I love fashion but I hate you.

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el solitario coveralls reminds you how pathetic your life is

The shittiest thing about being a blogger is the lack of a uniform. I think more people would volunteer for dangerous/shitty jobs if the uniform were awesome. Imagine some janitor decked out in Jil Sanders. You’d be grabbin’ that broom, too, my dude.

Put that uniform thought in the back of your head for a second and then ponder this: workwear is imploding. It’s not good enough to look like an 19th Century miner ever sinse Daniel Day poured that milkshake on the yard in There Will Be Blood and Amazing Moody Music. Jeans and a flannel? How Cobain of you. Now you gotta rock the full coverall like the most stylish dude in “Pimp My Ride.”

That’s why I’ve been bookmarking the El Solitario Coveralls in every iPad I play with in the Apple Store. El Solitario is what the ideal version of you would wish he could be, if your ideal version of you still wasn’t a huge disappointment. The blog is like an MIA video — just pics of women, motorcycles, and doing crazy things in the desert. But unlike MIA they seem like the real deal. And even if they’re not they still have the amazing coverall. Japanese selvedge blah blah you know all the usual shit us bloggers drool over.

Now think about this: bring forth that seed about uniforms from the back of your mind. Imagine now a uniform for bloggers. Selvedge denim El Solitorio X PMG Bloggers Coverall. The map chest pocket could be used to store iPhones/cigarettes. Cinch at the waist for when your ad share revenue is low that month. Long sleeves for when you need to wipe away the tears from nasty comments from mall ninjas.

Almost makes me want to do something useful with my hands besides blogging and artificially inseminating cows. Ah who am I kidding I love cows.

 

dispatches from the dark, part 2

The sun set with the timing of a doting parent. Time to head back. Time to get home before it got too dark. We made a quick run for last minute supplies, skittering about like post-apocalyptic tribesmen, then hopped a cab back into the Dark Zone. Down south, the darkness runs thick.

The line of demarcation is 25th street, and it is as sharp as a meridian. The streets are black-black. Looking down one block is like looking deep down a shrouded, moonless forest path. Shadows creep out and up and form an impenetrable archway. It is largely deserted. Those few you encounter are like specters — moving ethereally, quickly, sometimes glowing from a flashlight, often hooded or cloaked. A scan of building windows reveals no activity, like the buildings themselves are skeletons. It’s a strange sensation to pass a building or facade that you recognize intrinsically, but now has been obliterated by the blackout. Even the structures are like ghosts.

The taxi isn’t so much a car as a blockade runner. Intersections blur by and we can’t help but gaze down at the abyss. Each crossroad is an exercise in life and death. The only lights are from cars, and the occasional reflective vest. I can’t help but wonder what it is like much deeper into the Dark Zone.

We’re jettisoned at our stop and scamper out like infantry abandoned on a far coast, double timing across the street. In the building, one last obstacle: a steep, utterly dark staircase ascent. But back in the apartment, we peer back down at the darkened streets, the small lights glowing like cast off embers.

We lit a smattering of candle then retreated back to bed. It has gotten very cold, like the weather knew it was time to lay down winter on us.

oh, sandy. (dispatches from the dark, part 1)

 

At about 8:30pm, we lost power. You never know what to do when the lights finally go. It’s like reading a book on how to change your tire, and then suddenly finding yourself on a turnpike with the iron in your hand. We lit candles and drank and stood around, prehistoric-style, looking at the flames. I went into survival mode. I compulsively checked and rechecked supplies, water stores, rates of candle consumption. I experimented with what lighting arrangements yielded the most light. At one point curiosity got the better of me and I donned my Burberry and went to the roof. The storm was a layer cake of calm, then wet, then utter wind. It slapped the hat off my head and glared at me in the dark. It chased me off the roof. Back under, we experimented with the guitar and story telling. What little stored electricity we had we spent on incessant tweeting and music. All and all, it was a small party. We stayed up, fueled by alcohol, but found that in natural darkness the urge to sleep was very powerful.

—–

The next morning we wandered out. It is a testament to capitalism that, without shops open due to the outage and lack of workers, people didn’t know what to do with themselves. We just milled about, somewhat curious but mainly not sure what to do with ourselves. Use whichever analogy works. We were zombies. Or prisoners out on the yard. We wandered, slowly, hiking north towards civilization.

I dressed like a hiker. Tall Redwing boots, jeans, a waxed jacket and vintage rucksack, filled with nothing. We headed north with the rest of humanity and foraged primarily for coffee. Street after street and shop after shop was shuttered, but people all generally were in high, if confused, spirits. None talked of anything but the storm. At a friend’s apartment’s lobby, a generator hummed and stank up the space with gasoline. A half dozen phones were jammed into the only live socked in the whole building. News wasn’t good: could be days before power returned.

North of 26th street power functioned but a lack of staff meant still closed shop doors. A strange sight: Starbucks coffee shops with people clinging to the outside. Perhaps mindless zombies returning to their old habits? No. Wireless networks in the shops were still broadcasting, and users congregated outside.

The most valuable thing in the city now is a live power source. We stowed ourselves at a bar on 33rd and every outlet had been sniffed out and crammed with power plugs, each charging a phone. I found one and my phone drank happily. In Manhattan, survival food isn’t MREs or canned goods, it’s chicken strips and Guinness and onion rings. The football game was on.

 

 

Photo credit.

thom browne X neiman marcus X target X WTF X help my ‘X’ button is stuck

Right on the heels of my recent “review” (I say review in quotes because “I” don’t “know” how quotes w”ork”), the guy drops a Target collab right at the feet of the Alter of Cheap And Awesome, complete with blood offering to the God of Cop That Shit Right Now and Cthulu.

It’s part of a wider initiative with Neiman Marcus and Target, one that includes Daniel Plainview favorite rag & bone and brand-with-the-name-of-an-indie-band Band of Outsiders.

Target is definitely trying to corner the #menswear market, what with the recent Odin offering and rumors abound that soon there will be a Tide X Junya Watanabe collection, that Target team members will now be required to smoke outside while being photographed by Tommy Ton, and that the pretzels and nachos sold in the cafeteria will soon be made of cordovan leather.

 

thom grey still hella green.

It’s no secret that I am all UP on Thom Browne. I’ve got a bunch of his shirts and jackets (procured through sample sales, warehouse sales, drug trafficking, murder, etc.) But du’s stuff is hella** expensive. So Mr. Browne has since birthed his diffusion line, Thom Grey (by the way, shouldn’t a diluted “Browne” be “Light Brown”, or “Tan?” Anywayz.)

The stuff is nice. Very Browne, or rather, Grey. It’s like the Thom Browne man’s teenage son got into his dad’s stuff, then decided to pull on his letterman before playing chicken with the Puerto Ricans in the canal. Lots of oxfords and suit pants and ties, but then also some rugby shirts and scarves. It’s like when you try to go and hang out with your younger friends who are still in college but you’ve graduated and gotten a job and you’re still trying to match them shot for shot but you haven’t played Guitar Hero in forever so you totally suck and the guitar is doing that weird twanging thing and you’re getting really sleepy even though it’s only 11:00 and oh god now they want to go to Jack in the Box and you’re realizing that you’ll have to sleep on the nasty ass couch and why is the TV even set up on the ottoman and all you want to do is crawl back to the ‘burbs and drink some water and fall asleep watching Criminal Minds.

The other thing is price. Grey is expensive. It’s still almost two bills for an oxford shirt, which, yes is cheaper than $400 for a regular Thome Browne shirt but that’s like saying that you’re switching to Russian caviar because the cost of whale placenta has gone through the roof.

I’m not quite sold on it. It’s probably my 99-percent-er upbringing, but if you’re swinging hundreds of thousands of dollars for cotton, you might as well save up just a tiny bit more from your investment banking job (cut back to just two trips to Spearmint Rhino a week, perhaps) and get up to the good stuff.

Maybe Mr. Browne will do a thing with Target, like Odin did. That would be fucking awesome. Champion X Thom Browne sweatshirts. Merona X Thom Browne sweaters. High water, pleated, fleece Polartec pants??

A guy can dream.

 

**Hella. /hel-ah/ adverb: A term I picked up during my days in the San Francisco Bay Area. Used to remind myself that I, once, hung out with Filipino gangsters.

rule no. 7

Rule number seven of being a private eye is never fess up to what you’re doing while on assignment, even if you’re caught pants down flaming lipped red handed. Never. Deny as long as you can. If that doesn’t work play dumb. If that doesn’t work, play dead. I once was apprehended outside this dame’s place while she was sucking off her husband’s business partner by these two friendly, respectful, no good sons of bitches in blue. They were shaking me down as hard as they could and if I were a tree I’d have dropped coconuts, but I kept repeating, “I’m just passing through.” After they got tired of beating the shit out of me they let me go sure enough. No coconuts for them. Sons of bitches.

It’s why nowadays I’ll not wear my nice Florsheims unless it’s a real casual, safe type of deal. Most other things can be mended up — shirts, jackets, trousers, ties, even your face if it’ll make you feel better. But once shoes are blown they’re blown forever and not even Gepetto can make them dance for you. I’ve gone through five pairs of Florsheims and I’m down to my last one ever since the factory of theirs closed down and they moved their operation to Toronto. These babies have to last until I’m a door stop.

Rule number eight is never get caught without a hat.

 

 

Photo via Monsieur Jerome.