Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Digging Deep: Cap'n Jazz

Cap'n Jazz broke up in 1995, when I was 4. They inspired many a band and loved to play music. Many members still play music via Joan of Arc. They repped Chicago hard.




Review: The Hundreds Dig Dug Sweatshirt

"Streetwear sucks" may be considered true by some and I will agree, some streetwear is of poor quality and fit, and just hands down isn't something anyone would wear. Of course, there are a couple gems here and there worth picking up. Certain sneakers and jeans come to mind but good sweatshirts (that I would wear) by these streetwear brands are few and far between. Most streetwear sweatshirts/hoodies fit baggy, have obnoxious color ways with zany designs that look appropriate on an 8th grader, and have the quality of a plastic bag from your local grocer. However, I think I hit something half-decent.

The Hundreds Dig Dug Crew Neck Sweatshirt:

Now, I can't tell you where to find this as I picked it up at Jackthreads.com (for those who don't know, it's a streetwear version of giltman.com) for dirt cheap, and I can't find anyone else who keeps it in stock. I'm not really sure when The Hundreds released this as when I inquired twice via email I received no answer (so much for customer service, huh). So as far as finding your own, you might be out of luck; unless Jackthreads.com throws up another The Hundreds sale.

The sweatshirt fits like a charm. It's long enough for my abnormal torso, with arms that do not over bunch at the wrist. It's got two ribbed panels at the side, allowing for more flexibility and for a better fit. The pocket on the chest is too small to keep anything, besides a set of keys but the detail is a nice accent to an otherwise boring sweatshirt. Above the pocket there is a tastefully embroidered The Hundreds logo. It should be noted that I purchased the sweatshirt in brown which looks much better than the black, I just couldn't find a picture in brown. Overall, the look and fit of the sweatshirt is exactly what I was hoping for.

The sweatshirt may not be as thick as some would hope as it's made out of a thinner cotton, but it's perfect for when I go snowboarding as I don't leave the slopes drenched in sweat. Having worn this on the slopes a few times, I feel that this is the perfect layering pierce under a parka. IF (a big big if) you can find it, I would recommend at least giving it a thought before you buy a LL Bean or JCrew sweatshirt.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Shoes: Old Adidas Ransom

You've probably already seen this. It's old hat, rotting on the grapevine, etc. I, however, have just stumbled upon (can I steal this phrase from LAS?) Adidas's Ransom via Full Clip.

I like Adidas shoes, as they have a European vibe without being "oh, look at me and my Euro-trash trainers". The Samba (I'd throw a link to Sart Inc.'s Samba post here but I'm too lazy), Rod Laver, Stan Smith, are all wardrobe staples for many men. You can't play tennis in Red Wings and you can't kick the ball around in Alden's. So I think it's fair to say that the Adidas brand has influenced the way men dress for the past few decades; they're by no means newbies re-interpreting old designs. The designs shown in this video, however, are Adidas recreations of other brand's shoes. I see: Common Projects, Danner, Russell, Creative Recreation, and maybe a few other influences. This is nothing new, nothing eye-catching, and says to me that Adidas wants a piece of the minimalist/boot pie. It's their attempt at taking someone else's bread and butter (everyone does this, I know). However, the pieces look clean and are probably of good quality. I wouldn't mind having a pair in my closet.

I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Review: Woolrich Flannel-Lined Chinos

I call chinos khakis. I don't know why, but chino never really made it into my dictionary. Even if the chino is navy blue, to me, it's a pair of khakis. Finding good fitting khakis has always been a bit of a problem for me. Finding good fitting jeans always seems easy, khakis on the other hand, is like trying to find a pinnacle for which you can't even get to the base camp. The worst are the ones that balloon around your butt. Bleh! In general, most of my khakis have sucked. Of course, I hadn't gotten Woolrich's Flannel-Lined Chino until last Christmas.


They're heavy, giving them a good fall against your leg, well-cut, as in a bit of a high rise with nice straight legs, and has anyone mentioned warm? The sew is very good, and they will probably last me quite a few more winters. Of course LL Bean makes a good flannel-lined chino, as I'm told by my father, but since I've found something that works...

Parting thoughts: I live near Woolrich PA. A factory tour really should be in order.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Ebay finds

With the flexibility of a debit card, I now troll the site known as ebay.com. There's always really good cheap stuff being sold there. I'm not sure why we need flea markets when we have things like ebay now. Hell, I don't even have to move an inch to find a LL Bean flannel for $9. Ebay may be taking the fun of the hunt in second-hand shopping, but it certainly is easier to find exactly what you want. Instead of swimming in a second hand suit, you can find something that might actually fit you (as long as you know how to measure yourself).
Enough endorsing ebay, now to the real stuff. Every now and then you come across those things on ebay that you would never come across anywhere else. This is an example of that:



Brutally, brutally cool, this old 1930's drumset is being sold here starting at $650. I can't believe how well maintained this drumset is. Despite some rusted hinges and bolts, everything is still intact, including the front bass drum head which is beautifully adorned with the band name. Googling "Art Jayson and his Orchestra" turned up nothing. While it's history is cloudy, this is a drum collector's dream.

I listen to bad music. Here's a composed letter that I sent concerning DDG's album creation. It may shed enlightenment in why so many bands sell-out and the truth is: they have to in order to keep playing music as a job.

Dear DDG,

It was my original intent to write you a letter that I felt expressed how Worse Than A Fairy Tale is one of the most under-appreciated albums that I know of. When I gave it it’s first listen, I thought Worse Than A Fairy Tale (WTAFT) was terrible. It lacked many things that In Vogue provided. Breakdowns are few and far between, guitars are dirty, and the vocals seem off, more whiney than before and after. I left WTAFT on the shelf for about a month, enjoying some crappy pop infused post-hardcore album more. Finally, figuring that I should give WTAFT a full listen to before I wrote it off as a lousy album, I threw it onto my iPod before a run. After that run that I never wanted to end, I was sold.

When your most recent album came out, it was obvious what had happened to the band. Hot ‘N Heavy was filled with crowd pleasers. Similar to In Vogue but with a bit more pop that was been syruping the industry for the past two or three years. While your most recent album is by no means bad, something you had on your previous album you lost some where in between albums. I understand that as a band, your livelihood is from shows and WTAFT is not a very live friendly album. But at the same time, you lost what made WTAFT different than almost every album out there.

Following this realization, I decided to go back and see what others said about WTAFT. iTunes reviews proved themselves to be unreliable. Some loved it and some hated it but almost all conveyed it through an unintelligible babble of caps and numbers. Searching websites proved more successful although provided more mellowing results, I found a review that labeled WTAFT as a cult classic. What? This amazing album is just a cult classic? While it relegated me to the label of fanboy playing video games in his underwear at 3 a.m., it made sense. The concept was very non-mainstream, as concept albums tend to get swept under the carpet unless they’re by Muse or Coheed & Cambria, and the content was very dissonant, a recipe to turn away most listeners.

So now we come to the major questions. Do you satisfy the alternative mainstream or do you cater to those who want you to tell a story? As a band, could you survive another concept album? If you continue to produce albums like Hot ‘N Heavy will you continue to headline tours or will you fall into nothingness? I understand that nothing is forever, especially not bands, but I’m under the impression that if you release an album with the same amount of creativity as WTAFT, you will be able to continue to be a band for sometime. Many bands think that if they create more mainstream work, it will allow them to reach more people who will be able to support their band. This theory seems to work for some, though I do not think it is a fact. In turn, those who believe that this is fact have muddied up the alternative music industry with music that sounds generally the same, creating a glob of bands that may just sink. While I understand that it may be the death of you, please make music that lets everyone know that you still care about producing albums (yes, I know the album is dead and that WTAFT did not sell as many copies as In Vogue) and not just songs to be played at a live show.


John Lugg


Sunday, December 6, 2009

Frozen Run

Frozen Run makes birch beer in Lycoming, Pennsylvania. It's top notch stuff. Adorned by it's classic logo, a black bear, the can gives basic info about the bear and it's habits. It has a lot more peppermint than a usual birch beer soda, making it taste a million times better for the holidays. My family has always been a big Coca-Cola family and I have only recently discovered this stuff, even though it's made only a half hour away from home. If you're passing through central PA, I recommend stopping by a Weis supermarket and picking up a six pack. It's extra sugary, so watch out! Go forth, support local businesses.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Thinkin' 'bout Summer

The chilly weather has me thinking about Summer. I wanna' kick back, with my canvas folding chair that is beautifully sun faded, drink a diet coke, and read some comic books in a fresh t-shirt.


And maybe after that, go canoeing on the Susquehanna with the Dad in some Visims.


After all that, play some ping-pong in some clean sneaks.


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Week before finals

Sorry, I've had a ton of work the past week and no end is in sight. The College Writing Seminar class at Juniata has pushed my tolerance of busy work.

Instead of reading a poorly written analysis of some random picture or item, I would recommend listening to some Toto. It's inspiring.

Friday, November 27, 2009


Post stolen and then shortened via dapper kid.


This is the picture they show in the Oki-ni store. What the hell. Verdict: bad taste.


This is the same garment but in a Velvet magazine photo-shoot. Verdict: hard to wear but shown here in good taste. I guess Oki-ni can really miss the boat with their photos.

In general, this garment is too hard to wear but the photo of it in motion makes it look pretty cool.

Parting thoughts: In follow up of AAW's post, I thought I'd leave you with this picture of a comment.


Woah, the internet isn't a floor for open debate?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Wants: Indulgences in bad taste

I like comic books, but comic books t-shirts are almost always a dip into the bad taste pool, including this one by The Hundreds.



Comic books don't translate well to clothing, you'll either end up looking like a kid who only leaves his basement for Wendy's or an Ed Hardy bro. I wear them anyway, although I typically disguise them under a half buttoned BD shirt and reveal my geekiness only upon request. That being said, I really like this shirt and Stan Sakai's work. I'm might have to blow my lunch money on this if I can get my hands on it.

What's good for some, isn't good for others.

I like Ralph Lauren. They make good shirts, khakis, suits, ties, and sweaters. While most of what Ralph Lauren sells, it on occasionally is inappropriately branded (see big pony). There are more obvious mishaps, and then there are subtle ones that, depending on the wearer, may or may not be off target. I think one of the best things about RL is that many pieces are staples. A man's wardrobe could be completely RL from it's selection of basic BD shirts, chinos, ties, jackets, suits, and even classic shoes, but I don't endorse this.



This shirt gets away from the RL wardrobe staple. It's a piece that is pulled out on occasion, just to add a little flair. If worn in this way, I think that this shirt could be worn in good taste, but if worn more than a couple times, I feel that this shirt may become "that shirt". You know, "that shirt" receives more eye rolls than a emoticon in an business email. Don't be pretentious, be subtly pretentious.

My call: Bad taste

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Schoolboy Blazer: American or English

Having spent some of my life at a boarding school, I feel that in someway, my view of education and its dress are different than one who attended a public school. As a high school senior, I had much more of a reverence for blazers than many a public schooler whose uniform, unchanging as mine, was blue jeans and a t-shirt. Every boy at Western Reserve Academy had at least two blazers. One green blazer for set aside green days (our school colors) and one blazer for non-green days. The days get confusing and I won't go into detail. I personally owned (and still do) multiple, but most owned a typical 3 or 2 button navy blazer with golden buttons.
An American invention (the gold buttons that is), it's an article of clothing that I associate very closely with boarding school and American traditions. Recently, I saw this blazer released by Band of Outsiders called the Schoolboy blazer.
Tweed, while a really cool fabric, was never for anyone at boarding school a staple. It was something you pulled out for those lazy Saturday mornings when you had to doze through a Virgil reading or trignometry lecture. While this certainly could be considered an English boy's school blazer, I would say that this is improperly titled. If you disagree with me, please argue with me, as I'm making a wide generalization from a specific experience I had. In other news, this blazer is cool like Kool-Aid after mowing the lawn.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Alaska and Me

Alaska and Me broke up last year when their van broke down for good. Being a band is a lot harder than one may think. Road food is unhealthy, shows are exhausting, and equipment is fickle. They had a Northwestern vibe to them that few bands have nowdays... but this video sucks. Too bad Jake Davis wasn't around to save the day.
Music = good taste
Video = bad taste

Good Taste via Cartoons

Get yo' WASP on!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Hundreds Denim

While APC would be the obvious choice, I'm debating whether to grab this pair of jeans for my next pair to break in over the winter months.



Do these jeans constitute bad taste? For me, there's a chance that I would be exercising a lack of taste by rocking these. I'm not really a skate park/big t-shirt/rap kid as I'm more of a flannel/rock&roll/bike kid. The Hundreds is a brand that has a really chill SoCal vibe. Surfing, skating, freestyling, and getting high is the image that they have built around their brand. I know that that's not me. I think here I've built enough reasons to not get these and spend a couple extra bucks for the New Standard APCs but the SoCal feel to these jeans attracts me, even if it's something I'm not. This specific cut is skinnier than The Hundreds typical cut and looks something like the 501 or the 514. I usually wear skinnies but I would definitely be down with a pair that's baggier than my 511s. Restraint is something I'm going to exercise so I don't end with jeans that look silly on me. While branding is stupid and shallow, people will judge you on the stitching on your back pocket. Your clothes represent so much about you that if you dress like a confused person, people will think that you haven't found what kind of person you are. Knowing who you are and what you can wear is exercising good taste.

Monday, November 16, 2009


I'm regretting not having a camera as of this weekend. I went with my teammates to see our faster counterparts race at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania and afterwards we went to Johnny's Deli in Bethlehem and had their famous bagels. Holy smokes, they make some mean bagels. I got two: a garlic bagel with salmon cream cheese spread and a plain bagel with blue berry cream cheese spread for dessert. The former blew my socks off with it's garlic-y and salty taste which made the salmon spread that much better. The plain bagel with blueberry spread, while not as awesome as the previous bagel, proved itself much better than a Dunkin' Donut bagel. Warm, fresh, and dripping blueberry hunks out of the melting cream cheese, the bagel just melted sweetly into my mouth (yeah, it sounds so gay but tastes so straight). Looking for pictures online, I only found an angry reviewer complaining about how the service there hit on women... stupid feminists ruining my view of a perfect shop (can I say that?). I wish I had a camera to show you my delicious meal. I wish my area had a good bagel shop. I wish...

Parting thoughts: I'm feeling the diner coffee mug. I'll have to steal one sometime.


Fedoras must be tread lightly around. There are few that can pull them off. I'm under the impression that more people can pull off the Canadian tux off than the fedora. Japan usually nails new interpretations but not this time. They take the already touchy fedora and make it cheaper and rattier looking. Sorry boys, try again. I won't be caught dead in this.


You can end up looking like a boner here.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Moon Boots

I have neglected the theme of my blog for, well, almost all of my posts. You may not have picked up that my blog was originally intended to feature bad taste but I ended up posting on stuff I thought was cool. Well, now, after +40 posts, I'm finally picking up where I intended this blog to go. I present you:


Brooks Brothers offers these on their online store. I'm not really sure who would wear these. Hipsters? Astronauts? Mountain climbers? They seem to be something one would order from Sierra Trader's in order to climb Everest. I can't imagine them being worn for any other purpose. Would you wear these? Would you wear these is you were older than 50? Would you wear these if you just need a warm boot to walk your dog in? Would you wear these with green eggs and ham? I would not wear these Sam I am.

Parting thoughts: Postal Service - good lyrics = Owl City

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Decisions, decisions...

When it comes to bags, I'm not the first to get a tote. They look cool and all but I like to ride my bike, a lot. This pretty much rules out getting a tote, so I do enjoy looking out for backpacks. I, after a year of using a crappy backpack I found in the attic, am finally getting a new bag. Now, surprisingly, there are a lot of (hip?) bags out there. Backpacks are apparently making a comeback (see Selectism) after getting the school boy label for a year or two. I'm game for a nice canvas bag, and here are some options. From an affordability stand-point, only two of these bags make the cut. But one can dream, right?
Dropped by Nonnative, this Mountaineer Daypack might be my favorite pack. It looks like an Orvis or Filson backpack, but lacks the structure, which I think sends a nice disheveled message. The quality should be good, you're paying a nice hefty sum of £315. That's $522. I think I'd rather not take out a loan for my college books, thanks.
Gotta' love red. This pack by Master-Piece would really make my jean jacket pop but I can't say that a rucksack has ever been good as a bookpack. It's cool, but once again the price tag, at $307, sends me packing.
Oh, now this is cool. Utilitarian, rugged, and just plain old simple: this bag kills. You have to love what Kanken has done here. I only have a 15" laptop but you can fit up to a 17" laptop in it. Given my tendency to carry around everything that I might need (Chapstick? Yeah, that's a little girly), I'll need the extra 2". At $99, it's the right price.
This Penfield backpack, while really cool, is a bit bold in my tastes. Penfield blanket print seems like it might be a bit of a fad. The indian print looks great on blankets, but I feel that 2 or 3 years down the road the backpack might feel fadish and contrived. But than again, at $99 it's certainly not breaking the bank. I could go for this pack, but my first pick would definitely be the Kanken.

Monday, November 9, 2009


Keeping posts uniform while having your HTML screw everything up gets difficult. I have been lazy cleaning up as of late and hope that won't happen again. Anyway, thought I'd share a company based out of Minnesota, although outsources to China. Minnehaha makes bike bags that hang around the back of your bike seat. The shown model is $69.97, cheap for a bike specific bag. The construction is excellent, made of thick double layered cloth and supported with a wood bar. The straps are made of good leather that have aged well for me. There are a few problems: you can't fit a two liter in there and the buckle holes are too tight to strap the buckle in at first but break in with time. You can waterproof you bag with different treatments but avoid oils, as they can ruin the leather. They're good cheap bags but that's because they're made in China. I would advise a purchase if you ride a bike that needs a small bag and you're OK with outsourced products.

Parting thoughts: This post got me thinkin' it's time to bike before it gets too cold.

Sunday, November 8, 2009


It's November. I demand snow by December. That way I can go snowboarding by the time I'm back home for the Holidays.

Also: Shampoo daily? Or every other day?

Thursday, November 5, 2009


The white sneaker is a staple. GQ endorses it, ACL endorses it, hell, the kid down the street does too. Of course when winter rolls around, the dirty sneakers get put in the closet. White sneakers, be they canvas or leather, just aren't built to stand up to snow and keep your feet warm. Winter has traditionally been reserved for the boot. While I love boots, they can sometimes be too heavy on those days between the first snow and an actual snow base. On these days I go for *drumroll*... my Reebok Workout Mids.


"Why would you wear these?" you ask. "They'll get filthy in winter, they don't look like something a skinny jeans/button-up guy would wear, and you certainly don't play basketball. These are actually the most comfortable shoes I wear and they are indeed filthy. Unlike a Vans or Sperry, you certainly can't wear this shoe with shorts and without socks (should go without saying). I bought these off final-score.com last year for $29.99. Sorting through the perpetually bad sneakers, mostly rejects from the sneaker freaks, I found these. They don't scream "awesome" but when I read the comments I was hooked. One man said he had been wearing these for the past 10 years working at a Ford factory. Another said that they wore these when working on his garbage truck. Being a person that thinks workwear is pretty cool (like 90% of other bloggers, right?), I purchased these even though these were made in Indonesia. While they look very silly during the first few wears, once they brown, they look as loved as your first pair of Chucks. They're killer, in my opinion, and I'd be interested to see if anyone else owns pieces of clothing that are not typical ACL wear. Non-blogged items can add so much character to your wardrobe, and while it's shallow, set your apart from the crowd.

Monday, November 2, 2009

LL Bean Trim Fit


Wrinkle-free shirts have been given a terrible rap as gross and chemically. While it is true that some have been irreversibly altered, for some shirts you can wash the chemicals out. For example, this LLBean trim fit will be soft and chemical-less in about 7-8 washes. Having worn two of these for both years of prep school, I can attest for their quality. They don't fit super slim as they fit similar to Brooks Brother's slim fit. I certainly don't swim in them. And really, for $29.50, you won't worry when you eat spaghetti sauce. I would recommend at least getting one and remember, frumpy takes time.

Sunday, November 1, 2009


Being a college cross country runner, I drink a lot of Gatorade. It was probably cooler when it was out of a glass bottle.

Thursday, October 29, 2009



With the blogosphere mostly just posting about certain pieces that can be worn with hundreds of different clothes (in case you haven't noticed, disposable style is not our mantra), I think there is one aspect of how we wear our clothes that I get the feeling gets occasionally overlooked. Color is generally something that we stay very basic with as the pictured man above demonstrates. He goes with a nice red and blue colorway, mainly playing with one palette. No reason to overthink it, that would be silly and slightly unmasculine, however, wearing greys and blacks can get (pun intended?) drab. Everyday, I try to throw something on that pops. For instance, the man above (in case you couldn't tell, I got that from the sartorialist; now that's a man who pays attention to color) would look dull without his red cardigan. By all means, a man should be understated, lest he look the fool, but color makes dressing everyday less boring. I'm under the personal opinion that a man should have several colors to choose from in his wardrobe. By having many different colors, he in turn opens up many more ways to wear his clothes. For example, I own a blue khaki shirt that just looks boring with jeans, but pops when worn with light khakis or with a red undershirt. I don't need twenty different khakis or red t-shirts, just one or two khakis and one red shirt. By having these color options I just opened up three more ways to wear my shirt. I'm under the opinion that we should limit our clothing but never limit our colors. My parting thoughts to you: diversify your palette, it makes dressing in the morning, believe it or not, easier.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I own two Ketch neckties. They are both rip-offs of traditional designs sold by stores like JPress and Brooks Brothers. One is paisley and the other is university stripe.They are both made of cheap material but don't look cheap when wore due to their lackluster shine (their polyester isn't showing out). I like 'em but you might only be able to find them in thrift stores. I'm not sure who carries them and I can't seem to uncover much about them.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Secret Forts

This post is SO COOL.

Berries in the bushes...



Ok, I'm going to lay-off these types of posts for awhile. It was really a celebration of the fact that I'm finally hosting my own pictures now and not feeding off others.
I'll be back posting stuff I find neat, and maybe a little odd, in a day or two. Also, the spacing is very intentional.