Tuesday, May 22, 2012

January (capsule) - A Retrospectornomereif...whatever

I’ve been sitting on this post for some time. I could’ve put it out right when I got back from NY 5 months ago, but I decided to wait for various reasons. One reason is because I think the internet reacts too quickly and that some things need time to be seen properly. The other reason is because I'm real lazy and forgetful.

People often complain about the #menswear industry by saying things like, “it’s a circle jerk”. Before my experience at (capsule) I assumed that these people were just grouchy old hermits who had a bit of hard luck.

Upon rolling into the building looking like I got lost, which I was for a time, I noticed something was up. All the men in the building looked like their hair had been caught in a vicious hurricane and if they weren’t careful, it would blow off like a toupee. I walked back outside to see what had happened to the weather between the time I had walked inside and the time I got my hokey lookin’ bracelet. It was pretty nice out and Aeolus wasn’t active enough to blow anyone’s hair in that manner. This detail began to raise my suspicions that something was weird about this place.

I walked back inside and proceeded to the first room. Not much to see there. Just some expensive thrift store finds and a smell similar to my Grandmother’s house – the one that lives in Ohio and on a farm.

I walked into the second room and smelled it immediately: a recent wank. Actually, almost the entire place smelled like a recent wank (except for the woodland room, that just smelled like a big honkin’ pile of mulch). Even the music they played reminded me of that time when I was coming back from class and I walked into my room and… Uh, never mind.

Various groups of people gathered around the popular booths playing the “muffin game”, which explained a lot. Monitaly and Ovadia and Sons were popular booths to participate in, apparently, everyone’s favorite game*.


- A post-"muffin game" photo.

I was condescended to an uncountable number of times. People actually act like this? I had never met a group of people so snotty. A marketing director called me “Boss” four times in four sentences, which I would’ve considered a commendable feat if I hadn’t been so offended at the time. He represented a company that took old rugs and blankets and repurposed them into expensive bags. Which is a lot of green to be green. Is that even green? My Mom has some old rugs and blankets lying around. I’ll have to see if this company wants to buy a few and my Mom will have some extra cash to go with my Dad out to Applebee’s. It’ll be a date. If you’re ever there you should try the Cowboy Burger. It looks like the current middle-class America – sad, sloppy, pale, and with little hope of becoming something great and respected – but it tastes like contentedness, which I suppose is like middle-class America too. (capsule) was the sort of place that would make you miss something like a Cowboy Burger.

(capsule) was a big circle jerk. But when looking at most industries that are like #menswear, I’m sure you’ll see exactly the same thing. Is jerking a necessary component of success? Maybe.

Shout out to the few people who did treat me with a bit of kindness. I don’t endorse products but I wish you the best for you and your brand.

As I rode the bus home, I realized that spending a day at (capsule) turned me into a Veblen sympathizer. Money begot money. Productive begot useless consumption. But after 5 months I got over it and accepted reality. Frankly, I didn’t care enough to make a fuss. Now that I had my answer to the question, “Is #menswear a big circle jerk?” I discovered I had a new one: do I want to get some lube or not?

*The muffin brand name “Otis Spunkmeyer” actually makes sense now.

Friday, May 18, 2012


John: Rebellion and being a “quirky jerk” in general have an odd place in society and has not been entirely defined. This “quirky jerk” is progressive to some, so containing value, and disruptive to others, detracting value or whatever crap. Does society have an end other than constant progression? If you answered “yes”, then these “quirky jerks” can really drive you nuts. But whatever, these “quirky jerks” like splurging on stupid stuff like incense sticks or socks or shoes(?). It’s the “quirky jerk” who would splurge on something like Cazal glasses. Cazal glasses could be progressive to some. But if you’re hoping we’re moving to a place of post-materialism then perhaps not. Societal value is hard to define and grasp, as is a coherent paragraph about Cazal’s value. Even years after their introduction, I haven’t got a clue what exactly Cazal gives society - differentiation from all those people wearing fake tortoise shell Ray-Ban’s? Follow me, and we’ll wade through the fog of my narration and occasional interjections from Sam.

Cazal glasses are really cheesy. Big surprise right?

Sam: this is the dubest article ever why cant we right about warby parker they actually have cool glasses for sale and they just dropped a lookbok

John: If you want to follow the crowd then you’re more than welcome. This article is about being a “quirky jerk”, remember?

Sam: oh john your soo cool and rebellios

John: I had no idea you were capable of sarcasm.

Sam: ok heres the rundown cazal started in the 60s by this dude named cari zalloni

John: Right, and from there he designed some iconic (quick, call the cops! I’ve sold out) frames. The 951 and 955 were pretty big during the 80s.



The 8003 and 8004 are some Rick Ross style pieces. Late 90s rap throwbacks, y’know? The 607 and 616 are on some Asian furniture designer levels.




 Cazal was very popular with rappers, B Boys, and new money attorney’s in the late 80s and the very beginning of the 90s. Check out this song about stealing Cazals. Or don't, it's not particularly good.

Sam: WHY ARE WE TALKING ABOUT HESE THEY ARE STUPIDE AND UGLY I cant believe I did research for this post

John: The Vintage Cazal glasses are on something else. I’m not sure if Cari Zalloni is a good designer or not. I mean, given the price tag I’m sure that these are great quality, but the design choices are meant to make people aware that you are wearing glasses. If you want something more reserved just hit up Cazal regular collection. There are some atrocious Dollar Store frames but some gems in the rough. “Quirky jerk” sums these frames up for me. They’re large, clunky, claim great design, and great for those who might not be looking for long-term commitment.


Sam: these are so ujgly
You realize how expensive these are for a bunch of ugly holly guacamole

John: Yes, but I think that might be the point.

Monday, May 7, 2012


The shiner walked specifically through the tunnel as his shoes ick-ick-ick’d along the floor. The squeak was a product of dry sneakers, which is funny for a man who took care of others shoes.

The shiner was ick-ing along to a neighbor hood where his skills were needed. A place where men knew some old secrets which once benefitted society but harbored ideologies of centuries past. Ludditown it was called. The man arrived at his spot: the subway stop for the neighbor hood. Just as he arrived he heard the coming of a train.


The train rambled making noise erratically. The train pulled into sight as bodies of young men flew up and down – like Animaniacs – as they pumped a jigger. Coming into the stop, both stopped and began to yank on the brake that would slow down the single car that they pulled behind them. The car had no roof and looked vaguely like that boat in that movie. Y’know the one with the kid and the crazy guy and the chocolate factory and the scary orange guys? Yea, that one.


The train scraped to a stop.

Several scrambled out and they stumbled over those who remained. By this time the shiner had already set up shop. A man looked at the shiner and walked over. He looked a proper Luddite, one who could very well live up to the neighborhood’s name. He had grease in his hair; starch in his shirt, far too much frayed fabric in his wool trousers, and suspenders that hiked his pants past his navel.

The man plopped himself down with a resounding:


The kind of unintentional noise that even Grandma would smile at.

The man flopped his shoe’d feet into the face of the shiner. The shiner halked up a large lugie he had been storing since breakfast and, with little deliberation, spat it upon the man’s shoes. PLOP! Using a dirty rag the shiner rubbed the shoes clean. The spit corrected the corrected leather.

The man paid, got up and left. The shiner sat there waiting for another customer who needed his corrected leather corrected.

Some people aren’t just borne back ceaselessly into the past. Some people bornded… borned?... boobed?... Well, that one isn’t right… beared?

Well anyway, some people row like the dickens (haha, get it?) to that green light. It’s at the end of the tunnel. Or at least that’s what I heard from a man wearing corrected leather. Pfff. What a cheeseball. Everyone knows that you have to go all the way or not even bother at all. Dabblers have no place in society. Except the part when they’re our society.

Saturday, May 5, 2012


“You and me guy, we’re gonna’ grow old together.”
The man sat with a new pair of pants next to him.
“We’ll grow old together and we’ll be trustworthy and I’ll you everything. We’ll be BFFs!”
The pants sat and looked awkward.
“Here, have some of your coffee!” the man exclaimed and poured some coffee down the pant’s fly.
The pants sat and looked awkward and wet.
The man pulled out his computer and wrote about how the pants would grow old with him and they’d have lots of stories to tell and how he’d wear them every day and never wash them and how the pants would whisker and how they'd have adventures and how they'd carry him through life like a trustworthy friend and how he'd spill stuff on them but the pants would still hang out with him and how all his other friends sucked and how the pants would go through bitter rejection of girls but more hopefully they'd be there for the successes but mostly just bitter rejection.