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    Posture and body language

    There's a scene in the terrible (except for the late 193Os production design) mid-70s version of The Last Tycoon where Robert DeNiro & Jack Nicholsen are sitting side-by-side in director's chairs drinking coffee, DeNiro, a paragon of poise & elegance, and Nicholsen a classless cad, and it has...
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    Post your favorite poem

    What happens when one has too much time on his hands... [On His Blindness, by John Milton When I consider how my light is spent, Ere half my days in this dark world and wide, And that one talent which is death to hide, Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent To serve...
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    Post your favorite poem

    Reference Back by Philip Larkin Reference Back That was a pretty one I heard you call From the unsatisfactory hall To the unsatisfactory room where I Played record after record, idly, Wasting my time at home, that you Looked so much forward to. Oliver's Riverside Blues, it was. And...
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    Sign of the times: casual is king

    All I know is I took the 146 Bus up Michigan Avenue the other day at 6:OOpm, when the sidewalks were wall-to-wall people, and in the six blocks between the Chicago River & The Drake Hotel, I saw 2 suits & 1 tie. Maybe that's why yesterday's Crain's said the Paul Stuart store may be replaced...
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    Worst job you've ever had?

    My Meteoric Career at World Drug Store I had just totaled a borrowed new car that didn't belong to me--an uninsured car, I found out after the fact--and my pal & I had sat down and worked it out like grown-ups, even though we were still just out of college. I blamed him for not having told me...
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    Dark green suede shoes - what would you wear them with?

    I have a pair of dead-moss green suede Church's that I wear in the fall with anything that is A) fuzzy or scratchy and that B) comes anywhere close to the natural color of a dead oak leaf, whether that's tawny or nutmeg brown or russet or raisin. I was talked into buying them seven or eight...
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    Weekend Plans

    Well, Plan A was that I was going to take the back roads and drive down to visit some friends in the sleepy little downstate town where I spent a few years growing up, where we'd sit around and, basically, do nothing: play with the dog, walk to what's left of downtown, hit the local antique...
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    2nd Annual Seersucker Day...Post your pictures!

    There are a few of us in the Chicago Loop who wear seersucker on a fairly regular basis once the temperature goe above 8O. I've got suits in blue-gray & gray, a jacket in green and trousers in about six colors, which a woman in the office saw as I took them out of their shipping box, and then...
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    Weekend Plans

    Plan A was to head out of the city and go down to see friends who live in a big Craftsman-style farmhouse downstate, where they're hosting a houseful of out-of-town people, all leading up to a big cookout thing on Sunday. The catalpa & the horse chestnut trees should be in full bloom by then and...
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    Undershirt under white dress shirt

    I wear two t-shirts all year long. I'm in-& out-of-doors a lot in the summer, and a double layer of cotton prevents both perspiration & nipple show-through, and in winter it acts a base layer for two cashmere sweaters worn under my dress shirt for warmth. I wear the heaviest Oxford cloth I can...
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    BB-lack of inventory

    The same thing happened to me when I went into the new, improved Rookery store for the first time since its grand opening, except that I was looking for the same shirt in pink. They weren't in what seemed to be the logical spot on the shelves, so I approached the stylishly-dressed young guy...
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    Astonishing poll numbers

    I'm smart enough to know that I don't have the solution to the problems that face the country & the world today, but then, I'm an architectural historian & decorator, so I'm not supposed to have one. All I do know is that between the hard-core GWB Bush lovers who will always defend the president...
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    "Fighting over the ties that bind"

    I was going to say that newspaper feature writers have been re-writing this same stupid article for at least 3O years, but then I realized this particular writer wasn't just being lazy & recycling old cliches, he's acting as PR guy for a manufacturer. The Mandarin Collar Society (for...
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    Jos. A Bank Seersucker Pants

    Mine are here, or, at least the gray, pink, red & orange--and it's really orange here: think Home Depot--are here. Yellow & blue are on backorder. They showed up the next day in a big flat box via UPS. I had them sent to my office, and a coworker--a recent-hire, who's never seen me in...
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    Walter Reed conditions

    I am shocked--shocked!--to find these conditions here! That's the part that's weird about all this, how shocked & appalled those in charge are to 'discover' the terrible conditions that veterans have been griping about non-stop for years on end. I never served in the military--they don't want...
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    Trad at a nightclub?

    OK, this doesn't exactly address the original question... but I can't think of a better excuse to post this poem by Philip Larkin, who's sort of fallen from favor these days, although not with me. Reasons for Attendance The trumpet's voice, loud and authoritive, Draws me a moment to...
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    Anyone own any Italian clothing?

    I guess this is Italian--it made a pit stop at Goodwill before it landed in my closet--but I have an incredible Pal Zileri jacket with the softest shoulders I've ever worn, no vent, pockets you don't even notice unless you look really hard & the oddest fabric I've ever seen. It's some sort...
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    Trad at a nightclub?

    Here's another vote for dressing as you would for any other evening out. You may hate the joint you're going to, but that won't change by dressing--or trying to dress--like the regulars, and since you'll have to leave eventually, I'd much rather find myself looking good as I stumbled into an...
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    Favorite piece of summer tradliness?

    Chicago may be a 'northern' city but come summertime, it's hot & muggy as North Carolina--I was going to say 'hell' but that's probably more of a dry heat--and I fall back on seersucker suits, but last season, Brooks had a great quarter-lined seersucker jacket in lime green, and it instantly...
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    Is it too late in the season to buy an overcoat in NY?

    I noticed one gap in your itinerary: J. Press. I was in the city last week for the Winter Antiques Show up at the Armory, and when, midweek, a weird blue tinge in the clouds made me think we were going to get freezing rain, I stopped into their store next to Brooks Brothers on Madison for an...