Semper Jeep

Senior Member
979
United States
Michigan
Bloomfield Hills
If you only want to go to Canada or other North American countries, you could instead get a passport card. It's a little cheaper.
https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/apply-renew-passport/card.html
This is what my parents use
Is a passport now required for a US citizen to pass through Ontario? :icon_scratch: We didn't used to have to do that!
As UteLawyer mentioned, you can use a "passport card" and that's what my parents have used for a few years now without issue. I occasionally travel internationally for work though so I'll just stick to the traditional passport.

FWIW, I don't think I've ever once been asked for my passport when going into Canada, it's only the CBP on the American side who ever want to see it.
 

eagle2250

Connoisseur/Curmudgeon Emeritus - Moderator
32,064
Harmony, FL
United States
Florida
Harmony
^^
I guess with the current geopolitical realities, to include the threat of international terrorism, I can appreciate the changes, but was just surprised, given my experiences in the early 1980's. To be honest, I reflect longingly on "the good old days!" ;)
 

mlenecare

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
135
United States
illinois
lemont
Wow, what a great place. It was overwhelming - there was so much stuff just on the main floor. Ethan and the crew were great in helping me try on a large list of items. I happened to be in Erie, PA and the 4 hour round trip drive was totally worth it.

I’ve been pondering buying another suit. I’d love to hear thoughts on the fit. It seems to fit well off the rack with the normal adjustments. I wasn’t sure if the shoulders were boxy or not.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
This is my first post so I feel like this is a strange time to chime in but, as I’m reading this I’m waiting to get on a flight to Erie, Pa right now and this thread is Making me considering making the drive.

Long time lurker first tome poster. Good to finally say hello.
 

never behind

Senior Member
876
United States
IN
Zionsville
This is my first post so I feel like this is a strange time to chime in but, as I’m reading this I’m waiting to get on a flight to Erie, Pa right now and this thread is Making me considering making the drive.

Long time lurker first tome poster. Good to finally say hello.
Less than 2 hour drive. Pretty easy. I felt it was well worth it!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

TKI67

Super Member
1,218
United States
Texas
Austin
Thank you for the photos and you/they are right, there is definitely a method to their madness.

I try to make it out there once a year or so (this reminds me that I need to renew my passport so I can cut through Ontario and head back over there again soon) and I was definitely overwhelmed on my first trip there about a decade ago but you can ask for anything and they immediately know where to find it, even old deadstock stuff that you might be looking for.

I've never been to Cable Car Clothiers in San Francisco but I imagine it to have a similar, maybe less cluttered, vibe as O'Connell's.
It has been many years since I was in Cable Car Clothiers, but it was, at the time, very sedate and orderly, more like a Brooks Brothers of the late seventies.
 

Redasp

Starting Member
1
United States
KS
Wichita
This is the best trad/classic store in the U.S. So much stock in the store and knowledge with John and Ethan. I’ve been going there one day a year for the past 8 years when I’m in Buffalo on business. John and Ethan always know me on sight even though I’m a small sale and there 1 day a year. Always so much fun talking with the guys and watching John jerk trouser after trouser out from under the stacks. Quality investment goods that are unavailable elsewhere. Please don’t ever repair the cane chair in the dressing room.
 

JLibourel

Honors Member and King Fop
6,020
United States
California
Long Beach
Even though I hate traveling with a passion, those pictures of O'Connell's makes me somewhat rueful that I will never get to Buffalo.

I have to wonder how much longer a wonderful men's store like that can last.
 

Flanderian

Connoisseur
24,066
United States
New Jersey
Flanders
Even though I hate traveling with a passion, those pictures of O'Connell's makes me somewhat rueful that I will never get to Buffalo.

I have to wonder how much longer a wonderful men's store like that can last.
As long as we keep buyin'! :happy:

But seriously, having had some experience with business succession, your concerns are well placed. Smaller businesses such as O'Connell's rarely survive beyond their second generation of ownership, and more typically, past their first.

The nature of the original ownership is critical in influencing this, and most such businesses are either sole proprietorships or partnerships. The first generation has the vision and the energy, but for the second its old-hat, and due to the first generation's success, they find themselves less willing to make the personal sacrifices needed to run the business in the same way.

For example, a man has a business, his sons who were brought into the business as partners inherit it. The business is situated in valuable real estate they own. One son wants to continue the business as is, the other wants to cash out the real estate and do something else.

Alternately, some business not only succeed, but grow during subsequent ownership. These then can become victims of their success by becoming targets of capital partnerships who mainly just wish to exploit the name. I.e., Jos A Bank.
 

Fading Fast

Connoisseur
10,129
United States
New York
NY
⇧ New York City loses many small, family businesses to the real estate "cash out" every year and, sad as I am to see them go, you can't blame the owners.

Just last year, we lost a ~100 year old German bakery that was very successful (very busy all the time), but the two great grandsons (I think I have the right generation) wanted to retire and, while there was a niece who wanted to take over, the grandsons needed to sell the real estate to have money to retire.

They looked into having the niece take a mortgage out to pay the grandsons, but then she couldn't make the economics of the business work as it wasn't profitable enough to come close to covering the proposed mortgage.

To be honest, the economics of the business weren't really working for, probably, decades in that the owners (the grandsons) could have stopped working 12+ hour days /6 days a week years ago by either selling the building and investing the money or renting the building out to another business at a market-rate rent.

In either case, they'd have made more than they did running the bakery. In truth, they were losing money every year they kept the bakery open versus what they could have made selling (and investing the proceeds) or renting the building out. The bakery (and all its hard work) was, effectively, a hobby.

It's a shame, but the "downside" to New York City (and many areas) massive rally in real estate over the past decades has been to price small businesses out of the city.
 
Last edited:

Flanderian

Connoisseur
24,066
United States
New Jersey
Flanders
⇧ New York City loses many small, family businesses to the real estate "cash out" every year and, sad as I am to see them go, you can't blame the owners.

Just last year, we lost a ~100 year old German bakery that was very successful (very busy all the time), but the two great grandsons (I think I have the right generation) wanted to retire and, while there was a niece who wanted to take over, the grandsons needed to sell the real estate to have money to retire.

They looked into having the niece take a mortgage out to pay the grandsons, but then she couldn't make the economics of the business work as it wasn't profitable enough to come close to covering the proposed mortgage.

To be honest, the economics of the business weren't really working for, probable, decades in that the owners (the grandsons) could have stopped working 12+ hour days /6 days a week years ago by either selling the building and investing the money or renting the building out to another business at a market-rate rent.

In either case, they'd have made more than they did running the bakery. In truth, they were losing money every year they kept the bakery open versus what they could have made selling (and investing the proceeds) or renting the building out. The bakery (and all its hard work) was, effectively, a hobby.

It's a shame, but the "downside" to New York City (and many areas) massive rally in real estate over the past decades has been to price small businesses out of the city.
Fascinating! Thank you! I hadn't fully considered the role that real estate appreciation plays in the destruction of some wonderful small businesses.

I am currently reading Ron Chernow's very extensive and enjoyable biography of Alexander Hamilton. I had not had any idea of the extent to which he personally created the American economic system.

And in discussions or debates about the desirability of this system, I find views defending it as being composed of the immutable principles of the universe handed-down on tablets; the adherence to which is tantamount to religious observance, and the questioning of which is spitting in the face of God. And, of course, it's nothing of the kind. Hamilton was well aware when he created much of the underpinnings of this system of the problems inherent in it, and the need to intervene in its functioning, or modify it, in circumstances where it is proving destructive.
 

WA

Honors Member
3,973
United States
WA
Bellingham
The niece could have, I suppose, bought the name and equipment and start somewhere else, because the quality of the food is already established as very good. The grandparents didn't start in an expensive estate location. Therefore, she doesn't need to, either.
 

eagle2250

Connoisseur/Curmudgeon Emeritus - Moderator
32,064
Harmony, FL
United States
Florida
Harmony
Fading Fast and Flanderian, I found your post(s) #29 and 30, respectively, both interesting and very informative. You both are very thoughtful and well read gentlemen! Thank you for enlightening me regarding the financial dynamics impacting the potential closure of our favored men's shops. ;)
 

Fading Fast

Connoisseur
10,129
United States
New York
NY
The niece could have, I suppose, bought the name and equipment and start somewhere else, because the quality of the food is already established as very good. The grandparents didn't start in an expensive estate location. Therefore, she doesn't need to, either.
I think that's a smart idea, but the challenge - just my guess - is that there would be no location anywhere nearby that didn't have insanely high rent for a bakery. Also, they not only had an avenue-facing location (much more valuable than a side street), but a lot of square footage as they had a both a good-sized retail area and a full bakery in the back (and extensive basement storage).

I hear your thought, but in a way, no matter where the niece looked, the real-estate issue would still be a big challenge. She could have tried to separate the two, as many bakeries in NYC do, and put the actual baking equipment off sight in a cheaper area and then rent a smaller retail location in NYC. Again, just my guess, but she probably wanted to take over the existing location - it was very cool - and run it as it had been run; doing some of the other things might not have felt like she was really keeping the business going.

To that point - see these pics of the bakery. In a way, Glaser's wouldn't be Glaser's in any other location and building.
Glasers-Bake-Shop-6sqft-1.jpg
122blackandwhiteglasersinterior.0.jpg
 

Matt S

Connoisseur
8,042
United States
NY
New York
The niece could have, I suppose, bought the name and equipment and start somewhere else, because the quality of the food is already established as very good. The grandparents didn't start in an expensive estate location. Therefore, she doesn't need to, either.
The bakery wasn’t in the most expensive part of New York City, so she’d need to leave New York to continue, and the reputation was a local one. The only way for it to have continued would have been for a larger company to buy them out and create a chain out of it.
 

mlenecare

Active Member with Corp. Privileges
135
United States
illinois
lemont
Every time I go back to NYC I find more of my favorite little places have closed. Like Glaser's many of them are old and have become local institutions. Things change and I accept that but what makes it so depressing is there are not new places like this opening. "The rent is too damn high."
It really saddens me to see New York lose so much of its character but what can one do?
 

Flanderian

Connoisseur
24,066
United States
New Jersey
Flanders
I think that's a smart idea, but the challenge - just my guess - is that there would be no location anywhere nearby that didn't have insanely high rent for a bakery. Also, they not only had an avenue-facing location (much more valuable than a side street), but a lot of square footage as they had a both a good-sized retail area and a full bakery in the back (and extensive basement storage).

I hear your thought, but in a way, no matter where the niece looked, the real-estate issue would still be a big challenge. She could have tried to separate the two, as many bakeries in NYC do, and put the actual baking equipment off sight in a cheaper area and then rent a smaller retail location in NYC. Again, just my guess, but she probably wanted to take over the existing location - it was very cool - and run it as it had been run; doing some of the other things might not have felt like she was really keeping the business going.

To that point - see these pics of the bakery. In a way, Glaser's wouldn't be Glaser's in any other location and building.
View attachment 31565 View attachment 31566
Thanks for the great photos!

What a shame! 1902! A hundred and seventeen years down the c*****r!

Not that it's in any way comparable, but independent bakeries everywhere are dying. The few that have subsisted around here have fallen victim to supermarket bakeries. 20 years ago there was an authentic French bakery in a nearby town run by French natives. Gone 15 years! And the stuff the supermarkets sell is dreck! Looks great, tastes like BLAH!
 

WA

Honors Member
3,973
United States
WA
Bellingham
Well, a new location would require all new customers.
Maybe we need a democrat president to bring the prices down by high taxes that brings a recession. That will bring prices down as companies go bust and employees are let go.
Well, so much for the humor.
 

Fading Fast

Connoisseur
10,129
United States
New York
NY
Thanks for the great photos!

What a shame! 1902! A hundred and seventeen years down the c*****r!

Not that it's in any way comparable, but independent bakeries everywhere are dying. The few that have subsisted around here have fallen victim to supermarket bakeries. 20 years ago there was an authentic French bakery in a nearby town run by French natives. Gone 15 years! And the stuff the supermarkets sell is dreck! Looks great, tastes like BLAH!
Most supermarket bakeries are awful - as you note, stuff looks okay, but it tastes like 1970s cafeteria food.

As we've been talking about, in NYC, the old-school stand-alone bakeries are closing and the only ones that open are chains (some are good) or one-off "foodie" places with some sort of "artisanal" this or that "hook -" but either style is always very expensive.

I understand, in this city, they have high rent, a lot of rules and regulation to follow and now increased minimum wages to cover, so the result is that instead of going in and buying a bunch of stuff regularly (like we did at Glaser's), we go occasionally to buy a few things as a treat.
 

eagle2250

Connoisseur/Curmudgeon Emeritus - Moderator
32,064
Harmony, FL
United States
Florida
Harmony
Every time I go back to NYC I find more of my favorite little places have closed. Like Glaser's many of them are old and have become local institutions. Things change and I accept that but what makes it so depressing is there are not new places like this opening. "The rent is too damn high."
It really saddens me to see New York lose so much of its character but what can one do?
The solution is somewhat simpler than we care to admit. If we want to keep our favored niche stores profitable and in business, stop shopping at Amazon and those other "Oh-So-Convenient" online sources. ;)
 

TKI67

Super Member
1,218
United States
Texas
Austin
Eagle, I agree that we ought to do what we can to preserve locally owned businesses, but there is a change afoot that will eventually bring much we treasure to an end. Downtown Austin has had its share of iconic locally owned businesses. Las Manitas, a beloved restaurant, was packed every day. If they had jacked up theirs prices, it would still have been full. It was populated regularly by the full array of Austin from the most liberal to the most conservative, from hippies to investment bankers. It is now a small bit of a very large Marriott. That’s just one of many such sagas. The world seems to gravitate to new things. While I’m no fan of large hotels, some of the new Austin businesses are pretty nice and get my business. The list of TNSIL sources has grown quite short. So yeah...support places like O’Connell’s, Hunter and Coggins, Eljo’s, Cable Car Clothiers, etc. when you can and buy quality that will carry you through! Now I’ll be quiet, lest I be flogged for hand wringing.