Friday, July 30, 2010

Near the Highline Ballroom

Lookit, an artist amongst the Fritos. Obviously I have beaten The Sartorialist to the punch, or the photo as it were, because this guy, Daniel Barrow, meets or exceeds every requirement of that prestigious post -- somewhat androgynous quality, interesting man bag, ironic mashup of dress shirt + shorts, winsome legs, really fetching Paul Smith socks and some sort of ghillie flap brogues (click on the photo to look at em nice and close). I want to personally thank Daniel for being an artsy man in NYC and not wearing jauntily rolled up pants without socks. Thank you Daniel thank you. If more men had fine hosiery like this, I think we could nip that annoying hipsterism in the bud. If you get the chance, go to Daniel's website, He draws, and not just conclusions.

Tall, thin, Angelina Jolie look-alike -- the heat and humidity were slowing down my processing speeds, so by the time this registered, I had to get someone to hold my place in line for The Moth story slam and run after her. Other than the obvious attributes I've listed, I loved the way she'd wound that long string of wooden beads around and around. It looks kind of tribal. In sharp contrast to the great big baby blue bag and soft white leather jazz shoes which identify her as from that tribe of very good-looking people in Chelsea, sometimes extending into the Meatpacking district. This is why I heart NY.

Louboutins in DUMBO

Truth be told, I followed the iconic red-soled towering heels into Starbucks for the public bathroom and the sweet sweet air conditioning, but even in my damp and depleted condition I recognized an opportunity that no self-respecting street style enthusiast could deny. The peep-toe, ruffled Louboutins (on which she was navigating the tricky cobblestones of Dumbo streets), and the lavishly draped and ruched frock, well it made me just giddy to see this sort of stuff walking around in the daytime, normal as anything, getting coffee. That saying about how the other half lives -- here's the other half. Oh and you can't even see the zipper on the back of the jacket, so edgy. Here's a New York thing -- she gave me her card. I say this is a New York thing because two other people gave me their cards after I took their photo and I feel like people stopping them on the street and asking to take their picture is an everyday occurrence. Anyhoo, you are looking at the CEO of By Kilian, a perfumery. Is that a word? They make perfume. Lovely.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

my first day in NYC!

Not-so-fresh off the plane/subway and it was intensely humid. My first purchase in NYC was an umbrella from a charming Canal Street vendor. No sooner bought than the sky opened up. It passed but was still mighty oppressive out when, somewhere in Soho, I ran across this airy woman looking cool and fresh. I love lacey or open-weave stuff. The sweet camisole, Gibson girl up-do and umbrella lend a vintage feel to the whole show.

This woman, near the New York Road Runners' offices on the upper east side, was a study in soft draping. Loved loved her simplified gladiator sandals and the simple draped skirt. How did she manage to make a plain gray t-shirt seem elegant?

Friday, July 9, 2010

West River Road, Minneapolis

We're picnicking, Sylvia called out as I hit 75 mph on my bike going down that big hill to the river flats under the Washington Ave. bridge. Did I just see a very colorful woman blowing bubbles on a wide and people-less swath of grass next to a glassy river, all syrupy in the stillness? If you are me, this is not something to be processed and calmly filed under Stuff I Saw along with trees and asphalt. Eventually I stopped. And came back. Hi, what's your name? I'm Sylvia, and she extended her non-bubble hand. Seconds and many sentences later, she offered her card. When I asked what she did, she said, Arrrrrrrrtist. When I said I liked what she was wearing, she told me it's Liberty of London for Target, x-small, that she got for $1 at a thrift store today because no one can wear that small shit.
Now you are wondering why there's that picture of the red gym shorts up above Sylvia. Those are the shorts I was wearing, that I got at a thrift store for 99 cents. And bless her heart, Sylvia noticed immediately that they are emblazoned with the Nieman Marcus logo, and she got the irony of cotton gym shorts, those most utilitarian of garments, made by Niemans. Be true to your school. Hauter education. Sylvia is the only other person who has noticed this and gotten the irony, and I love her for it. We virtual fist bumped.
She has a vintage Raleigh bike with orange frame and white fenders that used to belong to someone who died of AIDS. It's like the bike died and went to heaven.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Landmark Plaza, downtown St. Paul

Gorgeous evening, so I biked down to the first of the summer dance series in which instruction is provided for free in a certain dance style, followed by music and opportunity to practice your new skills. Tonight was tango which is ambitious. I loved this woman's cute cutout back dressette but I failed to capture the teeny tiny scale of everything about her. If I'd had maybe a teaspoon with me or a pencil eraser or something you could tell how seriously small she is. The dress is an XS from Wet Seal ($10!) where she shops because it's one of the few places she can find things that fit. I like the way she played up her small frame with the very close cropped hair and girly pearls.

Friday, July 2, 2010

the tent#1

So I got a Walmart trail tent for free from my neighbor and, looking ahead to my upcoming trip to NYC and hotel prices that have bounced back jauntily from their recessionary humility, I thought to check out all my housing options. Included are: a stuff sack, a tent (and I use that term loosely; more like a tarp with some tissue-thin carcinogenic polyvinyl sewn to it), two telescoping poles, four strips of plastic rope and six fragile stakes. The half-page instructions spent a fair amount of time on site selection including positioning the door away from prevailing winds, but then rushed through the actual set up, jumping from Assemble all parts to Now your tent is ready to use! I identified an information gap the size of the Grand Canyon but I have tent experience and the limited number of parts seemed encouraging. I suffered a moment of doubt when I noted that the tent itself (not the box, mind you) was emblazoned with a logo that said Ozark Tent. Having seen Deliverance and driven through the Ozarks at top speeds, any combination of Ozarks and camping is ill-advised. Onward!

the tent#2

Look at all the triangular shapes formed here. Interesting. This is where they got the idea for pyramids probably. See those two yellow strings (excuse me, guy wires)? Those and the less visible collection of five toothpick-like stakes are the sum total of the accessories. I'd like to see the Egyptians build a pyramid with that.

the tent#3

Still optimistic. Note the firm staking and artfully angled pole. Now we're getting somewhere. This is the way the west was won.

the tent#4

If I just hold it up like this...

the tent#5

So close. Rascal is surprisingly unhelpful and is frankly a little embarrassed by all the running back and forth and ineptitude. But from this angle it was perfectly clear what needed to happen -- corners firmly staked first, then the end poles practically right themselves.

the tent #6

Success! Quite an effort though.

the tent, the end

Whew. I'm in and quite cozy. Hot even. This structure would easily stand up under a 6 or 7 mph breeze and up to and including a not-ridiculous amount of dew without collapsing. Last time I was in this situation, I was in the process of getting a life-threatening number of sand flea bites. I'm thinking that mesh is not no-see-um-proof. Weirdly and inexplicably, don't those look like Rascal's pointy ears peering through the door from above? Eary. Get it?