…just trying to make a living and feed families and take care of themselves.
Btw, the thing he’s wearing on his face is a hygienic mask. Everyone seems to wear them here for two main purposes: they wear them when they have colds and don’t want to infect everyone around them, and they wear them if they spend a great deal of time around car exhaust. I don’t know for which reason he’s wearing his, but he doesn’t seem concerned that it’s not over his nose and mouth. Maybe it’s just a sartorial choice.
I was texting my wife while my feet were up on my desk in my office at work. She asked me how my day was going. I believe I answered something like, “Craptastic.” She asked why and I explained that there had been a snafu regarding thirty of my English 11 exams and that there was a steady stream of other craptacular things happening. She suggested I do something about this, and I answered her, in a text, with the following:
“The past cannot be undone. Only through how we handle the present will we show our true character. Whether we help those in front of us, deal with the situation we are currently facing – these are the things that determine our direction for the future.”
And isn’t that what hope is? Believing that the outcome of present circumstances will be positive. So don’t dwell on the past. Don’t spend your day dreaming of the future. Believe that your circumstances will turn out positively and then put your hope into action.
And then? Put your feet up.
WordPress’ Photo Challenge this week is “Hope“.
I bought a shoulder bag from Old Navy years ago and it’s been sitting in my closet. I found it while cleaning and decided that, seeing as I wasn’t using it anyway, I’d modify it and stencil a little something on it. It’s a nice bag, but I’d nearly forgotten I had it.
I admit that I have a little problem when it comes to three things: bags, jackets and shoes.
I buy shoes very rarely, but I’m very specific. I buy shoes that I know will last many years. My Doc Martens have been around for more than five years. I have one pair of Converse All-Stars, but they’re Batman shoes (the DC Comics release last summer). I’m pretty picky.
I love a good coat, but most of them serve both a fashion and practical purpose.
But bags? I’ve got backpacks – a couple of different daypacks and I still have the first Mountain Equipment Co-op backpack I ever bought. I’ve got a 100 liter duffle bag that my wife once climbed into. I’ve got a laptop briefcase and a laptop backpack and two different camera bags – one to hold all of my gear and a smaller bag that’ll hold my camera and an extra lens. And then there’s the…well, I think that’s enough.
I guess my other problem is that once I’ve got a good bag, pair of shoes or jacket, I’ll never let it go. Why get rid of it if it works? I’ve learned that if I’m not using it, I should get crafty and change it and then I’m suddenly more interested in using it.
Oh, and yes, that is Boba Fett. I guess Star Wars would be my fourth “problem”.
I am not Tony Stark. I am one of the few men that I know who knows how to iron his own clothes. I am one of the few men who irons his own clothes – it’s not enough to know how, you have to practice. My old iron died this last week, so I got to buy a new one and, what with my new, more mature fashion choices, I am quickly becoming enamored of my new iron.
So here are some tips for all the men out there who can’t iron their own clothes: Start with the backside of the collar. Move to the shoulders. Then do the sleeves. When the extremities are done, start on the front. Work from the front around the back and back to the front. Does that make sense? Don’t leave any hard lines on anything except the sleeves. When you’re done, hang up the shirt and button at least the top button, preferably the top two buttons. Hang it up in your closet. Start on the next shirt.
Or, put it in the dryer with a damp towel.
Actually, don’t do that. Learn how to iron.
I made a concerted effort this summer to mature my wardrobe.
Here’s the back-story: I’m a high school teacher. I like witty and obscure references. I make witty and obscure references. My wardrobe, for many years, has reflected this. I’m a huge fan of Threadless, superheroes and anything else that amuses me. These shirts have been married to Gap Jeans and sports coats. A mix of professional and nerdy youthfulness.
But this summer? I made the move toward mature. I bought button front shirts (they are also “button-down” – button-down refers to the collar points being buttoned down) and have been pairing them with jeans and brown, black and navy pants (that’s three different pairs of pants – not all in one). I’ve even been putting on a tie two or three days a week.
Here’s the fun parts. One, I’ve never had so many people comment on my clothing choices. Two, I’m falling in love with my iron. T-shirts don’t require ironing, but all of my dress shirts? They need a little steamy help. Today’s photo is of my new, hot little number and one of the many new, more mature shirts I’ve been wearing.
I’m not talking about zombies, although I do love them a lot.
I’m talking about those things that grow on you, those things that take on a life of their own. Those things that you have and wear and keep for a long time and when it comes time to retire them you’re not sure if you want to get rid of them or bronze them.
It’s pretty stupid, really. They are just things, after all. It is a solid reminder of the consumption-driven lives most of us lead. It is a symptom of a society that is becoming enamored of things and not people, of virtual relationships rather than actual relationships. It’s the purse you can’t part with, the iPod that finally charged one last time, the VCR that still plays but not well. In my case, it’s a pair of ASICS Fortitudes that have almost given up the ghost. They hug me in just the right way. They support me. They…
…are inanimate. And they will have to go soon.
These are my new shoes. I am very excited about my new shoes. Converse made my new shoes. Batman is on my new shoes. The Dark Knight. The World’s Greatest Detective. The Caped Crusader. The protector of Gotham City. My hero.
New shoes + Batman = greatest shoes ever. EVER!
I’ll be painting my basement soon, so today I was out buying paint. It occurred to me, through the wise and kind words of my family, that I am one of the least qualified people to go out on his own to buy paint. I, like many men, am color-deficient. I am not completely red/green colorblind, but I do have serious deficiencies in color identification in the red/green color spectrum.
When I suggested that I could go out on my own to buy Batman Grey and Superman Blue for the basement, which is becoming a superhero themed man-cave, everyone jumped in with their little quips about how I couldn’t be trusted to handle this task on my own. Let me explain the extent of my, ahem, deficiency.
At Christmas, I am overwhelmed by the green-ness of everything, not realizing that there is a great deal of red against the green. Red lights, red garlands, red bows – all green to my eyes. Not until I am within a couple of centimeters of the tree do my eyes distinguish the red against the green. When I was in high school, I was called upon to name the country that was green on a large map hanging at the front of the room. I couldn’t tell which was green, as they all looked green. On top of that, purples (because of the red in it) comes through as blue.
Let’s just say, I’ve learned that the smartest thing to do in my wardrobe is to concentrate on three dominant colors: brown, navy and black. Browns and navies are easy to coordinate with each other, but black wins in my closet. Black is my favorite (lack of) color. I am often dressed in all black and have endured years of, “Hey, Johnny Cash!” comments from co-workers and family members. I also like the varying shades of black, from charcoals to heathers to deep blacks to washed out blacks. I even, in moments of fashion-forwardness, pair browns and navies with black in a nose-snubbing way to prove that black does, in fact match with everything.
One danger, however, is illustrated by the photo above. When I take my daughter to a paint-your-own pottery place for her birthday, I am happy, joyous even, when they label their color so blatantly. I could easily end up with a color-challenged project if I am to depend on my own abilities to detect the colors in front of me.
Thanks, kind person, for making 104 Orange so easy for me to “see”.
Ooh, is that Coolio? If you don’t know Coolio, look him up, you whippersnapper. My daughter and I were listening to a CD on the way to the lake – a compilation of hip-hop songs from the late ’80’s and early ’90’s – that has Coolio’s “1, 2, 3, 4 (Sumpin’ New) on it. Besides Coolio, it includes songs like “MistahDobalina” (Del the Funkee HomoSapien), and “I Left My Wallet in El Segundo” (Tribe Called Quest). My daughter thought the songs sounded hilarious – me, it took me back to my job at the mall in 1989 selling clothing at Bootlegger (a Canadian chain of young adult retail stores). It took me back to the following list of things that I hope are never revived by the fashion industry, music industry, or, well, any industry:
1. Baggy pants with high waists. Seriously?
2. Big hair put in place with Final Net. No one thought that much alcohol under that much pressure was a bad idea?
3. Polka-dot rayon shirts. Silk shirts. Wha…?
4. Fido Dido. Really?
5. Vanilla Ice style. Worst abomination of a song using a Queen and David Bowie sample. And the hair and dancing…argh!
6. Suspenders. If you are not wearing clown pants, dress pants, or are a lumberjack, these are not necessary.
7. Tight pants and loose baggy shirts. Yechh…
If you would care to add anything to this list, feel free to drop response.
Oh, and the photo, it’s a sunrise on Cultus Lake. It was just something I shot after listening to music from my youth.
Ever since I was a kid, I’ve loved Converse All-Stars. I associate them with all things cool and I have owned a few pairs. The ironic thing is that I hate wearing them because I find they’re unbelievably flat, and aid not one bit in holding up my arches (man I feel old when I write that). I would get home, take them off and feel a great sense of “aaahhhh…” I love Chucks but I hate them.
These Chucks were worn by Tim Neufeld, of the band “Starfield,” who I saw last night at Harrison Resort. Chucks belong on guys in bands, or hipsters (who probably don’t wear them because they’re no longer ironic) or high school students. Not 36 year old dad-teachers.
Pentax K20D; Sigma 70-210mm; f4; ISO 1600; 1/8 sec.