Category Archives: Style

A Cap Collection: 1986-99


I’m enjoying the format so far. It’s got the cleanest writing interface I’ve ever used — the em-dashes look like em-dashes! — and the community there is quite active when it comes to commenting and collaboration.

I wrote my second thing over there and it’s on a project I’ve been thinking about for a while: documenting my childhood baseball cap collection.

You can see the full collection over on my Flickr page, and read the story, “The Sad and Rapid Decline of the Ball Cap,” at Medium.

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The Cost of Being Cool


You can buy selvage denim at J.C. Penney now. The jeans cost $35.

Pick them up and they feel a little light but that’s what you get for the nearly $100 price difference from most competitors. Roll up the cuff and there’s the telltale self-edge–where the jeans get their name–running up the outside seam. Turn them over and that same red and white seam is on the top of the back pocket, an ugly and extraneous bit of adornment. But, in this case, it serves a purpose.

It says: Look at the damn miracle we’ve created. You can now buy the jeans denim-heads covet in the same place where your father once bought a poly-blend suit and a clip-on tie for special occasions. Never mind that the traditional Penney customer never knew he wanted selvage jeans, much less the difference between those and regular jeans. The point seems to be that it can be done.

So maybe it’s not a miracle, but rather an experiment. An experiment that’s failing.

Read the rest of the entry over at COOP

Super Scarves

If you’re like me you thought there was nothing endearing left in the monstrosity known as the Super Bowl. But then this comes along:

Love that lady, love that idea. Good work Indianapolis.

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Things you can buy me for Christmas

Happy Black Friday, all. It’s time to start buying in the name of worldwide bonhomie/obligation. Should the Internet/Santa need some ideas here are a bunch of things most people wouldn’t think to give me. (Though I’m still all for well-conceived surprises.)

Bay State Tartan Scarf

 I remember fondly my time in Massachusetts and nothing encapsulates this better than the official tartan of the Bay State. The blues are for the oceans, the greens are for some hills, tan is for Cape Cod beaches or something and red is for Curt Schilling’s sock. Quite confident that I’ll be the only person in Omaha with this scarf and, even better, it’s a steal at only $27.50.

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The Worst of the Best of Big O Awards

All 320+ of the Best Steakhouses in Omaha

I have an on-going battle with Omaha’s potential. Will it ever be a world-class city? No. Will it ever be a hidden American gem of a city? Some would argue that it already is. The argument (and NPR trend pieces) typically involve the following words in some sort of order: Slowdown, Saddle Creek, creative class, NoDo, young professionals, Old Market, Bright Eyes, Cursive, indie, artists, Film Streams.

Those are the most widely known things and people making Omaha better. More importantly, they’re giving Omaha a distinct sense of self. They’re giving the city things that you can’t get anywhere else which, in the grand scheme of things, is why people love places like Austin, Portland, Milwaukee and Nashville, not to mention the already well-established “world-class cities” (Chicago, New York, San Franscisco, et al). They have things that are unique. There is a core group of people devoted to developing that in Omaha, but it’s hard work. As evidence of how hard it is, I offer you this:

According to the just-released, 11th annual Best of Big O awards the best steakhouse in Omaha is Texas Roadhouse.

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Artifact Bag Co.

Got a new story below on Omaha’s own Artifact Bag Co. In my mind, this is one of the most unique things happening in the city, a one man shop that seems to be garnering attention everywhere but here. Let’s change that.

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Bowling Tie Bars

Mother of Pear Links & Bar, $28

Not surprising, I suppose, but there are a lot of mid-century tie clips and bars out there featuring a bowling motif. A throwback to a time when people not only wore ties but also bowled, often at the same time.

All photos via Etsy. (Click photos to go to the listing.)

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Green Glass Cufflinks

Need a gift for the gentleman in your life? Here’s your perfect mix of distinctiveness and value: Bohemian glass cufflinks from Kent Wang.

These buttons came from a shop in Bohemia that supplied buttons to high couture designers in France. When the Nazis occupied Czechoslovakia in 1939, the shop was seized by the Germans and shuttered. The buttons have been in storage since then.

The best part? They’re $20 with free standard shipping. At that price, might as well pick up the ivory and scarlet versions as well.

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Vintage Hamilton Watches

Got sucked into eBay the other day and came away with two 60+ year old watches. Couldn’t help it. Price was right–less than what these retailed for in the 40’s when they were the modern day equivalent of a $500 watch–and these Hamilton timepieces were manufactured in Lancaster, Pa (my wife’s hometown).

Here’s the scoop on Hamilton Watch Co.:

The Hamilton Watch Company was established when the Keystone Standard Watch Company was forced into bankruptcy in 1892 and sold at a sheriff’s sale to a group of Lancaster businessmen whose “objective was to build only watches of the highest quality” … With quality being Hamilton’s primary goal, the company set out to manufacture “America’s Finest Watch,” and indeed they did.  The  first watch made under the Hamilton name was an 18-size 17-jewel pocket watch in 1893.    Within the next six years, Hamilton had developed a reputation for creating pocket watches whose quality and accuracy exceeded the stringent “railroad pocket watch” requirements.

Hamilton went on to become the first advertiser in Reader’s Digest and stopped civilian production during WWII to focus on supplying the troops. The company is still around today but has long since stopped producing in America, joining the Swiss watch conglomerate that brings you Swatches.

I’m in way over my head on the technical specs but the gold watch pictured above runs like a champ. Got some work to do on the white gold one pictured below.

More photos after the jump… Continue reading

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