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Showing posts from March, 2015

Classic Style in the Air. . .

An old travel ad notable for at least three reasons.  One, the people in it are dressed nicely rather than in Prole Drift sweats or the like.  Two, you'll observe an old Lockheed 'Constellation' in background, truly one of the most aesthetically beautiful flying machines of the pre-jet age.  My mom flew on one a few times as a girl in the 1950s.  And three, note the sadly departed (and for me, much missed) Trans World Airlines.
Great minds think alike as the overused and hackneyed expression goes, but imagine my delight when one of you suggested a post on dressing for air travel.  Since my family will spend 7+ weeks in Berlin, Germany this summer, I have mused about just such a post but have not yet written anything specific, and neither do I have personal photographs to share yet.  However, I can advise men who aspire to somewhat more stylish air travel attire than has become the typical, sloppy, and sometimes just plain gross norm in recent years.

I am old enough to recall…

Classic Style for the Average Guy Is Moving. . .

"Well, Sir," as my maternal grandmother used to begin the occasional statement, good fortune has smiled on us here at Classic Style for the Average Guy.  Thanks to lots of hard work and crossed fingers, not only has my wife, the Grand Duchess, been offered a plum position at a Big Ten university, but they have also offered yours truly a full-time lecturer appointment, which seals the deal.   Extremely generous compensation in both cases, an ample moving allowance, excellent schools for the Young Master, further opportunities for professional development, more interesting service possibilities, and so on, and so forth.  The kind of opportunity that does not come around very often you might say.

We will sell up, pack up, and leave our digs of the last seven years here in Central Illinois (where the Grand Duchess has been since 2001, and I since 2004) come mid-June for snowier environs (and more dependable skiing conditions) in East Lansing Michigan where we'll …

Oh, the humanity. . .

I made a quick run to our local Target this afternoon to pick up a new matress pad for our bed, and, while the various sights that met my gaze were not quite what you might observe while shopping at a Wal-Mart here in the United States, they were uncomfortably close.  Cold weather at least forces more people to keep more parts of themselves, and their related body "art," jingly-jangly or otherwise, under wraps.  Oh, the humanity.

-- Heinz-Ulrich

Strive for sophistication and imagination in your everyday style. . .

“It takes no imagination to live within your means."  -- Francis Ford Coppola(courtesy of the Voxsartoria website)-- Heinz-Ulrich

Some things are better left unsaid. . .

Keep calm and keep it to yourself, please.
Yours truly enjoyed (no, really) an entire five days straight of midterm conferences with students last week for all of the courses I am teaching this semester.  During each confab, we discussed students' recent research topic proposals, related upcoming paper assignments, and so on, and so forth.  By and large, these are always enjoyable although after four or five days you do begin to feel like you are having the same conversation 60 different ways as you try to help most students focus their thoughts and topics into something manageable and/or actually worth doing for the remaining eight weeks or so of the term once Spring Break ends.  We'll come back to this in just a moment.

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During the weekend, I enjoyed puttering around the house doing largely nothing of consequence beyond a few domestic small chores and relishing the thought of a week without daily preparation for classes, the classes themselves, and reading/grading pa…

Make it a double-breasted Formal Friday. . .

The always dapper surgeon, Dr. Andre Churchwell, one of my particular style touchstones.
Well, it seems the writing bug has bitten me today.  Hypergraphia they call it.  Amazing what the start Spring Break, and how that frees the mind for ten days or so, can do.

Since we are nearing the start of Springtime in my neck of the woods, the snow is now gone, and temperatures are gradually climbing, the days for heavy tweed and wool flannel suits are numbered.  That, and my general disdain for the abomination know variously as casual/ blue jean/ dress down Friday* meant that I decided on a clothing combination yesterday very much like the photograph above for my final round of midterm student-instructor conferences.  

I'm sure it scared the heck out of some of my undergrads, but that's not my problem.  Not everyone in the world, they will discover before long -- those who actually complete their degree programs. . .  the small liberal arts school where I teach shares similar problems wi…

Remove the TV from the Living Room!

Remember this?  A still from the old advertisements and TV commercials for Memorex cassette tapes, dating from the tail end of the 1970s, or very early 80s.  That's actually a stereo speaker in the picture, but hopefully you'll get the point.
Or hide the television in some way when you are not watching it.  You know the drill.  Too often, the TV dominates the living room in an apartment, or on the first floor of a house.  This has been a feature of life in many homes for decades, but televisions are bigger and somehow more obtrusive now than ever before.  Even flat-screen models.  And invariably, every single dang chair, loveseat, or sofa is arranged in such a way that all sitting places in the room face the one-eyed beholder.  

If you live alone, and that's how you like it, fine.  But the problem comes when you share your living space with a spouse, partner, and/or family, who might, just might, not share your tastes in decor, viewing habits, liking for car chases, shoot-ou…

Greetings and Salutations!

Two men chat at the bar in rather elegant 1930s style.
Don't you think "Good morning/afternoon/evening," or even the more formal "How do you do?" might be preferable to the now oh so common (in several senses) interjection "Hey!", the clownish "How you doin'?", or the truly insipid "T'sup?"?  I am rapidly coming to detest the latter three in my daily journeys through humanity.  Likewise, let's agree not even to mention the hackneyed "Nice to meet you."  Ugh!  What in the world happened to the simple and (almost always) appropriate, "Hello.  How are you?"?

-- Heinz-Ulrich

Classic Style in the Bedroom. . .

A terrific Art Deco style bedroom, but it could use a few books on the bedside tables and a bathrobe or dressing gown tossed over the chair to give it a slightly more lived in look.
Not quite what you thought, right?  Nope, the point of today's post is simply this.  

In the bedroom and bathroom, keep things neat, clean, and picked up.  Make your bed in the mornings, change your sheets and towels once a week.  Body dander, dust mites, stench, and worse collect on these very quickly.  Be sure too to toss dirty clothes in a hamper out of sight (NOT on the floor or in a chair!), hang garments you will wear again in the closet or wardrobe and shut the door, or fold and put them back in the dresser.   It's not hard to do, it takes just a few minutes, and living in a space that is kept straight does wonders for your own mental and emotional well-being.  Not enough people are aware of that particular, and very real, benefit.

Be ruthless about clutter, in both areas, especially in the ba…

We've changed our name slightly. . .

Yet one more great old Laurence Fellows or Leslie Saalburg illustration from the 1930s. . .  The Golden Age of Menswear!
We're changing our name.  From now on, The Average Guy's Guide to Classic Style will be known as Classic Style for the Average Guy.  A somewhat more concise title, we hope you will agree, that rolls off the tongue and stays in the mind a bit more easily.  For the time being, the web address remains the same, however, so you will not need to refresh your bookmark or fool around with your blogroll membership.  Spring Break is coming, so be sure to drop by again before long for more thoughts on natty attire and pleasant conduct.

-- Heinz-Ulrich

Just Because. . .

From a 1932 edition of Apparel Arts.  Illustrator unknown.  Downhill rather than cross-country skiing here, but you get the idea.
Well, the temperature is above 40 degrees Fahrenheit here today, and the remaining five or six inches of snow are melting fast.  We've probably had our last hurrah here as far as winter and cross-country (Nordic) skiing are concerned.  Warmer temperatures are forecast for later in the coming week.  Any precipitation from this point forward will, no doubt, be in the form of rain.  Sigh.

Still, my mind turns to thoughts of gliding silently through snowy landscapes in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan -- or the hills and mountains of Norway -- breathing hard as you herringbone up rises, and the joyous schussing down the other side while the cold air whips the face, burns the lungs, and makes the eyes water a bit.  

I've always been a winter enthusiast.  There is just something about short, dark days, and snowy, quiet vistas I hope you'll understand.  Bu…

Fix Something Special for Breakfast. . .

Not a photograph of my own breakfast handiwork this morning, I'm afraid, but the picture makes the point in a visually pleasing way.
Slow down on the weekends and fix something a little special for breakfast, either for yourself , or your loved ones.  While I don't do it every Saturday or Sunday, today, I felt like fixing something a bit tastier and more interesting than the usual Special K or Frosted Mini Wheat breakfast cereal that constitute the Young Master's and Grand Duchess' breakfasts most of the time.  Yours truly limits himself to black coffee during the week, and my clothes fit more comfortably these days as a result, thank you very much.

While there are various things I am capable of in the kitchen, my favorite weekend breakfast routine is to whip is some good old, cholesterol infused thick slice bacon, fried eggs, and buttery toast with some kind of delicious fruit preserves along with orange juice or grapefruit juice and fresh coffee, which we enjoy togethe…