Skip to main content

Ugly sentiments are totally lacking in class and style. . .

Country singer Taylor Swift's childhood home in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania.

Resentment and envy are ugly, ugly things.  As the old saying goes, if you have nothing nice to say, don't say anything at all.  The nasty tone of multitudinous remarks left by commentators today on Yahoo -- in connection to a story about singer Taylor Swift's childhood home, described as a "mansion" -- make my blood boil.  And I'm not even a fan of Ms. Swift or her music.  But let's get a few things straight.

This is a very nice home in an upper middle-class area just outside Reading, Pennsylvania, clearly taken care of and maintained very well.  Some other families in the area even live in renovated 200-year-old fieldstone farmhouses with the barn and outbuildings intact.  And still others have a couple of horses.  What?  Shock!  Horror!  Gasp!  Horses?  The nerve!  

Anyway, you'll find many examples of both types of houses in SE Pennsylvania and elsewhere in nicer areas throughout the Middle Atlantic and Northeastern regions of the United States.  You'll also see similar types of houses like the one shown above in certain well-preserved, nicer urban areas, or their suburbs, in other parts of the country.  But Ms. Swift's childhood home is hardly a mansion, and it's hardly the kind of place lived in by "the rich." Upper middle-class educated professionals with some grooming and taste, yes.  

Resenting someone because he or she enjoyed a pleasant upbringing and did not come from the streets is bad enough.  Actually giving voice those kinds of opinions in a very broad, public forum and going on to lay all of one's own problems at the feet of someone else is mean (in at least two senses) and just plain crass.  And that's putting it mildly.  Let's work to stop ourselves before we behave in a similar fashion, ok guys?  It's not attractive.  Unless of course you  somehow think the world owes you something.  Let's do our utmost not to be like that.

For average guys working to kick up their personal style a few notches, it's always a better idea to keep any seething, festering resentment about someone else, and the remarks it might generate, to themselves.  If you want to write and distribute a manifesto identifying the vast litany of societal ills you perceive, fine.  So be it.  Grow your hair out, move to Latin America (or these days, Egypt), and start another Revolution.  Otherwise, let it go and work to make your own immediate life better in whatever way that might be.  Without taking to the streets and looting or burning others' property.  

If, however, we want to come across as more groomed, stylish, and urbane in our attitudes and actions, it's far preferable to keep our mouths closed.  Unless we can contribute to the general conversation, or even societal discourse, in a positive way.  Life is too short to grind away and moan about how others are somehow the root of society's problems because they were fortunate enough to have a fairly pleasant childhood.  As we began this post, let us end it.  If you have nothing nice to say, then don't say anything.


  1. For once I do know who Taylor Swift is because daughter no 2 likes her. The bottom line is that there is a v ugly section in our society who contribute nothing and who are the first to hurl abuse and invective. They have always been with us but with the advent of social media the troll really has come into their own. For teenagers who read this trash it really has an impact and regretfully they do not always have the maturity and sense to firstly not read it and secondly disregard it. The reintroduction of the public stocks would be my solution. Taylor Swift rarely enters my orbit but here she has my deepest sympathy. And as a side issue her parents house is v pleasant but lets get realistic here it is hardly in the mansion catagory.



Post a Comment

All opinions are welcome here. Even those that differ from mine. But let's keep it clean and civil, please.

-- Heinz-Ulrich

Popular Posts

The Sunday Papers. . .

  I once knew a dean of something or other when I was a graduate student at The University of Wisconsin-Madison, who restored old radios like these and had two or three working models in his office on campus.  He turned them on for me once.  Nothing sounds quite like these old tube (valve) sets with their large, resonant polished wood cabinets.  An iPhone with earbuds ain't the same thing, folks. This particular illustration turns up here at Classic Style with some regularity, but it conveys perfectly the mood of today's post.  Relaxed.  At ease.  Kind of sleepy.  Definitely not worried about the trials and tribulations of the world for the moment.  My late father used to smoke a pipe during the weekends, and, although I am not a smoker, the aroma of good pipe tobacco is not unpleasant when I detect it on occasion. Ok, magazines rather than a newspaper here, but the expression on his face is priceless.  And many Sunday papers do have a magazine supplement, so it's not that

A Summer Capsule Wardrobe. . .

The sort of items I basically live in when at home from May through September each year until things cool down enough for corduroy jeans and rugby tops. W ithout going crazy, or busting the ol' bank account, it is entirely possible to put together a versatile casual summer wardrobe that will both keep you comfortable AND looking a bit more pulled together than the sad average in 2021.  As my parents used to point out when my sister and I were children and brought home the occasional 'C' on a quarterly report card card from school, "Average is nothing to be excited about.  You can do better than that."  Sharing that sentiment will, no doubt, rile up some readers, but ol' Mom and Dad had a point. Indeed, we can do better than average, even with our casual summer attire.  After all, you only need a few pairs of shorts and a few shirts to mix and match in various combinations that will keep you looking decent without having to put a whole lot of thought into it wh

New Casual Belt Style. . .

  This particular belt is a nod to my (idyllic) formative years in southeastern Pennsylvania just outside Philadelphia.  It used to be a common occurrence then to see male and female Ring-necked Pheasants taking off and landing in, or around the many cornfields in the area.  Especially in the late fall and early winter after the harvest and before snow fell. J ust five days after placing an order for three new casual belts with Country Club Prep , a small box arrived on our doorstep later yesterday, containing not one but three new belts very similar to that pictured above.   I am extremely satisfied with the purchase.  Today, I sport one such new belt with some very faded pink shorts and an equally well worn blue and white micro-check cotton twill short-sleeve shirt with a button-down collar.  It's amazing how much more comfortable you feel when your pants are not slipping constantly down your hips. This comes after two months -- the initial order was placed in mid-May mind you --