Tag Archives: Style

Dress for Success?

The Nehru Suit. Apparently some manufacturers are still trying to bring them back.

Went out on one of those computer board “dates” the other day to a lunch with a woman I had met online. Since it was lunch, and a workday – I wore what I normally wear to work… Which is business casual, with the usual attached company badge. The restaurant was a strip mall joint – nothing fancy. The woman in question made a snide comment about my “not dressing up”. In her occupation as an educator, I guess she had never been exposed to the tech world. I gave up explaining what I do a long time ago to non-technical people – leaning towards the “something with computers” amorphism.

I do have and sometimes wear suits in appropriate situations, and in my collection of 10-15, they range from Jos A Banks to Anderson & Sheppard bespoke – typically chosen on the basis of the old business adage – “slightly out dress your customer”. Ergo don’t wear a $10,000 Rubinacci to a meet and greet with your Government clients (wear you Banks), while it is the low end in some boardrooms. The nice thing about Rubinacci is they don’t put their label inside the suit, unless you ask. If you know the fabric look and feel of a high quality suit, you can figure it out (from across the street) even if you don’t know the maker. I have had a few knowledgeable women surreptitiously actually check the label inside the jacket.

Have a friend who was a marketer in the Music Industry years ago. Don’t know if anyone remembers Nehru suits, but they were a big fad back in the early 70’s. My friend flew up o NYC to the Garment district and had a set of 5 made. The problem being after one summer they promptly “went out of style”, leaving him with a closet of expensive unwearable suits.

And about the lady who complained? Needless to say it was a one-dater.

Oh no! Not the Polo shirts!

Polo shirt debate: Dating deal-breaker or still in style?

Love it or hate it, the polo shirt has cemented its role in fashion and pop culture — evoking images of WASPy jocks, prep school suck-ups, Best Buy employees and old-moneyed yacht owners across America.

Ralph Lauren, who helped propel the silhouette from a practical sport shirt (worn by tennis, golf and polo players alike), to an everyday wardrobe staple, is retiring from his Polo-branded empire this year. And as sad as it is to see the fashion legend hang his equestrian-inspired hat, I say it’s time to retire the polo shirt with him.

I know I’m not the only one who finds this casual take on the collared shirt to be a bit offensive. Maybe not as bad as sneakers with dress pants or baggy pants worn low enough to show your boxers … but about as offensive as a single item of men’s clothing can be.

The polo wearer has been made fun of on TV (Blake’s triple polo in “Wet Hot American Summer,” we’re looking at you) and in the movies (Steve Carell’s character in “The 40-Year Old Version” sports a polo shirt in all of the movie posters. As does his pre-makeover character in “Crazy, Stupid, Love.” See a pattern here?). And the ’80s popped-collar polo will forever be seen as the ultimate in obnoxious yuppie styling.

Furthermore, a writer for Real Simple magazine recently cited the polo shirt as a dating dealbreaker — until she discovered that her own personal McDreamy had a closet full of them. But you can always change the way your man dresses, right?

Well, maybe not. My cousin and her fiancé approached me the other day, just as I was about to head to the airport for a flight home. “We need your opinion,” my cousin explained. As I prepared to dole out wedding advice, I was surprised to hear her ask, “What do you think of Robert’s shirt? Can you explain to him that he can’t wear these polo shirts anymore, please?”

While the middle of their relationship is quite literally the last place I want to be, I couldn’t help but (silently) agree with my cousin. Polo shirts belong back in the frat house or exclusively on the golf course, polo field or tennis court where their practical nature can be put to good use. So, unless you are literally picking up a mallet, tennis racket or golf club right now, delve deeper in your closet and find something else to wear. Polo shirts may be the uniform of choice for The Sport of Kings (aka, horse racing), but it’s unacceptable for a family dinner, the office or Sunday brunch.


Posted by on October 19, 2015 in and the Single Life


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Trevor Noah – I Wanted to be Black

South African Comedian Trevor Noah, who is scheduled to take over for Jon Stewart on Comedy Central Sept 23rd…

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Posted by on August 22, 2015 in The Post-Racial Life


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Michelle Obama – She’s Just…Cool!

Eatonville, dedicated to Zora Neale Hurston

Folks living in the DC area know about Michelle’s visits to the local eateries. No content to just hit the high end, like Citronelle (now sadly departed) or Komi – she is known to visit the new, medium priced, and trendy.

It’s a lot more classy than hitting Ben’ Chili Bowl, a DC institution – she has developed a culinary following among the “in the know” in DC. And introduced a number of places like Eatonville (A restaurant dedicated to Zora Neale Hurston) to a wider audience.

This interactive shows all the spots she with local friends, or with her husband have hit. Let him have his burgers – Michelle has become a star!

Michelle Obama, total hipster, dines at edgy Maketto on H Street

Hey, isn’t that… first lady Michelle Obama, hanging at hipster haunt Maketto on H Street, NE on Monday night?

FLOTUS was celebrating a pal’s birthday with a group of friends, a tipster reports. Maketto, a retail market (sample wares: culty Japanese sneakers and obscure magazines) combined with a Taiwanese and Cambodian-influenced eatery, is a far cry from the usual white-tablecloth spots one might expect to find a first lady. Obama, though, has sought out some of Washington’s trendier spots, in addition to dining at its finer tables.

And it wasn’t the first First Family foray to the H Street corridor: the Obamas have visited Smith Commons and Boundary Road along the once-gritty strip.

Have to admit, she has hit a number of my favorites, but she had missed Boss Shepherd’s – named after one of town’s most famous (and occasionally infamous for having work crews build roads all night to avoid Union bosses and opposition) politicians (at least before Marion Barry). Great food, and excellent staff! But she beat my little culinary group to Boundary Road and Makketo!

President and Michelle Obama at Boundary Road Restaurant.

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Posted by on August 4, 2015 in The Post-Racial Life


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Going Out in Style in Ghana

Picking a coffin in Ghana for that deceased loved on is a bit more complex than “Do you want the wood one, or the brass handles?”

Funerals are one of the most important events in Ghanaian society. Frederick Nnoma-Addison, a D.C.-based journalist who comes from the West African country, says funerals in Ghana are considered an investment in the memory of the deceased. “Yes, there is mourning, but we also reflect his or her good life, and celebrate,” he told Seth Doane. 

And while a funeral lasts just a few hours, since eternity is, well, eternity, it’s important to spend it in style.


Check this out! For the ful set – follow the link above.

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Posted by on March 28, 2013 in Africa


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Elle Magazine…The Obamas are “black-geosie”?

I’m not sure this one falls into the “incredibly racist” category… I think it just falls into “incredibly ignorant”. Is this fashion editor truly stupid enough to belive the back heads of Fortune 500 Companies, and Senior Executives go to work in baggy jeans and baseball caps turned sideways? And at a time when at any moment at least some of the top designers and supermodels in the Fashion industry are black folks? Get real!

Barack and Michelle Looking Great (and Presidential)

French Elle Writer Says Incredibly Racist Things About Black People

French Elle writer Nathalie Dolivo is so happy about black people! She’s thrilled that they’ve finally learned to dress well! Yes, after generations mired in baggy pants and rap music and such, they finally have Barackand Michelle Obama to look to. Thanks, Obamas! You’re stylish black people and now other black people can be stylish, too.

See how racist that was? We’re paraphrasing, but it’s not far off from what Dolivo actually said:

In this America led for the first time a black president, the chic has become a plausible option for a community so far pegged to its codes [of] streetwear … But if in 2012 the “black-geoisie” has integrated all the white codes, it does not [do so] literally. [There] is always a classic twist, with a bourgeois ethnic reference (a batik-printed turban/robe, a shell necklace, a ‘créole de rappeur’) that recalls the roots.

So, thanks to the Obamas, black people can dress like white people, with an “ethnic” spin. Like a turban!

That excerpt is from a post written by Dolivo for French Elle called (wait for it) “Black Fashion Power,” which manages to cram an insulting misappropriation into even just the title! There are some amazingly stupidthoughts on display in Dolivo’s post (why did we need to coin the term black-geosie?) but perhaps the most insulting is the suggestion that black people need to be taught by example. That before the Obamas, they were just toiling in their streetwear, waiting to be led.

One French Elle commenter (via NYMag) distilled the insult of Dolivo’s nonsense beautifully:

“How, in 2012, in a France where there are at least three million blacks and mixed people, can you write such nonsense? You are too kind when you write that in 2012 we have incorporated the white codes … what do you think, in 2011, we dressed in hay and burlap bags?”

We’re hoping sometimes things get lost in translation, but–as was the case with that Rihanna “nigga bitch” debacle a month ago–we’re betting this has more to do with racism, which isn’t uncommon in the fashion industry. Anyway, we’ll let you know when Dolivo issues her apology (/announces her resignation?). Expect phrases like “deeply regret” or “never intended to hurt.”

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Posted by on January 26, 2012 in The Post-Racial Life


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Guinness – World’s Biggest Afro

This is Aevin Dugas (36), a Social Worker from New Orleans, who has won a place in the Guinness Book of Records for the “World’s Biggest afro”.

OK — Old Skoolers – Remember how much of a pain it was to keep your Afro clean and neat back in the 60’s and 70’s?

Dang … We need some Trammps and some platform shoes with that!


Posted by on September 15, 2011 in The Post-Racial Life


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CNN Discovers DC’s GO Go Music

30 years later and folks are still “discovering” Go-Go, a music style developed in Washington DC. Sorry about the ad in the beginning. Danced away many a night to this at one or more of DC’s “Cabarets”.


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