gap belt

The Phantom of the Stairwell

So one day at school I was going up the stairs and the guy in front of me was dressed up in full costume as the Phantom of the Opera like…mask and cloak and everything and he was singing “Down Once More” (which is not a solo….). He was singing all of the phantoms parts but he was still leaving spaces for Christine and Raouls parts in the song so it was like awkward silent gaps and then BELTING PHANTOM. Other than him and me and like one other person, the stairwell was empty…it was really weird.

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“The stars were allowed to pick out their own outfits” (x)

Does this mean Daft Punk personally chose those terrible, terrible denim-on-denim outfits?!?!?!

(If you don’t know about the Gap ad, it’s a very important, unfortunate part of Daft Punk history.)

Sunday Afternoon’s Thoughts

I feel like I have absolutely nothing to write about right now (<– a sure to be thrilling post, when it starts like that).   It’s been a really quiet weekend for me; so much so I’m debating whether I should extend the rotation I’m on, or not. Right now I head back to Toronto July 1st weekend, however I could stay until the end of October (aka for the summer), but given my intense lack of friends and things to do, I’m not too sure… 

I have a date this evening. I suppose that’s news. As always I’m super nervous and keep thinking of reasons to back out, but it’s also something to do.  I find dating in Detroit to be a lot easier than dating in Toronto; the guys here are mid-west gentlemen; friendly. Or, I’m more easy going.  But… all the dates I’ve been on so far I’m the person who has not wanted a second date, and I keep wondering if I have got to such an independent point now, that it won’t matter if Mr. Right even comes along, because I’m so stuck in my little bubble of one. Cool cool. #dyingalone

I went to CrossFit this morning and did 17.4 (the official CrossFit workout released this week).  I did the 55 deadlifts at 100lbs, 55 wall balls at 10lb, made it through the 55 calorie row, and got one (modified) handstand up push-up in. Felling pret-ty baller right now. 

I was up (laying in bed) till about 4am last night. At 8pm I drank a “decaf” coffee which I’m 99% sure was not decaf, and I want to go back and complain now to Starbucks. 

Have you watched Big Little Lies yet? ohmy, get on it! It’s sooooo good.  I may buy the book, as waiting for the episodes to come out is too suspenseful.  

Next weekend my parents are coming to visit, and the weekend after my friend Veronica. And then friends from Boston are coming in April!  I’m pretty excited to show people around Detroit.  I’ll also admit I’ve sort of been shocked at how much some of my friendships in Toronto have sort of fallen off a cliff from me moving here.  Perhaps my expectations are way too high, but I feel so isolated here, and when I message friends, there’s usually no reply. Cool cool.  Perhaps it’s karma, as I’m pretty terrible with texting at times too. 

I am feeling a really strong urge to go for a run lately. Note, easier to type than actually do.  I’m doing CrossFit four or five times a week, but think I may drop down to three and add one or two runs in.  When I see people running (they’re few and far between in Detroit though!) I get so jealous.  Perhaps I should sign up for a 5 or 10k to motivate myself.  

I built myself a shoe rack today.  It’s the worst ikea-type job I’ve ever done, as I had no screwdriver, just a knife, but it gets the job done.   I’m going to add a photo of it to the bottom of this post because I’m weirdly proud of it. 

I have been really obsessed lately at looking at jobs. Don’t get me wrong I have zero intention of leaving my company (ever, right now), but I keep looking up Product Manager jobs at large tech companies to ensure I am learning and doing items to be able to one day check off all the requirements.  

I’m down to 193lbs. Or, perhaps you could say up to 193lbs.  That being said I had to buy a belt from Gap the other day to help with a now-too-big pair of jeans. YES. And, I went shopping yesterday and fit most size 12 dresses, which is a win, as I think around Christmas size 14 was a stretch.  I’m still counting calories, not as diligently as before, but I’m now 40 days consistently on My Fitness Pal, which is good because it feels like a habit. 

How do you make adult friends? I signed up for Bumble BFF (like a dating app, but for for friendships) and it was SO WEIRD. Almost more awkward than talking to guys.  Ha. Although my friend/colleague from the Toronto office is heading to Detroit for six weeks (starting today!) and she’s living in my building, and I’m super super excited for that, as I think I’ll now have a friend to actually go out with, and/or do a hiking trip up north with. Yesssssssssss! 

And would you look at that, I did somehow have something to say, Happy Sunday! 

My brilliant work. I couldn’t screw the middle rack in, so it’s just balancing on the screws pushed in. ha

That plaid lining, those corduroy cuffs. Let’’s take it back to the first half of the ‘'90s when J. Crew was just J. Crew, the catalog resplendent with a New England WASP essence that Arthur Elgort managed to depict as somehow, cozy, full of regular dude gear, and baggy clothes for chicks. Pre-Drexler, of course. Not the Liquor Store or curators of “authentic” merch, or purveyors of modern-classic-vintage-chic or whatever they are now. New jacks might say “"Oh, when J. Crew was wack”,“ but all you thirtysomethings remember when those rollneck sweaters and this barn jacket reigned supreme (picture them now with your pegged jeans, Gap bridle leather belt, Doc Martens or Bass loafers. No socks. Ever. Camel Lights and Tiffany key ring you got for graduation with your first set of car keys jangling in the deep pocket–you with me?). Whether in the quad for lacrosse games at any top tier private college, or on the streets of NYC, key pieces from the J. Crew of the ‘90s played starring roles in any well-equipped wardrobe.

Trench in the snow in Alsace, 1915-1916.

Barbed wire is often under-rated as a tool of defensive warfare, especially in the First World War. It was another technical innovation of the fifty years preceding the outbreak of the Great War. Unlike several other technologies which took a great length of time to be worked out barbed wire was picked up by all sides of the War very quickly. It was quickly understood to be an extreme hassle for infantry to cross and when laid in wide belts between each line of trenches it became a primary hazard during an attack. It bottled up attacking troops as they converged on whatever gaps were made in the wire and made them easy pray for machine guns and artillery.

Many attempts were made to find efficient methods to clear gaps in wire belts, with the most effective being high explosive artillery bombardments to simply blow holes in the belts. When this method failed, as it often did, other methods such as Bangalore torpedoes or wire cutters were used. These methods however took longer and were more hazardous to the men using them. 

The image of men strung out on the barbed wire as they attempted to cross it became a dominant image of the War for many soldiers becoming a popular marching song of the British army.

Hard Lines and Leather

This is finally done (sigh), been faffing with it for too long :P But enjoy! Based on the Drunk!Alistair canon, he has a reunion with his long lost Warden…(A longun, around 4000 words, and nsfw! Smutness below)


Alistair stared into the empty depths of his tankard, licking the last drop from his lip as he set it back on the bar. Pushing it forward with a finger, he nodded to the innkeeper for a refill. They seemed to empty too quickly these days. Maybe because now it took numerous drinks for the warm fuzziness to envelop him. Typical. Shifting on his stool, he settled back against the wall, casting his gaze across his fellow patrons. The evening air was hot and thick, making him glad that there were few people to raise the temperature of the room further. He felt a trickle of sweat down his back as a freshly filled tankard was slopped next to him.

Each day was the same. Waking with a screaming head, he set to work at the odd jobs left to him – chopping wood, fixing the baker’s wagon, hauling fresh kegs into the inn – basically the village dogsbody. In return he was given lodgings, food, and enough ale to drown his sorrows every evening. ‘Lodgings’ was probably a generous word. His small room adjacent to the stables was barely big enough to swing a nug. It was at least an improvement from being comatose in the inns around Kirkwall – Teagan had convinced him to leave, but he wasn’t ready to go back to Fereldan. Too many…memories. So here he was, living in a nondescript village in the Free Marches. It was a bearable existence, and it was enough to help him forget.

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Because I'm A Wild Animal: Affordable Wes Anderson Inspired Looks II

Damn, coming up with Wes Anderson looks is harder than I thought. When it comes to the costuming in Wes Anderson movies it’s always very specific and in many cases custom made. What you’ll also notice is that if an outfit is a bit more traditional, let’s say a blazer and trousers for instance, it has very specific details that can make it harder to replicate or even catch the vibe for. Because the outfit (like most of Anderson’s work) is defined by the details. So this is my attempt going forward. This is what I can throw together based on what’s currently in my closet.

Mr. Bunce from The Fantastic Mr. Fox

Sport Coat: Topman ($110)
Shirt: H&M ($25)
Knit Tie: J Crew Factory ($15)
Chinos: Levi’s 511 Trousers ($45)
Boots: Jeffrey Tyler ($75)
Watch: Momentum Square One ($200)
Belt: J Crew Factory ($15)

Total : $485($285 without the watch.)

Whole lot of earth tones in the Fantastic Mister Fox. I actually don’t really wear that much brown so this was a pretty difficult movie to put together. I’m going to watch it again soon so I may come up with another look from that later.

(Not Really) A Fantastic Mr Fox Look

Jacket: J Crew Factory ($50)
Sweater: Polo Ralph Lauren ($40)
Shirt: H&M ($15)
Herringbone Tie: H&M ($25)
Jeans: J Crew Factory Driggs ($45)
Boots: Steve Madden ($150)
Watch: Orient Ray ($150)
Sunglasses: $10

Total: $485 ($335 without the watch)

So this is not really based on a specific outfit from the film. It’s more based on the overall feel. But I think it has the color palette and textures to fit into the movie. I can see one of the characters possibly wearing something like this.

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