Acquisitions | Vintage Porsche Carrera Aviators

Wednesday, January 27, 2010 11 comments

Even most of the seemingly gigantic Tom Ford aviators look like tiny 19th century reading specs on me, so these vintage Porsche Carreras that I picked up at the Brooklyn Flea on Saturday are something of a miracle (and they come with a second set of gradient lenses).  You can get the exact pair here - or choose from countless similar ones here.
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Friday, January 22, 2010 6 comments

Kansas City kids performing at the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis.  They really get goin' in the second section.  I'd like to fling myself around on an upside down ladder teeter totter, too!
Thoughts on Autos...Including a New Favorite

Thursday, January 21, 2010 14 comments
The '50s-'60s-era Rover P4 - I sure wish hybrids (or any new cars) looked more like this (or even like a Mini Cooper).  Fuel efficient underbits shouldn't only come with hideous space craft coverings.   
The American auto industry should be trying to reinvent itself.  But while Detroit implodes and continues to pour out soul-less monster truck ads, Kia gives us a small boy pedaling through Georgia where they're making jobs, robots and energy efficient transportation at big shiny new plants.  It takes South Korea to sell the new American dream, I guess.

Our car ads should be about our complete and utter love affair and emotional entanglement with our cars. VW did it with the wonderful Pink Moon Cabrio ad in the '90s, but where are our American tales of a kid working his fingers to the bone to buy his first car - and sticking to that brand for the rest of his days...the kid begging his dad to borrow his car for prom - and getting to...a middle aged couple going at each other like a couple of teenagers thanks to those easily-to-remove seats in the back of the family mini-van?  

It's important to know that our cars won't kill us (the Germans like to stress this), but I sort of think we all secretly hope that they'll help us get some action (or at least some freedom).

This pristine 1969 Rover 75 P4 is going for about EUR13,000.  So great.
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Wednesday, January 20, 2010 5 comments

The Louvin Brothers, sibling harmony the old way.  My favorite way.  I like 'em most when they sing their murder ballads, but love songs go down almost just as nice.  We usually truck our friends over to apartment after consuming gallons of Liquid Gold (the world's most evil hangover maker) at Fette Sau, blast this song and run around poking each other with gun cleaners.
The Flea Goes to the Bank

Monday, January 18, 2010 11 comments
Not your average flea market experience in Brooklyn these days.  The Brooklyn Flea moved into the spectacular Williamsburgh Savings Bank (the one that's been converted into luxury condos in Fort Greene) for the frosty months - and, woah, this sure beats the playground (although, the goods seem to look better on the playground, as everything suffers by comparison when seen in this setting).  I'm still shocked that people live upstairs.  Can you imagine this as your dainty little lobby? 

A look inside the incredible - probably 5  ft. thick - vault door.

(And yes, I promise that the blog imagery will at least - to some degree - veer back to non-iPhone Polaroids someday.  Today's onslaught was a big much).
Haiti Red Cross Text-Message-a-Month Club

Monday, January 18, 2010 3 comments
Thank goodness for the survival stories, but as we all know, we've only seen the tip of the iceberg of this tragedy.  The 60 Minutes piece last night was particularly - and appropriately - gruesome: bodies in heaps, bodies exploding from decay, amputations performed on children with hacksaws and vodka.  I wish there was some way to photograph the dead and tag the bodies so that, despite the current need for mass graves, there would be some way for the survivors to have a semblance of closure down the line.  Given the need for Civil War-era surgical techniques, that's clearly a logistical impossibility.  And it's all just heartbreaking.

We've all probably sent many $10 90999/HAITI texts to the Red Cross by now, but it would be great to keep up the practice - even after the news crews go home.  Maybe a few texts for each pay check?  That's my plan.  

(Above: The first oil painting I ever did - in 1994 - based on a tiny, grainy black and white image of the Presidential Palace in Port-au-Prince that I found in my '80s-era World Book Encyclopedia.  Last week was the first time I actually saw it in its full grandeur - in the before shots illustrating its utter destruction after the quake. My god, it was beautiful).
Acquisitions | Rugby Hunting Slippers

Friday, January 15, 2010 15 comments
They're finally on sale! $200 for Rugby's most humorous slippers to date.  Porter got a pair yesterday.  I'm getting mine at lunch.  If our closeness wasn't sick enough, we've now resorted to wearing matching shoes.  Mucho planning and coordination must ensue in the mornings to insure we're not both in the mood for plaid hunting slippers.  

(They don't sell the slippers online, so you have to pop to one of the stores).
Auctions | Skull and Bones Ballot Box and Photos at Christie's

Thursday, January 14, 2010 9 comments

For an estimated $10,000 to $20,000 you could: a) make damned sure your secret club's precious ballot box doesn't end up in the hands of some lowly Harvard grad; b) teach your children the proper etiquette of blackballing; c) have an antique - albeit a bit macabre - vessel to hold jelly beans. 

The present lot, with hinged flap on top of the skull was said to have been used as a ballot box during society meetings or displayed in the Society's headquarters at 64 High Street in New Haven. The inscription on the right cross bone Thor could be a name which would have been assigned to a member upon induction. Accompanied by approximately 50 photographs of society members and a small black book inscribed with names (which were published until 1971), the present lot provides a rare glimpse into the society which has been linked to many influential figures and leaders at Yale University and in this country.

It all hits the block at Christie's New York on January 21-25 in the Important American Furniture, Folk Art, Silver and Chinese Export sale.

(Thanks to Urban Daddy for the tip)

Acquisitions | Dries Van Noten Carry On

Monday, January 11, 2010 10 comments
I'm in San Francisco swimming through the sea of suits at the JP Morgan Healthcare Conference, but stole away for a few minutes yesterday for a major, major treat - this Dries Van Noten carry on (a treat made possible by the considerable sale at Barneys right now).  It resembles YSL's Downtown bag, but you could fit a small child inside.  Quite nice to travel home from a business trip in better style than that in which you arrived.  

They have my favorite wooly, collegiate-looking bags on sale, too -- for only about $267.33!
Better-Late-Than-Never Resolutions for 2010

Monday, January 04, 2010 19 comments
{1} Learn to sew (on a machine).  The problem with keeping this one will be the complete lack of pleasure associated with following patterns/directions, my inability to remember to put that little foot thing down and some life long struggles with finishing projects.  (However, in an attempt to start out on good footing - and to justify buying a sewing machine - I sat down yesterday and needle and threaded this little striped skirt for Porter (her birthday is tomorrow).  Even without a pattern, it fit.  Miracles never cease!).  

{2} Finish (a few) projects. 

{3} Do more cultural stuff.  Gallery openings, concerts and the like.

{4} Choose slightly sunnier vacation destinations.  Bangkok?  Capri?  We'll see!  (Really being tough on myself this year).  

Happy remaining 361 days of 2010!