2012 in Review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 2,500 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 4 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.



For me, flavored coffee from Dunkin Donuts is a real treat.  This morning I decided I deserved this hot indulgence.  There is nothing I love more than hot coffee on a cold day.  As I was waiting for my coffee I observed the men around me, all wearing…


I am truly a believer in wearing sunglasses all year long.  Your eyes are the first part of your face to age so you want to avoid those crow’s feet as long as possible.  I asked a few men I know to tell me what their take on sunglasses was.  Which are the best, which are worth the money, when to wear them, etc.  Here is the feedback that I absolutely agree with.

The sporty sunglasses you just bought for close to $200 are of good name and probably have amazing polarized lenses. Good for you. They are probably block white, or black with blue mirror lenses, and cover half of your face. Therefore, you need to only wear them when you are out on the beach, boat, playing a sport, or on patrol in Kandahar Province.

Too many guys these days think because they sprung for the awesome glasses they can wear them with their suit, or in just any situation. This is not so. If you have a facebook friend who recently got married and posted the groom’s party pictures where they do the iconic and common “let’s all line up in our tuxedos, fold our arms in front of us, and wear bulky black, shiny Oakley’s…because we are a bunch of bad-asses!!!” The shiny mirror sunglasses are OK if you are sitting at the final table at the world series of poker, if you are pitching the last inning of a no-hitter at Yankee’s stadium, or if you are Lance Armstrong. But while wearing formal wear or business wear for that matter, put on a more delicate pair of shades. The bulky Oakley’s are made in the USA and they sure are cool but not made for every scenario.

While wearing a suit, where do you put your sunglasses when you go indoors? They don’t fit right in your suit pocket. And a little etiquette here: you better take them off while inside! Even if you are dining alfresco, in many cultures, it is very rude to hide your eyes. My fashion expert learned this in Eastern Europe…the hard way.

If another pair of glasses stretches your wallet, ditch the Oakley’s and get a pair of Smiths; they are a little cheaper but just as polarized. Then you have some extra bucks to pick up a nice pair of Maui Jims which look amazing with anything and are very durable for the money. If you insist on a pair of Serengeti’s please tread lightly, it has been a long time since “Top Gun”, and the word Maverick now has a whole new meaning…just ask Sarah Palin.


Quick Aside:  A nice pair of sunglasses is an amazing investment and most of the time worth the money.  But, if you are anything like me and you go through several pairs of sunglasses per year due to damage, loss, or lending without return, then do yourself a favor and go for the less expensive pair.

Formal Attire Requested

Photo Credit: Taken by Alicia Hemerlein

There’s nothing like a good wedding!  I was in attendance at my fourth wedding of the year this past weekend.  (Needless to say I have heard Corinthians 13:4 enough for a lifetime!)  This last wedding was a ton of fun but once again my critical fashion critiquing sense was in full effect.  There is no better time than now for me to write a blog post about wedding fashion etiquette.  So here it is men who are not always sure what to wear on a wedding day, my take for men on


First and foremost you must look for guidance from the invitation and take into consideration the time of day and year for each wedding event.  I can not stress how crucial this instruction is.  Make no mistake; this is not a suggestion it is a rule.  If the invitation states that the wedding is “Black Tie ,” “Black Tie Optional,” or “Formal Attire Requested” you better put on your Sunday Best.  If the invitation does not indicate any of the three aforementioned options, you may want to ere on the side of caution and ask the bride or groom what they recommend.  (Do not call them up the day before or even days before and ask them what to wear, they will be too busy to talk to you!)  The most important aspect to consider is that you do not want to in any way upstage the bride and groom.  You need to dress appropriately and conservative.  If you show up under dressed or over dressed you will be directly insulting your hosts.  Below are a few simple rules to consider when preparing your wardrobe for a wedding.

  1. Don’t be afraid to match your date.  If your date is wearing a red dress maybe you want to wear a red vest or tie and so on.
  2. Unless you are the groom you are not wearing a tuxedo or black suit before 6PM
  3. No one wears cumber buns anymore so don’t even think about it
  4. Whether you are the groom or not, white jackets are only for the summer, dressing seasonally inappropriate is a major fashion Faux Pas
  5. While you never want to take away from the happy couple, have fun with vests, cuff links, and suspenders.  These pieces will allow your personality to shine through without making a spectacle of yourself.
  6. If you wear a silk or satin scarf with your suit, you are a real class act
  7. Never wear a short sleeved collared shirt under your suit jacket…NEVER
  8. If you get hot and want to take your jacket off or roll up your sleeves a bit at the reception, that is OK, but that’s it.  Do not take off your shirt or do anything drunk and funky like that.  Remember you will be looking at the photos taken that night for the rest of your life and the photographers catch everything!  Don’t do anything you’ll regret.
  9. Unless given to you by the hosts, do not take it upon yourself to wear a boutonniere
  10. Don’t even think about wearing jeans, sneakers, or hats, I don’t care how much you can dress them up
  11. Although I understand that servicemen have a dress uniform, if you wear it you are going to stand out and take attention away from the groom.  Save your dress blues for the next Military Ball.
  12. Other people’s weddings are never the time for you to be fashionably experimental.  You may not be invited to another event from the new couple again if you do so.
Formal Daytime Evening
Morning   suit; conservative shirt and tie. (Ascot Optional) Tuxedo   or Black suit.
Semi-formal Daytime Evening
Dark   suit or Dark Blazer with grey or light colored dress pants. Dark   suit.
Informal Daytime Evening
Sports   jacket or blazer paired with a dress shirt and slacks (tie optional) Sports jacket or blazer paired   with a collared button down shirt and dress slacks (tie optional)

The above chart is a short and simple breakdown.  If all else fails, get yourself over to a Men’s Warehouse, Brooks Brothers or even a Jos A. Bank and let the sales people guide you. And for you New Yorkers out there, check out this link.

Quick Aside:  Special thanks to RM and RJM for their guidance and input for this post

Working Way Too Hard

Photo Credit: http://www.123rf.com

For the most part it is women who wear the tighter clothing and men the looser.  Nowadays that is not as much the case.  I was squeezing my not-so-skinny self into a dress today that I am suppose to wear in a wedding two weeks from now and quickly realized that I looked like a stuffed sausage.  Today I was fully aware of how horrible I looked, but I began to think about how many men I see that look awful in clothes that are…


I know skinny jeans are in, and being metro sexual, a hipster, or just trendy is en vogue but there is such a thing as your jeans being too skinny.  Why do I see so many men walking around with neck fat pouring over their collars, bulging crotches, muffin tops, practically exposed flabby man boobs, or the all time worst; bellies pouring out from under a shirt?  No one wants to date guy whose clothes are working way too hard.  Seriously, you need to try on clothes before you buy them and on that note don’t walk around looking like you picked up your outfit in the boys department.  Never ever purchase an article of clothing that is too tight while promising yourself you’ll lose weight.  You’ll wind up keeping the extra pounds and then you’ll love the outfit, squeeze into it anyway and look like a fool.  I have met so many men who hold on to clothes that are too tight in the hopes that one day they will be back to their high school weight or be as thin as they were after recovering from mono.  Dream on! It is never going to happen.  Donate the way-too-skinny stuff and move on with your life.  Don’t be afraid to buy the size that fits you and for the love of all things holy ask a sales person for help.  If you are a bigger guy, wearing clothes that are too small will only make you look larger.  If you are fit, wearing skinny stuff is ok, just make sure what you are wearing does not show us all of your goods.  If you are not sure how skinny is too skinny here is a tip; if you need to lie down on your bed, have another person assist you, or say ten Hail Mary’s before putting something on, it is too tight! Finally, read the labels.  You will be sorry if your favorite shirt becomes the victim of dryer shrinkage or washing machine damage.  There is no going back at that point, you have to say goodbye.

Quick Aside:  If you are broad in the chest and/or shoulders and have trouble finding a dress shirt that fits properly for a decent price, try Express.  They cater to this body type and have the best assortment of colors.

Weigh the Pros and Cons

Today was one of those perfect New York City Sundays.  After I woke up late, I had brunch with friends and enjoyed the beautiful weather while walking down The Highline.  Not surprisingly it was very crowded, but that’s OK because I got a lot of people watching accomplished.  Everywhere I go I observe a lot of men from all walks of life wearing…


I have to say, these shoes are a bit of an enigma to me.  I read an article about these popular kicks that said 60% of all Americans own or have owned a pair of “Chuck Taylors” as they are lovingly called, in their lifetime.  Personally, I never owned pair and can say with much confidence I never will.  I know so many men who swear by them and I never understood why.  I am scared to even write this but I find them so unattractive.    There is something about them Americans love.   As every man has the right to express his individuality, there just have to be some guidelines.  Please do not be caught dead wearing Converse sneakers in anything other than work out gear or jeans.  One of my biggest pet peeves is when I see men in tuxedos at their weddings wearing Converse sneakers.  When did that become allowed or even cute for that matter?  It seems that Converse sneakers are not only here to stay, but are becoming as much a symbol of American culture as tailgate parties, Black Friday, and apple pie.  The “All Star Chuck Taylor Converse Sneakers” are unisex, come in several different shapes, colors, and are appropriate for all ages.  I suppose this is why they have stood the test of time.  If you are going to wear them; good luck.  All the same, before you decide to incorporate Chuck Taylors into your wardrobe, weigh the pros and cons.