July 11, 2009
Silence is the greatest luxury of all
If time is the most valuable currency, then the freedom to not turn on the TV or radio, not listen to music, not answer the phone or the door or talk to anyone for an entire day, or leave the house except to walk out to the mailbox, from the time you wake up until you drift off to sleep with your book, well, that's how I define the lap of luxury.
How true it is, that the best thing in life is free.
Barfbag Origami — 'Fly the queasy skies'
Barfbag Origami Book
This book teaches you how to fold a barfbag into 27 different origami shapes, ranging from a bow tie (so first class) to a variety of aircraft and birds (save those distressed parents who forgot their kids' toys).
96 page paperback plus practice barf bag.
Taiwanese sculptor Ju Chun
for the Juming Museum,
located on the outskirts of Taipei, Taiwan.
Blast from the past: What Giorgio Armani and I have in common
This post originally appeared on December 7, 2005.
For me it's been since forever; for Armani I cannot say.
I do know this: in Sunday's New York Times Style magazine supplement, in an article by Chandler Burr, this sentence appeared: "Giorgio Armani is a fanatic for Agraria's Bitter Orange and last year had Aedes perfume his runway show with it."
Aedes would be Aedes de Venustas ("temple of beauty" in Latin), a wonderful store in New York City whose catalog may be the most beautiful I've ever received.
Burr wrote that Aedes is "the most exclusive perfume shop in New York."
I had occasion to chat on the phone with one of the two owner/proprietors one day a few years ago when I was reordering Bitter Orange potpourri.
I mentioned how elegant and exquisite their catalog was and asked who designed it: "We did" (meaning he and his partner), he replied.
Burr wrote that in the decade since its founding in 1995 Aedes has become "a bit of a cult."
Once you page through the catalog you'll understand why.
I always take along a box of Bitter Orange potpourri when I travel, along with a few small plastic containers with lids.
I put out potpourri in various corners of my hotel room soon after entering.
Then, every time I return to my room and open the door it's as if I'm coming home, after a fashion. Smell is a reptilian sense, striking notes deep within the midbrain and amygdala as its neuronal message traverses the warp and weft of our synaptic network: along with it stream associations long since forgotten yet somehow still resonant.
Excuse me while I step off the treadmill for a sec to go scatter some potpourri around the house.
'What's Going On/What's Happening Brother' — Marvin Gaye
Reader Joe Peach sent me a link to the video above, writing, "It seems so dated, so yesterday on the social comment, and yet still so now... but what a brilliant performance by Marvin Gaye and his group. Long at nine minutes, no, not long enough....
Puncture Proof Professional Pruning Sleeve
Perhaps preposterous, possibly precious.
From the website:
Pigskin Pruning Sleeve
Easy, flexible design won't hinder your mobility or reach.
Up to your elbows in razor-sharp rosebushes, hackly hedgerows or brambly berries?
Just slip on our Pruning Sleeve (by itself, over or even under your favorite work glove) and avoid all those pricks and pokes.
Its thick, pliant pigskin is all but impervious to thorns and branches, but is still soft, supple and breathable.
Easy-moving fit with a generous, comfortable thumbhole that keeps the sleeve from riding up.
Adjustable hook-and-loop closures ensure a perfect fit on any forearm.
One size fits left or right arms (lots of folks buy two sleeves for total protection).
What is it?
'We're not in Kansas anymore' — 'Wizard of Oz' Talking Keychain
"Press the buttons to hear the voice of Dorothy Gale speak six of her most famous lines from the classic 1939 film."
Includes (three replaceable) button cell batteries.