October 27th, 2005



So yesterday I went to get an oil change. Alas the garage was unavailable to perform the oil change at the time. Still, the afternoon was not a complete waste as I was near the bookstore so I thought to give myself a treat and browse for a little while. I ended up reading Queer Eye for the Straight Guy : The Fab 5's Guide to Looking Better, Cooking Better, Dressing Better, Behaving Better, and Living Better. It's an excellent book and touched on a lot of areas I've been working on. The food seciton has some wonderful recipes, and even what Ted has to say about cocktails, while I disagree with much of it, is useful if only because it emphasizes the personal appeal of cocktails. The culture section was fun, if not helpful. But what really shown through for me were the grooming, clothing, and design areas.

The stuff on grooming answered a lot of questions I've had about how to use my product and what further product I need to get (exfoliant and pre-shave oil apparently). Kyan also explained that I'd been shaving wrong for years. I'd learned how to shave with the aeresol can shaving cream, you know: the really poofy kind, and I'd just dabbed it over my face. When I switched to gel, and now actual cream (actual product!) I did the same thing. This acts like a lubricant but it seems it misses one of the main purposes of shaving cream, which is that it's supposed to coat each hair to make it stand up for the razor, to say nothing of working in the vitamins in the product. This morning I followed Kyan's advice and actually worked the shaving cream into my skin. It was an amazing difference. Not only did I shave closer but my skin was less irritated and has felt better all day. I love this stuff!

The clothing section is less helpful at the moment mainly because I can't get the things I need but I'm still working on following Carson's philosophies. I like the classy look a bit more than he seems to want to play around with, but there's still some things I need:
- The perfect suit (I have a good suit now but it doesn't fit that well these days).
- Denim jacket.
- Cowboy boots.
- Navy blue blazer.
- Vintage belt.
- Pea coat.
- The perfect leather jacket.
- A more varied collection of shirts (currently nearly all of my button downs are one color oxfords).
- More varied pocket squares (I'm going for linen now).
- A classier watch.
- More cufflinks (and French cuff shirts to wear them with).
- Burgundy leather shoes.
- Mocassins.
- New sneakers.
- One or two more blazers (one tweed, one cream linen).

So clothes may take awhile. I'll start checking out vintage after I graduate. In the meantime I look good. I've gotten a lot of compliments on the way I dress of late and it's... gratifying. Having someone say they like the way I look is guarunteed to make my day and it's been happening a lot lately. It's nice.

But the big haul was in the section on decorating. My room's set up very nice at the moment, and I think Thom would approve, but it's nice to have this guidance here for after I move out. It won't be useful in my Madison place (furnished, not a whole lot of say over the house, room's not that large) but there'll be some things I can do and it's nice to start thinking of this stuff now so that when I get a real place I can actually hook it up.