On Tear Down This Paywall: The New Yorker Opens Its Archives

A New Yorker subscription is my yearly Christmas gift to myself. The magazine is great, of course, but the archives are amazing. I've been reading back issues from the forties, and they are full of undiluted New Yorker "voice." The profiles of greater- or lesser-known people are just gold.

Posted on July 22, 2014 at 11:01 am 0

On My Last $100: 48 Hours in Chicago

@CaddyFdot : Do you eat meat? Then you should go to the Purple Pig, because it's excellent and super neighborly. Also, if you've never been to the Field Museum, you should stop by on the weekend and go through their "Evolving Planet" permanent exhibit, which is basically a walk through the entire timeline of life on Earth. It's the best natural-history exhibit I know, and absolutely mindblowing.

Posted on July 22, 2014 at 9:52 am 0

On The Most Expensive Meals We've Ever Paid For

Le Bernardin. Worth every one of the many, many dollars.

Posted on July 18, 2014 at 4:00 pm 1

On Got an Extra $500? Buy Jibo, the Family Robot

The "blinking" animation is very appealing. I also approve of the design of the two body articulations -- it gives it a pleasantly organic "tilt" when it moves. As it stands, however, I'm sticking with my old R2 unit, who will carry my beer and follow me around. http://www.theoldrobots.com/otherobots5.html

Posted on July 16, 2014 at 4:43 pm 0

On How President Obama Does Credit Cards

@LookUponMyWorks : I mean, this is equivalent to the presidential motorcade having right-of-way through traffic. Yeah, I figure he's got better things to do. @wrappedupinbooks : I can totally imagine Clinton doing that, and incidentally charming the heck out of everyone in the joint in the process.

Posted on July 14, 2014 at 4:08 pm 1

On Concerning Inflation, Pants, and Getting Old

@Josh Michtom@facebook : I've heard good things about Clarks, but never worn them. Their chukka boots / desert boots are an old-school classic. On the other hand, I've had nothing but crappy experiences with Cole Haans, so there's that.

Posted on July 11, 2014 at 4:25 pm 0

On Concerning Inflation, Pants, and Getting Old

@Josh Michtom@facebook : Quality shoes will take a good polish and become nigh-indestructable. Many shoe manufacturers make dress shoes with Dainite (rubber) soles or a Goodyear welt for waterproofing and general sturdiness, too. If you're really really going to do some damage, get a thicker pebble-grain leather, which is a bit casual but still looks smart. It is also totally OK to wear dress boots. After all, if James Rorimer can wear his old WWII combat boots with a suit every day at the Met, you can wear a nice pair of Loakes, or Alden's Indy boots.

Posted on July 11, 2014 at 3:18 pm 0

On Concerning Inflation, Pants, and Getting Old

@cryptolect : Oh man, I'm afraid I don't know a thing about women's shoes. I'd guess that it's a similar deal, but I can't off the top of my head name a women's equivalent to Allen Edmonds or that sort of price/quality point. They must be out there, though.

Posted on July 11, 2014 at 2:27 pm 0

On Concerning Inflation, Pants, and Getting Old

@gyip : When Brooks Brothers has a sale, you should be able to pick up a pair of their wool trousers for $80 or so. They're a great staple, and I believe tailoring is free in-store (even if ordered online) if they're unhemmed, so Josh could buy an unhemmed pair and have the length made exactly right.

Posted on July 11, 2014 at 2:20 pm 0

On Concerning Inflation, Pants, and Getting Old

@Josh Michtom@facebook : I'm assuming you're buying men's dress shoes, in which case I'm afraid to say -- it's because you didn't pay enough. You went up in price, but not enough to get to the tier of quality that you expected the price hike to bump you into. (With men's dress shoes, think of quality as a function of price as a discrete function rather than a continuous one.) The lowest price point that I can think of, where the shoes can be expected to last you well into the double digits of years, would be a nice pair of Allen Edmonds oxfords, which will run you about $350 or so. UGH I KNOW, BUT IT GETS WORSE. To really bump up into the "these shoes will last me for the rest of my natural life" category, you're going to get into the $500+ range for a pair of Aldens or $600-some for a pair of Crockett and Jones shoes, both of which in ten or twenty years will look as good, if not better, than they do today. Yeah, that's real money. God, is it real money. But as my grandmother said, "you have to be rich to buy cheap shoes" and, assuming you're buying good ol' solid brands rather than some flashy fashion brands, these suckers will distribute that cost over time like nobody's business.

Posted on July 11, 2014 at 2:14 pm 2