PhD In Style: Famous Cinematic Professors

Robin Williams in “Dead Poets Society”   We return to our Professor Week coverage with a gallery of film dons (and a few schoolteachers). The list must be endless, so let us know who else belongs here. Above, Robin Williams in “Dead Poets Society.” Below, John Houseman as a Harvard Law professor in 1973’s “Paper


Cheeky Humor

This is a test to see if this post goes viral. After I mentioned that our Sewanee post shattered all traffic records, someone left a comment suggesting that it was because all the old curmudgeons and fogeys were ogling the candid shots of lovely young co-eds, rather than the more likely reason that kids from the school


Avuncular Style: Robert Vaughn And The Original Man From UNCLE

Today “The Man From UNCLE” opens. Hollywood, as the cliché goes, is all out of new ideas. That may not be such a bad thing, as there’s a lot worth recycling, including the enormous body of Cold War-era spy stuff. The latest “Mission Impossible” is supposed to be excellent, with a 93% positive rating at


Wet Hot American Blog Post

The great American tradition of preppy-jerk villains returned last week with the debut of “Wet Hot American Summer: First Day Of Camp.” The Netflix series, which consists of eight 30-minute episodes, is a prequel to the 2001 comedy film of the same name (minus the last part). Over the past 14 years I’ve somehow managed


Walk A Mile In Don’s Shoes: Mad Men Prop Auction Starts Tomorrow

“Mad Men” fans rejoice: tomorrow is your chance to get a souvenir from the show. The auction website is putting up what looks like 1,000 props from the show, including wardrobe items. I took a look at nearly a dozen and most were from Brooks Brothers, which surprised me, since I’ve publically complained here that the


Behind The Scenes Of The Mad Men Title Sequence

I’ve been focused on tennis more than golf lately, and am fortunate to have a 14-court facility just down the street from me in Astoria Park. The Triboro Bridge snakes above, and the East River and Manhattan skyline provide a fantastic view. Recently I got into a couple of pickup games with a new guy, who happens to

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Jumping The Shark: Shark Week, Jaws And Ice-Cold Beer

I had an obsession last summer. I call my obsessions “manias” in homage of Kenneth Grahame’s aristocratic amphibian, Mr. Toad. I sometimes feel like the dapper toad, but I have to admit my manias pale in comparison, as I gravitate to armchair pursuits that risk neither life nor fortune. My summer mania started this way: it


Five Years Ago — The Underappreciated Yellow Oxford

This post originally ran five years ago this week. * * * For a certain breed of trad purist, there are only four shirts worth wearing: oxford-cloth button-downs in white, blue, pink and yellow. White and blue are everyday staples of the office wardrobe, and pink is the iconic color, leaving yellow in fourth place,


Wayward Preppies

This week I heard about a prime-time drama on Fox called “Wayward Pines” featuring a preppy with a wayward-fitting school blazer. Apparently the show has a sci-fi theme. I’ve actually been on a sci-fi kick lately since watching a movie called “Predestination,” based on a story by Robert Heinlein. I got a collection of his


Six Years Ago — License Revoked: John Gavin, Almost a 007

As part of our regular new series revisiting topics from the early years, here’s a fresh look at this post that originally ran in June 2009. * * * Take a look at the guy above: Mild-mannered schoolteacher, or James Bond, license to kill? Providing Ivy Infotainment comes with constant pressure to dig up fresh


Six Years Ago: Dirty Rotten Scoundrel

We close out the month of May with this post, which originally ran in May of 2009. Pegged on the movie “Dirty Dancing,” it’s a short but fascinating look at how heroes and villains have switched places in pop culture — at least when it comes to messy issues such as social class. * *


Six Years Ago: Haole Spirit

As we approach our 1,200th post, I’m going to start giving some of the early ones an encore in a regular series of reposts from five, six and seven years ago. This one originally ran on this day in 2009, and concerns heyday-era Ivy in unexpected places (or maybe not), as well as the interesting


Reel To Real: Take Ivy 1984

Deep Google searches on the phrase “Take Ivy” often return an image of a mysterious green VHS cassette with art from illustrator Kazuo Hozumi — evoking fantasties that the mythic 1965 film was once available as a commercial release. Six months ago, a former VAN Jacket employee handed me this very videotape after cleaning out

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Just Give Them Some Space: The Astronaut Wives Club

When one door closes, the saying goes, another one opens. Or when one TV show ends, another begins. In our case, farewell “Mad Men” and welcome to earth “The Astonaut Wives Club.” ABC is currently advertising the series, which is set during the ’60s Space Race; it will debut in June.


Boys Town

As we approach our 1,200th post, I suppose it’s inevitable that we start recycling things every once in a while. It offers those of us who’ve been here all along to revisit certain topics (I’m certainly at the stage where I’ve forgotten half the stuff on here), while giving new readers the chance to see

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Light In The Fog: Streets Of San Francisco’s Mike Stone

When we ran our profile of a tradly dressed Washington DC police officer last week, a reader left a comment invoking the name of Mike Stone, the cop played by Karl Malden on the ’70s TV show “The Streets Of San Francisco.” In contrast to his wide-lapelled and groovy necktie-wearing partner (played by a young

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Katnip Kollege, 1938

OK, it’s officially Cartoon Week. This one’s from 1938, three years into the swing era. The music is decidedly different from 1932’s “Freddy The Freshman.” — CC

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Raw! Raw! Rooster, 1956

It’s inevitable that things wind down at the end of the week, but to devolve into Cartoon Week? Sheesh…. On the plus side, it may be a short week. I did some extensive googling for collegiate-themed animated shorts from the ’30s, but couldn’t actually find anything. Suggestions appreciated. Were there any Madison Avenue spoofs? —


Call The Style Police: The 3/1 Roll

Does this man look guilty to you? Does it look like he’s hiding something? In fact he is: he has fastened only the top button on his three-button jacket. Pictured above is Tyrone Power from the fantastic 1957 Billy Wilder film “Witness For The Prosecution,” which features an incredible performance by Charles Laughton as a