Golden Years: Curtain Call In New York

Today former J. Press president Richard Press once again becomes a citizen of Manhattan, leaving the suburbs of Connecticut for an Upper East Side apartment. Evidently life begins (or at least begins again) at seventy.

• • •

Twenty-five years in the hinterlands is long enough. Today my wife and I move back to New York City, land of our original dreams.

Pictured is a souvenir of Father and Son Day 1978 at the City Athletic Club: me and my son, who in those days upheld the J. Press cut tradition at the Buckley School in New York.

The City Athletic Club was my home away from home that I shared with my best friend from my Loomis days, Gene Mercy, where we devoured cherrystones from Mike at the Clam Bar in the lounge topped by martinis at the second floor bar.

Today the City AC on 54th Street is long gone. The member roster included Senator Jacob Javits, producer Max Gordon, Paramount Pictures founder Adolph Zukor, Henry Kravis, Ron Perelman, Ralph Lauren, my Paul Stuart competitors Cliff Grodd and Paul Stuart Ostrove, not to mention Ivan Boesky, who appeared with me as an actor in an off-Broadway production of “Abie’s Irish Rose” at the Van Dam Theatre.

Now it’s time to seize the moment. I look forward to contributing to the Ivy Style exhibit at the Museum of the Fashion Institute of Technology Museum, along with blog maestro Chensvold, author and sage G. Bruce Boyer, and the museum’s deputy director Patricia Mears, plus her enthusiastic band of FIT cohorts.

Back to the future. — RICHARD PRESS

15 Comments on "Golden Years: Curtain Call In New York"

  1. Got to love me some Queen Elizabeth II Royal Stewart plaid pants. Had some Corbin plain front flannels in the late 60s and who didn’t own a pair of Polo pleated in the late 70s, made of smaller proportion cotton broad cloth shirting.

  2. I am excited for the Ivy Style exhibit. I hope there are some fun, casually organized events after the opening. Maybe some drinks and an impromptu lecture?

  3. Christian | May 29, 2012 at 9:46 am |

    I’m sure there will be many events, official and non-official. Richard, I know, will be leading tours on the weekend, and I’ll likely be his sidekick.

    I’d also like to use this site to help organize some informal get-togethers, so that like-minded (you know, except for politics) readers can meet and go through the exhibit together, then go out for food and drink afterwards.

    Should be a great, great time this fall with three months of Ivy get-togethers in New York.

  4. New England’s loss is New York’s gain. I am sure you and Vida will be very happy! Wonderful picture of you and Ben.

  5. This post made me bizarrely happy to read.

  6. window trimmer | May 29, 2012 at 12:42 pm |

    best of luck 2 both of u in your new(original) digs.signed-not john norey!

  7. Ne Cede Malis | May 29, 2012 at 1:43 pm |

    Mr. Press, you should add “fellow Loomis Alum” to Henry Kravis…

    Best of luck with your move!

    LC ’96

  8. Eustace Tilley | May 29, 2012 at 8:12 pm |

    Welcome back to the heart of civilization, Mr. Press.

  9. Anonymous | May 29, 2012 at 11:06 pm |

    Hard to improve New York.Having the lovely Vida back will do just that.All the Best, Frederick

  10. In 1974, I had a pair of plaid trousers identical to the ones in the photo. Loved them and wore them to death. One day while wearing them, someone I knew remarked that the pants were out of this world. He said they should have stayed there.

    No accounting for taste. Best Wishes!

  11. Maybe it’s time to open a “Son of J Press” store in Manhattan.

  12. Won’t comment on your return to NYC, but I am trying to put something together for a visit to NYC in the fall – FIT exhibit is the primary attraction. Still trying to get together with Ben again, but it’s been hit and miss…

    Nice pants, Ben! lol I’ll have to dredge up some old pics from the Buckley days… If you have any from the bar mitzvah, I might even be in some. Heh.

  13. Boris Nofziger | June 3, 2012 at 9:25 am |

    Little extra tidbit here:

    If you belong to a city club, TAKE CARE OF THE PLACE!!! Give a little extra and sit on a committee. Once they fade, they don’t come back. As Mr. Press says, they’re your home away from home.

  14. Dickey Greenleaf | June 9, 2012 at 12:45 pm |

    Nouveau Riche? not likely, so back to the future, deftinately, so I wonder who else is going to attend the FITM exhibit, best wishes Chris, and proliferate us by the same token as we celebrate you’re accomplishment, achievements, satire, and angst to P.S. the last part was just a joke Chris, lol.

  15. Dickey Greenleaf | June 9, 2012 at 12:52 pm |

    Really I mean no harm, you’re a good guy, good luck, I sincerely mean it, thanks for all the hard work you put in to this site , and for all of the wonderful, bright, interesting,and meaningful stories you share with us, thanks pal, Dick.

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