Happy, Happy Birthday to Me

Some people have a problem with their birthdays. They will go great lengths to avoid cakes at the office, presents from friends, general recognition, etc. Not me. I have no problem letting folks know that my birthday is coming up, nor do I find myself reluctant to say “It’s my birthday” whether or not I know the person to whom I’m speaking.

That said, it’s my 41st birthday, and just because I’m in an even-numbered mood (more feng shui you know), let’s put that number at 42. [Insert tasteful multiple-birthday-candle-, or forgetfulness-related  joke here].

Thin is in!

Today’s Tie du Jour is a fun one to write about, and not just because I’m hopped up on birthday cake from Fraîche, on Noyes Street here in Evanston. I’ll also admit that I indulged in an almond croissant this morning from there, too. Go check out what Susan, Mari and the gang have in store for you–one good bite after another, I promise.

I bought this tie at Unique Thrift Store, if memory serves. As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, it was way too wide for my taste, and I just went over to see Wafa at A-1 Tailor on Dempster, just west of Chicago Avenue. He has worked wonders for us over the years, doing anything from sewing a Harry Caray patch on my Cubs jersey, to altering a suit. His prices are fair, and he does great work. He has bettered many of my treasures.

As soon as I saw my new, thinner tie, I was ecstatic. Somehow the narrower strip makes the pattern stand out even more. I couldn’t wait to wear it, so it took me all of a day.

Mr. Zanayed and I have always had nice mini-conversations, but this time I spent a good fifteen minutes, being regaled with some cool stories from his early career in Palestine. His expertise has always been suits, and I can tell he knows what he’s doing. I even have a few suits from resale shops, and those need some adjustments, and he has really helped me save some money.

Wafa told me about a woman who came to his shop last year with a piece of fabric, and wanted to surprise her husband

Great sweater, great tie, great tailor

for his birthday with a custom-made tie. Wafa took apart an old tie to see how to put it back together, and produced a beautiful surprise. It cost around $100, but the husband loved it so much she came back this year with another fabric.

And now here’s a teaser for another TdJ: he showed me a tie that had been waiting for its owner for a year and a half. He offered it to me for what the previous owner owed on it, so for $5 I got a great new tie. Sorry, Mr. Deadbeat Tie Owner…

Speaking of tie owner, my original number was 116, but I found 4 here at the office (do not knot unless in an emergency) and have bought around 8-10 since starting 100 Days, 100 Ties. So, by rudimentary math standards, that puts us at 130 or so. Yeesh. I need to start giving some of these away. Seriously, if you know of someone who wants a tie, or perhaps a college graduate who could use a few, let me know. I’d be happy to wear 1 or 5 in a row with the idea that I could mail them at the end of the day or week. Let’s get creative.

Thanks for reading, thanks for the birthday wishes…

Brooke

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One Response to “Happy, Happy Birthday to Me”

  1. Dan Says:

    There are schools and men’s dress programs that would love to have your ties! For example, we have a school here that is K-5, and they are working with the fifth graders to learn how to dress appropriately including learning how to tie a tie. So look around – there is bound to be a program in need of your ties (even the ugly ones!).

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