Archive for February, 2011

Can’t spell ‘State of the City’ without T-I-E

February 27, 2011

Just finished Thursday’s post, so let’s get right to Friday, shall we?

I will need to re-classify the Tie du Thursday, as I said it was from Alfani. Actually, the Tie du Friday is from that designer. I have memory problems, most likely borne from the fact that this was Tie No. 230. I love this TdJ–the design is sort of an optical illusion (the one where it looks like the lines aren’t parallel but they are), although if you stare at pretty much anything for long enough you’ll hallucinate anyway. What is not a hallucination is that my crapiPhone camera did a pretty good job on this pic. Maybe if I give it some confidence it’ll come through for me a little more often.

Friday was the Mayor’s Annual State of the City address. Love the slightly oxymoronic phrase. There were about 250 attendees on hand at the Hilton Orrington, and very many of them wore ties. I only snapped a couple of them, but I’ll post a link to the professional photographer’s shots when we get them.

First we have Joe Liss, a GWT alum. He is a partner in the Evanston accounting firm Brown Kaplan + Liss, and he’s also Treasurer of the Chamber’s Board of Directors.

Then we have Jeff Cory, who’s the City of Evanston’s Cultural Arts Director. His tie is befitting of his position, very cool and artsy.

Julia’s friend Charlotte slept over on Friday night, and while they did some things that would be classified typical of a girls’ sleepover, they also had a tie-tying lesson. Here they are with the results…not bad!


And, for a while, Julia has wanted me to snap a picture of these ties, from the intro to the show iCarly. Jerry Trainor, on the right (duh, he’s not an ostrich), plays Spencer, Carly’s older brother. I actually think the show is pretty funny: it makes Julia laugh when I laugh at it.

Thanks for reading…Brooke




Tie got a Basketball Jones

February 27, 2011

A couple of weeks ago, I think I mentioned that I had mailed 5 or 6 ties to my cousin, Beaux Jones, who is a law student at LSU in Baton Rouge. You may recall that he had sent me a tale of shopping for a tie in New Orleans. I told him then, which was months ago, that I’d send him a bunch of ties to use in time for his next internship or job (he may be graduating this spring). Well, you know how I am with the procrastination and all that fun stuff. I finally got around to it, with the stipulation that he take a couple of photos of them when he wore them. Since he is a Jones, I made sure to send him a couple of Jones New York strips. In addition, I thought it would complete the circle if I sent him a Lee Allison tie, since that is what he was purchasing at the Aidan Gill Store.

Well, good thing I sent them when I did…he was going to the national environmental law moot court competition in NYC. The part I loved most was his perfectly crafted subject line: Jones New York tie on a Jones in New York. Love my readers! The part I loved second most (it was a close competition, and the decision of the judges is final) was his followup email:

Lee Allison strip

You won’t believe what just happened…we just made it to quarterfinals of the competition and I won two best oralist awards, but that wasn’t the best part… After the quarterfinals the judge was giving his comments and said I want to give the “annual best tie award” to Mr. Beaux Jones. I kid you knot!

Okay, I put the ‘k’ on ‘knot’ in that last sentence, but isn’t that awesome! Way to geaux, Beaux!


Once again, I am way late on my postings, solidifying my standing for Procrastinator of the Year Award, which is always announced several months after the year has actually ended. The Tie du Jour (from Thursday…at press time that is officially three days ago) is from Alfani, and it’s a fun red, white and blue number that would be perfect on July 4th. But, I evidently couldn’t wait that long to celebrate our independence. America! [Editor’s Note: this TdJ is from Countess Mara, not Alfani. Can’t spell ‘editor’ without I-D-I-O-T]

And yet another reason to love my readers…Anna, our friendly neighborhood barista at Other Brother Coffeehouse in Evanston, was crafting a dress made out of paisley ties. I brought her a bag full of some already-worn paisley concoctions, and behold! You can read all about it on her Little Green Pixie blog. As a proud former owner of some of these ties, I will say that she used one of mine for the straps, as well as four along the back. Good ti(m)es.

And, gosh darn, if there’s not another reason to love my readers…GWT alum Vince Roberts snapped a shot of young Busby Malone, grandson of Chamber friend Mary Berg (owner of Simply Chicago Art). The tie has dogs and bones on it…cute stuff.

Thanks for sending this stuff in, folks. It makes each day different and fun.

Thanks for reading…Brooke

Can’t spell ‘tennis’ without T-I-E

February 23, 2011

It’s much too cold to play tennis these days, at least here in Chicago, where Mother Nature today bitch-slapped us all in the past two days with a mild ice storm followed by about a half-inch of snow. “It is not spring,” she told the surprised citizens, as she executed the bitch-slap. “Now get your mittens and winter hats back on before I bitch-slap some more of you!” Mother Nature, always jealous of Zeus’s lightning bolt, takes out her frustrations in the form of bitch-slapping.

Tennis, the sport, was invoked this evening because my Tie du Jour is from the Wembley line of fashion items. It’s white with gray (Brit: grey) and blue (Brit: blue) threads making up the plaid. I put it with this solid purple Gene Meyer shirt to purple up that bit of blue, and it was good. The ensemble was greeted, and properly complimented, this morning at the Other Brother, by Anna, aka Little Green Pixie. Can’t wait to see her dress, made almost entirely of ties.

That is water in that cup

A couple of months ago, I gave a few already worn bow ties to my friend (and GWT alum) Todd Paul. My one condition was, when he wore ’em, he had to get a picture taken for 100D100T. Well, he gave me the opportunity to snap the shot…diggin’ it, TP.

Thanks for reading…Brooke


Tie Fellow Americans…

February 23, 2011


…or what Rahm Emanuel said, “Tie Fellow Chicagoans.” He probably said ‘my’ instead of ‘tie’, wouldn’t you think? Congrats to the new Chicago Mayor for leaving DC and getting a job right away. He should be a great post-Daley exec, and his sound bites should be fantastic.

In other election news, zzzzzz.

It’s been quite a while since I’ve posted on the same day that I’ve actually worn the tie. There are still 3 minutes to midnight, but I’ll give myself the credit anyway. The past two were 5 and 4 days late…sheesh. But, I’m sure that’s expecting a lot from a guy who calls his blog ‘100 Days, 100 Ties’ when it’s gone to 228 days & ties. Houston, I have a problem.

The Tie du Jour was selected in honor of our host for our monthly Networking Breakfast, the North Shore Retirement Hotel. You may recall that, at the request of Managing Director Margaret Gergen, I gave a short presentation about my ties to their Open Forum group. As a thank you gift, she gave me three ties. This pink beaut from Oscar de la Renta was one of them. Margaret recognized it right away…so cool.

One of the prospects at the meeting, Steve Schwartz, was kind enough to remain motionless for 1.3 seconds while I snapped this shot. He laughed when I told him that he was the 3rd Steve Schwartz that I know, and we all shared a hearty chuckle (or was it a chortle) when a woman mentioned that she knew another Steve Schwartz. It’s a schmall, schmall world.

Thanks for reading…Brooke

Prince of Ties

February 21, 2011

We got a great big Conroy, ain't she a beautiful site...Con-roy!

For the love of books and the language…Pat Conroy

That is the inscription in my copy (real hardback!) of The Prince of Tides, a book I thoroughly enjoyed right up until the moment where director Barbra Streisand directed leading actor Nick Nolte to say, rather emphatically, “You’re so beautiful” to leading actress Barbra Streisand (yes, they are related). Pretty sure she bought the movie rights just for that magical movie moment, and I can just picture her watching every morning before facing the world. Funny Girl, my ass. That character put the ‘arf’ in ‘barf’.

Since I am not, by nature, as cynical as I make it sound, I assume that Mr. Conroy was not talking about the legal language one uses when selling rights to an international film/entertainment star. Instead, he was talking about his passion. Again, I go on the assumption that this dedication was for me only, and not his regular, get-this-kid-away-from-me script. Also, I don’t remember his hair being quite that big…the combover is mightier than the sword, indeed.

Anyway, let’s get on to the Tie du Thursday, even though it’s Monday. Just so you know why there won’t be Ties du Friday et Monday, I was off of work Friday, and Monday was a holiday–President’s Day, for which even Hallmark can’t create a demand for cards. Thursday morning was highlighted by the North Shore Business Breakfast, hosted by several departments at Northwestern University. It was a grand gesture to local businesses, in which NU detailed how to go about becoming a vendor for the university. That is a key question from chamber members, trust me.

Againyway, my tie is a mildly vintage strip from Pierre Cardin. It’s my last purple tie, and I wanted to look my best with the whole Northwestern Wildcat theme of the morning. I’ll have to stock up on my resale shop visits. Fairly simple pattern, but the dark purple adds some prestige.

And, for the second day in a row, Dr. Vince Roberts made it to a networking event; for the second day in a row, he wore a tie (it’s a nice Paul Fredrick one!); AAAAAND (the suspense is killing you, n’est-ce pas?) for the second day in a row, he has made the GWT list. I think he and Paul Hletko are leading the GWT race, not that there was one (if there was, I’d be winning [sticking tongue out]).

As the coming short week sets itself upon us, I would like to determine another Tie Week Week. Also, I realized this evening that it’s less than a month until my one year blogging anniversary. Can’t believe it. Think I should have a party. I’ll also think about ending the blog, even though I probably won’t. Would love your thoughts on what I should do. Oh, one thing I’d like to do is revisit some of the ties that have been worn (and are so nice I’d like to wear them again): should I choose a day of the week to reprise a tie? Or should I have a vote, where people choose their favorite 5 ties, with the winners getting their own Winner Tie Week? Help me ponder, help help me ponder.

Thanks for reading…Brooke

Tie-er Beware

February 21, 2011

Well, this is officially the latest I’ve ever been, as far as blog posting goes. Those who know me well will know that my procrastination knows no bounds; those who don’t should just know that this blog (still hate that word) has gone against the grain for me. So, let’s get to it.

A few days have happened since Wednesday, although there have only been two Ties du Jour since then (a Tie du Wednesday et a Tie du Thursday). So, I’ll try to properly apportion the goings-on from this 5-day period.

My TdJ for this particular post is a navy blue and white number from Barini Originals. Though I really like the tie, I don’t think I gave it its best shirt companion. Oh, well, can’t win ’em all, I guess…though the blue tie clip gets an ‘E’ for effort in my attempt to save the ensemble.

Wednesday was our Business After Hours event, held at Bar Louie Evanston. Our good friend, GWT, Friday Freebie winner, tie contributor, Vince Roberts was there, sporting the vintage purple and black bubble tie that was given to him at the inaugural Guys With Ties Mad Men Happy Hour last month.

Thanks for waiting, and reading…Brooke

We’re all gonna tie!

February 16, 2011

No, no, relax…that 50-mile wide asteroid will miss Earth by thousands of yards. The 25-miler right behind it, however…

Doom schmoom, let’s have some fun! The snowcaps are melting, here in Evanston, at least…sloooowly but surely. I’m not a weather-payer-attentioner, but it’s hard to miss the chatter about hitting 50 degrees by the end of the week. Good thing I’m driving further north to Madison for Thursday night. But I’ll have dozens of different whiskeys to keep me warm. No, I won’t be traveling like Nic Cage, with a suitcase filled only with booze, in Leaving Las Vegas; I’m going to Distill America, presented by the Madison Malt Society. I’ll be wearing a tie, of course.

Speaking of ties, as I tied the Tie du Jour, I realized that it was the tie of a child. Not a particular child, mind you; as in, I didn’t steal it. But it was incredibly short: from the small picture on the right you can see that it only came down a couple inches short of my bellybutton. Did I replace it? Heck no. Thought of the solution as I tied it on: just throw a sweater on it. Bingo. Next time I’ll try a more colorful sweater…and by the way, it’s a tagless strip. No clue where it’s from.

Mildly funny story about taking the pic. The first pic I took of the way-short tie was taken without pants. No underwear were shown (yes, I was wearing ’em), but it looked pretty risqué. But, we’ll keep it clean, and leave it out. This shot is pretty goofy in it’s own right.

My string of snapping shots of GWTs on the TV carries on. This time it’s a RWT (Rapper With Tie), as Mos Def was rhymin’ on the Gorillaz concert from the Roundhouse in London. If you haven’t checked out Palladium channel, you really should. Some great shows on there. Anyway, I liked Mos’ purple tie; it has a snakeskin quality to it. Promise I’ll get some in-person GWTs tomorrow.

Thanks for reading…Brooke



Can’t spell ‘Valentine’ without T-I-E

February 14, 2011

You also need L-I-N-T and a N-A-V-E-L, but that’s beside the point, especially when you get to the ins and outs of it.

So, here we have the feast of St. Valentine, which has become the #3 spending holiday on earth. Yes, I just made that statistic up, but if you’d seen the line at the Belgian Chocolatier Piron today, you’d know that procrastination knows no bounds.

Back to the Cupidity at hand. My friend Dan Murrell passed along a few tie-related quotes, as well as some song titles. Here’s a good quote from the master of suspense Stephen King (which you can’t spell w/o T-I-E): He had a massive stroke. He died with his tie on. Do you think that could be our generation’s equivalent of that old saying about dying with your boots on?

Not bad, Mr. Master o’ Suspense. Here’s one, that’s quite apropos for today, from Earl Wilson (who, for all I know, may just be some random citizen): A woman may race to get a man a gift but it always ends in a tie. I hereby dub thee the Earl of Clever!

So, on to the TdJSVE (Tie du Jour, Special Valentine’s Edition)…

This is a wonderfully crafted tie, from la maison du Charvet. This high-end atélier has served kings and politicians for almost two centuries, and their shirts are world-famous. I thought this blue and red pattern had a little hint of hearts, perfect for today (yes, Mom, I’m writing it on time).

As for the ensemble, I had my friend snap a shot of it, so I could show my redness. Cufflinks, pocket square and pink shirt, of course. In this pic, it actually looks like there are tiny blue hears weaved into the fabric of the tie.

Well, once again, I delve into the world of the tele-vision for my new Guys With Ties. This is from a movie whose title is perfect for this blog. School Ties, of course, starring Brendan Fraser, Matt Damon, Chris O’Donnell, Ben Affleck, Marlon Brando, Gregory Peck, Laurence Olivier, Elvis, Ronald Reagan. Okay, I lied from Brando on, but this is some heavy cast. And, since the movie, from ’92, was set at a prep school in the mid-50s, the students wore a lot of ties. I picked out a couple of good ones…

Thanks for reading…Brooke

Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodtie

February 14, 2011

I actually don’t believe that he kissed him goodbye, but President Obama’s farewell news conference to his Press Secretary Robert Gibbs was very tie-centric. Apparently before Obama’s speech at the convention, he, his wife and his staff (pfff…I said ‘staff’) were arguing about which tie to wear. Someone suggested they take Gibbs’…the rest, as they say, is restful. Take a look at this video (click about halfway and you can see the actual presentation that I’m talking about) for a very cool gift idea.

As for my Friday, no one gave me a framed tie, nor did I leave a high-powered Washington gig. But, I did wear a tie, as I have done a few times. And, yes, I did remember to close out Paisley Tie Week. I didn’t close it out with a flourish, which is kind of a surprise. My TdJ was rather plain: muted tones, small paisleys. It’s a vintage strip from Besley’s Inc., sayeth the label. A quick journey to the land of Google tells me that Besley’s was purchased by the Robert Daskal Group in the 80s, and that they still make ties today (or at least until their website lost a webmaster). I got this at Unique, and I actually have an almost-exact replica, which is only slightly varying in color. A few months ago, I bought a bunch of ties to see if I could figure out a way to make pocket squares out of the tips; I figured it out, but I never cut up the ties. This is one of those ties that were almost cut up for business.

Speaking of business, here we have a different kind of GWT…a Godfather With Tie. Michael Corleone, who goes by Al Pacino during the regular course of the day, was hanging out on my television this weekend, so I thought I’d put him on here. This is the part where he is plotting to get into the family business, by the simple act of executing an execution on Captain McCluskey and Sollozzo (aka “The Turk”) at Louis Italian Restaurant.

Thanks for reading…Brooke


Smoke gets in your ties…

February 11, 2011

No, don’t worry, there wasn’t a fire here at 100D100T Inter-galactic HQ (thanks, AC), I was just fishin’ around for another blog title. And, it’s only natural that a song by The Platters should come to mind in times of literary (sorry, that’s a stretch) distress (oh, come on, it’s a blog).

Once again, no Guys With Ties were snapped on this cold Thursday, so it’ll be another basic-themed posting. Oh, well, maybe we can fire up a limerick to enliven this installment of Paisley Tie Week (extended).

There once hailed a young bloke from Paisley

Who looked on the world rather hazily.

His Mum saw to his needs,

Sis supplied him with weed,

And Da’ thought he lived his life lazily.

Not bad for midnight.

So, with that Scottish Irish poem, we stick with the British Isles theme with the Tie du Jour. It’s a gray (grey) number with pink and purple undertones, from the house of Liberty of London. This may be my 5th or 6th Liberty tie…Dad had a bunch from their London travels (Dad liked to go on soccer hooligan tours…he loved the random thugness that came from being part of a larger, opponent-stomping mob). This one I found at Unique, at the same time as yesterday’s TdJ.

Just one more day for PTW (ext.), so I’ll have to choose the Tie du Friday wisely.

Thanks for reading…Brooke