Posts Tagged ‘Lee Allison’

RIP Rusty Cavataio

January 20, 2012

Well, I see that I could have taken that subject field in a couple different ways. RIP Rus-tie Cavataio, or RIP Rusty Cava-tie-o. Either of those would have been pretty basal. Way too common for perhaps my favorite coach.

Over the years, I have liked most of my coaches. In fact, I can’t think of a bad one. Oh, wait, there’s one. Ah. And another. No matter, this isn’t about them, the not-so-great coaches. Some of my coaches were my PE teachers. Since I played soccer (British eq.: football), I’ve definitely had the most of that flavor. But, I’ve had football coaches, baseball coaches, basketball coaches, cheerleading coaches (oh yes he di-id), swimming coaches, a tennis coach and probably a golf coach for a lesson or two.

Many of these coaches were with me for longer than a season, being teachers at my various schools. The one that stands out for me was rather a flash in the pan, at least to me. Coach Rusty Cavataio was in his first year at Christian Brothers High School, and he took over the JV baseball team. He made our team so much fun that we became almost unbeatable. Well, that’s an untrue statement, since we lost our first game, to a varsity team. We only lost 1 more game all season, going something like 23 & 2. I think we said it was an exhibition, but, really, aren’t all JV games exhibitions?

Anyway, as a side note, I’ll take you to the bottom of the 7th (the last inning) of that first game. We were getting crushed. 14-zip. I get tabbed to go pinch-hit to lead off and start our rally. First pitch, I swing. I’m so far from hitting it, it’s a joke. Second pitch, a curve ball that doesn’t curve. I somehow remember to duck the beanball attempt. Somehow it calms me, and I give a little butt-shake. Third pitch, I hit the holy living shit out of the ball to left field. We weren’t playing on a field with a wall, but it would have gone over any wall in baseball. I could have run around twice, it rolled so far. 14-1, and in my high school baseball career, I’m 1-for-1 with a dinger. Should’ve retired. Glad I didn’t.

And, thus concludes the glory days portion of today’s 100D100T. Back to Stump, which is what we called the 5’6″ (being generous) Coach Cavataio. Coach was so great to all of us, cussin’ and teasin’…it really was the most fun team I’ve ever been on. After Coach’s obit was posted on Facebook, a couple of other ball players mentioned his famous drill. We had to hold a small rectangular piece of wood in our glove hand, and he would screech grounders to us on a parking lot. We had to learn to field with our other hand, too, pinching the ball with both hands and our ‘mitt.’ We weren’t able to stop until the whole team cleanly fielded grounders all in a row. Amazing team builder. I really am surprised one of us didn’t go out and play an inning with one of those boards in our hand. We…our team…would have done that for Coach. I’d have loved to have told him how much I’ve thought of that drill over the years. When I go back later this fall for my 25th high school reunion, I’m sure there will be many stories told about that season.

Anyway, my Tie du Jour is bedecked in CBHS  purple and gold (we are the purple wave). Although I’m thinking Coach abhorred wearing ties (he seemed much more comfortable in those BIKE coaching shorts), he may have given in to these colors. Rest in Peace, Coach Cavataio…Godspeed.

Thanks for reading…Brooke


Coffee, tie or me?

January 4, 2012

Haha, snuck a day in there without posting. But, of course, my mom was right on it, with a “did you write your blog today” that had similar tone to it as a good old “did you clean your room”? Thanks, Ma.

The CTdJ (the Catchup Tie du Jour) is another beauty from Lee Allison. This, as you may know by now, is my favorite blue. That cornflower blue, so nice, with a power stripe of red & white thrown in there for good, patriotic measure. No idea where I wore this one, but it was also found, all treasure-like, at Classy Closet at Washington & Custer in Evanston.

This tie will soon be put on the list for the TieXchange. Tomorrow we are sending out our first beta tester ties, and we’re trying to get the mailing just right. We will use an envelope that can be used to return the tie. So, at least we can be a little green, even if your tie isn’t so green.

Thanks for reading…Brooke


Buy low, sell tie

December 30, 2011

Can it be? Wow, this is two days in a row with a post! Kind of a pre-New Year’s resolution. I’m so. Darn. Proud of myself.

Let’s make it quick, since this tie was worn waaaay back in November-like. It is a spectacularly green tie, designed by my good friend, Lee Allison (a GWT alum). These ties are made so well, with so much care, that they practically tie themselves. I loved finding this one at a local place called “Classy Closet.” I know I’ve had a bunch of 100D100Ties from there.

This tie will be available on TieXchange very soon. Like, as soon as I take another picture of it, and upload it to our database.

Whoa, and I just kinda figured out my timeline (can’t spell it w/o T-I-E)…in a couple of posts I’ll write about a tie that I wore to a Hallowe’en party. So this one was worn in October, not November. Oh, the procrastination…

I have a lot of Guys With Ties coming up, so stay tuned! And check out TieXchange, if you get a chance.

Thanks for reading…Brooke

The Tie Traveler’s Wife

September 27, 2011

I’m going to go out on a limb here: I’ll probably never have the chance to time-travel. There. I said it. So, I can guess I can finally use this post subject that’s been sitting in my drafts list for quite a while.

And though the chances are somewhat greater that I’ll have an encounter with author Audrey Niffenegger, an Evanstonian by day (and night), I figured I’d just go ahead and use it to signify that I’m going back to one of the 5-7 ties that remain un-posted.

Mildly interesting backstory on my Tie du Jour, and that’s putting it very mildly. This TdJ is solid in at least a couple of ways – color scheme and craftsmanship would be my choices. It’s from designer RVR Neckties, owned by Robert Valdes-Rodriguez, with whom I used to work at ABN Amro Bank. Or for whom, I guess you could say, at least for a few months. I nearly choked on my bowtie when I saw that his strips go for $185 a throw. [long, slow whistle] Give me 30 days and I could find 100 above-average ties for less than $185. And, no, I wasn’t really wearing a bowtie when doing my research. My good friend Lee Allison designs ties that have personality, AND are half that price.


In my last post, I can’t believe I left out a Guy With Tie. Mike Ryan is a mixologist-extraordinaire at Sable. Paul and I visited there a couple of times in the past week, thanking them for carrying Few. Here’s Mike in proper mixology-gear, i.e. waistcoat and tie. Go see him, and ask him to make you a Few-inspired cocktail.

Thanks for reading…Brooke

Lucy in the Tie with Diamonds…

October 29, 2010

Picture yourself in a train in a station / With plasticine porters with looking glass ties

With an assist from Kim Pierceall of Grotto Communications, we break off from my two-day Stones jones and turn to the Beatles for a hit of inspiration. And it even had Guys With Ties hidden amongst the lyrics. These guys looked good in everything, even their matchy-matchy dark ties…

My Tie du Jour (wow, how long has it been since I’ve actually written about a TdJ on the actual Jour?) is a salmon pink strip (yes, Dan, I realize the iPhone camera didn’t capture the color, and no, Dan, I haven’t gotten my Flip video camera yet) with differently-sized and -textured blue and gray stripes complementing. From Ermenegildo Zegna (remember, it’s pronounced air-men-eh-HEEL-dough), this tie has great changes in the grain of the fabric.

I am sorry I am wearing pink so late in the month, but I would like to honor those who have taken the time to promote National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. You have walked, run, biked, talked, shared, cried, cheered–all for your friends, your family, yourselves. Football players have worn pink shoes, gloves, hats (on the sidelines) as a token of their request for women everywhere to fight the good fight, so that we can dream the good dream of a world where cancer kills only in the history books.

My newest and bestest buddy, Lee Allison, is offering a special promotion codes on a selection of pink ties, through his Lee Allison Company site, until the end of the month.

Speaking of new buddies, I recently discovered (because one of them discovered me) a couple of blogs that have been focusing on the ties that they wear. One of the cool things about using WordPress is that they track the web links via which users arrive at 100D100T. Through this avenue, I found the dimpledfourinhand, which mentions 100 Days, 100 Ties, as well as a very similar blog called 100 Days of Ties. They could both teach me a lot in terms of blog presentation, as their designs both kick mine’s derrière. Check them out if you get a chance…

Well, this may be the end of the week for ties. The Chamber moved office today, with a marathon packing event this evening. Tomorrow will be an unpacking event, and I’ve been advised to wear jeans. Jeans to work is all fine and dandy, but I need to make an appearance, as a local G-list celebrity, so I may opt to wear something a little less casual. For the second year in a row, I’ll be judging a pumpkin-carving contest amongs the tenants of the 500 Davis Building. Let the bribing begin!

Thanks for reading…Brooke

A good tie was had by all…

September 24, 2010

My Leadership Evanston program has begun in earnest. We had a 5 1/2-hour workshop last night, and I met the 30 other folks with whom I’ll be spending the next 10 months. The participants are from all walks of Evanston life–educators, non-profit directors, ministers, etc–and it’s very easy to tell that I will get a lot out of this. As you’ll see below, I even got a new GWT out of last night’s meeting. AND, we even went to Pensiero Ristorante for dinner, where I got a GWT alum to show off another tie.

Paisley Park

My Tie du Jour (Tie du Yesterjour, to be precise) is another from Liberty of London, but I’m pretty sure it’s my first paisley from them that I’ve sported. I chose this one because there was a pep rally in downtown Evanston, in advance of Northwestern’s game against mighty Central Michigan. It’s Evanston Day at the game tomorrow, and local businesses have used the rallying cry “Paint Evanston Purple” while offering specials to people wearing purple on game day.

I really like that the colors in this particularly pretty paisley pattern seem to be so far off from each other. I have other paisleys that basically stick to one color scheme, be it blue or green or what-have-you. It took some creativity, and a supremely talented silk-screen artisan, to put this one together.

My new member of the Guys With Ties clan is Gary Millman, who works right here in the Rotary Building for Rotary International. Every year, the new Rotary President chooses a tie that becomes a sort of fundraiser for Rotary Clubs worldwide. His Tie du Yesterday, which depicts the inside of an abalone shell, was from a few years back, when the president was from New Zealand. I met Gary yesterday, as he and I will go through the Leadership Evanston program together. I have worked with his wife Lucy on some Northwestern-Evanston initiatives, so it was great to make this connection.

Adam, the mixologist extraordinaire from the new Pensiero, makes it in again, with another very-cool vest-tie combination. I need to get back over there and get me another Sazerac. Delicious.

So clever, no?

Next week I’ll be sporting my new tie from Lee Allison Company, which I ordered using the special promo code that they gave me on my field trip this week. Remember, you can get 25% off of your total order if you enter 100TIES on the checkout page. Here’s a picture of the gift card that I sent to myself.

Thanks for reading (my blog AND my note to myself)…Brooke

Special added bonus: Weekend Edition!

April 17, 2010

So, via the magic of wireless signals and the ingenuity, and chutzpah, of Al Gore (Version Junior), I get to sit at my laptop, in the privacy of my flat, sip coffee and peruse ties in what my Cajun family call caleçons.

My good friend Pat Hughes (check out his company, Inclusion Solutions…he’s an all-around great guy) turned me onto a tie designer located in Chicago–The Lee Allison Company. I dig the way the website plays out: when you look at a tie, they helpfully suggest others. The choice of fabrics is amazingly varied. Neckties are regularly priced at $90; bowties $52. That, as you probably can assume, is steep for thrifty old moi, but looking is free. They seemed to have over 100 tie styles (sound familiar?), even more with all the color choices within a particular pattern.

They have a loft studio in Bucktown…may have to take a field trip down there, if I can get my mom to sign my permission slip, that is.

The good, the bad, the worn.

While I sip on my coffee du jour, I’m pondering what I can do as 100 Days, 100 Ties marches on. It’s been wonderful having friends comment, on here and in person, and I am looking forward to getting some ties that are being sent. I got an idea the other day that I may need some help clarifying into a concept. I’d like to sell some ties for charity…not mine, really, I don’t think they’d go for much, but if I could get some celebrities, and maybe designers, to donate a tie or two, don’t you think a good cause could be helped? I’d love to hear your ideas…

And, where are my manners…in yesterday’s post, I forgot to say “Thanks for reading.” I’ll try not to let that courteslip-up happen again.

Thanks for reading (there, that’s better)…Brooke