Friday, April 30, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 99

Tie number 99 for the year... Blue with what looks like tiny, microdot flowers in a ridgid pattern across it. The tie is too thin, too plain, and basically just ugly.

On Wednesday, in celebration of the 99th tie of the year, I was going to release 99 red ballons and blast the song 99 Luft Balons out of the windows of my house, but I wasn't sure that was a smart idea. Living near Naval Station Oceana, such a performance might have been interpreted as a terrorist attack and brought military action down on my house. I would have felt terrible if I raised the national threat alert to level Brown. Also, it seemed an excessive celebration for such an insignificant feat.

And of course, the tie was ugly. If it had been a better tie, just maybe...

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 98

Tuesday's tie was a fun tie. Fine Italian silk in a black and silver zig zag pattern. Up close, this tie is an attention getter because it has an optical illusion quality to it.

Thick and soft, this tie was begging me to wear black. It was a call I answered with pleasure. Wearing all black from head to toe made me feel like a ninja. My tie was the distraction that allowed me cut to the heart of problems and acrobatically eliminate the enemy. The enemy was, of course, ignorance which I dispatched with my imaginary katana.

This is the point in a conversation when my children will say, "Dad! Stop, you are not a ninja," and then roll their eyes. They are still young and don't realize that I have saved all my best material for their first dates.

Anyway, why can't I be a ninja in my own dreams?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 97

Silk ties are very nice. This is not news to anyone, but maybe I have just started to pay attention and notice the obvious.

The tie I wore on Monday was a good reminder of all I had forgotten about a fine silk tie. The fine thread was so smooth that I barely felt it as I slid it around my neck. This particular tie is reflective and has a thick feeling to it. Thick and soft, it reminded me of a neck hug from my kids.

The conservative design is ok, but you can't miss the high quality of this tie. At some point in the past I am sure this was one of the finest ties in my father's closet, although the pastel colors were not something he normally wore. Somehow, the colors make me think of Easter.

Not really one of my favorite ties to look at, but it was truly a pleasure to wear.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 96

I have been running a bit behind lately, so I am sharing last Thursday's tie on the following Monday... Like anyone is keeping records!

This paisley wonder is a little thin for me and I think it is some sort of a fabric blend tie. If I were to grade this tie on a "Ties I Like Scale," I would give it a 5, but only because of the intricate paisley.

Manufactured in the 80's, this tie has been hanging in my closest for a long time. My father gave this tie to me early in my teaching career. When I was first hired as a teacher in the early part of 1990, I was told I needed to wear a tie every day for work. When I told my dad about my new dress requirements, he asked me to follow him up to his room. I remember standing there in front of his closet with my arm sticking straight out as he draped 20, or 30 ties over it.

Every visit back home, he would give me a couple of more ties. Over the first 3 or 4 years in teaching, my tie collection grew incredibly fast. Pants and shirts you can grow out of, or wear out. Sometimes they even go out of style, but I have found that ties can hang around almost forever.

I am pretty sure my father was only making room for new ties and giving me the ones he didn't like, but that is how hand me downs work, isn't it? Perhaps all of the ties he gave me were of little consequence to him, but to me, they have made a lasting impression.

Tie a Day, Number 95

Bedrock Rappers is the name of Wednesday's tie. The Flintstones are dancing and singing on this character tie. This tie immediately made me think of this currently popular song, Bed Rock (warning lyrics are NSFW).

As I walked in the door at the after school program where Sam stays when his school day is done, one of Sam's friends stopped me. He jumped in front of me and grabbed my tie.

He gave it a good once over before he looked up at me and said, "Mr. Doss! This tie is it!"

I always love a good tie review.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 94

The tie that I wore on Tuesday made me think of tires. Green and brown, zig-zagging lines down the front like the tread on some sort of off road tire. It also reminded me of one of my favorite songs by Jimi Hendrix, Crosstown Traffic.

Today is the stream of consciousness tie review.

Green and tan, zipping down the front... this tie is ok, but not one of my favorites.

Maybe I should have saved this tie for Earth Day?

Monday, April 19, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 93

I put very little thought into today’s tie. Since I was running a bit late and had a difficult weekend, I chose my clothes by what did not need ironing. I should probably amend that to say, what I wore may have needed ironing, but I was in no mood to deal with it.

Normally, I kind of like to iron. It is a way that I can feel control over something in my day. I can take the chaos of a wrinkled shirt and make the fabric conform to my will. It is an empowering feeling.

Ironing is a way that I can take a few minutes out of each day and allow my mind to focus on only one thought, “Don’t burn yourself stupid!” I know it is strange that this is a peaceful experience for me, but I have never made a claim that I am normal.

This tie is ok. I have no strong feelings about it as being good or bad. It has a black background with what appears to be golden cat tails and some sort of odd purplish flowers mixed together all over the tie. I am kind of leaning towards not liking the tie, but it might be that my shirt and pants don’t bring out the best in this tie.

In any case, this is a Hugo Boss tie from the late eighties. It is redundant for me to admit that I have no style, but today is the first time I have ever taken the time to look at Hugo Boss. It seems that Hugo Boss is a German fashion and lifestyle house based in Metzingen that specializes in high-end mens- and womenswear

I really should get out more.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 92

My three tie tribute to the Bahamas and a wonderful vacation is now complete with today’s tie. This fine 100% polyester Looney Tunes character print is the closest thing I have left in my collection to a colorful tropical celebration tie.

All of my Saturday morning favorites make an exaggerated comic appearance in an ocean scene.

Sammy, my six year old, looked at my tie this morning and said, “I like your tie dad. I can’t take my eyes off of it.”

That is the best tie compliment I have had all year.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 91

Tuesday's tie was a yellow tie that looks like it has red, green, blue and white paint slashed across it diagonally. I am not really a yellow wearer, but in keeping with my tropical Atlantis theme (here is a movie I made from our trip photos), I thought the tie fit well.

There have been many interesting things that I have discovered about men's neckwear in my tie research. I found things out mostly because I was curious, but sometimes it was an accident just so I could have more to say about my ties than,"this tie stinks," or "this tie is awesome."

For example, I always wondered why so many ties have diagonal designs going across them. Originally, I thought that it was part of the overall men's wear thing. A diagonal to offset the pinstripes in a suit or the vertical lines in a shirt. It seemed logical, but it was completely wrong.

When woven fabric is cut across the grain, or on the bias, it is cut at a 45 degree angle related to the vertical thread, or warp, and its horizontal thread, or waft. The reason that tie fabric is cut in this manner is so the tie will come out of the knot evenly without twisting. If the pattern on the tie fabric is a woven pattern, such as stripes, when the fabric is cut on the bias and a tie is created the pattern will become a diagonal pattern.

Now the problem with this new found piece of information is that doesn't explain ties with a diagonal slant that are prints, such as the tie I wore on Tuesday. Maybe Countess Mara is just messing with my head.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 90

Jerry Garcia is best known as the lead singer for the group the Grateful Dead, but it seems that he also studied visual art. I must assume that he created many different paintings and prints during his life because there is a line of ties out that bears his name. On Monday I wore a Jerry Garcia tie to display as many colors as I could.

I chose to wear this tie because of the bright colors that reminded me of my recent trip to
Atlantis. Purple, blue, black, yellow, orange and brown are all in there. This tie has the appearance of being tessellated, but in truth, I could not match up parts of it as repeating. There is enough similarity to give you the feeling of tessellation, but enough variance in the design to make you keep looking.

While on my spring vacation at Atlantis, I went window shopping. My recent interest in ties prompted me to look at ties in the shops located in the resort. I wandered into the Ferragamo store wearing my best $12 summer casual shirt, neatly ironed, and went straight to the ties that were hanging innocently on the wall.

I am not sure what I expected to find, but I was curious how much one of the ties cost. I almost choked when when I saw the $160 price tag! I think I was looking at this
tiny fish patterned tie. The ties were interesting and beautiful, but way out of my price range.

I don't think I have ever bought a tie for myself. My ties are all gifts and hand-me-down's from my father. I know that my father bought many ties when he worked at
Franco's in Richmond, VA, that I currently own, but I don't think he ever paid nearly that much for a tie. Although Franco's does have some expensive ties...

I guess, besides the well known fact that I have no fashion sense, I discovered that I am cheap, or at least that I will never pay $160 for a tie. After all, a tie like that would be incompatible with my out of style button down shirt, dingy khaki pants and beat up brown shoes with no jacket.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Tie a Day, Number 89

Finally, I am caught up for the week!

Thursday's tie was a solid blue silk tie with a paisley pattern that you just can't make out from the picture. It was more of a texture than something you could see anywhere but close up.

It was odd, but yesterday an email was sent out from someone looking for 5 ugly ties. I have no idea what the project was, or if I would ever see them again, but I was happy to help out!

The ugly tie search began with tie number 51, this was the tie made of wool that I swore I would never wear again.

Next tie on the list, number 78, the tie with the Alien face design that I hated. I will not support the overthrow of humanity!

After that, I went to the unworn tie racks in my closet and picked out a really cheesy silk tie that I hate, a linen tie that is a train wreck and the only other wool tie that I think I own.

Five ugly ties have left my life. I will not miss any of them. I hope they have fun with their new owner!

Tie a Day, Number 88

Wednesday was day two of laptop install and battery removal, but I decided to wear a good tie.

This tie was not one of my favorites but it is a nice tie. Looking back at it now, I think it would have looked better with a purple shirt.

At some point on Wednesday, I looked at the Atlantis web site. It was a huge mistake because I have been distracted ever since. The whole family will be vacationing there over spring break!

The Doss family is ready for paradise, but is paradise ready for us?

Tie a Day, Number 87

On Tuesday, I was in a very weird mood because I knew that my day would be spent installing software and removing laptop batteries. I was pretty sure that I would be in hiding all day, so I thought it would be safe to bring out the Alfred E. Neuman tie.

Character ties are always fun, but not always appropriate for a serious occasion. On the this tie, Alfred is spinning records. Luckily I was in Laptop lockdown and able to get this tie involved in my parade of ties.

Tie a Day, Number 86

After a weekend at the Great Wolf Lodge in Williamsburg, I was completely worn out on Monday. I found this tie in my closet and grabbed by favorite shirt and that was all I could manage. I think it went together, but I was too tired to care.

I took the family to the Lodge as a surprise for my wife for her 40th birthday. Thankfully, it remained a surprise right up until we pulled off the interstate.

One of the things we did there was to contribute to a Guinness World Record by going down a slide a bunch of times and signing our name in a book- longest distance traveled on water slides in a 24-hour period.