Q: Do you agree Untuckit shirts are the equivalent of the Sansabelt pants? The new shirt company seems to be spending an enormous amount on advertising this silly idea. —Dave
A: We think you're giving Untuckit too much credit. Sansabelt's innovation was to eliminate the need for a belt by elasticizing waistbands, thus disrupting dressing by automating pant tightening and putting an entire accessory category on the endangered species list. To match Sansabelt's achievement, a company would need to engineer a similar sartorial breakthrough, like combining socks with shoes or boxers with pants.
All Untuckit did was circumcise sport shirts.
That's not to dismiss Untuckit's value in the marketplace. Despite our long-standing admonishments againstthe practice, some guys cannot resist the urge to expose their hemlines. Any technology that spares them from looking like Obama throwing out a ceremonial first pitch qualifies as progress.
In late December, the Dow Jones topped 18,000 for the first time. The U.S. economy is taking off like a Titleist driven by the invisible hand, arm, torso, and Ping G30 of Bubba Watson. Even President Obama's approval ratings are trending upward.
Why all this good news? Correlation does not equal causation, but we can't help but notice that Mr. Obama is dressing better on the golf course. Granted, he had nowhere to go but up. As we've covered in the past, the nation's Executive-in-Chief has typically looked more like a hapless mailroom schlub while walking some of the best links in the land. Baggy cargo shorts. Voluminous polo shirts that would like right at home in Walmart's 4-person tent aisle. And who can forget that awful moment in 2008 when a driving range swing launched his Blackberry into the atmosphere like a doomed space shuttle. NASA, we do not have lift-off.
Now, he's still nowhere near embodying the casual kinetic assurance that says, "Yes, America, I am leading you toward prosperity, security, and overall well-being, and I still have time to get in 18 holes on Sunday."
But at least President Obama has apparently ditched the cargo shorts. He's wearing slimmer-fitting polos that leave his elbows uncovered. In his new garb, he looks more graceful and assured — and that in turn leads to greater grace and assurance. The impact is personal — his golf game has improved dramatically. But there's a macro element as well. America sees a more commanding figure at the helm, and almost magically, gas prices start dropping, consumer confidence increases, the Dow starts climbing, etc.
First Obama killed Osama bin Laden sporting a Nike golf jacket, now he's negotiating debt ceiling deals with golfing partner John Boehner in a Nike golf shirt and Nike golf socks. One logoed Nike thing at a time, Mr. President, or you'll blow your cover!
Also, if you won't trim the budget, can you at least right-size your shirt? We're pretty sure Paul Ryan would try to make a week's worth of garments out of that blousey tent you're wearing.
Meanwhile, in spectacular un-fashion, Rory McIlroy lifted the Oakley curse by being the first Oakley-sponsored player to win a major championship.
Earlier:Camelnot. Obama vacationing in Martha's Vineyard.
We didn't realize Trump's run was an either/or proposition between leading the country and giving up his Celebrity Apprentice gig. After all, President Obama finds time to golf every weekend — why couldn't Trump just tape his show on Saturdays?
But apparently his bosses at NBC don't want the host of one of the network's few successful franchises spending any time solutioneering issues like Social Security and health care when more pressing matters of state are at hand — like whether or not to fire Meat Loaf. And given that Trump makes rougly six and half times more money for a single episode of Celebrity Apprentice than President Obama makes in a year, it was easy to see which way the wind was blowing on this one.
In what no doubt qualifies as the greatest product placement of all time, President Obama shows off the business casual versatility of a Nike golf jacket (model not yet identified). He started the day
wearing it at the Andrews Air Force Base golf course, where he got nine holes in before cutting his game short to set up camp in the White House Situation Room and watch U.S. forces take out Osama bin Laden.
This was reportedly the fifth weekend in a row the President spent golfing. Given the outcome of the mission in Pakistan, we think he — and everyone else involved — earned the right to play a full eighteen this weekend.
In addition, we also think the President deserves a better golf jacket. Mr. Obama, if you're reading, we’d like to buy you a Kiton reversible as thanks for a job well done. (Wear the plaid side when you're out on the links. Then, when you need a more sober, official look that's better suited to overseeing a bold military strike against America's most notorious enemy, switch to the tan side.)
Q: Hey I was wondering what your opinion of Hart Schaffner Marx is? I don't see any reviews of them on your website! I know they own a lot of other brands, but is their flagship brand quality? I've recently seen a lot of their suits and ties on sale at deep discount and was wondering if its worth buying. -Rob
A: Rob, you're seeing Hart Schaffner Marx suits and ties on deep discount because the brand's leading model, President Barack Obama, has just a 47% approval rating. That, and fewer and fewer people who aren't either running America or dull but important Fortune 500 companies wear worsted wool suits with jackets running past the crotch, pleated trousers, and shiny silk power ties anymore.
Don't get us wrong. We give thanks to HSM every time we pee after drinking a few too many MBs -- the company was the first to introduce zippers to men's pants in 1936. And HSM suits clearly exhibit the sort of well-made craftsmanship that can only come from Midwestern fingers made strong and beefy from a livable union wage. But it's just not a look we'd ever choose for ourselves, even if that means we'll never be able to obtain the Democratic nomination or, say, occupy the top box in the org chart at ConocoPhillips.
How about it! It's Anglophilic, made of natural materials, exclusive, and not just derived from a military inspiration, it's actual military surplus. Why go designer when you can go right to the source? --Broski
A: Yes, it's all those things, and it's also modeled on a (flat-out ugly) woman, which is appropriate since military is big for them this fall. Military buttons, sleeve tabs, skinny cargo pants, and camo denim are the rage for women, but the closest thing to military you'll see us in this fall is a peacoat.
By our account military is on the 4-year election cycle. Men are on the presidential, women on the midterms. Look for lots of camo and epaulets available for the 2012 Obama-Palin tilt.
Following the lead of the Commander-in-chief, Vice President Joe Biden arrived in Iraq yesterday with what we believe to be the highest-rise jeans west (but for the moment, east) of the Euphrates. The denim, combined with that blazer, the Tiger Woods belt, and the tassle loafers is setting the worthy causes of aviator sunglasses and exposed ankles back 20 years.
Vacationing on Martha's Vineyard, we get another look at Obama's casual wardrobe, and it has not improved much since the infamous first pitch.
Left: JFK with classic American Optical Saratogas, in slim-fit pique polo with sleeves hitting at bicep. Right: Obama with Maui-Jimmyish Ray-Ban 3217s, in Hefty bag-fit Coolmax polo with sleeves hitting at elbow.
Even though this photograph came out six days ago, we continue to get queries about it. Most want to know: Did Obama win Bono's sunglasses in a poker game at Davos? Answer: No. These are protective glasses he wore while touring The Chesapeake Machine Company in Baltimore, MD, January 29, 2010.
Q: I was looking for a place to buy a pair of sunglasses like the ones that the character Tony D'Annunzio from Caddyshack wears to the pool. I saw you put them as an example in one of your answers but I can't seem to find where I could buy a pair, or something like them and I was wondering if you knew of a place? --James
A: Was Tony D'Annunzio The Situation before The Situation?
We cannot determine the exact make or model of D'Annunzio's sunglasses. (If you know, let us know.) The closest we think you're going to get -- and it's pretty close -- is vintage I Ski reflectors like the ones 44 is wearing (inset) before he turned into the most powerful toolbag on earth. These always turn up on eBay or vintage eyewear sites.
The August Details says running shoes outside the gym are suddenly OK, thanks to YSL creative director Stefano Pilati (left) and designer Raf Simons (right). As Project Runway's Isaac Mizrahi would say, "We're just not buying it." First, most running shoes are far too ugly even for the treadmill in your basement. Second, Details is forgetting running shoes' deep recession thanks to the president's infamous first pitch look (inset).
A week after his girlish first pitch, it's Barack Obama's soccer dad jeans that are still in the news. Yesterday on the Today show Obama admitted to being "a little frumpy," and said, "I hate to shop."
A few observations:
* "I hate to shop" is not something a president should be saying during a recession!
* "I hate to shop" is such a lame refrain, as if by implicitly asserting his masculinity (because shopping is something guys don't like to do) that excuses his lousy style.
* We've been covering Obama's lousy style for over a year. He wore the infamous All Star Game getup 9 months earlier at a White Sox playoff game on October 12, 2008 (pictured). After winning the election his toolbaggery accelerated at such an alarming rate we wrote an entire feature on the phenomenon: From Cool to Tool: Tracking Barack Obama's Descent Into Toolbaggery.
Obama's most recent sartorial slip-up is just the latest in his crusade to win the crown of Least Stylish Black Man from Al Roker.
Earlier this year we mocked 44's first pitch wardrobe as "soccer dad jeans and space-age running shoes." Months later, things have not improved, and probably even taken a turn for the worse as he's added white socks and a girlish early release point.
Q: There is some toolbaggery going on here. Are those Crocs? --Kevin
A: To our eye, it looks like an animal died to make the President's sandals. (Thanks to Reuters photographer Mike Theiler for sensing where the real story was.) So, no, they're not Crocs, which are made entirely from anti-fungal fossil fuels. They do have a very Crocs-like sole, however, and we imagined they looked great on the golf course he was headed toward, if that golf course had a styrofoam castle on the 18th hole.
Obama is clearly learning on the job. By next year he'll show up in flat-fronts.
BEFORE (July 2008)
1. PDA 2. Bracelet 3. Posing with Charles Atlas (suffers in a "97 lb. weakling" kind of way by comparison)
AFTER (April 2009)
1. Leave PDA at home; no text message important enough to reply to while meeting the troops 2. If you must wear jewelry, stick with nipple rings or other stuff hidden beneath clothes 3. Always pose with Bravo Company, Pygmy Battalion
Yeah, we were a little harsh on Obama on his inauguration, tracking his 47-year fall From Cool to Tool. But there's Hope, and even Change we can Believe in. Forced to give up his Blackberry (which we've previously discussed), Obama has turned to the Sectéra Edge, which would be positioned quite nicely on the MB Portable Communication Guide. It certainly has the benefit of being both exclusive and obscure, and in spite of the QWERTY keyboard and touchscreen display, with only 2 hours of secure talk time and weighing a whopping 12oz. it also scores highly for senseless lack of utility.
Although the New York Times reports Obama is "clinging" to his BlackBerry and he says, "They're going to pry it out of my hands," it looks as though Barack Obama might have to give it up. Next thing on the agenda -- far more important than any stimulus package: find a decent casual wardrobe.
On our extended break -- incidentally, we consumed enough Dewar's Rob Roys to kill the average bloke -- there were some very disturbing photos taken of the President-elect. (We had our suspicions back in July when he met the troops.) Sure, Barack Obama might soon be the 44th President of the United States, but the poor fella is a raging toolbag.
Pour 2 fingers into an empty tumbler, 3 if you're not alone.