Thursday, May 30, 2013


The streets of New York are arranged in a mostly-square grid.  Once a year, the grid coincides with the path of the sun.  This makes the sun directly visible down an entire street, creating a memorable image.

Alluding to Stonehenge, residents have started calling this day Manhattan-henge.  Whatever you call it, it's striking to see.  I wasn't able to be in Manhattan yesterday but here's a photo someone else took.  What do you think?


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Turning Nature Into Art

I played with an image I shot last weekend and like how it came out.  Do you?

Monday, May 27, 2013

Sunday, May 26, 2013

The Girls

I snapped up a cute pink bralette yesterday at Kohl's.  With a $10 gift-card, it was free.  Given that price, I couldn't resist.  After buying the bralette, however, I wondered how I can wear it.  I'm very sensitive to people's feelings about overexposure and don't want to disturb anyone by displaying too much.

I had similar reluctance a few months ago with a red sequined bra-thingie I bought.  The thingie is obviously meant to be seen and not covered up -- otherwise why would it have red sequins on it?! -- but I didn't want to look immodest.  So my deployment of the thingie required some careful consideration.  (See, e.g., here).

All of this led me to think about breasts.  And my relationship to them.  And your ideas about them.

Breasts are the most overt physical sexual characteristic for women.  Their size and shape often distinguish female bodies from male ones. 

Born with a male body, I don't have female-shaped breasts.  My body is cylindrical -- my measurements are 40-40-40.  My top is the same size as my waist and my hips.  In a t-shirt, I look like an average guy with slightly-muscular pecs.  (Here's a picture of my chest in a new Fashion Police tee.)

To create the illusion of female shape, I use breast-forms.  They are made with silicon and designed for women who've had mastectomies.  They feel real, have nipples and are the exact shape my body would be if I'd been born female or took hormones (44C).  The forms extend my body's contour in a natural way.  My goal wearing female clothes is to appear normal, without drawing attention to the shape of my body.  I want your focus to be on my outfit, not my body.

Equipped with these babies, here are pics of my new bralette and the red thingie.

If you care to discuss this sensitive subject, how do you feel about your breasts in relation to wearing clothes?  I read an interesting blog-post recently by a woman who feels her breasts are too large (38I); she complains their size impairs her ability to wear attractive clothing.  I'm sure there are women who feel the opposite, that their breasts are too small and cause different problems.

Any thoughts on the subject?  Any questions for me?

Friday, May 24, 2013

Meghan's "Ally-My-Darling Dress"

My close friend Meghan -- whom I visited in February -- just posted pictures of a colorful dress she made herself.  How talented is that?!  And she wrote beautifully about its origin.  Go visit her blog now!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Just Plain Crazy

In the pursuit of fun, I believe we can wear ANYTHING.  I put together this ridiculous outfit which is wild and age-inappropriate -- but it makes me smile.  A great big happy smile.

The outfit began when I found fuzzy pink leg-warmers in a head-shop.  Who could turn these down?  I built from there.  In my mind, I'm a 24-year old with a flair for the extreme.

If you've never dressed out on the ledge, I recommend you try it.  Expanding our horizon is exciting and teaches unexpected lessons.  Plus, it gives you something crazy to put on your blog!




Wednesday, May 22, 2013


Have you ever heard of Liberace?  I've a reason for asking this, which I'll mention below.

I am just old enough to have seen Liberace during my lifetime.  When I was young, Liberace was at the tail-end of his career.  He was really more famous during my parents' generation (the 1950's).  Later on, during the 1960's-70s, Liberace was considered almost as a joke.  But his career had social significance.

Liberace was a flamboyant personality.  Back in the traditional Fifties, Liberace wore rhinestones, bright colors and capes.  Growing up, I was amazed that people didn't see this as code for being gay -- I mean, just look at him!  But the fascinating thing was that most of America accepted Liberace as a mainstream, popular entertainer without acknowledging his homosexuality.

Liberace was, of course, gay but he never admitted it.  He believed being open about that would end his career, even while he was giving every message short of a billboard in Times Square saying "I'm Gay!!"

I remember being around 8 years old when my mother, who was watching Liberace perform on TV, said with utter sincerity, "It's such a shame he hasn't found a nice woman and settled down."  I shook my head in disbelief.  "Mom...", I wanted to yell, "just look at him!"  But I didn't want to upset her so I remained quiet.

The truth is that Liberace was gay.  When he was in his 50s, he had an affair for several years with a teenage boy whom he hired as his  chauffeur (Scott Thorson).  This period in Liberace's life has just been made into a movie which will be shown on HBO this Sunday.  The most startling thing is the casting -- Liberace will be played by Michael Douglas and Thorson will be played by Matt Damon.  The film is made by noted director Steven Soderbergh.

If Liberace was before your time, you're probably wondering, what did he do?  Well, he was a concert pianist who played classical music.  But, more than that, he was a large personality.  Liberace attracted huge crowds who didn't go to his concerts for the music; they went to see him.  (In truth, he wasn't a great musician.)

Liberace also had his own TV show in the 1950s which was a big success.  It made him and the network unprecedented money and catapaulted Liberace to a level of celebrity he coasted on the rest of his life.  Interestingly, Liberace's fans were mostly all women.  At the height of his celebrity, he got 10,000 fan letters a week, almost exclusively from female fans.

Liberace died in the 1980s from AIDS.

Have you heard of Liberace?  What do you know about him?  Did you know he was gay?

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Where's The Party?

Inspired by "The Great Gatsby" movie, I picked up a silvery flapper dress Fox's and enhanced it with some 1920's-style accessories.  I had fun with this project 'cause it's different from what I normally wear.  Now I just need to find a party!

Do you ever dress up like characters in a movie?





Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Images For Girls

I like the movie "Brave" because it presents a heroine who isn't traditional -- a girl who values herself, seeks to be strong, and doesn't want to devote her whole life to being a princess.  She (Merida) is a rare and healthy alternative to most entertainment for girls.

Disney, a company I'm always leery of, just decided to "re-fashion" Merida.  They made her thinner, sexier and more conventional in appearance.  In the process, they strip Merida of the qualities that made her special and healthy.  (Of course Disney isn't re-doing the movie but, as with all Disney characters, they continually use Merida in numerous spin-off creations.)

Both the film's creator and child-development experts say this change is bad for girls.  (See here and here.)  I know nothing about raising kids but I agree that giving girls only one acceptable image (thin, "sexy", traditional) is not good for them.  What do you think?

Monday, May 13, 2013

The Great Gatsby

I'm a big fan of Baz Luhrmann's work.  The Australian filmmaker performed magic by making Shakespeare exciting ("Romeo + Juliet", starring Leonardo DiCaprio) and he entertained us with the bombastic "Moulin Rouge!"

So, even though I never read "The Great Gatsby" and didn't know its plot, I went to see it simply because of Baz.  And I'm glad I did.  It's a terrific film.

Looking around the theater before the movie started, I was surprised to see 80% of the audience was female.  During the movie, I realized why.  The story is a romantic drama with natural appeal to women.  The characters, costumes and sets are interesting.  The story is compelling and lucidly told.  Of course, the movie has Baz's characteristic visual energy and excitement.  That spectacle serves the plot and entertains at the same time.

While I'm not a DiCaprio fan, I love Carey Mulligan since being introduced to her in the fabulous "An Education."  And Tobey Maguire is always good.

Not all movies are worth $12.50 (in 2D; 3D costs even more) but this one is.  Go!

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Back In The Saddle

After an exceptionally demanding week at work, I needed to relax.  So I turned to my favorite activity -- building an outfit.  I spent leisurely hours today doing this.

The outfit, oddly, starts with a belt.  I saw this cute silver belt while thrifting two weeks ago and snapped it up for $1.99.  What a bargain!

To highlight the belt, my dress needs to be plain.  No design except shape.  Single color.  Shopping at Fox's (discount store), I found a perfect one.  Yellow (seasonal) with light embossed pattern in the cloth.  Plus, it fits me like a glove due to its elasticity.

Completing the look, I realized I don't own any lipstick this color so I stopped at a drugstore on the way home and got some.  I like the shade I picked. 

What do you think?  Any different choices you might have made?





In Court

Last week, I conducted a large commercial trial before a jury.  That's not unusual for me, but what was noteworthy was where I did it.  The trial was in a courthouse you've all seen many times in movies and on television.  The Supreme Court building at 60 Centre Street in Manhattan.

This building looks like a courthouse.  Classic features, including large columns, numerous outdoor steps and judicial ornaments.  It is for that reason that many films and TV shows use exterior shots of the Court.  For example, every episode of "Law and Order" shows scenes of the characters chatting while walking up or down those steps.  That's actually inaccurate because this Court only hears civil cases -- not criminal ones -- and L&O episodes deal with criminal prosecutions.  Criminal cases in NYC are handled in a plain building elsewhere so the producers fudge a bit to give viewers a better impression than exists in reality.

The courthouse was designed in the 1920's by famous architect Guy Lowell and hasn't changed since.  I first remember going there as a new lawyer 30 years ago and being awed by its majesty.  Inside, the courthouse has a large, open rotunda decorated with paintings on the ceiling.  It is designed like a wheel, circular with spokes going out in every direction, at the end of which are courtrooms.

The building is magnificent.  I wish, however, they'd spruce up the interior a little which, by now, is not only aged but poorly maintained.  Water fountains don't work; there's no accommodation for computers or electronic devices.  Newer courthouses are built for contemporary use and most are set up for modern technology.  Then again, those buildings lack the character of 60 Centre Street.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Missoni (1921-2013)

At the end of 2011, I asked readers to nominate bloggers for best Post Of The Year (POTY).  Many names were submitted.  It was a fun competition.

The POTY award went to Ashley for a hilarious story on her search for new Missoni fashion during the day the clothes were released.  The post is fabulously entertaining and, if you haven't read it yet, you should go there now.

I mention this old post because Ottavio Missoni just died.  He was 92.  Missoni's designs are instantly recognizable and always popular.

Ottavio Missoni was born almost a century ago (1921) in Croatia.  In his youth, he was athletic, tall and handsome.  In 1948, he ran track in the Olympics -- and also designed his team's uniform.  During World War II, Missoni fought for the Italian Army, was captured, and spent four years in a prison camp.  After the War, he returned to Italy and started a clothing company.

Missoni's company was a success.  He explained, "I think our greatest asset is our simplicity of line.  We make it possible for women to be dressed in fashion and still dress very simply."

I find people's lives to be fascinating.  Don't you?

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Whoa, That Was Close

This is true.  I swear it.

Kelly Nash is a sports-reporter from Tampa Bay.  She was covering her team in Boston last week.  Before the game, she decided to take a picture of herself in Fenway Park.  The game hadn't started yet but the players were doing batting-practice.

Check out Kelly's photo -- it shows a ball travelling right at her head.  This isn't a staged or photoshopped picture -- the ball was actually that close to hitting her.  Fortunately, it missed her by an inch.  She could have been seriously hurt.

Have you ever been to a baseball game?

Sunday, May 5, 2013


There's a lot of discussion now about Jason Collins being the first openly gay player in a major sport.  Actually, he is not the first.

Back in the Seventies, Glenn Burke played baseball for the Los Angeles Dodgers and Oakland Athletics.  Burke was very open about his homosexuality, but the sports media was way too uncomfortable to write anything about him.  Later, Burke wrote an autobiography ("Out at Home") which told his tale.

Burke's is a sad story -- homophobia cut short his career and later his life.

As a wise man once said, you can look it up.

Friday, May 3, 2013

"Scatter My Ashes At Bergdorf's"

My favorite clothing store is Bergdorf Goodman.  It is the Mecca of Fashion.  I'm on their e-mail list and their ads are so enticing.

A documentary about the store was released today and I'm eager to see it.  Once I do, I'll give you guys a review.  If you see it first, please let us know what you think.

There's a trailer for the movie here.  My mouth is watering...

Let me hasten to add, in all candor, that I've never actually bought anything from Bergdorf's.  I just ogle the wares in their catalog and store.  Of course, you'd need to be seriously flush to shop top-designer clothing.  I use their clothes as a source of ideas and inspiration.  Then I go to discount and thrift-stores to create the best I can.

What are your favorite clothing stores?

Thursday, May 2, 2013

My Happy Place

Do you ever have a tough day that seems hopeless but turns out alright?

Yesterday, I was driving home from court after a hard day of unpleasantness.  I was tired and utterly out of enthusiasm.  Since my favorite thrift-store is on the way, I figured I'd stop in for a look.  I wasn't planning on buying anything and didn't expect to find anything special.

I was wrong.  I discovered a dress so pretty that it turned my whole day around.

The dress, shown below, beams like a ray of sunshine.  It was amazingly priced at only $19 and is large enough to fit on my body.  A triple win.

Reflecting on it, I realize that this dress is fashion for its own sake.  I have no idea how to describe this dress, or what category it inhabits, or where one would wear it.  But I love the dress.  Love love love it.  The vibrant colors, the adorable flowers, the tulle underskirt.  Just putting on the dress is a thrill.  Oh, and while at the store, I found these Steve Madden platform pumps for only $14.  (Size 11 -- ouch!)

Destiny certainly played a role -- the same day my friend Lynne sent me the pretty orange flower-ring I'm wearing.  It matches the dress perfectly.

Do you ever wear clothes that you love for the pure sake of their beauty? 

Since I have no place to wear this dress, how 'bout we throw a Bloggers' Party?  Pull something pretty out of the back of your closet, toss on some fancy jewelry, and join me in smiling at the mirror.  Let's enjoy fashion for its own sake.





Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Odd Pictures

Sometimes pictures come out funny.  As in weird.  Camera angles are unexpected, people's limbs are in the wrong place, things look like something else.

I found a few strange pictures on the World Wide Web and thought I'd share them.  Do any of these amuse you?