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Socks with shorts

Each summer morning before deciding on his day’s choice of footwear Mr. Henry scans the weather report, looking in particular at the temperature. The question he poses himself is not whether he will wear shorts and a polo shirt, his default hot weather costume, but whether the temperature will climb so high that his poor feet will boil in closed shoes and as a consequence he must wear sandals.

If sandals are the day’s choice, a more ticklish problem arises, namely, whether to wear socks. If the temperature will reach 90 and above, the decision is clear. Sockless sandals are the only choice. But what if rain is predicted? What if he plans to spend time in gelid air-conditioned interiors? What if he plans to be outdoors among bloodthirsty mommy mosquitoes? Aren’t socks necessary, even with sandals?

Mr. Henry wears socks proudly. With the confidence of a Scandinavian giant gamely navigating the avenues of midtown, Mr. Henry remains blasé if hipsters with tattoos and slouched trousers should cast derisory glances at his stockings.

In defense of socks:

  • When hiking Manhattan’s valleys, you need expedition footwear. To protect against chafing on long walks, socks are a must.
  • Sandals that expose bare footflesh cannot protect against scrapes and scratches, vectors for the introduction of exotic, antibiotic-resistant bacteria. Save yourself, man!
  • The mosquito is the most dangerous animal in the wilderness, and she adores your ankles.
  • Chilled air sinks to the floor. Half an hour of such temperatures and your arthritic toes – old soccer injuries – start barking, not to mention your plantar fasciitis.
  • Who admires your knobbly, hairless, vein-riddled ankles, anyway?

Dunked in Black

rubberized Converse Chuck Taylors

Converse All-Stars are as classic as sneakers get, but they have one slight problem: If you get caught in the rain, the canvas shoes get soaked through, which risks creating odors worse than a high-school locker room. John Varvatos, however, had the bright idea of rubberizing Chuck Taylor high-tops, which can be safely used to make a splash on the court.

Mark of Polo Goes to China

Ralph Lauren Olympics outfitThe Wall Street Journal is reporting that Polo Ralph Lauren will be outfitting the U.S. Team at the upcoming Beijing Olympics:

“Norman Bellingham, chief operating officer of the [U.S. Olympic Committee] and a former Olympic kayaker, says that he wanted the athletes to be attired in a ‘classic and more formal manner.'”

[…]

“At a meeting at Polo’s headquarters on Madison Avenue in New York, Mr. Bellingham told Mr. Lauren that his inspiration was ‘Chariots of Fire,’ the 1981 movie about British athletes competing in the 1924 Summer Olympics in Paris. Upon hearing that, [Ralph] Lauren smiled, Mr. Bellingham recalls. ‘He knew precisely what we were going for.'”

[…]

“At the Olympic Village and at the Closing Ceremonies, athletes’ wardrobes will include V-neck tennis sweaters and ties, classic Polo mesh shirts with ‘Beijing’ written in big Chinese characters across the front and cargo pants — all in a patriotic palette of red, white and blue. The Olympic logo featured on the new uniforms may include a replica of a crest with stars and stripes used by the 1932 U.S. Olympic team at the Los Angeles Games. Polo ponies of varying sizes will also make an appearance on the garments.”

Izzy thinks that the sketch offers some great white hope.

Party in Your, er, Shorts

Matix Supergusto party shorts

For tasteless frat boys everywhere, this hideous pair of shorts from Matix is designed to carry a six-pack of beer in its four insulated pockets.  Combine it with a beer hat and a camel-sized hydropak, and you’ll never have to leave the couch ever again.

Dorkus Maximus

Mayor Bloomberg in shorts

As Spring finally arrives on the East Coast, many men are no doubt getting the perverse desire to show off their hairy legs and gnarled knees. But before you reach for the shorts, Izzy beseeches you to keep in mind this image of New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, who is usually well-dressed. (Note also that His Honor would have looked less goofy had he chosen a slimmer-fitting polo shirt with shorter sleeves.) And at the very least, if you absolutely, positively must wear dress shorts, do your fellow citizens a favor, and avoid white socks please.

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