Saturday, March 26, 2011

Calling All Hamletonians! Campout May 20th!

You ever try to get the guys back together for old time's sake? For years, some of the reprobates from college met every once in a while for a camp out or a canoe trip. Memorable trips down the James River where it's narrow below Charlottesville or perhaps camping at the rustic yet perfect Upper Cabin in the Blue Ridge Mountains meant long days of portaging the canoe over shallow stretches (of which, on the James, there are many) along with late nights playing cards, smoking Camels and sipping Obnoxious Gobbler (also known as Wild Turkey). I'd often come back to work on Mondays looking like Edward Norton in Fight Club. But despite the wear and tear on an increasingly middle-aged body, I enjoyed the time away and came away with some great memories. There was the time when we camped in the middle of the James on tiny Dog Island. It was great until the heavy rains came. We cobbled tarps together, made a make-do tent and resumed partying. The River certainly rose but we made out OK. What about good ol' Spew who would get into great wrestling matches with his brother or the time he took off his drawers and threw them into the camp fire. -Violated some air pollution laws on that canoe trip. And of course we did the prerequisite smoking, fishing, shooting, bragging and cussing all along the way. In short, every once in a while we checked off items from The List of Things Dudes Do. Every year, though, it seems to get harder to pull these trips off. Conflicting schedules, family and work responsibilities make getting 'the full roster' seem impossible sometimes. However, THIS year appears different. 'The Jaguar' (he doesn't drive Jaguars, he drives only SNAABs) has risen to the occasion and lined up some fine accomodations, shooting sports and other diversions so it promises to be great. Here are some shots of much younger Hamletonian Campers on long ago outings.

Remember when you could open up a Bean catalogue and get all of that made in the U.S.A. gear?

That's me bugging the dog. The lab remained unimpressed. The Dogs of the Campout were always the stars of the show and were honored guests.'Phineas', 'Blackie', 'Ace' and the rest were always the best behaved. That year, we held it at my famiy's property on the Rappahannock River in Virginia. I posed drinking Tobasco out of the bottle and ruined the picture, I was told. -So, I cropped myself out of that one. Ah, 'The Old Man's' truck. -Not my father's truck mind you. But the guy driving it is nicknamed The Old Man. -Ironically, he is now the youngest looking one among us.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Trailer Trad Grooming: So Wrong It's Gotta Be Right

The Trailer Trad grooming tip that I'm about to share is just wrong. It really is. But hear me out. Carrying bottles of expense aftershave around in your gear bag or travel luggage can be messy. And TSA's guidelines on the permittable size of bottles in carry on lugguge can make carrying around your favorite aftershave even more of a pain. And those little tiny travel bottles are expensive!
What's a penny pinching trad to do? Well, you know those cologne ads in magazines with the sample strips? Yep. Tear them out and cut out the sample strip. Then, place some in a resealable baggy. They fit neatly in the side pocket of your tennis bag or your dopp kit. When you get out the shower, pop that bad boy open and rub it for a perfect amount of aftershave. Classy!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

English Shirt, Irish Heart (Reshown)

With apologies to Morrissey, I had to title this entry 'English Shirt, Irish Heart' in honor of today, Saint Patrick's Day. I found this beauty a few days ago and I said to myself, "this is an awesome shirt and it would be killer for St. Pats." Well, it didn't make the cut today but I did wear it to church the other day. It really stood out among the navy suits and white shirts. Judging by the attire, you'd think that I was a member of a Shaker congregation. The heavy drinking gives it away that we're not.

The pocket square is a Chapel Hill square from Alexander Julian on Franklin St. to honor The Tarheel's big win over Duke in the ACC tournament. -Whoops!

Oops, the vintage silk Rivetz of Boston tie is from England too. I'll listen to 'Jump Around' by House of Pain and drink an extra pint of Guiness to make up for it.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

"I was curious...I tasted it...Now I know why Schlitz is The Beer that made Milwaukee Famous!"

I have been combing my local sources for my go-to beer Schlitz but apparently the distributor has gone to Barbados or somewhere. Until he returns to restock, I'll be content to look at these vintage ads to tide me over.