SAILING | Braving the sound in wintry weather

sailing gear
Gear you’ll want should you be brave enough to undertake winter sailing, as our newest correspondent, Edward Briganti, has.

Edward Briganti
ejforbes.com Contributing Writer

If you’re a New Yorker (or live anywhere on the eastern seaboard for that matter), you know we’re coming off what’s proved to have been a long winter. As a lifelong sailor, however, I long ago swore off heading out on the water between October and late April unless it was in warmer climes. But after New York’s fourth major snowstorm, I was driven from my cramped, stuffy, over-heated apartment into the outdoors. I have begun “Frostbiting,” as winter sailing in New England is known, on Sundays at Larchmont Yacht Club. It’s amazing how “up” life can look just by spending a few hours in the sun, even if it’s 40 degrees.

On the other side, winter sailing can be a brutally cold and miserable affair — the water is a hypothermic 36 degrees — so cold the floor of the cockpit gets chilly and forms ice inside the boat as you sail; there is more wind and it is shiftier and puffier and more unpredictable than in the summertime — all increasing the dreaded threat of a capsize. The fear of capsizing, however, is what also makes winter sailing so exciting. It’s healthy for the soul to scare the crap out of yourself every now and again. Winter sailing can also be some of the most strategically rewarding and visually appealing sailing there is. The light refracts off the water in a crisper, clearer way and the lack of boat traffic creates smooth waters. When it’s good, there’s often nothing better, so it is critical that outdoor sportsman dress appropriately for the conditions. Below is a summary of the gear I use, love, and recommend. All are based on two key and reinforcing themes: warmth and moisture transfer.

My take on gear is that you pretty much get what you pay for and cheap can be expensive. I take a long-term investment approach to my gear: if you buy the good stuff, it will perform better, longer. While it is recommended that anybody recreating in waters colder than 50 degrees wear a drysuit, it is not mandatory. For the sake of comfort, I use my Gore-Tex and capilene based offshore foul weather gear as my winter sailing attire.

1. Top: Musto MPX Gore-Text Race Smock: My top layer has an active cut, room for layering, articulated elbows and underarms for ease of movement. I like the smooth non-abrasive stretch neck seals with Velcro adjustment, side opening neck with waterproof gusset, and Velcro adjustable neoprene waistband. Side pockets with water resistant zips stash granola bars or a beanie on warm days. The waterproof coating keeps me dry.

2. Bottoms: Musto MPX Offshore Trousers: I lived in these bibs for 4 sultry days in the Gulf Stream on the way to Bermuda during the 2008 Newport Bermuda Race. The 500 denier Cordura seat & knee patches resist abrasion while hiking and moving around the cockpit. There’s plenty of room for layering. The multi-tool sheath stores my Gerber multi-tool. My favorite feature is the 2-way zip, which allows one to relieve oneself over the side without having to derobe.

3. Boots: Shamrock Stretch Boot by Dubarry of Ireland: Cozy feet are happy feet and happy feet make for a good sailor. These boots are gore-tex lined and incredibly comfortable. There’s enough room to fit a Little Hotties toe warmer inside as well. Some people think it’s cool to
wear these boots around town. Don’t. These boots will save your life, so treat those award-winning slip resistant soles with respect and have a pair of sneakers to change into when you’re
back on the dock before you reach the pavement.

4. Lifejacket: Lotus Designs PFD: This was my lifejacket from college sailing. I picked it up on a five-finger discount from the Lost & Found at the yacht club after watching it go unclaimed for an entire summer. The low profile/flak-jacket look is key to keep the things flow. The utility pocket on the front carries your knife, lip balm, granola bar, and beer koozie.

5. Gloves: Atlas Thermal Fit gardening gloves: Yes gardening gloves. Sold individually and preferred by sailors who always seem to lose just one glove. Much cheaper than brand-name sailing-specific gloves, just as warm, and in many cases more functional.

6. Sunglasses: Haber Vision Kenais: A bunch of ex Bollé guys got together and produced a gnarly line of polarized shades at value prices. The full coverage blocks out glare, and the polarized rose-colored lenses allow you to spot that lefty shift coming down the course from 300 yards
away.

7. Hat: Patagonia Beanie: Crews might prefer a thicker wool hat, but as a skipper, I often get warm when I’m in the thick of racing.

8. Fleece Sweater: Patagonia R2 Jacket: This piece will essentially be your mid-layer between your smock and you base underwear. It is super light, super compressible, breathable, and heck, the U.S. Marines even use this jacket (have yet to find the special issue tan and olive drab), it must be good! The softly lined inner collar is where it’s at.

9. Fleece Pants: Patagonia R1 Pant: Similar to the R2 jacket but for your legs. Could get a little warm on the more mild days, if so, drop down to full-length capilene tights.

10. Wicking Undershirt: Patagonia Capilene: No cotton t-shirts in here. We wick and we stay warm and dry. Not much more to say here.

11. Wicking Underwear: Patagonia Active Boxers: The outdoor sportsman can’t have enough pairs of this wicking boxer short.

12. Socks: Patagonia Mid-weight Hiking Socks: If it seems like I’m obsessed with Patagonia, I am. They make good stuff and I believe that pretty much all others are just imitations. In all practicality though, you need a warm sock for frostbiting but it’s important that your sock not be a thick one. In the event you end up in the water and your boots fill up, you need to be able to kick them off easily. While this is an extreme situation, in reality, the Dubarry’s seem to fit better with a thinner sock.

13. Multi-tool: Gerber: The icon on this tool is a sword in a stone. I’ve had this tool since high, school and it has truly been my Excalibur. The quick deploy needle-nose pliers are a big help in clasping cold ring dings and adjusting shroud tension.

14. Knife: Boye Boatknife: A multi-tool AND a knife you say? What for? Well, the Gerber is your toolbox in a sheath for all the nuts, bolts, ring dings, pins, and other misc. hardware on the boat that might require attention. Yes the Gerber has a blade, but every sailor worth his salt knows a knife is really for personal safety. When things get rough and that line needs to be cut to free yourself or your crew from danger, you need a blade that will deploy quickly, cut inch-thick line like butter, and it’s dendritic cobalt so it won’t rust in the saltwater environment. For that you choose Boye.

15. Activated Warmers: Little Hotties:
It might seem like cheating with all this gear to use these little suckers but when it’s cold out, you’ll be glad to have them. Who said you have to suffer and be uncomfortable?! Enjoy some creature comforts and stuff yourself (especially crews) with these activated charcoal warmers.

16. Neck gaiter: Buff Original: Some people like the fleece ski neck gaiter, I prefer the lower profile, climate controlled Buff. The fish scale pattern lets the competition know I’m serious.

GIFTS | The ejforbes.com 2010 holiday list

KnotbeltA beer-themed belt from Knot Belt Co. is among the items in 2010 ejforbes.com holiday gift list.

The holidays — ready or not! — are knocking. It’s time to get shopping. Here’s our second annual selection for just about anyone on your list. This was assembled with the help of contributing writers Will Briganti and Maxwell Eaton III. It’s a bit on the masculine side, but you’ll cope.

Happy shopping.

GreenBlazerDuds and headwear
Bottle-green blazer: The navy blazer, definitely a wardrobe staple, can be complicated by the rarer bottle-green version. For outfitting, we turn to O’Connell, Lucas and Chelf, Buffalo’s iconic men’s store. Their three-button sack model fits the bill. Made in the United States.From $350.

Tab t-shirt: A campus classic for decades that takes its cues from crew teams of yore, this is an essential piece of casual clothing. Naturally, we’ve selected the St. Lawrence model, on offer from the Brewer Bookstore. $16.95.

NewarkBearshatEbbetts Field Flannels ballcaps: Made in the United States — a strong compliment — these flannel ballcaps are a must have, especially as winter starts to show its frosty face. Given our New Jersey roots, we recommend the Newark Bears model. $35.

DaleDale sweater: No clothing item we can think of quite says winter like a Dale of Norway Sweater. De rigeur in all alpine precincts, we’ve selected the U.S. Ski Team issue in honor of Lake Placid’s Andrew Weibrecht, who a bronze in Vancouver. $295 from NorwaySports.com.

Jytte hat: Nordic skiing requires the right gear. We’ve always liked the Jytte (pronounced you-tay) hats procured by the St. Lawrence ski team some years ago, and the Idaho-based firm will set you straight when it comes to headwear. Hand-made in the United States. From $18.

Filson shelter-cloth cap: Lined with wool, this cap comes recommended by ejforbes.com outdoor correspondent Steve Reynolds, a long-time Filson devotee. The water-resistant outer lining sets this cap apart. As appropriate for bird shooting as its for cruises through the urban jungle. Made in the United States. $62.50.

Brooks Brothers dress shirts: That these have been selected will probably not be seen as a surprise or a unique choice by some. It had to be done. Made in the United States — North Carolina, we’re fairly sure — these are essentials. Ed bought three earlier this year and has been suitably impressed to include them here, despite being generally skeptical of the Brothers. You won’t go wrong with the original. $89.50 or three for $199.

Eyewear
REGlassesRandolph Engineering Ranger Classics: Everyone needs good eyewear for sporting-clay excursions. Randolph Engineering delivers with its Ranger Classics, which can be customized with a range of lenses. From $119.95.

Ray-Ban Caravans: For your everyday sunglass needs, nothing beats the Ray-Ban Caravan. Nothing.Modeled on aviator frames that are still standard in most branches of the U.S. Military, these are Ed’s favorite sunglasses barring his grandfather’s Bausch and Lobs. And, for the benefit of our “Mad Men” fans, if they’re good enough for Don Draper, they damn well ought to be good enough for you. $125 from J. Crew.

Outerwear
Patagonia vest: Ed’s never recovered from the loss of his Morristown-Beard ski team vest, which was left by a friend at a Canton watering hole. He took solace for most of college in borrowing Furnary’s instead. A must-have layer. $149.

LiddesdaleShooting vest: We chose Barbour’s very fine model because it offers padding on both shoulders and because we doubt it’ll ever wear out completely. $199 from Orvis.

Barbour Liddesdale: The gold standard for a smart, country-styled coat for the winter. As common on the streets of Manhattan as its Beaufort and Bedale cousins, the Liddesdale is an affordable and stylish alternative. It’s also pretty cozy, which we’ll take. $149 at Orvis.

Henri Lloyd’s Breeze Performance Jacket: Contributing ejforbes.com writer Will Briganti writes, “This is my best purchase of 2010 this far.” An avid sailor, Briganti’s word is bond on this choice. Versatile for coastal and urban activities. $69.

Footwear
MinnetonkaMocsMinnetonka Driving Moccasin: In Dark Brown – perfect for the ski lodge or casual Fridays at the office. Invest in only one pair, the more worn in, the better. $56.95 from Holly Woodworking of Old Forge, N.Y.

Justin Ropers: As appropriate for a day on the farm as they are in any situation where dress shoes aren’t required. The basic cowboy boot from Justin is a staple we can’t deny. From $99.

Bean boot: More than one pair (one being the shorter moc-version) is essential to make it through the mud, rain and snow. We like the new, shearling-lined model. Made in Maine as always. From $149.

Vasque Sundowners: Essential for any long trips in the woods. $170.

Accessories and housewares
GouchoBeltArgentinian polo belt: One snappily dressed reader is never without his. These are downright swell and are apparently standard on the polo fields of Argentina. In regimental and school colors from Gaucho Belts. $51.

Nantucket red socks: The genuine article, only for your feet. From Murray’s, the Island’s primary haberdashery. $17.50.

Billykirk and ACL & Co. canvas briefcase: A collaboration between A Continuous Lean.’s Michael Williams and Billykirk, this olive-drab canvas case is based on a World War II bag issued by the U.S. Navy. Made in the United States. $325.

Vice holster: This Etsy item caught my eye a few weeks ago. A holster that will hold a flask, a phone or a pack of smokes, it’s the perfect hideaway for your vices be they booze, texting or tobacco. On offer from Four Chamber Forge. $95.

Smathers and Branson flaskNeedlepoint flask: Rare is the time when a tipple isn’t welcome. Indulge in style with this needlepoint-covered numbers from Smathers and Branson. Customizable with monograms, too. From $65.

Cordial Churchman velvet bow tie: We picked the rust-colored option from the Cordial Churchman, the charming bow tie emporium run by Ellie LaVeer Stager. Made of 100-percent cotton velveteen, the tie is presented in the traditional butterfly pattern. Charming. $26.

Knot beer belt: Knot Belt Co.’s belts are simply charming and this fall’s beer-bottle is now exception to that rule. Made in the U.S.A. by a Laurentian, Nick Mannella. $55.

J. Press braces: When it comes to dressing somewhat professionally, do a little growing up and embrace braces. J. Press has a versatile offering from which to choose. Keep it conservative. $59.25.

Housewares and other gear
Chip and dip: One of Mrs. F.’s favorite pieces of serving wear is a glass chip-and-dip engraved with a Buffalo. It comes from Pitt Petri the venerable purveyor of all things proper in Buffalo, N.Y. These also come monogrammed. From $84.

whiskeystonesWhiskey stones: It’s frustrating, to say the least, when good whisky is diluted by the ice that chills it. Whiskey Stones to the rescue. Handcrafted from Vermont soapstone, this set of nine, properly chilled for four hours in a freezer, offers the right temperature and the right consistency for the holy water. $19.99.

New York in a Bag: A charming set of building blocks fashioned to resemble such architectural New York city icons as the Chrysler Building, the Guggenheim and MoMA’s original 1939 structure. From the MoMA store at $19.99.

Cocktail coupes: Exploring Westchester County’s Rivertowns — Ossining, Sleepy Hollow, Tarrytown, Irvington, Dobbs Ferry — this summer, we happened upon a very nice rummage sale at the Presbyterian Church in Dobbs Ferry. Lots of take could have been had, but we settled on a nice little set of vintage coupe glasses. For $2, they were a bargain. You can shell out a bit more at CB2 for adequate stand-ins. $5.95 each.

Olivewood cheese server: There’s no denying it. Ed and Mrs. F. have yet to find a piece of artisanal cheese they couldn’t palate. They often enjoy their curd on this olivewood cheese server from Williams-Sonoma, a gift from Mrs. F.’s grandmother. $59.

Cast iron grill: While we love Weber’s Smokey Joe, it pales in comparison to this hearty cast-iron offering from Lodge Cast Iron Cookware. Made with pride in the great southern state of Tennessee. $139.95.

Stanley Thermos: For the early morning call when you’re hitting the trail, the slopes or the road, keep your caffeinated fuel warm with this Stanley thermos, an undeniable American classic. My grandfather used one and so, too, should you. $48 from Urban Outfitters.

Books and stationery
Colonel Roosevelt“Colonel Roosevelt”: Edmund Morris’ third volume in his epic biography of Theodore Roosevelt. It’s worth re-reading “The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt,” (1979) and “Theodore Rex,” (2001) in anticipation. Morris looks at the last chapters of the 26th president of the United States. From $19.25 at Amazon.com.

“40: A Doonesbury Retrospective”: It wouldn’t be an ejforbes.com gift list with out a coffee-table book. Take home this one for the reader in your life. A 40-year retrospective of Doonesbury, the iconic strip by Saranac Lake’s own Garry Trudeau. From $59 at Amazon.com.

“Coming home to Glory”: David Eisenhower’s memoir of life with his father Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, the 34th president of the United States. A must for every baby-boomer father. From $18.48 from Amazon.com.

Moleskine notebooks: For writing, for jotting, for doodling. Can’t get enough of these tough little buggers. Made in Italy. $9.95 for a set of three from the MoMA store.

BELTS | Coming soon to a Brewer Bookstore near you

ScarletandBrownBeltKnot Belt Co.’s Scarlet and Brown belt, created exclusively for the St. Lawrence University Alumni Executive Council’s SaintsWear line.

As many readers now, I have the privilege of serving as secretary of the St. Lawrence Alumni Executive Council, the 40-member governing body of the University’s Alumni Association.

The Council, which funds a range of programs for current St. Lawrence students and supports activities for alumni, raises funds through an affinity credit card and SaintsWear, a growing line of Scarlet and Brown clothing and accessories. SaintsWear is sold via the Brewer Bookstore, St. Lawrence’s college store.

The newest addition to the line — which already includes a Barbarian rugby shirt, Louis Garneau cycling jerseys, SmartTurnout socks and accessories from Sara Langley — is a belt designed by this writer and Nick Mannella, proprietor of Knot Belt Co.

You may remember Mannella — we did a profile interview last fall. Nick is also a Laurentian and graduated from St. Lawrence in 2006.

The belt features four St. Lawrence motifs: An Adirondack chair, evergreens, the University shield and the clocktower of Sykes Residence Hall.

It will retail at $38 and should be available online later this month. In the meantime, you can order your belt directly from Knot.

Note: The classic St. Lawrence Leather Man Ltd. belt is not being discontinued.

MAPS | The Old New York of ‘Mad Men’ (Updated)


View ‘Mad Men’ environs in a larger map

Season Four updates appended below.

Some weeks ago, I asked a couple of good friends who are devoted ‘Mad Men’ fans for some help in identifying Old New York icons referred to in the AMC drama, the fourth season of which premiers on Sunday. The idea was to build a Google map to complement the excellent map put together by the staff of The Journal News, which details the Westchester County references on the show.

We came up with a fairly short list: Keen’s, the Waldorf, the Oyster Bar, P.J. Clarke’s, Tiffany’s and a number of hotels and department stores. I started watching shows from the previous seasons and came up with a few more. Then, early this week, I spent some time mining Basket of Kisses, an excellent blog run by Deborah and Roberta Lipp. They’ve got a catalog of cultural references for each episode that I believe to be nearly complete. Armed with data assembled there, my Google map filled out quite nicely.

I won’t bother listing all the locations, save for those which are marked only by addresses. Here’s that group, accompanied by explanations:

405 Madison Ave.: The headquarters of Sterling Cooper
152 Riverside Drive: Freddy Rumsen’s apartment
995 Fifth Avenue: Stanhope Hotel
767 5th Avenue: Savoy-Plaza Hotel
335 Madison Avenue: Biltmore Hotel
5th Avenue and 56th Street: Bonwit Teller
116 MacDougal Street: Gaslight Cafe
33 W. 52nd Street: Toots Shor
3 East 53rd Street: The Stork Club
8 Whipoorwill Road, Chappaqua: Henry Francis home
Park Avenue and 83st street: Pete and Trudy Campbell’s apartment
42 West 12th St.: Joan Holloway’s apartment

Updates
Season Four, Episode 1: ‘Public Relations’
Time-Life Building: 51st Street and Avenue of the Americas
Waverly Place and 6th Avenue: Don’s new apartment
Jimmy’s LaGrange: 151 East 49th St., detailed here.
Hotel Barbizon: 63rd Street and Lexington Avenue
Griswold Inn: Essex, Conn.

Season Four, Episode 2: ‘Christmas Comes But Once a Year’
Chumley’s: 86 Bedford St.
White Horse Tavern: 567 Hudson St.
St. Vincent’s Hospital: 275 8th Ave.
Hotel Elysee: 60 East 54th St.
First Baptist Church: 71st Street and Broadway

Season Four, Episode 3: ‘The Good News’
The Brown Derby: Los Angeles, Calif.
City College: 160 Convent Ave.
University of California: Berkeley, Calif.
Santa Catalina Island, Calif.
Barnard College: 116th Street and Broadway

Season Four, Episode 4: ‘The Rejected’

Jim Downey’s Steakhouse: 8th Avenue and 44th Street
Washington Market: Meatpacking District
Audubon Ballroom (Site of Malcom X’s assassination): 3940 Broadway

Season 4, Episode 5: ‘The Chrysanthemum and the Sword’
Playland Amusement Park: Rye, New York
Benihana: 47 West 56th St.
Staten Island Ferry: Whitehall Terminal, South Ferry
104 Waverly Place: Don’s address
Deerfield Academy: Pete Campbell’s alma mater
Asia Society: 725 Park Ave.

Season 4, Episode 6: ‘Waldorf Stories’
Heller’s Luxury Furs: 246 Seventh Ave.
Pen and Pencil: 205 E. 45th St.

Season 4, Episode 7: ‘The Suitcase’
The Palm: 837 2nd Ave.
Forum of the Twelve Casears: 57 West 48th St. (Now A.J. Maxwell’s)
Keen’s (previously mentioned in Season 3): 72 West 36th St.

Season 4, Episode 8: ‘The Summer Man’
New York Athletic Club: 180 Central Park South
Barbetta: 321 West 46th St.

Season 4, Episode 9: ‘The Beautiful Girls’
University Club: 1 West 54th St.
Frank E. Campbell: 1076 Madison Ave.

Season 4, Episode 10: ‘Hands and Knees’
Shea Stadium
Playboy Club: 5 East 59th St.
Warwick Hotel: 65 West 54th St.

Season 4, Episode 11: ‘Chinese Wall’
Jones Beach
Hotel Statler (today’s Hotel Pennsylvania): 401 7th Ave.
River Club: 447 East 52nd St.

What are we missing?

GEAR | Barbour Beaufort, back from the near-dead

BarbourCollar
The collar of my newly-restored Barbour Beaufort.

Late last year, I wrote about an aging Barbour Beaufort I received as a hand-me-down from my good friend Carl, who disposed of it in the process of moving from New York to Tennessee, where he is pursuing a medical degree.

A navy-blue Beaufort, it had not been reconditioned in years and had a number of small holes on its sleeves. I wondered if I should take a page from Trip Reed, who’d written about reconditioning one of his coats. In the end, which was only in August, I elected to dispatch the coat to Ken and Catherine Bissonette, who operate Green Mountain Reproofing in Vermont.

For about $40, the coat was returned in pristine condition. I had it back within a fortnight of sending it. I strongly recommend Green Mountain Reproofing. Take a look at some before-and-after shots:

BEFORE:
BarbourOld

AFTER:
BarbourNew

CLIP | ‘Adirondack Holiday,’ 1960

Read more

MAPS | USGS bonanza online, courtesy of U.N.H.

WestchesterA detail from the 1891 U.S. Geological Survey map of the Harlem, NY-NJ Quadrangle that shows southern Westchester County.

As you may have guessed from various posts over the two years I’ve been operating ejforbes.com, I love maps.

The affinity for cartography is a trait inherited from my mother, who is obsessed with atlases, maps and where things are, were and will be. Given that most of her life — save for stints in Europe and Jamaica in the 1960s and 1970s — has been spent in Morris County, New Jersey, it seems fitting that she hung a giant school-room map of the county in our den about 10 years ago. Also in her collection is a soil map of Sullivan County, New York, where we own a home; a vintage Sullivan topo that includes our pond there; and a 1921 road map of New Jersey.

Topos are always fun — don’t you want to know the elevation of Amherst, N.Y.? I do. I was delighted by the recent discovery of a massive online archive of U.S. Geological Survey topos. The maps, housed by the University of New Hampshire’s Dimond Library Documents Department, cover all of New York and New England.

Here’s a little gallery of historic topos of places that interest me:

WHEELS | The Sunbeam Alpine is a real beauty

AlpineThis 1967 Sunbeam Alpine Series V is similar to one I saw in Buffalo over the Labor Day holiday.

Driving north on state Route 5 on Saturday afternoon, en route from my in-laws place on Lake Erie to dowtown Buffalo, Mrs. F and I beheld a beautiful sight: A 1960s Sunbeam Alpine convertible that was painted racing green. It was a gorgeous vehicle.

The classic Alpine of the 1960s has its roots in a 1953 version that revived a marque used by Sunbeam in the 1930s. The Rootes Group, which manufactured the Sunbeam brand after the war, opted to redesign the two-seated coupe in 1956. Designers Kenneth Howes and Jeff Crompton produced a lovely design that closely resembled the Ford Thunderbird. Aimed at the U.S. market, the Alpine appeared in five series through 1968. About 70,000 Alpines were manufactured.

A V-8 variant, the Tiger, was produced between 1964 and 1967.

A search on eBay motors yields four Alpines for sale, including the lovely green 1967 model pictured above. Bidding is up to $5,100.

Here’s a video I posted earlier on NorthTowardHome that captures a portion of an early Alpine ad:

BOOKS | ‘Take Ivy,’ at last

TakeIvy‘Take Ivy,’ the iconic collection of photography that is considered a bible of classic American style.

At last. For those of us unwilling to tender bids of as much as $1,000 on eBay, there is salvation. ‘Take Ivy,’ the iconic collection of photographs that is considered by many as the bible of traditional American style, is at last available for the masses. My copy arrived in today’s mail.

At $24.95, the book, published yesterday by Powerhouse Books, is an affordable winner. Originally published in Japan in 1965 by Fujingahosha, the venerable magazine concern, ‘Take Ivy’ is a journalistic exercise. Photographer Teruyoshi Hayashida and reporters Shosuke Ishizu, Toshiyuki Kurosu and Hajime Hasegawa. In their forward, the authors write:

… Here is a report entitled “Everything About the Ivy League” with photos that our team of reporters collected during our one-month fact-finding trip.

As the name suggests, the classic buildings on Ivy League campuses are literally adorned with green ivy. Tranquil school grounds are covered in lush grass. Dormitory lights remain lit until late at night. Classrooms are compact to accommodate a small, but elite group of brilliant students. The vast dining halls accommodate hundreds of hungry students at one time. Our camera successfully captured scenes of typical and beautiful American campuses in both lively and tranquil times.

Each Ivy Leaguer wears clothes in his own way while maintaining an appropriate student look. The meaning of freedom can be found in what the students wear at their residential campuses. [We] believe that this book serves an invaluable documentary of appropriate dress codes on campuses. …

‘Take Ivy’ accomplishes that mission, but we already knew that. Several excellent blogs, including The Trad and A Continuous Lean., posted images from the original Japanese editions ages ago. Men of Dartmouth, Brown and Princeton figure most prominently, as do a lovely collection of ‘old boys’ navigating the concrete and granite canyons of Manhattan.

I suppose the joy of the book is that it’s a book, by which I mean that I still enjoy the process of turning pages and assessing photography as editors intended. On the whole, I would say it’s the third-best catalog of 1960s photographs I own, behind Slim Aarons’ oeuvre and Bill Eppridge’s “As it Was: Bobby Kennedy in the Sixties.”

One disappointment is that the color reproduction seems poor, especially when compared with the images I’ve enjoyed at the aforementioned blogs. I’m sort of motivated to splurge for an original copy to make a comparison. For example, in the scans I’ve seen elsewhere online, the Dartmouth green is decidedly green. In the Powerhouse edition, it often seems black. Still, other frames, particularly in the section on Bermuda shorts, seem to reproduce beautifully.

The glossaries, on the upside, are charming. They include brief discussions of the Eight, anecdotes about the raising of Old Glory over each campus, President Kennedy and the the tradition of working and playing hard. The Japanese authors also offer a dissertation on Ivy League vehicles that includes a note on the 1960s obsession with vintage vehicles.

And, finally, of course, is an outline on traditional style, at its apex in 1965. Going barefoot, school colors and madras are all discussed in brief before the authors present a nice little guide to the wardrobe essentials.

So, reproduction issues aside, get thee to a bookstore!

‘Take Ivy’
Powerhouse Books
First English Edition, 2010
$24.95

MAPS | A cartographic artifact of Lake Placid in 1980

SchweitzMapA detail of the famous map of Lake Placid drawn by Pittsford, N.Y. artist Duane A. Schweitz in 1980.

There are more coveted Lake Placid relics: The poster created for the 1980 Games that shows mascot Roni Racoon clinging to the Olympic Rings, an image that had to be altered after a dustup with the IOC; tickets to the Miracle on Ice; and even original china from the Lake Placid Club.

Still, the elaborate pen-and-ink map created by Pittsford, N.Y. artist Duane A. Schweitz is a rare and valuable find. Schweitz’s map, which he billed as a cartographic artifact, shows every major structure that was standing in Lake Placid in 1979 and 1980. Schweitz gives us a view of each house, hotel, church, school and commercial building from the most modest houses of Averyville Road to the grand, hipped-roof wonders of Signal Hill.

I splurged and bought myself a copy to honor my recent 30th birthday. Its frame was shattered in shipping and I’ve just agreed to spend a little more to right that wrong. It’ll be well-worth the expense, but I already miss having the piece in the house. We had it propped up on the kitchen table the last few weeks and after checking the day’s papers every morning, I’d look at the map. It’s remarkable how little my adopted hometown has changed since 1980. Good friends’ houses all appear. The home I rented while living up there, a little raised ranch that overlooked Mill Pond, is present. Most of the Main Street corridor is accounted for. Some icons, of course, are gone: the Lake Placid Club, the Brewster Building parts of the harbor complex and a few others.

Schweitz, for his part, is still practicing his craft in Pittsford, focusing on the seasonal beauty of that village.

Here’s a gallery of images from his Lake Placid map:

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