22 March 2011

I like New York in June, how about you?

This wonderful clip from 1974 of Kenneth Williams being interviewed by Russell Harty was sent to me by my dear friend and The Style Inside reader Andrew. It's simply marvellous and ties in fabulously with the recent "Working The Crowd" post.  I love how his simple and beautifully delivered statements are as true today as they were then. The whole "corruption" thing is hugely relevant. Love it! Thanks Andrew. X

14 March 2011

vintage cycling

Today turned out to be a bike-themed day. What with him indoors all giddy at having signed up for the ├╝bercool L'Eroica vintage bike race in Italy, followed by some quick but very rewarding research on girlie vintage bikes, it's little wonder I've managed to tick practically nothing off my day job worklist!
Firstly some info on the said vintage bike race.  It's a rather charming event which takes place every year in September in the Chianti region of Italy and competitors dress up vintage-style, really looking the part complete with fag dangling from corner of mouth and hip flask containing anything BUT water or Gatorade. Check out the website to really get a feel for what it's all about. It's the perfect venue to show off that beautiful Bianchi or Cinelli of yours.

For the girlies on the other hand it's another excuse to indulge in some serious online shopping with these two really lovely Bike Dealers offering exquisite vintage style bikes in fabulous colours and matching accessories. I know a couple of ladies who are already smitten with the models on offer (especially the red one) and I bet you'll be tempted too once you start browsing. The first online shop is the fantastically tasteful Abici - unlike with politics, the Italians really do seem to know what they are doing when it comes to bikes. I dare you NOT to fall in love with their Pantone Universe range. 
The other site I found is charming UK-based retailer The Old Bicycle Company, offering beautiful well-made traditional vintage style cycles. Lovely! If I had more time on my hands I could probably get some more sources for you but my boss is throwing daggers so must dash.

13 March 2011

working the crowd

I was slightly taken aback (in a good way) the other day when I noticed a friend actively working the crowd and bringing to life what otherwise would have been a brief and possibly unmemorable chance encounter between a group of people. The reason I noticed this phenomenon was not so much because I recognised some of my own moves and tactics in my friend's highly skilled social display, but because I was mesmerised by her huband's reaction. His palpable sigh of relief at not having to get involved himself but let his wife do the work combined with his very endearing facial expression which screamed "Isn't she good?" made me smile, albeit in an exasperating way. I also promised myself that I would write a post about it, so here we all are.
You either do or you don't, right ? Well, as I said before, I, like my charming friend, am one of those that do. At social gatherings with the husband I am not the one who sits back and observes, looking cool and sophisticated. That, would be him. No. I'm the scary one with the broad smile and matching body language who's coming right atcha in a bid for some contact. I can't help it and I don't make excuses although sometimes I admit, it would be quite nice to "have the day off" and let someone else do the PR.
So what's it about? "Why does she do it?" you ask. I can guarantee that a deep-rooted need to people-please is a huge part of it just as much as a genuine belief that we are all humans and no matter how northern you are, inside every person male or female, is a big need to communicate, to connect and to feel loved. Or not? Isn't that what it's all about? Sure, there's upbringing. My parents for example, taught me a) to be compassionate and b) to shake hands properly, openly and with a smile on my face.
Of course once you start using words such as "social" and "communication" it's hard not to touch on  the whole subject of social media - that amazing new world in which we're all finding great new ways of  communicating like never before. Where does that leave our social behaviour and ability to connect with others in the real world? I for one believe that the tweeting, chatting, blogging, commenting and "liking" is actually helpful as we are learning to express ourselves and communicate more than ever before. 

What do you think, dear readers? Maybe you'd like to answer some of the questions raised above and below with your own valid and highly valued opinions? It would be fantastic to hear them so why don't we get a little conversation started....
  1. Do you work the crowd for your other half or are you happy to let him/her do the talking?
  2. Is it important to connect and communicate with others socially and how do YOU go about it?
  3. Do you make the first move or do you prefer to let others come to you?
  4. Do you think upbringing is the key to our social behaviour?
  5. Does all this matter? To connect, to communicate....?
  6. How are your kids' virtual and personal communication skills going?
Thanks for reading and thanks so much in advance for participating - if you prefer to remain anonymous you can send an email and I will publish your comments without names on the comments form below.

01 March 2011


A little Music Update for you, just a quickie, nothing that will take up too much of your time but that will undoubtedly give great pleasure to some of you, and which seems, from where I'm sitting, important and well-placed here. 
No, it's not about my latest obsession (Plan B) but my longterm love (Sinatra & Jobim). Some of you faithfull followers will remember many posts ago my ode to ye that art great (Sinatra, Jobim and mein Papa). Now we have the next chapter of that story:
Yes, last year, a mere forty-one years after it was recorded and forty years after it was pulled from the shelves by eager fans, Sinatra/Jobim can finally be heard as it was intended to be. Trust me when I say, it’s so been worth the wait. 1969 was indeed a very good year. Barnes & Noble put it rather nicely in their Review right here.
There's a time and a place for Plan B, but some days, some moments, only Francis Albert will do.

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