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The D.C. Colonist is featured today’s The Reliable Source column in the Style Section of the Washington Post
|| 11/19/2009 || 11:03 pm || 2 Comments Rendered || ||

When I got back home from yesterday’s hearing I wrote my friend at the Washington Post the following e-mail:

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She’s got the sole of the city with SWIMS galoshes
|| 10/31/2008 || 11:51 am || Comments Off on She’s got the sole of the city with SWIMS galoshes || ||

Map of Paris featured on SWIMS City Slipper high heel

I read about these stylish galoshes a little while ago, and saw the map on sole of the shoe, but I couldn’t find a high resolution version that showed the actual map. Yesterday I found it. SWIMS, a Scandinavian company known for making stylish galoshes, incorporates lots of great details both for practical and aesthetic reasons such as:

• Extra traction for slippery surfaces.
• The sole of each CitySlipper has the map of either New York, Paris, or Tokyo.
• Pull on/off grip and the soft siliconpad on the sides makes it very convenient.
• Flexible design to fit almost any heel height and thickness due to flexible material and construction.
• Protection for the delicate leather/suede sole of your shoe and the tip of the shoe against the elements.
• Low-Cut style is for shoes with bows and buckles.



The maps themselves definitely fall into the realm of aesthetics not cartographics, but ya know, I am a big fan of those kind of maps.



Related Fashion Entries:

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An interview on a bicycle conducted while riding through Amsterdam
|| 7/31/2008 || 5:56 pm || 3 Comments Rendered || ||


Amsterdamize Bicycle TV : Riding With Marie from Amsterdamize on Vimeo.

Yesterday I watched the video above and smiled. It was the first time I’d seen an interview conducted whilst riding down the street. Have you ever seen one conducted in this fashion?

The 9 minute video above features the author of the Dutch bicycle advocacy blog Amsterdamize as he rides side-by-side & interviews the co-author of Copenhagen’s bicycle advocacy blog Copenhagenzine. They discuss the differences in bicycle riding in their respective cities while showing the beautiful scenery of Amsterdam. It truly made me want to go back to Amsterdam just to ride around the city and take in the city’s car-free culture & rich history.

Anyways, this year I’ve added bicycle advocacy to the disparate topics this website covers. It makes sense as well because my main transportation method is a bicycle and the 120-year-old house I live in is on the site of a former bicycle racetrack.

Since I recently purchased a digital camera I’ve been running through a bunch of ideas as to how I can creatively use this simple technology to make new content for this blog. Expect some more bicycle related entries in the coming days….

In case the video above didn’t satiate your appetite for urban bicycling, here are few of my favorite bicycling videos from Amsterdamize, Copenhagenzine and it’s sister site Copenhagen Cycle Chic for you to enjoy:

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Hipster : The Dead End of Western Civilization By Douglas Haddow
|| 7/28/2008 || 2:48 pm || 8 Comments Rendered || ||

This entry has depreciated, please click here to read the official article on the Adbusters website.

Below is the feature article of Adbuster’s Magazine Issue #79, which should hit newsstands either today or tomorrow. As a subscriber to the magazine, I received my copy in the mail last Thursday and after reading the entire issue I decided to spend an hour Friday afternoon transcribing the feature article for this blog entry.

Normally I don’t waste my time transcribing articles, but I have a strong feeling that this article will not be published on their website in its entirety and I feel that by sharing it here I’m able to direct more people to the magazine’s website than would otherwise visit. I don’t think Adbusters will take too much issue to my reprinting of their article, but if they do I’ll remove it from my website. I’ve already been their anti-advertisement lackey before and probably helped sell dozens of their corporate flags when I was featured in the Sunday Style section of the Washington Post on the 4th of July, 2004.

What I enjoyed most about this article is that it hits close to home. Depending on what clothes I might be wearing I could easily be considered a hipster under the definition outlined in the article below. However, what’s lacking in the demographic the author outlines are those that bridge the gap between socially aware and unaware. As in, can someone stand for something, but not have it thrown in the face of the unaware? On my behalf, I can say that I’m fully aware of what style I am supporting just as I am aware of what corporations I am not supporting in my clothing, music, and transportation choices (I have two bicycles; neither of which are fixed-gear). Aren’t culture jammers supposed to be wolves in sheep’s clothing that can blend in, but stand out when the time arises?

In this respect, the author makes little room for someone like myself to exist within the rubric of hipsterdom. Can one be stylish, but not hipster? Or can one be socially conscious while maintaining the decorum of that which the author loathes? The inherent irony is that many of the clothes the author points out are also clothing items that were not made in a sweatshop.

As a mashup of all demographics before it, how then will the future be defined by the absence of this mashup? Essentially, if hipsterdom is to die, then how can a new demographic be born anew without stealing some its tenets, much like all previous generations did before it? In that respect, the author attempts to answer this by stating we are at the end of the Western Civilization because we have no where to grow, move, or redefine ourselves. Yet the author doesn’t give much direction as to how we are to accomplish this.

I ask those rhetorical questions above because I generally agree with the author’s conclusions, yet as someone that straddles the demographic at hand, I don’t see the how the demographic will end or morph without some cataclysmic event that forces the delineation between those who have both substance and style and those that are simply posing for the camera blissfully unaware of their choices. Only time will tell…I hope you enjoy the read and if you do, go out and purchase the magazine yourself.





Hipster : The Dead End of Western Civilization
By Douglas Haddow for Adbusters Magazine, Issue #79


I’m sipping a scummy pint of cloudy beer in the back of a trendy dive bar turned nightclub in the heart of the city’s heroin district. In front of me stand a gang of hippiesh grunge-punk types, who crowd around each other and collectively scoff at the smoking laws by sneaking puffs of “fuck-you,” reveling in their perceived rebellion as the haggard, staggering staff look on without the slightest concern.

The “DJ” is keystroking a selection of MP3s off his MacBook, making a mix that sounds like he took a hatchet to a collection of yesteryear billboard hits, from DMX to Dolly Parton, but mashed up with a jittery techno backbeat.

“So… is this a hipster party?” I ask the girl sitting next to me. She’s wearing big dangling earrings, an American Apparel V-neck tee, non-prescription glasses and an inappropriately warm wool coat.

“Yeah, just look around you, 99 percent of the people here are total hipsters!”

“Are you a hipster?”

“Fuck no,” she says laughing back the last of her glass before she hops off to the dance floor.

Continue reading:

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My Artomatic 2008 Top 100 by Floor
|| 5/24/2008 || 2:06 pm || 7 Comments Rendered || ||

At around 1pm on Friday, May 23rd, 2008, I began walking through the entire Artomatic venue floor by floor with the intent of making a top 5 artist listing for each floor. After walking one quarter of the way through my first floor I decided to expand listing to the top 10 of each floor, and after doing some quick math, I decided to round up and give each of the 9 floors a top 11.

First & foremost this listing is not perfect nor am I trying to pass judgment with respect to other artists talents or styles. Any person who decides to make a Top 100 will have a completely different listing based on their own personal tastes. A few of my own personal friends are not listed here because while I like their art, its not something that I would really like to have hanging on my walls. Also some people got left out because their floor had too much other fine artwork to choose from. The method I used to construct this listing is not based on any exact science or talent threshold, but simply, I asked myself if would I pay money to have this in my house? Does this fit the aesthetics that I prefer to have displayed in my house? And with the proper supplies, can I reproduce the artwork on display? Is there some intrinsic aspect of the artwork that makes it stand out?

I tend to visually deconstruct all artwork, animations, video segments, infographics, and maps etc. that are presented to me. I have an active imagination that begins this visual interpretation process the moment I gaze upon something. Most of what I saw at Artomatic did not require much thought to decipher and generally speaking, it’s why I am not interested in a lot of contemporary art in general. Artomatic, however, provides an excellent glimpse into the Washington, DC area’s arts scene.

Surprisingly many artists do not have their own websites or did not take the time to adequately fill out their on-line Artomatic artist profile where they could link from. I did not take the lack of personal website into consideration for inclusion in the listing below. Maybe the next listing should be based strictly on Artomatic artist’s websites? In the listing below I link to the artist’s website or Artomatic artist catalog page and include the cryptic location of the artist’s exhibit space.

The following is a comprehensive listing of my favorite 100 visual artists out of the 1,000+ artists participating in Artomatic 2008:

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Rush hour bicycle traffic congestion in Copenhagen, Denmark
|| 4/16/2008 || 4:34 pm || Comments Off on Rush hour bicycle traffic congestion in Copenhagen, Denmark || ||

The last couple days I’ve been posting about bicycling, so why not add another one of my favorite examples of how people in another country have embraced bicycling? Everyday I check out Copenhagen Cycling Chic, which is a blog about styliciousness of bicyclists in Copenhagen, Denmark. More specifically, the blog usually features well-dressed, attractive women on bicycles. As xenophile, I love seeing how the people commute and how drastically different it is from the American way of life. It seems that the majority of bicycles for sale at my local bike shops are racing bikes, mountain bikes, and single track bikes. Thus it appears that the stores mainly cater to the athletic folks who treat bicycling as a physical activity (or business: couriers), and not a simplified, slowed-down, lifestyle as the author of Copenhagen Cycling Chic and myself view bicycling. I have not owned a car in nearly 10 years and I don’t miss being car-crippled one bit. The money I’ve saved in car payments & car insurance is astounding and I’m healthier because my transportation is also my exercise. Yet this is the difference– I view the exercise as a lesser byproduct of a conscious decision to live a more mentally & ecologically sound life. I’ll pick the rush hour in the YouTube video above any day over sitting in traffic enclosed in a metal box pumping toxins into the atmosphere. Better views too.



Comparative Front Pages: Washington Post / Philadelphia Inquirer
|| 1/2/2008 || 10:58 pm || Comments Off on Comparative Front Pages: Washington Post / Philadelphia Inquirer || ||

Photograph of the Washington Post and Philadelphia Inquirer newspapers showing my map Jefferson Mandala

On March 26, 2007, the Philadelphia Inquirer published David Montgomery’s Here Be Dragons article. That morning I received a phone call from one of my best friends who happened to be in Philadelphia on business. He excitedly informed me that one of my maps was on the cover of a section in the Philadelphia Inquirer. I asked him to purchase as many copies as possible and about a month later I picked up the six copies from his house. My housemate let me borrow his camera to take an overhead photograph of the two newspaper articles side by side. When the housemate moved out a few months ago he gave me all of his photographs that he had on his computer and I found this photograph that I had forgotten about. What I found to be the most interesting aspect is the size of the map that was used in Philadelphia, the change of the article’s name, the movement from “Style” to “Health & Science.” I’ve tried to track down other syndications, but so far only the Philadelphia Inquirer has been obtained. The article itself has already been deaccessioned from the Philadelphia Inquirer’s website.

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Nikolas Schiller is a second-class American citizen living in America's last colony, Washington, DC. This blog is my on-line repository of what I have created or found on-line since May of 2004. If you have any questions or comments, please contact:

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  • thank you,
    come again!