Experiencing the breeze between the knees since March 2009

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Leather of Legend...

I have heard stories of a mythical kilt fit for Hephaestus' relentless toiling with fire and iron, a garment so hardcore, so manly, and so utterly awe-inspiring that Odin shed from his sacrificed eye a single tear of admiration when the garment was first completed. This mingling of pleats and power became known as the legendary Leather Utilikilt, and it was thought to have vanished from this world with the cessation of its production so many moons ago...

...until NOW.

You could imagine my excitement at having the honor of seeing one of these beauties, discontinued for an undisclosed amount of time at UKHQ. Luckily, I was introduced to one of the famed kilts and its owner, a new friend of mine who was fortunate enough to procure one a few years back, and I got to see it in action at the gathering where we met.

I'll try my best to let the awesomeness speak for itself, but if you've been reading for any period of time, you know I have to throw in my praise. Apart from the thousand-and-one hardships this garment can withstand given the durable nature of leather, it is also quite insulating. On the particular night I was introduced to its wearer - who, by the way, is active in the Society for Creative Anachronism, a testament to longevity of medieval proportions itself - it was particularly chilly outside, and he was without a worry in his cozy leather leg-tent. That is normally one of the only downfalls of living a kilted life: the cold can be bitter, unless you're a mind-over-matter kind of guy (as I claim to be, when my Texan genes aren't screaming "You're from the south and you suck at winter - get yer ass inside!") Usually I find that a nice, long pair of socks fixes the problem and rather detracts from the overall cold, but we'll see whether or not I'm forced to invest in a pair of long-johns this season.

One of the advantages of my Survival, though, was the ample pocket space. I think my friend was just as excited about my kilt as I was about his. At any rate, one of the only downsides of the Leather model was the lack of storage space - notice the sporran (granted, he pulls it off nicely, and part of me thinks it adds some measure of character and tradition.) If I'm not mistaken, it comes with one back pocket for billfolds or cigarettes or what have you.

And of course, what's a kilted gathering without hammer and claymore? (Why I've seemingly begun to stick out my tongue is beyond me. Perhaps I was trying to satiate a subconscious need to taste the awesomeness drenching the atmosphere of the room.)

I figured at the time this photo was taken that it might present a little too much testosterone for some readers, so I made sure to include the following:

Nothing like a cute little puppy to help calm things down. That flash almost ruined the opportunity... lucky you, eh?

So now that that's all said and done, any guesses as to how much a leather kilt would go for? Last time I checked, they had been asking about $800 per Utilikiltarian, but at one time they may have been as low as $700. Again, they're off the market (for now), so until production begins again we can't know for sure. I'd be interested to see if any improvements are added or if anything changes. Meanwhile I'm happy with my collection so far. Speaking of which, I'm planning to dye my black Original soon, so expect some before-and-after shots so you can get a good comparison of what a year-and-a-half's worth of wear-and-tear will do to the color (I don't think I've ever used that many hyphenated phrases in a single sentence before.)

I'll leave you with a token of my allegiance to They Who Clothe Me, who also sell many other garments, if you're interested in showing some spirit but maybe can't afford a kilt just yet. I believe the hoodie I'm wearing goes for $32 without shipping, but you're welcome to browse their site again and find out for yourself.

See you next time, and let the legend be remembered!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Texas Renaissance Festival

So it's been a couple weekends since I went to the Texas Renaissance Festival in Plantersville, TX, and if you're not familiar with such events, it can be a drag having to return home afterward. Rarely are you able to find such a diverse conglomeration of people, festivities, vendors, and foods, so if you haven't been there, you need to get your arse in gear! Not to mention there's no shortage of kilt vendors at any given fair: I actually worked at a Utilikilts booth at the Norman, OK Medieval Faire earlier this year, and last summer I visited Scarborough Faire in Waxahachie, TX - my first experience at such a venue - where kilts abounded. Granted, most of the kilts you'll see are modeled after the traditional plaid fashion, but there's nothing wrong with that. I'm still looking to get my family's tartan in a traditional wool kilt one I have enough funding (and a reputable source.)

Anyway, TRF is still going on and will continue every weekend through November 28. Check out their website here, and pay special attention to the admission fees and discounts – if you buy a weekend package, it’s much cheaper than paying by the day (not to mention you get to spend more time there), and if you buy tickets at local venues (like select grocers) it’s significantly cheaper as well.

Of course, I was faced with my usual dilemma of being the guy with the camera, and there weren’t many mirrors handy, so most of my photographic documentation did not include me or my kilt, but I managed to hand off the camera to another party member quickly enough to get a couple snapshots. I think we were in the “gardens” at this point, giving me plenty of statues to pose next to. I chose an elephant. Why not?

Like I said, there was no shortage of traditional-style kilts (I think I only saw one or two other Utilikiltarians: one was drawing money from an ATM, otherwise I would’ve stopped him and asked for a photo to prove it. I figured against potentially freaking him out while he grabbed his cash.) Anywho, the bloke in the following photos is a member of an awesome band called Tartanic. They blend some new vibes into some traditional tunes, and they are pretty hardcore when it comes to pleasing their audience. I was told after leaving this show that this fellow removed his shirt to reveal washboard abs, much to the delight of the ladies in the crowd, while the rest of us men-folk were ogling the scantily-clad wenches selling CDs. Talk about smart advertising.

If you want to check them out, you can find their website here. They're a lot of fun, especially in an intimate setting like Renaissance festivals, so I'll repeat it again: if you get a chance to go, GO!

Now, having given credit where it is due, I'd like to point out a simple comparison: note the sporran (the little bag-thingy hanging in front of the piper's kilt.) Note how you don't need one of those in a Utilikilt, given the ample pocket space available. Granted, it does add an element of traditional neatness, but I think it'd get old quick having a bag of junk swinging in front of your... um... bag of junk. All the same, freedom is freedom, and every man has his favorite flavor (speaking of flavors, if you like mead, you MUST go to TRF and sample the mead from one of the permanent vendors. Be prepared to spend $52 on a bottle of ambrosia. Luckily I turned 21 the weekend before this event, so I am able to boast my first purchase of an alcoholic beverage as mead at a Renaissance festival. But don't drink, kids, 'cause that's bad!)

That about wraps things up here. See you folks at the next update! And drop me a comment every once in awhile so I can quit pretending like people actually read this and start believing it ;)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Some Serious Cleaning

Unfortunately, one of the only things the Utilikilt does not come equipped with is a protective mask (for the face, anyway), and for a guy as allergy-ridden as me, a chore as simple as mowing the lawn or cleaning out the shed certainly necessitates the use of such a device.

I personally think the kilt just adds another measure of badassedness to it. I could sense the dust mites trembling with fear at my approach... In all honesty, though, if I can't at least breathe without assistance from something attached to my face, I will certainly take advantage of letting the important bits breathe by wearing proper kilted attire. 'Nuff said.

Lucy Got Some 'Splainin To Do

Remember how I mentioned the start of the school year as a great opportunity to keep sharing the love in the blogosphere?

Next time I say something like that, feel free to slap me. Between Shakespeare, the French language, and Russian literature, I have very little downtime. The logical thing to do, then, would be to further burden myself with responsibilities in six different student organizations, right? Apparently that's what I thought was the best plan, and as you can see, the journaling has suffered.

But quite a bit has happened between my last post and this one - the beginning of a new semester, a twenty-first birthday, and a trip to the Texas Renaissance Festival, to name only a few - so I do have some things to share, and hopefully they will reflect a return to regular updates.

I still have the problem of being the photographer: inevitably, it is difficult to take pictures of one's self, and I really never think to say "Hey stranger, would you mind snapping a few photos of me in my kilt?" I'm sure plenty of people do, but unfortunately it ain't on my camera.

So, without further ado (is that right? Ado?), the blog returns.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

AWOK (Kilt, of Course)

You might be wondering why I've been so quiet lately, and I have a very somber reason (get the tissue boxes reasy, cause it's a tear-jerker): I haven't been able to wear my gear as often as I'd like to recently, and you have to realize that "as often as I'd like to" means every moment of every day that I'm not naked.

Obviously, I still sport my kilts most of the time, but the few times I am unable are for reasons I really can't argue with. I teach yoga at a local studio, and as much as I want to encourage freedom, downward dog is not the place to do it, especially since it's a beginner's class and I don't want to scare anyone away. The only other time I have to grin and bear the discomfort is at the gym, a place I've seen a lot of lately. Innevitably I'll coordinate my errands with being out in town, so I have to shame myself in public by wearing pants - I'm just waiting for the day that some person runs up behinds me and "pants" me in public, just so I can stand there and enjoy the brief moment of freedom before pulling them back up to avoid public indecency charges...

Anywho, the lack of 24/7 kilt-wearing is the disappointing reason behind my laack of posts, in addition to my lack of a cameraman. It never occurs to me when I'm out with my friends to say "Hey, let's get a shot of us all - be sure to get my kilt in the photo." You see, it's become such a natural thing to me that it never seems to warant a spontaneous photograph, but for your blog-reading pleasure, this is my promise to try to keep the pictures coming, at least as often as I'm able to give you a written update. Come on, that's what you're really here for, right? The killer photos? (Speaking of which, if you just want to browse through some badass imagery, navigate over to the Utilikilts website and they've got more pictures than you can shake a fist at.)

So that's to let you know I'm still alive, and hopefully as the school year starts up, I'll have more opportunities to share the love. Peace, my friends.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Staircase of Doom

I can understand cutting some corners when it comes to realizing a budget, but whether it was for financial purposes or for reasons unknown, the previous owners of the house I live in thought it necessary to make a last-minute change on their floorplans, with specific regard to a staircase leading to a one-room second floor (or first floor, for all the Europeans out there.)

In retrospect, it seems like the stairwell in question was originally designed to house a spiral staircase, given the extremely limited space available. But for some reason - again, I'm unclear as to whether it was a money-pinching fix, a last-minute "oops, we did that wrong" kind of solution, or just poor judgement in the first place - the previous owners who presumably built the place decided to nix the spiral steps and install a normal stair instead, allowing a whole SIX INCHES of tread width per step.

To put that number in perspective, I believe the average stair width is about nine inches; any less can prove particularly dangerous, as our model certainly did. What's worse, some genius decided to carpet the stairs, detracting even more from the already scarce stepping room - to a guy with feet as big as mine, that's basically a death trap. (And it's true what they say about guys with big feet: they fall harder when they trip down the stairs. All that room under the kilt is actually for strategic parachuting purposes.)

Given the present danger, something had to be done (now that we've been living here for eleven years, of course - some projects sit on the back burner until they boil over) before it became a literal stairway to heaven; injuries have already ensued. It was time for remodelling, and time for me to break out the Workman's to aid comfort in repair.

I would've taken some before-and-after shots, but I figure my handiwork speaks for itself. Of course, when I say "my" I mean "our," as I had help with the project, otherwise it couldn't be finished in the five or six days we worked on it. Anyway, we tore up the carpet and replaced it with hardwood, alotting a bit more space for stepping, but we also extended the tread another couple of inches to give more foot room on the way up - it's no different coming down, but you can't expect perfection when fixing someone else's mistakes. Besides, it looks pretty awesome, if you ask me.

Also, more importantly than the finished product, I felt pretty badass with a pneumatic staple gun, which came in handy when the Russian spies showed up to steal our floor plan. When they saw I was wearing a kilt, they backed off immediately, aware of their instantaneous inferiority. Oh, and sorry for the delayed post: things have been busy lately, lots of home-improvement projects like this going on, but you can bet I'm the most comfortable handyman around.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Oh, Bother...

"Oh the wind is lashing lustily
And the trees are thrashing thrustily
And the leaves are rustling gustily..."

If you're familiar at all with my area, then you've probably wondered why Chicago was dubbed "The Windy City" instead of any of a number of cities in north Texas, because when it blows here, it BLOWS. If you didn't catch it, those opening lines belong to the wise old Winnie the Pooh, which makes me think the Hundred Acre Wood must have been down the road from me at some point. You know, aside from the fact that there are no trees in N Texas...

Anyway, I had to roll up the canopy of our camper parked out back so the winds wouldn't take the whole thing to Kansas, and one has to wonder how a kilted young lad could accomplish such a feat and remain humble in his attire (although, Winnie the Pooh was allegedly one of the humblest figures in literary history, and not only did he not wear pants, he didn't wear anything down there. He certainly must have been a wise bear, hmm?)

To save myself some effort, I'll refer you to an earlier post about getting to know my kilts, where you will find a description of the Workman's model, equipped with a built-in safety system. Basically the point of this post is to let you know that it stands up to the test of the savage winds of north Texas; show me a city-slicker from Chicago (say that five times fast) who can keep his cool in a windstorm on the open plains - quite literally, as my downstairs were able to enjoy the winds as much as the rest of me.

If there's anything I have in common with Winnie the Pooh, it is assuredly a sense of freedom unknown to the unimaginative, trousered folk out there.

Did they seriously use the word "lustily" in a children's show? And what's this "thrashing thrustily" business? I need to rethink my childhood... This might actually explain a lot.

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Whole Family & Wash Care

Just look at 'em. Don't they seem happy? I think so. One thing's for sure - a closet full of kilts certainly gets my spirits up! Just thought it'd be nice to have a group photo.

This is also a good opportunity to give you an idea of how low-maintenance these beauties are. They only need to be washed infrequently, as they're pretty hard to get dirty enough to actually need a good washing (depending, of course, on how you like to spend your time. I can think of more than a few ways to dirty a kilt, but maybe that's because my mind is so often in the gutter.)

Anyway, I just run them through a cold cycle in the washing machine - after ensuring the labyrinth of pockets is emty, of course - and spread them out to dry. It's just as well to hang them up, but I find the pleats keep their form best when laid out to dry, maybe with a ceiling fan on. Just straightening them out by hand a bit aids the process, and keeps wrinkles out. Now I'm not that worried about the heavy-duty Workman's, so I usually just throw it in the dryer for a little while, not enough to dry it completely, and then spread it out for the rest of the process. The heavier material makes it nearly impossible to hang when it's soaked, cause it gets HEAVY.

As far as care goes, I also find that these things are built to last. I was more than a little turned off when I first saw the price tags, but you really do pay for quality and durability. I would've spent more on pants that wear out too easily in the time I've had my kilts, were I still living a shackled life, and I know folks who have spent years in one kilt with no complaints. I think it's a no-brainer.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Olive, Oh Love...

As promised, here are some shots of the newest addition to my collection, the olive Original Utilikilt.

The color is much richer than I'd expected, a very deep, almost forest green, which can be elegant but still retain its character. Like a delicious glass of wine, no? Aged to perfection in the Utilikilts warehouse, this beautiful garment has been blah blah blah AWESOME. Got some good shots of the pleats in here, that fresh-off-the-factory crispness that makes for a nice looking kilt. They do tend to soften after awhile, but we're talking months and months of wear and tear - especially if you wear them every day, like me, but properly kept they can keep this nice, sharp look (like my Mocker, if you haven't seen it in action yet.)

I also wanted to experiment with sizing, because my 34" waist I typically order (all of the kilts before this one) is a bit loose - but COMFORTABLY so. I went a size down with this one at 33" (still kept the 23" length) and it definitely sits higher, the top just below my navel. It makes it feel shorter, which is actually kind of nice - I might consider going down to a 21.5" length on the next one - but it also wears more noticeably on my hip bones. I wouldn't want to load the pockets with much, else it'd be a bit uncomfortable. Either way it's nice to have options and to notice how different the ride can be with a simple alteration in sizing - and only an inch, at that! I worked with Utilikilts at a fair earlier this year, and almost every time we got the bifurcated blokes' actual waist measurements, a size up from that did the job, so if you're in the market for one of these, keep in mind that you're going to need some room to breathe (unless you like a tighter fit, like this one.) Also gives some "pinching room" in the backseat, extra fabric to stretch about when you're sitting or being active and whatnot.

And I love the black embroidered logo above the back pocket - it's white on my black Original, for obvious reasons, but I like the subtle, stylish element this lends to the whole package. Oh, and speaking of packages, everything still breathes just fine in this kilt - try getting a smaller size of trousers without the choke factor! (Actually, just take my word for it and don't.)

I've been wearing it for a whole day, and already I've got a handful of compliments and weird glances. Apparently this look is popular in Germany (maybe the military-grade green?), because a girl stopped me earlier who had been to Germany and enlightened me that I'd fit right in. Anyway, to wrap things up, this was a good lesson in sizing, and it makes me want to reiterate the importance of actually trying one on, if you're planning on freeing yourself anytime soon. It's one thing to take your measurements with a tape in front of a computer screen, but to really get the full effect and know for certain what's your style, either look for a retailer in your area, visit UKHQ on your next vacation, or check out different Renaissance fairs and other conferences for a vendor.

Hope you've enjoyed the pictures as much as I've enjoyed wearing it today - now I'm off to fetch some groceries and enjoy the reactions of some townsfolk!

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Deep in the Heeaaart of Texas!

It's one wonderful thing to return home after weeks of being gone, but it's even better when you have a beautiful new kilt waiting for you to arrive! Soon as I get a few free minutes (probably tomorrow,) I'll get some pictures up. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Every Vacation Needs a Breakdown

So I mentioned the Prius briefly before, and it's a fantastic vehicle: been getting about 43 miles to the gallon on this trip, which has saved a bundle. The problem with vehicles, though, is that you still have to put gas in them - yes, even in hybrids - as we learned when we ran out of gas about 79 miles east of Pensacola. Luckily we've got AAA, so after their guy gave us a couple gallons we were able to make it to a gas station. Of course, it was still sweltering hot, and of course, I was still in my breezy kilt, which is a good combination, so overall it's just another experience to mark off the list.

I'm in Mississippi now, crashing with family for the night, and I'll be back in Lone Star sometime tomorrow - home sweet home, finally some dry heat instead of this humid, muggy stuff!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Shopping in Savannah

Here I am chilling in one of the very many shops in downtown Savannah, GA today. If you're not familiar with the city, it's an absolute tourist trap, but it's still one of the most beautiful cities I've ever been to. It's been hot as balls here lately (not mine, of course) but being from Texas that's not a big deal for me: in Georgia, it's the humidity that really gets to you. I wouldn't dare set foot outside in a pair of pants. Or anywhere, for that matter... Anyway, I'm in my Survival here, and I suppose this shot is a good demonstration of how the pleats fall in the front when sitting down, keeping everything out of the public eye.

I'll be headed back to Texas tomorrow morning, but I won't get in until Wednesday as I'm staying with some Mississippian relatives tomorrow night. I've heard it's hot as ever back home, but I'm more than willing to put up with the dry heat. Plus it's north Texas, so for all I know it could be hailing, blistering, tornadoing, puring rain, or snowing (don't believe me? Check out your national news records of the devastating blizzard we had last year that caught most of Oklahoma and surrounding areas.) Hopefully I'll get to snap some photos on my way back, so keep in touch ;)

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Getting Acquainted With the Crew

As long as I've got the pictures handy, I figure I'll go ahead and share a good mix of my older photos as well as some of the new. This is also a good opportunity to officially introduce you to my kilts.

I do have something of an artsy side, and I love a good hike in the woods (whenever I can find any woods, that is: north Texas isn't exactly notorious for towering trees.) This one's from a short trip I took to Fort Richardson in Jacksboro, TX - if you're a camping kind of man, this is a pretty nice place to stay. Good for the family, too: Civil War reenactments during certain seasons, plenty of wonderful hiking trails, decent camp sites, and a great deal of wildlife. I saw a fawn (that's what you call a baby deer, right?) nuzzled under a bush on one trail I took this trip, but unfortunately wasn't able to get a good photo. Of course, I captured the most unusual thing to see in a north TX state park, which would be my kilt. I don't exactly see them roaming around, grazing in the fields or anything.
The kilt featured above - and in many of my photos, as you've probably noticed (it's the black one) - is called the Original Utilikilt, a very simple but functional design. Two serious cargo pockets on either side and one interior rear pocket provide plenty of space for the junk I need to carry around with me, but it remains a lightweight and VERY breathable garment, perfect for everyday wear and casual occasions.

What I should have been wearing in the great outdoors was this fine piece of craftsmanship: the Survival Utilikilt. Even without the archery equipment, this is a kilt that reeks of badassery: two double-pocketed, removable cargo attachments to either side; deep, interior front pockets; two pouch pockets in the rear; water-repellent material; also fairly lightweight, and equipped with a caribiner-hook for whatever needs to hang (you know, besides what's under the kilt.) Perfect for the outdoorsy type.

Next on the list is my Workman's, a kilt modeled after Carhartts designed to take the beating of truly manly activities like construction work, welding, technician stuff, etc. As Jethro Tull might say, this thing is thick as a brick and just as durable - I've put it through a few months at Habitat for Humanity builds, paint stains to prove it. In fact, the build site featured here is a Habitat location, and here's why the Workman's is the kilt for the job:

It is designed to minimize risk of accident and maximize productivity. Note the built-in, adjustable hammer loop (and, not pictured, tape-measure loop on the opposite side) fashioned to keep tools safely secured in the handiest of locations, the lengths of which are adjustable. The studs you see (apart from the one wearing the kilt, of course,) dotting the external cargo pocket are constructed likewise to hold miscellaneous items in place: they served well to secure my pencil between markings and cuts, in this day’s example. On the opposite hip hangs a clip for any number of extra necessities, in my case car keys that would otherwise have obstructed precious pocket space. Speaking of pockets, such burdensome necessities as those pesky nail aprons are a thing of the past; the bulge you see in the visible pocket (don’t get too excited, now,) is comprised of galvanized nails, readily accessed at a moment’s notice. Perhaps a bit more obvious is the built-in AC, activated with a simple swing of the hips or a stiff breeze – the latter of which some would normally consider to be a problem if the kilt-wearer, true to regulatory fashion, were in easily-offendable company, but even then safeguards are built in. Were I, for example, atop the scaffolding and in danger of surprising onlookers from below, the Utilikilts modesty system would have leapt into action with a simple series of buttons to conceal the potentially disorienting view (the Survival is equipped with a similar system.)

Finally, we have one of the more chic Utilikilts available today, and that is the Mocker. Usually I save this one for special occasions, like the obviously-cropped event featured here (forgive me: identities must be protected.) Instead of the bulky cargos, this streamlined beauty has those deep, interior pockets, both front and rear, and really makes an outfit look nice when properly matched. Still, that won't stop me from wearing it casually on laundry day or when I just want the sheer material without cargo pockets. Great for lounging and just taking it easy, if that's your thing.

That about wraps it up for introductions, and you can bet on getting more acquainted with the crew as the blog rolls on. In fact, a new family member should be joining us within the next few weeks - an olive-colored Original, hopefully en route from the UK HQ in Seattle, Washington soon! This is probably a good time to let my readers know that, if at any time you feel inclined to drop a comment or leave me a lil' sum'm sum'm, you're welcome to do so - TASTEFULLY, please. Or at least without being too terribly mean to me. I'm really nothing but a big, soft teddy bear. In a badass kilt.

Travels, Pt. 2

Interestingly enough, I'm beginning this blog a little over 1100 miles away from what I call home, but I suppose that's appropriate considering the ample opportunity to put the kilts to the test. If I haven't iterated the functionality of the garment enough, take, for instance, a simple trip to the beach:

For me, the sand and sun provides a chance to be truly utilitarian. As most
beach access areas are designed, I'll park my car and take the boardwalk to the sand, but instead of worrying over changing into my swim trunks before making the trek, I have them rolled up in my spacious cargo pocket ready at a moment's notice. Once I scope out a decent area to settle, changing my wardrobe in the public eye is as easy as unrolling my trunks, slipping them on under the kilt, unsnapping the latter and dropping it to the ground. Since it's a complete wrap-around, I can open the kilt to its maximum length and even use it in lieu of a beach towel to claim my spot on the sand. After I've had my fun in the waves, I return to land and air dry a bit before wrapping the kilt back around my waist and stealthily dropping the trunks - again, all without the need of a private, enclosed area to change.

I would say that, in more urban areas, I'm not as concerned about functionality so much as what my getup says about my character, but no matter my inclination, the kilt remains functional. Inherent usefulness aside, sometimes I do just like to give folks something to look at while they're on vacation, and I like to think I do a pretty good job.

In the case of this photo showing my Workman's model Utilikilt, the weather had more than a few folks sweating and shifting their weight uncomfortably from one foot to another, but I was chilling with my built-in air-conditioning and enjoying the sights of the city.

If you haven't guessed by the brick sidewalk and timely metalwork I'm clinging to, this next shot might alert a few seasoned travelers that I'm in Savannah, GA. The hotel featured here is called The Mansion, and the high-class facility definitely lives up to the name. I and the bifurcated fellow I'll admit to being related to got to dine on a very gourmet brunch inside the impressive hotel. Couldn't resist the typical tourist-style shot in front of the building.

I'll share another of my favorites before calling it quits on this post, and that, dear readers, is the mighty Mississippi. If you've never seen the river before, it is certainly a marvel worth your attention - even more so if you're able to feel the breeze rising up from the water; very refreshing when pants aren't in the way to interrupt. In this particular shot, I'm actually in the state with the same name, and I wager I'll be visiting again soon before too long (maybe on my way back home in a few days?)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Travelling Salesman

Here's my pitch:

Probably my favorite thing to do in a kilt is travel. My family is the type to take those special road trips designed to cram four close relatives into a sardine can with a metric ton of baggage blocking the rear view mirror. Who doesn't like those kinds of vacations? At any rate, one thing I absolutely DO NOT enjoy is being cooped up in the mobile box of steel with a pair of trousers on: assuredly what comes to mind for my male readers is the awkward bunching up of fabric and warmth in our nether regions, accompanied by the all-too-frequent but necessary picking at said area to free up some space and comfort - usually at the dismay of any other passengers unfortunate enough to glance in the poor fellow's direction.

Why do that to yourself?

Gentlemen, in a kilt, the days of awkward readjustments you only think you're addressing with the skill and stealth of a ninja (trust me - everyone notices) are gone. Think, if you will, how liberating it must be to sit comfortably in your Hummer, Ford F350, suped-up Titan, or, in my case, hybrid Prius (what? It gets killer mileage) for hours without having to adjust yourself beyond shifting in the seat to relax that oh-so-satisfied rear end. If that's not enough, you can enjoy a full range of motion without the normal restrictions of pant legs to drag you down, a very desirable ability on those long stretches of highway. (And if it ever gets a bit toasty, just lift a pleat to the AC vent and chill out.)

I certainly enjoyed it - more than the usual, bifurcated journey, anyhow. It at least makes "I spy" and "20 Questions" more bearable.

Saturday, May 29, 2010


You've probably heard the phrase "to the hilt," meaning to the fullest extent - as if to plunge a blade to its hilt when it can plunge no further - and perhaps even "living to the hilt" by holding nothing back in experiencing your life, a philosophy essentially synonymous with carpe diem.

For me, seizing the day means going further than the average man and taking that giant leap toward true freedom: the kilt.

As far as I'm concerned, a man has not truly lived until he has lived in a kilt, and to show just how satisfied I've been since burning my trousers, I'm making the commitment to a regular blog (which will be quite an accomplishment for me: I can sometimes be lax when it comes to deadlines, but I figure that this ain't no trivial matter - this is passion.)

And so begin the chronicles of how I am Living to the Kilt.