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SPRING & SUMMER 2011 • ISSUE 8


BOSS Black

BOSS 0371/S

HUGO BOSS FASHIONS INC. Phone +1 212 940 0600 www.hugoboss.com


Hey, I put some new shoes on, And suddenly everything is right, I said, hey, I put some new shoes on and everybody's smiling, It's so inviting, Oh, short on money, But long on time, Slowly strolling in the sweet sunshine, And I'm running late, And I don't need an excuse, 'cause I'm wearing my brand new shoes. Paolo Nutini. "New Shoes"

Sometimes putting on some new clothes just feels good. Now, we'll admit that is a self serving statement, but we do believe it. We will cop to the fact that even though our combined vertical leap is now no higher than the width of a pant cuff, we feel we can fly like Michael Jordan when we show up on the basketball court wearing some new kicks. The same applies to your clothes. We all know the feeling of walking into a meeting or a party knowing that you look good and are dressed perfectly for the occasion. You have to relish the simple pleasures, and that one is relatively easy to come by. No, we are not going to guarantee that you are going to show up in the Sunday style pages, but even better, you'll have the quiet confidence of knowing that you are hitting the mark. You will be surprised how many people (and which ones!) notice a well-dressed man. We have noticed – and please do not take this the wrong way – that many of our friends are starting to fall into the “haves” and “have nots” in regard to their wardrobes. Some are making an effort to look great, and others are...well, making a lot of excuses. The most common reason we hear for not buying new clothes is, “I’m losing weight, and this will not fit when I drop 15.” It is true that many workplaces have become very casual, but that should not be an excuse for sloppy. In many ways, casual has lowered the bar, so your ability to be the best dressed guy in the room is actually much easier. Like the Scottish songwriter Paolo Nutini (yes, he really is Scottish) says above, sometimes all it takes is some new shoes. For those of you who favor tailored clothing, we hope that you have noticed the fairly dramatic narrowing of silhouettes, lapels and trouser widths. If you are buying narrow suits, please try to accompany this with narrow shirts as well. If you are still wearing your three button suits, your double pleated pants and your wide lapels, it is probably time to cut out the coupon in this magazine and pay us a visit. While you’re here, check out a few of our summer favorites, like the reversible shorts from Tailor Vintage or the super lightweight gingham Hugo Boss sportcoat in blue, gray or navy. If a formal event or a wedding is in the works, make sure you visit the Union Square vault for what we believe is the best selection in NYC. We want to emphasize that our goal is to do everything possible to make your shopping experience efficient, rewarding and fun. You can get just about anything online, but we are obviously believers in face-to-face service and expertise. If you are having trouble getting to the stores, please shoot us an email and we will try to arrange for our staff to come find you. If you have a group from your office and you want to put together a special evening in the store, please let us know as well. The “refreshments” are on us. As for this issue of Rothman’s Magazine, this is number 8 for us, or as us pretend publishers like to say.... VIII. Once again, it has not been a problem to find fascinating people with great stories to tell from our client list. We are thrilled with this roster, which includes our old friend from home, ESPN college basketball guru Andy Katz, as well as best-selling author Kostya Kennedy. Kostya’s new book about Joe DiMaggio is a must for baseball fans. Of course, there is some business advice and some informative fashion pieces, as well a woman’s perspective on “what not to wear” from Huffington Post columnist Debra Goldstein. We do hope you enjoy the read, but most importantly, it gives us another opportunity to thank you for your business. We truly appreciate the tremendous feedback we received from the last issue, particularly to the speech we included by the store’s founder, our grandfather, Harry Rothman. It was heartwarming to see that his thoughtful words touched so many of you. If you did not happen to read his acceptance speech for a charity award in 1962, we promise it is worth tracking down on our blog www.rothmansny.com/blog or on our “Rothman’s” Facebook page. Once again, we thank you for your support, friendship and business. Keep your eyes open for some exciting news from us in the near future. Jim and Ken Giddon jim@rothmansny.com ken@rothmansny.com

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MADE IN USA


issue 8

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ON THE COVER: The Rothman’s Man Illustrated by Douglas Fraser

1

Welcome

8

Interview with Andy Katz

10 Joe DiMaggio Harry Rothman’s Clothing Store. 70 Bleecker St. NYC 5/14/39

12 Licensing 14 We Notice 18 Interview with Robert Levin 24 Rothman’s VIP Coupon 26 When Hairy Met Sally 30 The Empire Strikes Back

Todd Tufts • Editor in Chief, Publisher

36 The Dog Jog

Leslie C. Smith • Editorial Director

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Vence Vida • Production Manager

40 Waste Not Time, Want Not Time

Rothman’s Magazine is published by Tufts Communications, 1201 E. 5th Street, Suite 1009 • Anderson, IN 46012 T: 765-608-3081 • E: todd@tuftscom.com

42 Put a Cork In It

© 2011, Tufts Communications. All rights reserved.

48 Peter Pan Syndrome

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coppley.com


sports talk

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Andy Katz

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ESPN College Basketball Guru

Andy Katz of ESPN is a loyal Rothman’s customer and is widely regarded as the top college basketball analyst in the country. However, I know Andy as my good friend growing up in Newton, Massachusetts. I remember he was the best basketball player on our 5th grade team (which incidentally was coached by my brother Ken), and that was probably the peak of his athletic career. Even at that age, Andy had an astute eye for talent, and realized that his future in basketball was not on the court, but in the emerging business they called “cable television.” Andy started by broadcasting his local high school games, and is now the face of college basketball on ESPN. With a great NCAA tournament wrapped up, I persuaded Andy to sit down for a few questions. –Jim Giddon

JG- You were invited to play basketball with President Obama on election night. What kind of experience was that, and can he actually play? Then Senator Obama invited me to participate in his election day basketball game when I interviewed him just a few weeks shy of the election in 2008. I was one of 28 players on the court that day at Attack Athletics, an NBA-training facility on Chicago’s West Side. I had been there many times to cover training events and the NBA holds its draft camp there every May, which we televise on ESPNU. So I was quite familiar with the facility. But it was still surreal to be there on election day. I was actually the first one to arrive after flying in from Hartford to Chicago for the day. A number of people started to filter in throughout the afternoon from politicians to those with Chicago ties to the campaign to former players in the area. It was quite a crew. The games were competitive. I only guarded Obama on a fast-break play, leaving to help. He scored. No one was about to foul him. He is a lefty, can handle the ball well, and has a decent shot. The most amazing part of the night was that Obama never seemed fazed that he was about to win the election. No one was bothering him about Indiana results – one of the first states to report – or any other updates. I asked him if he was anxious at all and he simply said that there was nothing more he could do. A few hours after the game, he was elected president. 8

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JG- Are there geographic differences in the high school talent pool. Not only is one area stronger than another, but are there legitimate stereotypes that apply, like is NYC a breeding ground for point guards? There are trends in certain parts of the country and it’s hard to argue against New York City being a breeding ground for point guards. North Carolina had a pipeline at one point under Dean Smith and then there has been a run of New Yorkarea point guards that have stayed in the Big East, too. Kemba Walker is certainly the latest New York-area point (he’s from the Bronx) to star not just locally but nationally. Finding size is a chore no matter the area of the country. JG- What is more important as a college basketball hoops coach, being a great recruiter, or being a great game coach and motivator? I would go with the latter. Recruiting is a skill, but a given school can recruit itself. Having strong assistants to ferret out the talent and then a head coach to close the deal is imperative. Of course, game coaching and motivating will ultimately take a team to an elite level.

JG - If your son was a high school senior basketball star this year, and he could play anywhere next year, what would be your dream school for him. That’s a tough call. I can’t choose a favorite school or coach. But I would say I’d want him to be around a winning program that treats its players like adults, but at the same time doesn’t enable them much. I wouldn’t want the rest of the school to be lip service. I would want him to be enmeshed in the entire college experience and not singled out just because of his skill set. JG- Explain something to me. How is former NBA and UNC star Brad Daugherty a NASCAR analyst for ESPN? You can't fool me, there is not a chance that guy has ever been able to fit in a race car. I can’t tell you if he’s been in a race car but Daugherty is well-versed in auto racing. I worked with Brad quite a bit when he was with us at ESPN doing college basketball. He’s genuine and has a great heart. He has a genuine passion for auto racing.


JG- You know these high school stars long before we have ever heard of them. Can you give me your top 5 freshman for next year along with their school? Kentucky’s freshmen class should be stellar with Michael Gilchrist and Anthony Davis leading the Wildcats. But it will be hard to top what Austin Rivers will do for Duke. The Blue Devils will hand him the basketball early and he’ll have a lot to say as to whether or not the Blue Devils compete with North Carolina for the ACC title. I’m also looking forward to seeing the impact Bradley Beal has at Florida and Ben McLemore at Kansas, two players that will get a lot of playing time early and often. JG- What are the top 3 basketball movies of all time? Of course this is my personal list but I would go with: Hoosiers, The Fish that Saved Pittsburgh and He Got Game. It’s not a great list. JG- In your opinion, who becomes a better pro player, Jimmer Fredette or Kemba Walker? Once again a tough call. Fredette will be a specialist and a game changer off the bench with his ability to score quickly. But Walker might be able to affect the game more directly with the ball in his hands. The NBA has shifted to being more of a point-guard league and that bodes well for Walker.

JG- Let's go local. Is St Johns a legitimate powerhouse or are they just a product of local media hype. Steve Lavin and his staff have done a tremendous job of making the Red Storm relevant. He got the Garden going again this season and with a senior-laden team that meant St. John’s had to recruit well. He did, and the Red Storm should be a factor in the Big East for years to come, although they will be extremely young next season. JG-People talk about Butler University becoming another Duke, with years of great teams ahead of them. Does it work that way? Butler won’t be Duke. It never will be Duke. But Butler can be a regular NCAA tournament team – which it has been to some extent – and a threat to go deep in the NCAAs. Of course, the Bulldogs will have to find players that develop into pros to keep that up like they did with Gordon Hayward and Shelvin Mack. It’s possible now. Brad Stevens can be a Mike Krzyzewski-like coach if he continues on his current trajectory. JG- If you had one guy in basketball history to shoot a 3 pointer to save your life....? I might go with Reggie Miller in his prime. Of course Larry Bird is the natural choice. But if I can’t get Bird, I’d go Miller next.

JG- We know Bruce Pearl of Tennessee was let go recently for among other things, recruiting violations, but we think he should have been fired for wearing orange suits. Any thoughts on coaches attire? Who is the best, and who wins the Jerry Tarkanian most disheveled award? Jay Wright probably should shop with you guys. He has great style and wears his suits well. I have a good relationship with Bob Huggins so I can send him a zinger or two. Huggs wears the windbreaker well and his mustard-colored suit he once wore at West Virginia might be the ugliest suit I’ve seen. JG- Is Bobby Knight just as scary in person? Not at all. Knight has blossomed in his role with us at ESPN. He has added quite a bit of Hall of Fame analytical work. He has mellowed since his coaching tenure at Indiana. He’s approachable and engaging. You don’t have to fear him. JG- You sent Gonzaga Coach Mark Few in to shop at Rothman’s. He told us that you have the most access of anyone in the game. Could you call Coach K right now to impress us? I could, but I wouldn’t unless I had a reason for a story. I think it’s more impressive that I can call you to order a custom shirt!

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Kostya Kennedy is our friend and the author of the recently released 56–Joe DiMaggio and the Last Magic Number in Sports. While this may be Kostya’s first trip to the “New York Times Best Sellers List” you might know him as senior editor at Sports Illustrated. Kostya sat down with us for a quick chat. –Ken Giddon

KG: What appealed to you about writing this book? The layers to this story, all that kept revealing itself as I dug into the reporting and saw the narrative taking shape. There’s the rich baseball material of course -- there has never been an event like this in the game, and a marvelous sense of drama attended it. But attached to that was also the environment of the time, the fragility of the country, with the Depression just behind us, and with our entrance into the war inevitable. People who lived through the summer of 1941 called it the “last free summer,” and that gave me a start on understanding some of the parallel stories that unfold as the streak captivated people—men, women, kids and grandfolks—all over the country. Maybe most compelling was the exploration of DiMaggio himself. I’d known about him, of course, but he really emerged in a new light. He’s 26 years old and extravagantly uneducated. He was a complicated figure, even then. That was clear in his relationships, with his family and with teammates like Phil Rizzuto and Lefty Gomez, and maybe most of all with his wife, Dorothy Arnold. She was a movie starlet who had given up her acting career to be with him, to be “Mrs. DiMaggio” and now he was ascending in a way that she once thought she might. Rich stuff. To see DiMaggio at that defining time for him, as he was transformed from a baseball player into an American icon, to see the toll that the streak took upon him and all of that in context of what was also a defining time in the country gave a great context to an astounding baseball achievement.

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KG- Sorry for the obvious question, but do you think the 56-game hitting streak will ever be broken, and if so, is there anybody playing now that has the skills to get it done?

KG- As a sportswriter, are you worried about the impact of Twitter, as athletes go "direct" to their fan base?

One reason to say it won’t be broken is that no one has come close. In the 70 years since DiMaggio set his record only one player has even gotten to 40 games. That was Pete Rose, who got to 44 and who commanded a chapter in the book. When you break it down in terms of probability theory it appears very, very unlikely that anyone will break it. Among established players of today the obvious candidate is Ichiro. Just because he gets so many hits, has good speed and bats at the top of the lineup -- all key ingredients for having a long streak.

KG- What is the most memorable event that you ever personally covered? Your favorite interview?

No.

The most memorable event was the night Cal Ripken Jr. tied Lou Gehrig’s record of 2,130 straight games played. I was there the next night when he broke it, too, but I found the tying night even more powerful. It was surprising, I didn’t think it would much of an event; all you’re doing is watching a guy play 4 1/2 innings . . . But the response from the crowd, and from the players on both teams really lifted things. It was clearly an event that reached beyond the game and lingered. In some ways being there that night was the first seed to writing 56.

KG- I was blown away by some of the behind the scenes stories of the streak. In particular, I liked St Louis pitcher Bob Muncrief refusing his manager's order at the mound to walk DiMaggio in his last at-bat when the streak stood at 36 games. How did you find all these details from 1941? I spoke to many people and there was a good deal of time spent in little, windowless rooms poring over old material. In the case you’re talking about, the generalities of the Muncrief incident were known, but I was able to enrich it with detail partly because I tracked down and spoke with his son, who was well versed in what happened with his Dad that night. DiMaggio’s streak touched many lives and those who were involved with it, even tangentially, or who played against DiMaggio that summer, usually passed down their stories. KG- Ted Williams or Joe DiMaggio? If I wanted to win a hitting competition, I’d pick Williams, no question. If I wanted to win a game, I’d pick DiMaggio. KG- Whenever I read a book about athletes from the 40's, 50's and 60's, I am always surprised by all the cigarette smoking. Thoughts? You could have fielded an all-star team called the Black Lungs. People smoked too much everywhere in society, not just on the ball field, but few people smoked more than DiMaggio smoked during his streak. KG- What do you think about baseball's new concussion rule, whereby a player has to sit 7 days if diagnosed with a concussion? Seems it might be easy to manipulate since a concussion is often an imprecise diagnosis.

Maybe, but ultimately the rule is designed to protect players who have had concussions. And we know so little about concussions that any precaution is a good precaution. KG- You did a lot research. Can you give us your all-time Yankee 9 by position? I went with three OF because you have to have both DiMaggio and Mantle on this team. SP-Whitey Ford, RP-Mariano Rivera, C-Yogi Berra, 1B-Lou Gehrig, 2B Tony Lazzeri (Robinson Cano is on his way), SSDerek Jeter, 3B-Graig Nettles, OF-Babe Ruth, OF-Joe DiMaggio, OF-Mickey Mantle KG- You have written quite a bit about hockey. Is New York a hockey town? The Rangers always seem to be forgotten. Ranger fans are the most loyal and knowledgeable fans in New York. They are fewer in number but deeper in heart. And they curse in the most spectacular and creative ways. KG- What is with "Kostya"? My given name is Constantine—same as my grandfather’s. Kostya is a Russian derivative, though my family has no Russian blood. My mother is a novelist and she loved the Russian writers. Kostya is a prominent figure in Anna Karenina and the Seagull.

My most memorable interview was probably with Marty McSorley, the former NHL tough guy. It was after he had been suspended for a year for hitting Donald Brashear with his stick. There were a lot of tangents to the story. We spent a couple of days together and in that time I got a look not only inside of this man, but also inside the mechanisms of the NHL. KG- In "The Boys of Summer", the amazing book about the Brooklyn Dodgers, Roger Kahn wrote a line that I know from memory "Yes it is fiercely difficult for the athlete to grow old, but to age with dignity and with courage cuts close to what it is to be a man." Is it tougher for men like DiMaggio to grow old, or is it just like the rest of us? That's probably my favorite sports book. One of the thrills after writing 56 was that Roger Kahn read the book and responded so well and strongly to it. A real treat. It isn't necessarily harder for an athlete, or in this case for DiMaggio, to grow old. Certainly he never had to endure feelings of being a hasbeen. As DiMaggio aged and spent the last three decades of his life as "The Greatest Living Ballplayer" he only became more r e g a l - s e e m i n g. And that suited him fine. Yes it's hard for an athlete to lose his skills with age, but growing old is a gift if we are lucky enough to get it. Author, Kostya Kennedy


business

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Licensing Licensing can take regular products and make them great Editor’s Note: We are thrilled when our customers make lots of money, and we hope that they use some of that loot to freshen up the wardrobe. Licensing has always been a great revenue producer for multinational companies, but also, for surprisingly small independent businesses. We asked our friend, loyal customer, and licensing guru, Stu Seltzer, to give us a bit of a primer on the business. Remember, ten percent of your new found licensing revenue goes toward improving your wardrobe.

So if you are thinking of going down this route, you need to know your basics. The Royalty Rate (a percentage of wholesale revenue paid from the manufacturer to the brand owner); The Guaranteed Minimum Royalty Payment (the amount of royalty that the manufacturer guarantees to pay you over the term); and The Advertising Commitment (the amount promised to be expended to market the product).

A few more thoughts: Most readers know that when they pull on a Yankee hat, the Yankees do not own a hat manufacturing company. They also know that Tony Hawk does not create his video games, or that Warner Bros. doesn’t manufacture Batman action figures. So these brand owners have embraced “licensing” as a way to extend their valuable trademarks to boost their revenue, brand awareness, and create more touch points with their consumers and fans. It has been proven that when customers love your brand, they want to buy more products with that trademark. Just like when you buy that BOSS suit at Rothman’s, it motivates you to buy the BOSS shirt, BOSS tie, BOSS eyewear and BOSS underwear. If you own a brand, there may be untapped value in “licensing-out” your brand. This applies to global brands and small boutique brands in all industries. Sometimes, the brand develops into a lucrative licensing situation without having been planned. Gerry Cosby, the well-known Manhattan, single store sports retailer now sells licensed sportswear in Japan. “Licensing-In” is a way for a manufacturer to increase sales. Star Wars action figures and the George Foreman Grill are examples where the manufacturer saw a brand that could be extended to other products. You see more of this example with brands like Harley Davidson, Samsonite, and Sharper Image. While licensing is a huge part of sports, fashion, and entertainment brands, it also extends to every other business sector for revenue and inventory risk management. Licensing can also take regular products and make them great. The Simmons Mattress Company made a deal with Westin Hotels to create the Westin Heavenly Bed; a win-win for both companies with already strong brand names. The Weather Channel joined forces with clock maker, Lacrosse Technologies, to create a clock that also displayed the outdoor temperature. FTD Flowers partnered with wedding dress designer, Vera Wang, to create the Vera Wang flower arrangement, which boosted the stock price 8%, upon the deal’s announcement. (I know the aforementioned deals because I put them together). 12

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STRATEGIZE: Create a licensing strategic plan – including the determination of licensing goals, financial expectations, and brand fit criteria. DUE DILIGENCE: Your brand cannot afford a marketplace faux pas nor do you want to deal with disreputable partners. Always perform the research and reference checks and site visits you would apply to any of your other business transactions. Know what you are seeking when you perform the due diligence! ENGAGE AN EXPERT: Not every brand, nor product, can benefit from licensing; an expert can assess your marketplace potential and worthiness. Inexperienced licensors and licensees can a make deal, but may suffer unfavorable contractual terms or archaic contractual provisions; So there is your intro to licensing. Perhaps it will make you more aware of licensed products that you purchased, or perhaps it will inspire you to unlock some value in your own business.

Stu Seltzer is president of the Seltzer Licensing Group where he crafts licensing partnerships for clients such as Breyers, Suave , Pioneer Electronics and Safeway supermarkets. Stu cut his cloth in prior roles, on both sides of licensing transactions, first with Yves Saint Laurent and later with Warner Bros.’ DC Comics. Stu is also an Adjunct Professor at New York University.


womanly advice

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Jim and I can give you a lot of advice about fashion. What we cannot give you is a woman’s perspective. With that in mind, we asked one of our favorite writers, Debra Goldstein, to offer a few pointers on making your clothes a bit more appealing to the opposite sex. –Ken Giddon

we notice Dear Gentlemen, I’m going to give you a page out of the universal female handbook. This is key information, so please pay attention. We know you want us to find you dashing, sexy, powerful, handsome, and the like–and we do. But oh if only you knew how quickly you can undermine that with the wrong apparel choices. Two words for you when it comes to what you wear: we notice. So from our fashion-loving hearts to yours, here’s a quick cheat-sheet of items that need to be purged from your closet immediately (read: today) if you want to wow us the way we know you can: 1. Mock turtlenecks. Steve Jobs pulls these off because, well, he’s Steve Jobs. No one’s digging him for his sartorial sense. If you invent the next wave of technological genius, then by all means wear whatever you like. But until then, off to Goodwill with these. 2. Black rayon shirts. Or any rayon, drapey shirts, for that matter. Yes, I know, those and a liberal spritz of Drakkar Noir worked like a charm for you in 1986, but that’s the same year David Hasselhoff parked his talking car KITT for the last time, and you should be doing the same with these items.

3. Galoshes. Oh my goodness, I hardly know what to say about these. I’m not speaking about rain boots. No, I’m talking about those old-man rubber booties that slide on over your shoes. I didn’t think anyone had worn these since my grandfather took me to see the Pirates of Penzance on Broadway when I was ten years-old. But lo and behold, I ran into an ex-boyfriend recently on a rainy day and he was sporting them. I use the word “sporting” there loosely, by the way, because there was nothing remotely sporty about them. They were just depressing. So unless you’re truly 90 years-old, get yourself a pair of decent inclement weather shoes and

resist the temptation to purchase any sort of footwear at an umbrella/shoeshine shop at Port Authority. 4. Rapper sneakers. Unless you’ve honestly got the street cred you think you do and/or a double platinum album, please restrict the number of colors on your sneakers to a maximum of two. (Just being an executive in the music industry, by the way, does not earn you said street cred). And for goodness sake, no color-coordinating your laces. An elegant pair of Stan Smiths, Nikes, Converse, Pumas, or the like will do just fine. 5. Any item of clothing or footwear purchased at Costco. I don’t want to see it, and I definitely don’t want to hear about how cheap it was. Ever. Your hamburger and jeans brand should never be one and the same. 6. Your fraternity sweatpants with the Greek letters down the leg. Really? You still have those? Let’s put it this way: how into me would you be if I showed up in a Champion sweatshirt with shoulder pads in it and tie-dyed leggings?

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7. Outdated suits. Now, I don’t profess to know the intricacies of what makes a suit current, but beyond appreciating that pleated pants went out back when Barry Bonds was still hitting home runs, I don’t need to. That’s what salespeople at good men’s clothing stores like Rothman’s are for. What I can tell you is that if your silhouette is out of style, I’ll notice. The experts in this area say you need to refresh your suits every two years or so, which sounds about right. 8. Any piece of jewelry that was given to you for your Bar Mitzvah. Nuff said. 9. Cheap and/or sensible shoes. Here’s the story about women and shoes: it’s the first place we look because it tells us everything we need to know about you. I cannot possibly overstate this. A man can be smart, successful, strong, witty and charming, but if his shoes look like they came from one of those stores in the mall that has the word “Walking” in its name, the sexy factor gets halved. If you do nothing else, find someone chic in your life who knows shoes and have him or her help you pick out a few good pairs. Buy the best ones you can afford.

10. While we’re talking accessories, no clipping your Blackberry to your belt in a holster. I don’t care how busy or important you are, unless you are the in-house IT guy at a large corporation, this is unacceptable. If you need proof, ask yourself how much action your in-house IT guy likely gets. 11. Banana hammocks. Do I really even need to go here? 12. Lastly, gentlemen…um, buy yourself some new skivvies every few years. If you want us to want to get into your pants, please make sure what’s under them is a happy sight. Most women I know, including yours truly, are partial to boxer-briefs, but pick whatever you like as long as they’re not the same ones your mom bought you when you were…well, who cares, any undergarments your mom bought you. That about covers it. Of course, every woman has her own personal tastes and desires, so if you want your lady to dig you even more than she already does, ask her to take you shopping. Trust me, that’ll work like a charm. Good luck!

Debra Goldstein is a New York City based freelance writer, Huffington Post blogger, and President of Thought Consolidators, a boutique creative communications firm specializing in solving short term branding, content and messaging needs. Deb can be reached at thoughtconsolidators@gmail.com.

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Roberto R ober to

                                  


business

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New York’s Chief Small Business Officer Founder of The New York Enterprise Report talks about what it takes to make it as an entrepreneur in NYC

“I really believe that all of us who live and work here in New York City are a little insane,” says Robert Levin, founder, publisher and editorin-chief of The New York Enterprise Report. Some would argue that anyone who starts an independent media company in the shadows of the world’s publishing giants is also insane. Levin would not argue back. However, he realized that privatelyowned, local businesses were not being directly served by mainstream media. “In any other city, everyone knows that small business makes it tic,” says Levin. “But in New York, we have Wall Street and Fortune 1000 companies that get the lion share of attention. Now, with The New York Enterprise Report, small to mid-size businesses have media property to call their own.”

Robert Levin

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just business In 2003, Levin founded the company by starting a website with the intention of providing how-to information and access to experts for business owners who were actively growing their companies. Today, The New York Enterprise Report produces a monthly magazine and events in addition to the website and reaches 90,000 readers while serving a whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s who of advertisers and sponsors. State of Small Business Not only does Levin produce content and events for and about business owners, heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a member of his own audience. This gives him unique and focused insight into the small business community, what itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s like to operate in New York, and how the state of small business has changed post-recession. â&#x20AC;&#x153;After the downturn of 2008, the fall of the Lehman Brothers, and the collapse of the financial system as whole, tri-state area business owners have been very resilient,â&#x20AC;? says Levin. In this â&#x20AC;&#x153;new normal,â&#x20AC;? heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s seen businesses going in one of two directions. Some businesses are not accepting that the economy has changed and the way people buy has fundamentally shifted. These businesses are having a tough time staying afloat. Businesses that continue to be successful recognize the shift and are taking action. They are 3f^]`bW\Ub]3[S`UW\U;O`YSba changing their products or services; they are changing the way they sell those products and services and changing how they price and package. In addition to the chalAPRIL 2011 N Y R E P O R T. C O M $6.95 VOL. 8, NO. 4 lenges presented by the tumultuous economy, Levin has seen the areaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s business owners struggle with governmental rules and regulations. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I find it interesting from a legal and regulation standpoint, how every politician talks about the How Bethenny Frankel importance of small business, pursued the insanity yet they keep passing laws that of reality television make it harder and harder to to create an empire do business here,â&#x20AC;? says Levin. >:CA(  â&#x20AC;&#x153;If entrepreneurs from other BVS areas of the country saw what 4WS`QSab we have to deal with here â&#x20AC;&#x201C; E][S\ costs, rules, regulations â&#x20AC;&#x201C; not to 3\b`S^`S\Sc`a mention the chaos of the City W\<SeG]`Y they would say we are crazy to start and run businesses here. All of that said, I think the City is trying to make things a little easier and the New York City Department of Small Business Services has done a pretty good job, especially considering they are a government agency.â&#x20AC;?

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While there are many stories of struggling entrepreneurs, Levin says one coolest parts of his job is having the opportunity to meet and interview a lot of entrepreneurs form the New York area. The New York Enterprise Reportâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first cover story was Norm Brodsky, legendary entrepreneur and columnist of Inc magazine. He is great example of how failure often leads to success. He went bankrupt in the late 1980s and he went on to build an even bigger business than he had. Another successful entrepreneur Levin interviewed was Danny Meyer, restaurateur and founder of Union Square Hospitality Group. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I think Danny has done two amazing things,â&#x20AC;? says Levin. â&#x20AC;&#x153;One, is heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s created an amazing string of successful restaurants where whether you are talking about a burger and fries at Shake Shack or one of the best prix fixe meals around at Gramercy Tavern, the reputation for quality and service is second to none. The other thing heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s done is create an amazing company culture. Danny was one of the first people I heard say â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;put your employees first, because if your employees are happy, you are going to have happy customers.â&#x20AC;&#x2122;â&#x20AC;?

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Founder and CEO Stephen McDonnell

According to Levin, most of the successful entrepreneurs heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s met have common traits. First, it takes a very diverse set of skills and attributes to start and run a successful business. Second. Entrepreneurs in any market need to be resilient; but that is even more important in the New York area. Third, you have to be very good at tuning out the noise and focusing. That doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mean audio noise, but rather the distractions surrounding you in your office, on the street, etc. Lastly, no matter what the job market is like, successful business owners have the ability to attract and retain top talent. That, says Levin, might be the toughest challenge of owning a business in New York. Looking at His Own Business As with any entrepreneur, Levin has experienced many ups and downs while growing NY Report. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m more optimistic now than ever,â&#x20AC;? said Levin. â&#x20AC;&#x153;A soft economy is a great time to expand and weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been working on a lot of projects. My team has created a great brand that gets stronger every day by helping entrepreneurs as well as the companies that sell to them. Because Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been reading the magazine for the last seven years, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m a little smarter.â&#x20AC;?

Rothmanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Magazine readers who want to get a complimentary subscription to The New York Enterprise Report can visit nyreport.com/subscribe. 22

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When Hairy Met Sally Summertime means a lot more skin exposure for both sexes. While this can be a fun and often very sexy thing (have you noticed how hard it is to get aroused by someone in a parka?), it can also doom any chance for romance if you don’t understand the importance of waxing, tweezing, creaming, razoring or lasering away unwanted hair. The formula has been pretty much drilled into women. They spend inordinate amounts of money at the aesthetician’s and even more time on their own in the bathroom, staring at various body parts in a magnifying mirror, depilatory implements in hand, ready to pounce on even the slightest stray hair. Guys are, however, learning. Men now make up an estimated 35% of laser and electrolysis patients, sales of all-over body shavers are off the charts and, especially during this time of year, you can always spot a few dudes haunting the drug-store beauty aisles, furtively searching for hair removal lotions. But are they doing the right thing in the right way? And is it enough – or too much? To find out, we take a small straw poll of women, aged 22 to 52, all coincidentally named Sally (well, not really – but none of them want even their first names used, for fear their men might recognize them) and ask what their biggest hirsute turn-ons and turn-offs are, as well as what advice they’d give guys who want to impress the opposite sex. Thirty-year-old Sally voices a common complaint: “Back hair is horrifying. I can’t even sit behind a man on the bus if he has hair creeping over his collar from the wrong direction. The only thing worse is excessively hairy wolfman hands.” She gives an Classic British Motorbikes are involuntary shudder.

Today’s Status Ride

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Is it time to bow down to a lighter, cleaner and trimmer spring/summer look?

Fifty-two-year-old Sally concurs on wooly man-oths: “Buttocks hair? Ewww! Back hair? Even worse.” As does 47-year-old Sally: “Both back and bum hair have me running for the hills.” Though the women all steer delicately clear of mentioning other regions south of the border, the latest manscaping craze for smoothly scraped chests has its supporters as well as its detractors, and their attitudes seem to vary with age. Sally-47, “can’t imagine gently caressing a stubbly chest, and one’s lips would get road rash. Nasty.” While 38year-old Sally doesn’t mind, “either way, so long as the guy doesn’t look like he’s wearing a hairy black T-shirt.” Sally30 says she “dated a chest shaver once, and while the thought of him actually doing it was a bit unsettling, I gotta say I liked the result better than the alternative.” Tw e n t y - t w o - y e a r- o l d Sally, perhaps because of her youth, leaves the most options open: “I’m not terribly picky when it comes to body hair. I try not to judge because it’s not like men choose to be hairy or not.” But even that comes with an added caveat: “The only kind of body hair I really dislike is when there is so much chest hair that it spills out over the collar of a man's shirt. That just makes my skin crawl.” Crawling skin, horrified shudders, thoughts of running for the hills… it’s apparent that rampant and errant body hair is not exactly popular with the opposite sex. But what about hair above the neckline?

Photo Courtesy of MILESTONE


& grooming

Sally-47 says her turn-ons include “lanky, lustrous, thick, long-ish hair, though wavy is good too. And well-kempt stubble is good on the right guy, very sexy.” A goatee? “Only if the guy is very good-looking – otherwise they can have a tendency to look like a goat. But that long thing Brad Pitt had on? Who knew even Brad Pitt could look so awful?” Sally-52 likes “nice hair that you can run your fingers through and hold onto in more, ahem, passionate moments.” She also likes clean hair that smells good and adds, quixotically, “hair that smells of sawdust is also nice.” Still, she continues, “I actually have developed a fondness for men with shaved heads. If their head is well-shaped and they are confident, it totally works. It’s a much better solution than the Friar Tuck tonsure.” Yet mention goatees and the currently in unshaven Dr. House look and she practically spits out the word: “Absurd. Goatees are absurd. And beard stubble is absurd – it’s not nice to kiss, it looks scruffy, and knowing it’s an intentional fashion statement takes away all appeal. Give me clean shaven any day.” Sally-30 doesn’t mind shaved heads and professes herself to be “all for beard stubble.” In fact, any kind of facial hair is fine with her, “as long as it’s not the lonely perv ’stache.” And (damning them with faint praise), “goatees can be excellent for covering unfortunate chins.”

“Personally I really like a little bit of scruff on the face,” says Sally-22. “If I had to label it, I guess I’d say ruggedness is the appeal.” None of them has a problem with the latest faux-hawk hairstyle, in which a slightly longer quiff of hair is shaped down the center of a man’s head, although Sally-47 says she prefers a guy to choose his own haircut rather than have fashion dictate it for him: “Look what happened with mullets in the 80s. Every guy started wearing one….” To a woman, however, they all find stray orifice hairs “disgusting – there’s no excuse for it,” in the words of Sally-52, even though the younger Sallys haven’t had any personal experience with this middle-aged situation. Sally-38 unfortunately has, and she puts it best: “Just think of how big a turn-off it would be for men if the situation were reversed and the woman you were out with had large, random strands of hair hanging down from her nose or off her ears. The thing that kills me is guys with this problem can’t be bothered to clip the hairs for themselves. They wait for their barber or stylist to do it. Well how often do you get your hair cut? Once a month? Every six weeks? Stray hairs like these can grow in very fast and very long in less than two weeks’ time. So do the bloody math, and then get into the bathroom with a good pair of clippers.” The same rule applies to older, beetling eyebrows, which can and should be regularly trimmed or plucked. As for unibrows, which can happen at any age, these too should have their dimensions shaped, either with tweezers every couple of weeks or every four to six weeks at a good waxer’s. As Sally-22 says, men can’t help their hormonally and genetically engineered hair growth. Yet, as the other Sallys maintain, guys don’t have to walk around looking like Chia Pets, either. Whether long married or still dating, a man who pays a certain amount of attention to his physical appearance is viewed as having respect both for himself and towards the woman he’s involved with. Women dig respect; and they really love eye candy. Put it together in one package and, well, that’s really sexy.

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Photo Courtesy of ALBERTO


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NEW YORK CITY I WHITE PLAINS I HARRISON I SCARSDALE I MT. KISCO I STAMFORD


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empire Classic British Motorbikes are Today’s Status Ride

Norton Manx Ever since the first pairing of two wheels and a seat, Man (and later Woman) has been fascinated by the concept. From the rickety “pedestrian curricle” of the 1810s, through to the rear-wheel chain drive “safety bicycle” of the 1890s, horseless transportation was viewed as a liberating experience, freeing people from the need to maintain or rent from an expensive stable, extending the distances they could travel, even changing the type of clothing they wore. The development of the internal combustion engine at the turn of the 20th Century inevitably led to manufacturers mounting motors on cycles. If riders had been thrilled by the more modest advances of the bike, they were now ecstatic. Imagine being able to fly down the road at 40, 70, 100 mph, the wind in your hair, bugs splattering against your face, a roaring, pulsating projectile between your legs. (Like horses and bikes before them, the Freudian implication of motorcycles has never been hard to discern.) 30

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Norton, Triumph, Brough, BSA – the classic names behind some of the past century’s most renowned motorbikes – share two distinctions: They all were bicycle brands in the beginning and they were all British.

The Brits would dominate motorcycle production before, during and after the two world wars before finally being displaced by their erstwhile enemy, the Japanese. Today, many decades later, enthusiasts are rediscovering vintage Brit bikes and, if they can’t afford the sometimes steep auction prices, are purchasing replicas that are almost like the real thing.

For your viewing – and perhaps buying – pleasure, we’ve whittled down the list to present you with the all-time top five British-made bikes.

Norton Manx

1

Founded in 1898 by visionary engineer James Lansdowne Norton (1869-1925), inventor of the chain-drive overhead camshaft, the Norton company went through many hands and management configurations over the decades, yet rarely was out of the winner’s circle at the top-ranked Isle of Man Senior TT racing championship. The single-stroke Manx model was designed for just that purpose; hence the name. Produced between 1946 and 1962, it really hit its stride in 1950, with the introduction of the revolutionary Norton Featherbed frame, drop handlebars and café-style seating included, for a profile that still looks ultra-modern today.


vintage rides

Brough Superior Brough Superior

2

Created in 1919 by George Brough (1890-1969), son of motorcycle pioneer William Edward Brough and a champion speedster in his own

Vincent Black Shadow

right, the Brough Superior was rightly known as “the Rolls-Royce of motorcycles.” Almost all Brough’s bikes were built to order, all were fitted with only the choicest of components, and all were personally ridden by George Brough before their sale, to ensure top performance capabilities. In addition, each bike was built twice, once for custom component placement and then again, after the parts had been removed for individualized plating and painting. Unarguably the Brough Superior’s biggest fan was T.E. Lawrence – Lawrence of Arabia – who owned seven of these bikes before losing his life crashing the eighth. 32

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Vincent Black Shadow

3

In 1928, BritishArgentinean Phil Vincent (1908-1979) bought out England’s Humphries production facilities and began producing motorbikes under his own name. Australian codesigner Phil Irving (1903–1992) joined the firm a few years later, left it, then returned again in 1943 when the company, like so many other British motorcycling concerns, had retooled for war munitions. Their greatest achievement came after WWII, in 1948, with the introduction of the Vincent cantilever rear suspension Black Shadow, the fastest production motorcycle of its time, capable of speeds of up to 125 mph. Cool V-twin styling and distinctive ebony paintwork only added to the bike’s enduring allure.

Triumph Bonneville

Triumph Bonneville It is impossible to talk of British motoring of any kind without mentioning Triumph, for a long time one of England’s largest car and motorcycle manufacturers. The firm itself was established in 1885 by German-born Siegfried Bettmann (1863-1951) and, despite a series of corporate ups and downs, including the disunion of the car and motorcycle units, the brand is still with us. The Bonneville T120 model, a dual-carb, duplex frame, 650 cc sports bike, debuted in 1959 and was named after Utah’s Bonneville Salt Flats, where it was ridden several times in an attempt to break the world motorcycle speed record. It eventually did set a record in 1969 at the Isle of Man, with the firstever over-100 mph lap recorded by a production motorcycle. Runner-up to the Bonneville is the earlier Triumph Thunderbird, another 650 cc model, whose name was eventually sold off to the Ford Motor Company. Marlon Brando famously rode his own Thunderbird in the iconic 1953 biker flick The Wild One. Freud fans will love the scene in which Mary Murphy suggestively strokes his gas tank.

4


SEAS THE DAY…


vintage rides

BSA Lightning BSA Lightning

Motorcycle Jackets

BSA stands for Birmingham Small Arms Company. The name is indicative of the fact that the firm was originally founded in 1861 by a group of British gunsmiths in order to supply arms for the Crimean War. The company later turned to bicycles, motorcycles and other machined items, including WWII’s ingenious folding motorcycles, which were parachute-dropped to troops on the European front lines. The largest motorcycle producer in the world at one time (especially after its purchase in 1951 of the bankrupted Triumph Motorcycles), BSA peaked in 1965 with the introduction of its sturdy A65L Lightning, a 650 cc, OHV parallel twin renowned as a sturdy all-round sports bike. That same year, a gold-painted model of the bike, fitted with a working missile system, was spectacularly featured in a chase sequence for the James Bond classic Thunderball.

Vintage motorcycle jackets are no less collectable than the bikes themselves, and all three of these iconic styles are still being reproduced today:

5

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The Belstaff Trialmaster – The original motorcycle jacket, available in England since 1924, this is a hiplength leather coat featuring four large snap-flap patch pockets and a self-belted waist. Its most recent product placement was on Will Smith in the 2007 film I Am Legend.

The Schott Perfecto – A true American classic, this waist-length black jacket, complete with silvered studs and heavy-duty diagonal zip closure, was developed by Irving Schott in New York City in 1928. Look no further than Brando’s Johnny (“What’re you rebelling against, Johnny?” “Whaddya got?”) Strabler character in 1953’s The Wild One.


DION STYLE • QUALITY • SERVICE

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health & fitness

the

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dog jog

Unleash A New Fitness Routine

If you need to lose weight and get more

To encourage people to exercise with

Ted Cornelius, Executive Director of the

exercise, look no further than man's best

their pets, Mars Petcare has been teaming up

Tennessee Alliance/Pioneering Healthier

friend: According to Marty Becker, DVM,

with YMCAs in Washington, DC, New York,

Communities Program for the YMCA of

and Robert Kushner, MD, authors of Fitness

Nashville, Chicago, and Portland, Oregon to

Middle Tennessee. 'We encourage families

Unleashed: A Dog Owner's Guide to Losing

introduce The Power of Pets program. 'At

to play together everyday, and incorporating

Weight and Gaining Health Together, taking

the YMCA, we believe healthy lifestyles are

the family pet is a great way to make every-

daily walks or jogs with your dog can be an

about nurturing the spirit, mind and body--

one more active.'

excellent way to manage your weight and

and pets certainly play a role in that,' says

reach government-recommended goals for physical activity. The book's exercise recommendations are backed up by research: For instance, in a 2005 study, researchers at the University of Missouri-Columbia found that people who walked a dog for 10 minutes three times a week, eventually working up to 20 minutes five times a week over the course of a year, lost an average of 14 lbs--and they didn't even have to change their diets to do it. Most weight-loss programs can't boast those kinds of results! Another study conducted at Northwestern University found that people who went on a diet and fitness plan with their dog lost weight and kept it off better than people who dieted and exercised on their own. Most recently, Mars Petcare, which makes dog food and sponsors research on human-pet interactions, surveyed 1,000 dog owners and found that 39% felt that making sure their pooch gets walked helps them be more active. Over half of pet owners also say their pets are good company while exercising, and they'd prefer to walk with them than walk alone. Another Mars Petcare study found that people who get a dog walked 30 minutes more a week than they did before they had a dog.

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Meet Lazarus, the publisherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s seven year-old adopted racing greyhound.


health & fitness Physical and Mental Benefits Having a dog can confer many health benefits: People with pets have lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels, suffer from

Recommended Activity Levels for Humans •

aerobic activity and muscle-strengthening exercise

chronic pain less frequently, and visit the doctor less often. Pet

such as gymnastics or calisthenics

ownership also has mental perks: Getting outdoors for regular canine breaks puts you in touch with nature, exposes you to moodboosting sunlight and fresh air, and allows for social discourse (dogs

What's more, research shows that older people who have a pet stay healthier than non-pet owners, probably because they're more physically active, and because the company of a pet staves off feelings of loneliness and isolation. Likewise, kids with pets tend to be more active, too. On the other side of the leash, regular walks make your dog

For adults: 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity per week plus strength training twice a week

are irresistible to many people and provide an easy conversation starter).

For kids: 60 minutes of physical activity a day, including

Recommended Activity Level for Dogs •

A daily walk of at least two blocks for every 10 lbs. of a dog's body weight

Sources: Centers for Disease Control, Fitness Unleashed

very, very happy (witness the tail wagging when you mention the word 'walk'). 'The fringe benefit of a workout program that includes your dog is a big one: as any experienced trainer can tell you, a well-exercised, tired dog is a well-behaved dog,' according to Drs. Kushner and Becker. Barking, chewing, digging and other problems often go by the wayside when a dog is being walked frequently and well. The regular activity also helps your canine companion keep his bones and joints strong and control his weight, which can add years to a dog's life. Approximately 40% of American dogs are overweight, putting them at risk for heart problems, diabetes, arthritis, breathing issues, and cancer--just like overweight humans. The authors advise walking a daily minimum of two blocks for every 10 lbs. of your dog's body weight. Your dog will also love it if establish a set walking time--and may even bring you the leash to remind you it's time to go out! In turn, that can help you stick to your exercise plan.

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Nancy Monson is the author of Craft to Heal: Soothing Your Soul with Sewing, Painting, and Other Pastimes (Wheatmark).


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waste not time, want not time There are only 24 hours in a day, so why do we waste so many of them?

In many cases we don't have a choice. We waste time waiting for the world's longest traffic light to change. We waste time while web sites load animations, videos, music, and more ads than anyone has time to ignore. We waste time standing in the checkout line at the supermarket, in spite of how hard we try to figure out which line will move the fastest based on a personal algorithm that factors in how many people in each line are older than 60, the number of items in each shopping cart, estimated time it will take people to find their wallet, and whether the checker is chatty or not. Even then, somehow we always manage to choose the slowest one. Luckily it's not a waste if you consider being able to flip through the tabloids and read about how many pounds Lindsay Lohan has lost, Kirstie has gained, and Madoff's British clients lost to be a good use of your time. We waste lots of time in airport security lines, mostly because people are shocked that a liter of water is more than three ounces, forget that their 4-lb. belt buckle is made of metal, and act surprised that they have to take their shoes off even though they've had to do it every time they've

flown during the past eight years. And we waste lots of time commuting. Boy do we waste time commuting. According to Gallup's annual Work and Education survey (motto: 'We do the work, you get educated') the average American worker spends 46 minutes a day commuting to and from work. That's 199 hours, or 25 eight-hour days, each year. This is more time than we spend on vacation, daydreaming about vacation, and calling in sick because we've used up our vacation combined. If you work for 30 years- hey, a guy can dream he has a retirement plan, can't he? -that means you've spent two years' worth of work days sitting in traffic or on the subway, wishing you were anywhere but where you were. The good side is, if you don't commute, this means you can retire two years earlier. Let me know how this argument works on your boss. Then there's the time we waste -I mean, spend -picking out our clothes. A survey by the British clothing company Matalan found that the average woman spends nearly a year of her life- 287 days to be exact- figuring out what to wear. That's 6,888 hours- or 413,280 minutes -spent deciding what to put on just so a woman can look in the mirror, turn to her partner, and ask, 'Does this make me look fat?' Stop laughing men, you aren't exempt. While men don't spend anywhere near as much time deciding what to wear, they spend at least as long trying to figure out if there could possibly be a right answer to that question. Face it, if the Sphinx had asked that question not a single person would ever have walked into Thebes and the Sphinx would still be alive and guarding the gates today.

If we're not waiting in line, commuting, or picking out clothes, we're being completely non-productive and wasting our time by sleeping. To the tune of six to eight hours a day. This is about the same amount of time we spend at work and nearly twice the time we spend being productive at work. But while we may think of sleeping as a waste of time, experts tell us we actually get too little of it and function better if we have more. I bet they get tired of hearing snoring whenever they explain this. Experts aren't the only ones who don't think sleep is a such a big waste of time. In a survey conducted by Westin Hotels, more than half the people polled said they'd rather have a good night's sleep than good sex, which says a lot for sleep. And not much for their sex life. As if to prove how much they enjoy their sleep, 42% said they'd rather have a sleeping pill left on their pillow than a chocolate, though since 62% say they take sleep medication when traveling, this might be more about saving money than the desire for a good night's sleep. And how about all the time we waste online? That too may turn out not to be such a waste, and not because you managed to uncover the email address of the first girl or boy you kissed while in third grade so you can write and profess to never having gotten over them. A study presented at a meeting of the Society for Neuroscience (motto: 'I mean, who's not for neuroscience?') found that online searching is actually a mental exercise that enhances brain function in older adults. They don't know if the same holds true for young people, but it's hard to believe that YouTube videos of Mario and Luigi Meet Yoda done with Legos could be anything but brain enhancing. One thing you don't have to worry about is whether reading this wasted your time. Remember, reading articles about wasting time is anything but a waste of time. I don't have any studies to back this up. You'll just have to trust me on this.

According to Gallup's annual Work and Education survey the average American worker spends 46 minutes a day commuting to and from work. That's 199 hours, or 25 eight-hour days, each year. 40

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MADE IN USA


think green

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Next time you sit down for dinner and open a nice bottle of wine, think about how that bottle is sealed. Whether you choose a bottle with a cork, plastic or aluminium stopper influences more than the quality of your wine; it can have a significant impact on the environment. "The public don't realize the impact that a simple decision like buying a bottle of wine can have," says Carlos de Jesus, marketing and communications director for Amorim, a leading cork producer and manufacturer in Portugal. "By buying wine with cork stoppers, consumers can help preserve the Mediterranean cork oak forests, their rich wildlife and the traditional way of life in rural communities." I visited cork forests (montados) and manufacturing plants in Portugal, which produces more than 50 per cent of all cork used worldwide, and discovered five reasons why you may want your wine bottles sealed with natural cork.

To this day, cork is still the stopper of choice around the world, but over the past decade, winemakers across the globe have started replacing their natural cork with plastic or aluminium stoppers to provide something easier to use and protect bottles from becoming "corked" - contaminated with Trichloroanisole (TCA), a chemical that is harmless, but produces an unpleasant mouldy smell and taste in wine.

1. A Natural-born Sealer The 1600s French Benedictine monk Dom Perignon is said to be the first to have used cork instead of oiled rags to close a bottle of sparkling wine. By end of the 18th century, wine was commonly stored in glass containers and cork stoppers became used on an industrial scale. Cork's natural elasticity, lightness, impermeability to both liquids and gases, and insulation properties make it indeed a perfect material to seal wine. There are 800 million cells in one cork, each with an elastic memory, so when compressed, they try to go back to their initial position. What's more, studies have shown that cork stoppers allow just the right micro-amount of oxygen to enable the wine to breathe and develop in the bottles. Plastic tops, on the other hand, let too much oxygen into the bottles, which can cause oxidation, and screw caps let in too little oxygen, which can affect the wine's flavour.

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Now artificial tops account for 30 per cent of the some 17 billion stoppers used worldwide every year -- a rise from just 5 per cent a decade ago. If this trend continues, up to three quarters of the Mediterranean's cork forests could be lost within 10 years, estimates the World Wide Fund (WWF). The Portuguese cork industry is fighting back by introducing new sterilization, purification and control methods to improve the quality of its corks and tackle TCA (now only about 1% of cork-sealed bottles are tainted with TCA).

M I S T I A E N

in it 2. The Basis of an Ecosystem Unique in the World. The cork oak tree, whose thick, regenerating bark is shaved off every nine years to make cork, covers about 2.27 million hectares in its native Mediterranean habitats of Portugal and Spain, and to a lesser extend Morocco, Algeria, Italy, Tunisia and France. Each tree lives up to 250 years and can be stripped 16 times during its lifetime, producing enough cork in each harvest to cover 4,000 bottles. The Mediterranean cork oak forests are listed amongst the world's major biodiversity hotspots. The Coruche montado, the cork forest I visited in the Alentejo region, is a mosaic of cork and other oaks species, pine trees (providing pine nuts), wild olive trees, many different brackens and grassland. These ancient forests provide a myriad of niches for many different animals, including rare species like black storks and booted eagles, both of which nest only in cork oaks, says Nuno Oliveira, an independent conservation biologist. The secretive Iberian lynx, the world's most endangered cat, relies upon the open, dotted structure of the forest for hunting. European Cranes also migrate to the forests from the north to feed on the cork oaks' acorns. The forests are also home to wolf, Barbary deer, wild boars, many reptiles, insects of all kinds and millions of birds, such as little owls, vultures and buzzards. "The montado is not about top species like lions or elephants, but it is its communities of plants and animals - so rich, so diverse and living in perfect harmony - that make it so unique," says Rui Sim es, local representative for Rainforest Alliance. To help preserve their forests, cork producers in Portugal, Spain and Morocco are working towards Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification, which guarantees they comply with the highest social and environmental standards and will insure the long-term protection of the forests' delicate ecosystems.


UNCONVENTIONAL CHIC


think green 3. Supports a Traditional Sustainable Economy.

5. 100% Natural, Renewable and Recyclable.

The Mediterranean cork forests not only support some 100,000 cork workers (harvesting, general forestry and industrial processing), but also sustain a traditional way of life in often disadvantaged areas. There, farmers have practiced a low-intensity mix of agriculture and forestry for millennia. On even a small patch of cork land, they can raise a herd of goats, a few cows and some pigs, which forage for acorns and graze beneath the trees. Villagers gather mushrooms, use rockrose bushes for firewood and tap local beehives for honey. The cork forests are one of the best examples of balanced conservation and development anywhere in the world, says Rainforest Alliance’s Simes. Skilled craftsmen harvest cork by hand with a special cork axe from June to August. Like their parents and grandparents before them, they follow a strict code of practice, including the legal period of time between each stripping, the ripeness of the bark and the weather conditions during the harvest. Fernando Pereira, 37, has been harvesting cork bark in the Coruche montado for 10 years. “Everyone in my village does it. It is a tradition that is passed from generation to generation. Harvesting is important to me–not just for the money (he makes 100 to 150 a day), but because it is part of my heritage.”

Unlike its plastic and aluminium counterparts, cork is an inherently sustainable resource, both renewable and biodegradable. Literally all the cork bark is used–any waste is granulated and agglomerated into a different type of stoppers called “technical” or used in other products, such as wall panels, shoe soles and fishing floats. Even the fine particles of cork dust are collected and used as fuel to heat the factory boilers. According to a Price Waterhouse Coopers and ECOBILAN 2008 report, the production of natural cork stoppers is responsible for ten times less carbon dioxide emissions than plastic stoppers.

4. Cork Forests Are Good for the Environment Cork oak forests help conserve soil by protecting against wind erosion and increasing the rate at which rainwater is absorbed. In North Africa, they act as the last barrier against advancing desertification. In addition to producing oxygen through photosynthesis, the unique cell structure of the cork oak traps carbon, which contributes to global warming. This is especially so in the early years of a tree’s life when it grows fast and when it has been harvested, as a harvested tree absorbs up to five times more carbon than one that isn’t, in order to regenerate its bark. According to a recent study carried out by the School of Agronomy (ISA) in Lisbon, the Portuguese cork forests alone, with an area of 736 thousand hectares, drained 4.8 million tons of CO2 from the atmosphere in the previous year. From this, one can deduct that the Mediterranean cork forests, with an area of over 2.27 million hectares, provide a carbon sink of over 14 million tons annually.

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Veronique Mistiaen contributes to the Telegraph magazine, Guardian Weekend, the Chicago Tribune and Marie Claire, among other publications.


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Yes, I have Peter Pan Syndrome. I just don’t want to grow up. I am a middle aged guy. I’m not in great shape. My hairline is not what it used to be. I have to strain my eyes and the lighting has to be just right to read the small print in the baseball box scores and the dates on coins. I cannot even remember WHY I read the dates on coins. I wear jeans and sneakers to work. They are not particularly cool jeans and sneakers. I realize how it looks from the outside. I have 3 kids, I should act more responsibly. I do not dress well. I drive a Ford with high mileage and cloth seats. I should be more serious, and I should start listening to Lite FM. But I just don’t want to grow up….yet.

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Syndrome A while back, one of my older brothers and I were talking. He asked me “How come people always blame stuff on their childhood…what the hell is that all about?...I mean get over it!...was our childhood THAT bad???” I said “Bro…I don’t even know how to answer that…I still feel like I’m IN my childhood…I act like Beavis and Butthead. I am still friends with all of my high school buddies. I play in a garage rock band. I go out drinking with the fellas whenever I want. I play softball 5 times a week, and my mommy still comes to watch me play!...I guess I’ll have to let you know when I grow up.” (It’s hard to believe I am single, I know) He said, “You are becoming Uncle Marty.”


Hmmm. I had an Uncle Marty who was always in a good mood. I just assumed it had to with the fact that he was drunk all the time. But now that I think about it, if you clear away the smoke from the Salem menthols, look past the wide lapels and the loud Quiana shirts, the bad combover and the hookers, Uncle Marty may have just been a fellow victim of Peter Pan Syndrome. I know Marty’s life is probably more interesting than mine, but I don’t really remember too much about him Do you know the show “Three’s Company”? (don’t worry if you are too young to know the program). There was a character named Larry…he was the pathetic 30-something bachelor who lived next door. He hung out at the Regal Beagle wearing his leisure suits and dating all kinds of cute ladies. And do you remember the show “The Courtship of Eddie’s Father” (again…don’t worry). There was a similar character named “Uncle” Norman” on that show. Okay…ya got the picture? Now erase it. Uncle Marty was nothing like them. He was an overweight paradox. Almost everyone liked him, but he didn’t like himself. He loved women but always picked the wrong ones. He liked to gamble, and constantly lost money. He made friends easily but he looked so ridiculous that not many people could take him seriously. He loved life, but just wasn’t very good at it. He would have made a nice “before” shot for a Rothman’s makeover advertisement.

My brother’s comment was a little scary to me. Was I just a 21st century Uncle Marty? Why did I not want to grow up? How come it’s an insult to be called “immature” but it’s a term of endearment to be known as someone who is “young at heart” (I think maybe that happens at age 60) Maybe I am having that mid-life “thing”. Or perhaps, it is that we live in New York post 9/11. We all lost friends. Good friends. Many of us came away with a sense that we should live in the moment and truly enjoy and appreciate our lives. Consequently, I might act a little young. I might choose the enjoyment path over the responsibility path every once in a while. My 3 teenage kids are not sure how to deal with me. I am probably less mature than they are. They know that dad is a little “different.” Hopefully, they don’t think I am “Uncle Marty” different, but maybe “pretty okay for a dad” different. We laugh a lot together. And they have turned out just fine even with Peter Pan for a dad. Immature?…probably yes. Irresponsible?... no. Young at Heart?...not yet, but I’m on my way. Am I the new Uncle Marty? Hopefully not, but like him, I could use some fashion advice.

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Rothman's Magazine Spring/Summer 2011  

Rothman's Magazine Spring/Summer 2011

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