Imagine yourself as a civilization. You yourself as an entire civilization. All of the parts of civilization within you - your soul, your mind and your thoughts. There is law, order, art, music, thought, doubt, strategy and an understanding that you face the world. You face some friends and some foes. Within us all is civilization and our internalization of these various elements and understanding within ourselves toward the outer can help us better to understand others in this world. It enables us to see the world through a different lens and ultimately expand the thought out to allow ourselves to see ourselves as a part within a larger civilization. A civilization made up of many individual civilizations.
Our style, our presentation, how we appear on the stage, how we present ourselves in this world is the outward face of our internal civilization. What civilization do you show to your friends? Your enemies? What does your civilization say about you? Style is about clothes, but not only. These are some deeper levels, some levels that many ignore or run from. Why do they run? Why do they look away? It is a good question. Maybe it is because much of what passes as style today is hideous and the civilization it reflects is hideous. Maybe, for others these ideas affirm too much greatness in man. Perhaps these ideas make man too big, broad, grand and serious. As soon as you begin talking about man, aesthetics, greatness, civilization and any ideas that may point toward the direction of dignity the conversation must be ignored. We live in a time of descent and lowering, to suggest anything which directs the other way appears as a virus and must be attacked by the current body of thought.
As for the pairing found in this photo, long time readers know I am always coming back to simplicity. Always err on the side of less. Less color, less pattern, less busy-ness, just less all around. This setting is no different. Often with this sport coat, which I love, I will go with a motif tie which is often easy to pair with a glen check pattern like this. Or, I will go with a simple knit tie which is also an easy choice. Sometimes a rep can be hard to pull off with this sport coat due to the bold check. The key to this rep working so well is that although the brown tie is fairly neutral like the khaki glen check sport coat, the colors are far enough away from each other so as to avoid any sense of a poor man's attempt at a match. The tie is distinctly separate from the sport coat yet also still overall still staying near neutral. It isn't a bold, bright and colorful rep. That would be too much. The very light baby blue stripes and small white stripes are the point of interest and grab your eye much more than the coat, yet they are so very subtle, very muted.
This is a bit of a tight rope walk when always remembering the simple, but it works beautifully. When you thread the needle like this often the outcome is very unique and the overall sense, image of your outfit sits in a wonderfully special place. Also it goes without saying, of course the white OCBD was my choice here. Always simple, always less. Always leaving yourself some room between your head and the ceiling is good. Nobody wants to be a clown. There is a special beauty about the white OCBD, it is different than the blue, it is beautiful in it's own standard-of-standards way.
The idea of ourselves as a civilization itself, our presentation to the world as the aesthetic idea of our civilization - this is an idea that aims to point toward greatness, forward-facing. It is an orientation of understanding ourselves in the world as a civilization whether we like it or not. A being worthy of defense, respect, dignity. A being that will be as long as you are. This is an idea which orients us toward a different way of understanding ourselves as men. When we start to think of ourselves in this way, understand our presentation in our world in terms like this, we start to pull ourselves out of the slop of post-modernity. We start to think about aesthetics a bit differently. What civilization does our style reflect? What lays beneath? Maybe we are worthy of respect and dignity. Maybe within us is art and music, dark alleys and rundown neighborhoods, philosophy and love yet also an exterior, a wall and a face we make and show to the world. A forward facing civilization we show to the world every single day, until our last.