Fashion trends

by MooshiMooshi

Are Totebag tastes migrating to the upper class? Evidently rich people are increasingly rejecting flashy items with logos.

Why Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Prada are in trouble

And Gap is doing poorly, in part because millennials are also rejecting logoware.

How millennial shoppers have made Gap’s uniform look obsolete

Will Totebaggers need to start adopting flashy items in order to differentiate themselves from the rich bozos and the teens?

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114 thoughts on “Fashion trends

  1. Sneetches unite!!

    I love this: “Still, in an interview earlier this year with trade publication Women’s Wear Daily, Bizzarri bristled at shoppers’ rejection of iconic logos. ‘You invest in a logo for so many years and then you’re going to be ashamed because there is a trend outside, and you say, “I’m sophisticated. I don’t use a logo?” That is not sophistication,'” — Umm, dude. Neither is Women’s Wear Daily.

    The whole “aspirational luxury” is based on the idea that people who aren’t wealthy can buy a teeny tiny piece of what the wealthy have. But the wealthy are always sneetchifying their way away from what the masses have. So the more these “aspirational” brands market to the masses, and the more it seems like everyone is carrying around LV or Coach or whatever, the less desirably those brands become for the truly wealthy. Which by definition makes the brands not “aspirational” any more.

    Put that together with the current hipster meme of rejection of generic-commercialized-mass-market products in favor of artisinal-homemade-special-snowflake-everything, and, yeah. These brands are in trouble.

  2. This is funny to me. My husband would prefer to not do his own shopping and just have me pick him up some shirts/slacks when he needs new stuff, but he is adamant that he will not wear logos. Having a kid with sensory issues, whose clothes drove him crazy if they were scratchy, I’m now all about the feel of the fabric. So – shopping is simple if I can just pick up cotton shirts and slacks from a certain couple of brands that use a good weight, soft cotton. But those annoying companies stick their logos on the clothes, so he hates them (but does wear the ones I’ve bought him). So – now he has to do all of his own shopping because I’m willing to help if it’s easy, but not if it’s high maintenance. Maybe once I learn his preferred no logo places, I can help out in the future.

    I feel the same way about purses – hate the visible logos, but for some reason a small-ish logo on a clothing item doesn’t bother me as much. Given the choice, though, I’d take a small logo over excessive bling or flash – I’m not a big bling person.

  3. The whole “aspirational luxury” is based on the idea that people who aren’t wealthy can buy a teeny tiny piece of what the wealthy have.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jaguar_S-Type

    When I was a teen, especially as a younger one, I was mildly obsessed with the Polo Ralph Lauren pony. That seems rather sad in hindsight.

    I recently bought a few things at Land’s End in Sears. No logos anywhere.

  4. I have never understood people paying good money to wear someone else’s name on their clothes or handbag – and paying a premium!

    I believe old money people have never gone in for buying these types of handbags and clothes preferring good quality and quietly tasteful. Think very good Italian leather handbags.

  5. I have never liked logoware, and refused to buy any of it for my kids. But then my daughter developed a love for the Puma logo – the leaping puma. Sigh. We now have lots of Puma tees in various colors

  6. I actually think old money buys a lot of this stuff. They just don’t like it when the new money or the poors also start to buy it. A Patek watch is easy to spot among the old money. So is the coveted Kelly bag. My friend who is part of an old money Washington family has a set of Vuitton luggage handed down from her grandmother. That fugly Celine bag is huge among the rich right now.

    Milo – my sons love the Polo Pony and the Gap Kids teddy bear. Maybe they will grow in to Jr Milos and drive sensible Acuras for many years :)

  7. I’m not into advertising for the companies that make my clothes, cars, etc. but it’s kind of inevitable. I have worn Levi’s jeans since I was ~13 (when my mom FINALLY let me have a actual brand I wanted, instead of the store-brand knock-off). They’ve always had the red tab and the “leather” patch. Just the way they are. Whatever brand of sneaker you prefer, all have their trademarked logo (swoosh, three stripes, leaping black cat)…back in the day it was Chuck Taylor All-Stars.

    And, frankly, with the proliferation of outlet malls and companies actually making things specifically for that market, distinct from the stuff that gets sold in “real” mall department stores, I think many places are weakening/diluting their brand (Brooks Brothers, Polo are but two)

    So I’ve kind of gotten off my high horse on this in the past few years. Stuff bought from the clearance section of an outlet store has the same exact logo as that for which you’ll pay full price at Lord & Taylor or Nordstrom. No longer am I impressed by the brand. I am more impressed by how the clothes look (and feel) on me, and how others look in whatever (brand) they are wearing.

  8. My parents never let us have Levis jeans – too expensive. We had to wear Kmart brand, except for the horrible year that my mother decided to try her hand at sewing jeans for us (she was excellent at sewing and generally I preferred her clothes to store bought, but not jeans!!!)

  9. I don’t think the westchester women received the memo about dropping logos. There seem to be plenty of women that have bags with the obvious logos from Chanel or LV. I do see other women that are carrying expensive bags from other brands without the logos, such as Chloe or Stella.

    i stopped buying expensive handbags when I stopped working full time.

  10. Yeah, was into logos when I was younger, now I don’t get doing the advertising for the brand. I think Polo lost it when they made that GIANT pony a couple of years ago. My kids don’t really ask for any brand name stuff with the exception of sneakers and socks for the boy (those $20 socks – no logo but you know them when you see them) and my daughter doesn’t want anything like that…..yet. Right now she’s just into books which can be pretty expensive actually!

  11. While I am technically not into logos, I do recognize that certain looks I like are tied to certain brands. Sometimes the knock-off version is fine, but sometimes I like the original. I recently bought my first pair of Converse sneakers, a lightweight, trimmer style that is surprisingly comfortable and more “hip” than what I typically wear. (I have problem feet and struggle to find shoes that don’t look orthopedic.) And I must admit I like looking looking down at my feet and seeing the Converse tag.

  12. I like the uniform looks of Gap and Uniqlo clothes, and more recently have found some items from the more upscale Eileen Fisher uniform choices to be very appealing.

  13. Whether true or not, I remember learning years ago that “the rich” didn’t wear logos, and if I wanted to fit in I would make sure that the nice things I bought didn’t scream advertising for a company. That lesson stuck as part of fitting in at certain environments. I feel like a lot of what I had to learn (still do, in many ways) is how to fit what is considered standard for whatever people like us are.

  14. My daughter would like another pair of 7 For All Mankind jeans to replace the outgrown pair that look like capris on her now (she still wears them) but was shocked when she googled and discovered how much they cost. The original pair was a child’s size (so less to start with) and came from Nordstrom’s Rack, so while still more expensive than the Old Navy jeans that are her standard, nowhere near full price. I’m due to take her to Plato’s Closet (teen consignment chain) to look for a new pair once her financial situation has recovered from buying vacation souvenirs.

    Anyway, those don’t have a huge logo, but they’re another of those that are recognizable enough if you know them. I don’t think her school runs to high-end jeans much, though, so this is more about her liking the old jeans than it is about needing to fit in.

  15. Regarding bags and brands, what are quality options that aren’t super-expensive? I’m on my second leather backpack/purse from Target and I bought two when I found what I liked, because I knew it would wear out in a year or two. I don’t expect to carry everything-but-the-kitchen-sink forever. No one will be surprised that I chose it almost entirely on function (can be worn hands-free, multiple pockets for organizing, large) with my preferred color (brown leather) the only aesthetic aspect of my selection.

    When my formula company diaper bag for DS1 was wearing out, I bought a large, canvas Eddie Bauer bag which held enough stuff for three kids in diapers. It’s still usable for Baby WCE and I’m saving her cute-but-cheap Minnie Mouse diaper bag for when she’s actually old enough to be aware of it, because I know it won’t last. I haven’t seen anything like my Eddie Bauer bag sold for infants. No one markets to mothers of four, I guess.

  16. popping in to wish everyone a happy 4th and a great weekend! I’ll be swamped with month/quarter end and won’t be posting much the next couple weeks

  17. What do people mean by labels? Actual labels or identifiable looks?

    Rich ladies have been sporting those Chanel jackets since the 20s. I’m not sure they have logos but the impact is the same.

  18. Lauren, I know what you mean, but I tie that particular Westchester look to the Mafia wife types. In my town, there are a lot of fairly well to do contractors, and their wives tend to dress in leopard prints, with oversized sunglasses sporting the logo in blinding goldtones, and big logo handbags with lots of bling. I also should note that every time there is a mass arrest of Mafia people in NYC, there will always be at least one person from my town. Always. Some years ago, a friend of mine living in this town actually lent his apartment to a FBI operation, targeting some mobster neighbor of his.

  19. Rhett, the guy in the video looks just like the guy who lives across the street. And the woman with the hair bump and the maxi dress – perfect!

  20. Rhett, it may amuse you no end to learn that our next door neighbor runs a bug extermination business. He dresses like the guy in the video, though he doesn’t look exactly like that. He has a huge garage, and when it is open, I can see that it is filled with canisters of chemicals.

  21. I am trying to buy a new purse, and am considering this one http://www.zappos.com/haiku-jaunt-poppy-mist. I want a purse that has the ease and space of a hobo bag, but also has some pockets for things like my cellphone. I have two Baggalini bags and detest both of them. Right now I am using a hippie hobo bag (batik, no less) but my phone and glasses keep getting lost.

  22. @WCE — what do you consider not “super-expensive”? My go-to is Coach leather for anything long-term. It is definitely a higher initial price point, but my mom used her office satchel for more than 20 years (every day, books/laptops, etc.) — and it was still in use when I bought her a new one for a gift a few years ago. Mine is @ 4 years old and looks like new. I also had a baby bag from them in a sort of wipeable/washable fabric thing that held up way better than anything else I tried, but given the shorter needed lifespan of that one, it was more expensive on a $/year of use basis. So if you’re looking at a 2-to-5-year window, you’re probably better off with another basic sturdy canvas thing or two.

  23. Rhett, it may amuse you no end to learn that our next door neighbor runs a bug extermination business

    I’m amused to no end to imagine you with your peasant skirts and hobo bags maybe accessorized with some sensible flats and an academic conference totebag amidst your Real Housewives of New Jersey neighbors.

  24. WCE – I use a giant messenger style bag as a diaper bag (Columbia makes one). I also have a baggalini tote which used to double as my pump bag and purse. Now it’s a second diaper bag. Here’s the baggalini – http://www.sierratradingpost.com/baggallini-fleet-nylon-tote-bag-for-women~p~9185j/?utm_source=GooglePLAs&utm_medium=PaidShopping&utm_term=Baggallini_Fleet_Nylon_Tote_Bag_For_Women&utm_campaign=PCGOOGLES5&currency=USD&codes-processed=true

    For reference – it could fit an in-style pump, a box of pump part wipes, a gallon zip lock bag of pump parts, a box of milk bags, 8-12 2.5 ounce medela milk bottles, 3 magazines, 1 book, a wallet/purse clutch, set of keys, iphone 4, a nursing cover, towel, personal items, snacks, and whatever else I needed. Miraculously, it still zippered and never felt heavy.

  25. Cat S and LfB, I think my Eddie Bauer bag was designed to hold a laptop when laptops were giant, heavy behemoths. I’m pretty sure it will survive Baby WCE. It sounds like I should consider Coach when I’m ready to spend more and need a new bag, which may be when I get a new job, hopefully in a few years. I’ll be going to/from work with a purse, lunch bag, and bag with pump parts, at least occasionally, and I don’t care that I look like Erasmus B. Dragon.

    Cat S, I think Mr WCE has only changed 3 or 4 of Baby WCE’s diapers and he hasn’t taken her anywhere alone yet. His masculinity is uncompromised by the Eddie Bauer bag and if we want something smaller, it will likely be an Embedded Systems Conference swagbag.

    BTW, to any new moms on here, I like my washable cloth changing pad way better than any vinyl ones I’ve had, which tend to crack and hold grime around the edges.

  26. Well, our neighbors on the other side are Mormons, with that squeaky clean Utah look, and the next ones down are Japanese, so lots of us don’t fit in. But there is definitely a good chunk who look like Real Housewives (and husbands)

  27. We had a diaper bag from skip hop that held up well, but I found it kind of small when I had three littles ones who needed me to stash things. I bought a larger, non-canvas bag from skip hop with the 3rd baby. It held up well for about a year and a half which I considered reasonable for the price.

  28. I am not into logos anymore, but I have to admit to being obsessed as a preteen. I remember in 5th grade the popular girls must have coordinated and they wore matching Abercrombie logo shirts to school on the same day. I had never heard of it before that point. And my best (very wealthy) friend asked me why I didn’t wear clothes from Gap Kids and Limited Too. So pretty much overnight I became very brand-conscious and ashamed of the Lands End wardrobe I’d worn up to that point.

    I still associate obviously branded items with middle school drama.

  29. I can’t really remember if I’ve been driven by brands. I don’t really think so. I know that caused some drama in middle school (like Rio mentioned), but those were the only two years from k-12 where I didn’t wear a uniform. So there’s something to be said there – uniforms make it very difficult to have brand consciousness.

    I have never felt the draw to have a brand logo prominent on my outfits. I know I had a few cute tees from different brands with their logos front and center (Roxy comes to mind…). And I love a good pair of Chucks… in fact, I need a new pair. My sunglasses are Kate Spade and have her logo on the arms, but very small. I’m more apt to wear a sports logo than a fashion logo.

  30. Rhode, speaking of Kate Spade, DW had a KS diaperbag that made it all the way thru 3 kids (oldest is 21) and survives to today as a decent bag (sans the vinyl changing pad).

  31. Milo, the trip was great. Beautiful weather, at least till we got to the Southwest at the same time as a heat wave in the latter portion. Well, we did get hailed on in CO, but that was part of the fun. Beautiful places. Wildlife galore — the marmots living in the sewers at the Alpine Visitor Center in Rocky Mountain National Park were a particular favorite. Arrangements all ran smoothly. Kids got their Jr. Ranger badges at various parks. Car rental place kept us waiting a bit trying to come up with the full size SUV we reserved, but because of that they upgraded us to a Chevy Suburban and spotted us the full tank of gas, so I think we came out way ahead on that one. It certainly helped with the backseat squabbling.

    One note on the new Google Maps feature I’d mentioned before leaving — a phone or device still wants to re-download the personalized map each time, so it wasn’t ideal for use in no-data areas even though it was able to keep track of a vehicle’s moving location on an already-open map. But what was really great was already having the locations entered of places we were trying to find (like hotel or site of activity) or of possible places to eat (I’d Yelped ahead of time and put the good options in the map), so that once we were coming into a town (with data) I didn’t have to start frantically trying to look up addresses or fight with the Yelp app. I could just look at our moving dot on the map relative to the places of interest and see where we wanted to go.

  32. Rio, to my knowledge, no mom of multiple close-together children ever has said, “I need a more svelte diaper bag.”

    HM, I like your analysis of using google maps in no data areas.

  33. A request for good thoughts or prayers from all of you. DH has multiple ailments and his Atrial Fibrillation decided to act up the last few days, manifested in part by getting short of breath just going up a flight of stairs. This comes five weeks before our planned energetic vacation. His medication cocktail probably just needs a tweak, but I was kept awake last night by a mind churning with a wide range of emotions, and I am not at all proud of some of them.

  34. Meme – I’m sorry to hear that and I hope it turns out to be nothing serious!

  35. WCE- good to know- though with the way this pregnancy has gone, I do not expect my children to be closely spaced. I have a feeling it might take a few years for the memory of months of what feels like unending stomach flu to fade enough to get the nerve to go through it all over again. Good to see the various diaper bag recommendations! Later today I might hijack with some baby gear questions.

    Meme- prayers that it resolves easily.

  36. Hope everything works out, Meme. I’ll be sending good thoughts your way.

  37. Mémé – ugh so sorry to hear that. I hope your home diagnosis is right and you can still enjoy your trip. Good thoughts your way.

    Honolulu – so glad you had such a terrific time!

  38. Mémé, I hope it turns out to be readily manageable, and I hope you can get it figured out quickly.

    Milo, I know you’re planning a big National Parks trip yourself, and if you want more specifics, feel free to e-mail. It’s my handle at gmail.

  39. Rio, I found that Sea-Bands helped take the edge off a little. Of course it could have just been a placebo effect. Having gingersnaps around to nibble, especially first thing in the morning, also helped.

  40. When you do start planning, remember that some of those in-park lodges sell out a year in advance. The lodging and learning programs (Yellowstone, Grand Canyon) don’t fill up quite as early, but even with those, the most desirable itineraries might be gone already 6 months ahead of time.

  41. Meme – sorry to hear that. Having a crappy day/week/month myself. The Florida shooting victim story I shared a week ago or so – well, he died yesterday. Senseless.

    You will feel what you feel – you should not be embarrassed for being human.

    I will also be checking in less in the coming weeks – first on holiday, then dealing with work crap and kid related stuff.

  42. We have some extended family in Scottsdale. I wonder if there’s a good itinerary that could reasonably include a quick visit with them, maybe flying in and out of Phoenix. Grand Canyon, I suppose. And keeping it simple is fine; we don’t need to hit every park the first time.

  43. Grand Canyon, Four Corners area, Mesa Verde, Vermilion Cliffs, Monument Valley, Lake Powell, Bryce Canyon, Zion. And I’m sure there’s more closer to Scottsdale — I never read the Southern Arizona portions of the travel books. BTW, your local library’s e-book collection probably includes a ton of travel books, if it’s anything like ours.

  44. Milo,
    Depending when you go, you should look into inner tubing on the Salt River http://www.saltrivertubing.com/ (though the minimum age is 8…may not work for you). Grand canyon is always good; you may also like Saguaro National Park near Tucson which is ~3 hours from Scottsdale/Phoenix. Lots of horseback riding opportunity. There are the jeep tours in red rock country (Sedona, which is between PHX and Grand Canyon). Since I forget how old your kids are, but I know you’ve got a toddler, these may not be what you’re looking for. And there’s this: http://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g31310-d126770-Reviews-Hole_in_the_Rock-Phoenix_Arizona.html

  45. “Rio, I found that Sea-Bands helped take the edge off a little.”

    I bought some for DW when she was expecting, and she reported they helped.

  46. Milo, you could do a big loop starting and ending in PHX. Grand Canyon north rim, Bryce, Zion, Arches, Mesa Verde, then back through Monument Valley and Painted Desert.

  47. Oh Meme… so sorry to hear that! I hope that your thoughts are correct in this. Much love and positive thoughts.

  48. Meme — I hope your husband recovers soon, and I wish you strength as you cope with his setback.

    Rio — After I had my first child, I was convinced — honestly convinced — that all second and subsequent children in this world were unplanned, since in those early days of motherhood I simply could not fathom why anyone would willingly go through pregnancy/childbirth/nursing/caring for an infant (all of which were difficult for me the first time around) more than once. But after a while, things settled down, Mommy Amnesia set in, and lo and behold, I was totally psyched to try for #2! I think there might be some sort of evolutionary mechanism through which women’s memories of the bad parts of carrying and bearing children is erased (or at least eased) over time, so that we are willing to go back and have more than one.

  49. Mémé–Good thoughts to you both. And I’ll sign on to ATM’s comment about feeling what you feel. We’re all only human and we feel all kinds of things. What matters is what we do about it. Here’s hoping that this current issue is a minor blip in the grand scheme.

    I tried Seabands when I was pregnant. They moderately helped, but I still felt miserable. Some combination of ginger, mint, seabands, and zofran were what kept me going.

  50. Meme — good thoughts your way, and please let us know how things progress.

    Milo — houseboating on Lake Powell

    When I saw an article titled “10 non-douchey rooftop bars”, I thought of Rhett. Apparently many roofttop bars are frequented by douches. Maybe I’ll go to one just to people watch!

  51. “Some combination of ginger, mint, seabands, and zofran ”

    Ginger helped DW as well. Ginger and seabands both help her with motion sickness as well.

  52. Meme – I am sorry to hear that. I hope he is able to gets his meds worked out and that it is an easy fix.

  53. Milo, now is a good time to start planning a trip for next summer. I know it’s more than the middle class standard of 6 months, but you will have fewer options if you wait.

    I should look at doing a similar trip next summer, folding in some college tours.

  54. Meme – sorry to hear that! I hope the medication cocktail will take care of it. Having emotions is human, determining what you share is more about how you show love and support.

  55. “When I saw an article titled “10 non-douchey rooftop bars”, I thought of Rhett. Apparently many roofttop bars are frequented by douches. Maybe I’ll go to one just to people watch!”

    CoC – can I tag along? People Watching is my second favorite sport. I’m very good at passing time by creating stories about the people I watch.

  56. Thanks, I’m going to make some notes for possible sights. I didn’t realize that all those parks were in rough driving distance.

    CoC – BIL is much cooler than DW or me, and much more hipster than douche. He’s taken us to a number of rooftop bars. Apparently, spicy drinks were a big trend at one of them. I tasted one and thought it was like drinking Tabasco sauce.

  57. For kid bags, I have been been very happy with my le sportsac. It is a bit brand conscious – those in the know can recognize them, but the prints are colorful, they are nylon and washable. Nordstrom rack or TJ max usually has a decent selection. For work bags, I love my coach bag – logoless.

    I have mentioned this before, but my dream of owning a coach bag, which propelled me through college and grad school, was tempered by finding all the support staff I worked with already had one. It really took the specialness away. It seems like the price now of the bags (coach and others) is inversely correlated with prominence of logo.

    I was terribly brand conscious in middle school – gap and banana republic. We didn’t have these stores in a 300 mile radius, but the cool girls always had them. And benneton rugby shirts. A friend from that time period, who I still see frequently, was recently reminiscing about how poor she felt then. I did too-brands seemed to matter so much then.

  58. Milo, I’ve mentioned before that I thought the lodge at Zion struck me as idyllic when we were there, at least on the outside. We didn’t stay there, so I don’t know about the inside, but here’s what I saw:

    My memory is of a late afternoon, when the air had cooled, and most of the day visitors had left. I definitely want to stay there overnight the next time I’m there.

  59. Milo, you might compare flying into Las Vegas or Phoenix and flying out of Salt Lake City (or the reverse). If you wind up by Las Vegas, your older two seem like about the right age for Hoover Dam. We visited the southwest parks in late April, which I think is an ideal time to go, though you may not want to pull your kids out of school. July/August is too hot.

  60. I agree with WCE, if you don’t already have reason to go to PHX, Vegas might be a better starting/ending point for a National Park tour. There are a lot of day trips available from Vegas to places like Hoover Dam and Zion (many of the day visitors I mentioned above came in buses from Vegas).

    But Milo mentioned family in the greater PHX area. If we do a similar trip next summer, we may start at PHX as well if DS continues to be interested in ASU.

  61. Far View Lodge at Mesa Verde has a really nice setting too.

    Ours was a single story building so our balcony was just off ground level and we could sit there and watch the cottontails and birds in the twilight. That was probably the most peaceful setting of all the lodges we stayed at. Having elk all around the cabins at Mammoth (in Yellowstone) was fun too, but it’s a much bigger, more bustling place.

  62. For a parks trip that isn’t tied to Scottsdale or another specific city, Salt Lake City is within a day’s drive of a whole bunch of them and has a lot of good kid stuff in town and also seems to have better prices on renting minivans and big SUVs than many other cities. I would hazard that they have more consistent demand for those vehicle classes.

  63. Ya think, HM? :)
    I was just wondering whether I should warn Milo to check which national park lodges accommodate parties of 5.

  64. Update: DH has been a patient for 40 years of the granddaddy of local HMOs. ( I am not and never will be. ) I was with the grandkids today, so he was on his “quirky” own trying to get help. His call to the main office cardiology desk did not result in instructions after 3 hours (apparently he underdescribed his symptoms), but since he had an eye appointment at a branch office, I said, just mention to the receptionist when you get there you’d like to have somebody take a listen to your heart. Since to my untrained ear the beat sounded like the theme to Mortal Kombat, I thought that would get somebody to pay attention. They whisked him off for tests in the lab, and now are bundling him into an ambulance for more tests tomorrow. Packing up his stuff to meet him there. Will keep you posted, but this is progress.

  65. Meme, sorry to hear that. Sending good thoughts to you and your husband.

    Rio, I get it. During my first 20 weeks, a good day was actually making it to the office and only throwing up in the trash can under my desk once. Of course it’s worth it (though there is nothing more irritating than people telling you that when you feel like death) but that doesn’t mean it’s not incredibly hard to manage.

    Milo, on the parks trip I took we visited the north rim of the Grand Canyon, Arches, Zion, Bryce, Mesa Verde, and the Painted Desert (underwhelming compared to the rest), though I can’t remember in what order. We spent 2 weeks and also visited a couple locations in NM.

  66. Milo, I’m not sure if HM was hinting that Yellowstone is about as far from Salt Lake City as the Rock Parks, but it’s true. June’s trip sounds interesting but for kids the age of ours, you will not need to look at rocks for two weeks, if two weeks is a possibility. Mr WCE and I did not go to Arches because we had a 15 month old and we decided we had seen enough rocks.

  67. Yes, Yellowstone was one of the parks I had in mind. WCE, have your boys done the junior ranger thing at the parks you’ve visited?

  68. Petrified forest, not painted desert. Sorry, sleep deprivation.

    WCE, you’re probably right–the kids on this trip were middle/high school.

  69. DS1 has been able to do junior ranger for a year or so. The twins (entering first grade in fall) find some of the activities a bit too challenging due to their writing ability mostly. But they love junior ranger, especially the part where the ranger does the ceremonial award.

  70. “Petrified forest, not painted desert.”

    Painted Desert Visitor Center is in the Petrified Forest NP.

  71. 2nd the idea that Petrified Forest is underwhelming compared to the other NPs. Our family really liked Mesa Verde and Arches. This was with a 20mo old…he did a pretty good job of hiking.

  72. Yeah, it’s nice how even at the busy visitor centers they’ll make time to swear in the junior rangers. At Bryce the guy added into the oath a promise to “keep the paths clear, especially the path leading into my bedroom.” My daughter figures her friends will be hugely impressed when she shows up at school with a bunch of junior ranger patches on her hoodie.

  73. Thinking of you, Mémé, and hoping for the best possible outcome.

  74. i haven’t been able to check back in all day.

    MM, there are women with REALLY expensive bags in the two towns that sandwich your neighborhood. One neighbor is full of the logos/and non logos, but they have really expensive clothes and bags. I’ve even started to see that in your neighbor to the south. I agree it is very different than your town, but there are so many people in your town that are not contractor wives!!!

    meme, I hope you feel better.

    I love Lake Powell, Mesa Verde and Bryce. That trip to several of the national parks and lake Powell is one of the best vacations I ever took in the US.

  75. Minor late-afternoon rant from the denominational conference: If you want to annoy me in a discussion about Israel/Palestine relations, definitely start with, “Well, as a mother, I can truly understand the suffering of the Palestinians blah blah blah.” Yeah, bite me. I guess as a disembodied barren womb, I don’t need to get involved in the debate.

    I mean, if you want to go with “as a mother, I can tell you more about cracked nipples than you ever wanted to know”, or “as a mother, let me tell you, epidurals ain’t all they’re cracked up to be”, then I’m right there holding your hand, sister. But why motherhood would endow you with any special insight into Israel’s policy decisions, I have no idea.

  76. You don’t think that form of rhetoric enlivens otherwise dull policy discussions? “As a mother, I believe that Greek default sends a strong warning signal for the entire euro-zone.” “Well, as a bisexual, I see German-proposed austerity measures as dangerously deflationary.” “As a hard-drinking manic-depressive, I’m more concerned about the Chinese economy.” It injects a note of personal drama into otherwise abstract arguments.

  77. This is awesome. My talking points for my upcoming settlement negotiations just went to a whole new level thanks to Rocky and HM.

    Now if I could only get Rocky’s disembodied barren womb to make a personal appearance at the talks . . . .

  78. What does everyone think about Greece?

    I think the Germans, who have defaulted three times within living memory*, need to get off their high horse.

    * And what did the do with all the money they borrowed and then defaulted on? Uh huh…

  79. I think I may have missed an opportunity to reallocate some of my retirement funds.

  80. Rhett– I was looking the first post trying to figure out what future comment you’d been talking about! (It’s late in the day….)

    HM and Rocky– Perfection.

  81. WCE – I don’t hold you accountable for the views of the people in your home state, but what the heck is going on in Iowa? From CNN “In the all-important early caucus state of Iowa, Trump is locked in a fight for second place with famed neurosurgeon Ben Carson.”

  82. Rhett,

    As a Taurus*, I think on the one had the Greeks were kinda led down the garden path with all those Olympics loans and severe austerity isn’t the best way to get their economy working again, but on the other hand it seems like they may have one of those no-trust cultures where you assume everyone’s out to fiddle the system so of course you’ve got to get your share, in which case it’s hard to see the official economy ever really getting on track.

  83. As a mother of four with an engineering degree, I had a far better conversation at the Bounce House with a mother of five-under-five (ending with twins) with an engineering degree. It involved the failure rates of low dose hormonal birth control and the likelihood that one birth control failure predicts another and that the second failure will be twins. Just one of those random statistics conversations that women engineers with 4+ children including twins get into…

  84. “I think the Germans, who have defaulted three times within living memory*, need to get off their high horse.”

    You forgot to say “Simon says.” “As an uber-Platinum Medallion member, I think. . . .”

  85. HM,

    If the primary creditors were Danish, you would have a point:

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rescue_of_the_Danish_Jews

    That the primary creditor is Germany…?

    At least the Greeks pissed away their ill gotten gains on high living and Olympic stadium debacles. The Germans pissed it all away on ill fated plans for world domination and epic orgies of slaughter.

  86. Rhett, tell me about it — my youngest spent the Grand Canyon evenings in the parental room watching what must have been Holocaust/Nazi Week on Nat Geo because for some reason his sibs were putting up a big fuss about watching it in the kid room. (Yavapai Lodge rooms include tv although not A/C, and we weren’t out star-watching or anything because our daytime exertions left us pretty wiped out.)

  87. You forgot to say “Simon says.” “As an uber-Platinum Medallion member, I think. . . .”

    I was just talking to DW about Sir Nicholas.

    Sir Nicholas dies and gets to the heaven line and he sees billions of prople waiting in a millennia long purgatory line. He scans his pass and the heaven computer goes:

    St. Peter appears and says, “Sir Nichols – you’ve been upgraded. Please come with me.”

    As I said to DW’, “Quick, we need to rescue a boat load of Libyan refugees! I don’t want to be in the regular line.”

  88. Meme – Hoping for an update with good news.

    Unrelated. Since I’m rich, and therefore listen to audiobooks on my commute, I want to share that I’m really enjoying Bryson’s “Made in America.” I groaned a little when it arrived in the mail because it’s 15 discs long (and just prior I had returned an equally long book halfway through because it was so dry), but this one is light enough to keep your attention. It’s more like an informal history of the United States with a constant focus on the evolution and development of language, and with Bryson’s characteristically dry sarcasm throughout. There are frequent, actual LOL moments, such as this morning in his discussion of the evolution of Uncle Sam, who only with the famous “I Want You” poster “took on a much more severe, almost demonic personality.”

  89. We are in waiting mode. The process is hampered by the fact he came on July 1, the day the new residents arrive, and tomorrow starts the three day weekend. He is not in imminent danger, but his condition is not improving. The young docs scheduled a stress test, but he can’t walk 100 ft without gasping and his BP is stratospheric. Never go to the hospital without an advocate, even in a top notch medical area.

  90. Meme – I am so sorry about your husband. I hope his condition does improve soon.

    Sorry to miss the discussions yesterday but we are on vacation and I keep forgetting to check my phone!

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