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Service Announcement: We're Going Away For A Little Bit!
Yep, we're taking a little break from NOGOODFORME! No, we're not off for Fashion Week or anything like that, just doing a little back-end makeover that should make it easier to comment and load our site faster and enable all sorts of technical wizardrous goodness. In the meanwhile, though, things may get a little messy over here, so pardon our dust! We'll be turning comments off, so if you are just DYING to get in touch with us, reach us at editors (at) nogoodforme (dot) com.
We should be back in about a week, week and a half, with fun things like the latest Astro-Cinema post (Cancers, you finally have your day) and FALL FASHION CONCEPTS. I know you're all on the edge of your seats. In the meantime, why not peruse this YouTube vid of a puppy rolling on its back?
Snapshot: Listening, Reading, Watching, Wearing, Wanting
Listening: PJ Harvey, Is This Desire?, Duran Duran, Rio; the Knife; King Tubby
Watching: OK, I know I'm making my way through Mad Men at a slow pace, but I finally started season three. Also, I just saw Going the Distance, which would be just an OK movie if not for the sheer likability of the actors. I liked it fine, it's a likable movie.
Reading: Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman, Haruki Murakami.
Wearing: A grey cashmere "sweatshirt," skinny jeans, ballet flats, messy hair, army parka.
Wanting: I don't want to deal with anything, I have fucking allergies, my head is GOING TO EXPLODE.
Maybe "Rio" by Duran Duran will make me feel better.
Listening: "Big Pimpin'" by Jay-Z and an acoustic-guitar-based rendition of "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen"
Watching: a really cute movie called Timer! If you love awkward little romantic comedies starring dudes from Gossip Girl* and set in my neighborhood, you should totally watch it on Netflix right now. Also I saw Foxes (Cherie Currie + Jodie Foster + Damone from Fast Times at Ridgemont High + Scott Baio as this total babe-in-training skater boy) and it's BONKERS.
Reading: A Boy of Good Breeding by Miriam Toews, which sadly isn't filling the Nomi Nickel void
Wearing: jeans + grey v-neck tee + zebra-striped ballet flats + knit beanie cuz it's c-c-c-cold...
Wanting: a Guys' Night Out with a Neil Young dance party
*Jack Bass and Aaron Rose, who's actually kind of adorable, when he's not being Aaron Rose:
+ Laura Jane
Listening: John "JWoww" Cale
Watching: Jersey Shore (bitch)
Reading: Jimmy "JWoww" Joyce
Wearing: My topknot, you know, it's such a good hairstyle, it's a situation. My hoody, you know, this is the THLV I call it, the chill-out THLV. For when I just chillin', you know? The topknot, the hoody, the leggings, the Vans. It's a situation; even when I'm chillin', you gotta look fresh. Fresh to death. In my jammies, even. It's a situation.
Wanting: 1) To get high with JWoww; 2) To get drunk with JWoww; 3) For people to call me "LJWoww" more often; 4) Dude advice from JWoww; 5) Other JWoww stuff
EVERYBODY IN THE WORLD'S FAVOURITE JWOWW MOMENT:
They Remade "Let The Right One In" As "Let Me In" And I'm Freaking Out
I really loved the Swedish vampire film Let The Right One In. It was one of my favorite films of 2008, and I loved it for its visual beauty, its delicately acted characters, the cleanness and clarity of the direction and that awesome late 70s/early 80s vibe. It struck a great balance between being both a sweet little supernatural love story and a chilling tragedy, and despite the deliberate pacing, it still managed to creep the hell out of me in a tastefully restrained way. And it's Swedish, and we all know Scandinavia is the most amazing geolocation on earth.
So when I heard that the dude who did Cloverfield was helming an "adaptation"/remake, I got that super-protective and wary feeling you get when you love something and you don't want anyone else to touch it. And then I saw your typical cheesy tv spot the other evening and it kind of made me want to cry, because it had that horrible melodramatic voiceover ("an ancient secret...over 200 years old...") and the typical horror movie trailer style to it. But then I caught this two-minute trailer and felt much better.
Although I could do without the bombastic, generic music of the trailer and I miss the gender ambiguity of Eli (now Abby, the girl vampire), I'm stoked that the beautifully austere, wintery visual style and setting seems to be retained, and it's clear even from this little bit that the director draws beautifully on the original film. It IS spiritually Scandinavian! So I feel better. A little. Maybe.
Heavy Rotation: Interpol, Josef K, ZZ Top, Neil Young
Interpol, "Summer Well"
Despite my official Interpol-ambivalence, I can't help but have what I call a "bro spot" for them in my heart. We're basically from the same generation of New Yorkers, meaning we first arrived in the city at around the same time and kicked around at the same nightlife parties in our struggling-in-the-shithouse days--only of course they got out of the shithouse and became successful rock stars. Or are they successful rock stars? Strangely enough, judging from their latest, self-titled album, they seem to be going through some doubt or lack of focus or early midlife crises or something about their successful rock star-ness. "Summer Well" is off Interpol, and it occupies the hallowed "track three" position of the record, which I've always said is the "iconic song of the album" position of most albums. That's pretty true in this case, as what's great and what's not with this track epitomizes the strengths and limitations of the record--it begins promisingly, but it doesn't quite gel in a strange way. Overall Interpol sound as dark and stylish as ever, and they may be even a little more vulnerable and revealing in terms of emotional content--but there's something about their songs in this go-round that doesn't quite cohere. Maybe they are sad that their bro gang is breaking up, what with Carlos D taking his gun holster and Latin-Gothic vibe somewhere else? I don't know, because even when Interpol flirted with mournfulness and melancholy, they still knew how to power out a track like "Slow Hands." They need a bit of that back in their groove, along with those nifty little dance-shuffles that they do in the video. Gentlemen of Interpol, if you're reading this: Cheer up! Hugs, not drugs! Go to Hawaii! Something! There's a bro spot in my heart with your name on it when you do, dudes! (Kat)
Josef K, "Fun 'N' Frenzy"
Before there was Interpol, Franz Ferdinand, Arctic Monkeys and a million other herky-jerky bands, THERE WAS JOSEF K!!! Seriously amazing post-punk from Scotland back in the day. Check out their anthologies Endless Soul or Entomology, you won't be sorry. Rock critics overuse the word "seminal" for bands like Josef K, but in this case, it's totally warranted. Half of musical 2006 wouldn't have existed without them! (Kat)
ZZ Top, "Balinese"
BUY THIS MP3
On Monday night at the bar down the street from my house I got a Violet Vapor (champagne + creme de violet) and ate strawberries from a plastic bag in my purse and Nick the IT Guy from The Office was there and they played this song. I like this song because I like all songs that were in the movie Dazed and Confused, and also because - according to allmusic.com - Guys' Night Out is my favorite music theme. So let's have a Guys' Night Out sometime. Let's make every night a Guys' Night Out from now on. (Liz)
Neil Young, "When You Dance I Can Really Love"
BUY THIS MP3
I was in a bad mood yesterday! So I went for a walk, like Einstein. After about an hour "When You Dance I Can Really Love" came up on my iPod shuffle and my black mood lifted a little and I made the decision that all discotheques everywhere should always play lots of Neil Young (or bars or whatever, wherever you go dancing on Guys' Night Out).
DJ BLACK EYES'S TOP FIVE FAVORITE NEIL YOUNG SONGS FOR DANCING (with dance-style suggestions)
5. "Are You Ready for the Country?" (the jitterbug - but, like, a slow jitterbug)
4. "When You Dance I Can Really Love" ("generic rock dancing")
3. "Sedan Delivery" (Ally Sheedy in The Breakfast Club)
2. "Cortez the Killer" (weird ballet)
1. "Cinnamon Girl" (any old way you want)
P.S. "Welfare Mothers" almost made the cut. The suggested dance style for that one would be "new wave." (Liz)
Tags: Albert Einstein, bad moods, bro spots, Dazed and Confused, discotheques, DJ Black Eyes, Guys' Night Out, Hawaii, Interpol, Josef K, Neil Young, sly Mad Men references, the jitterbug, Violet Vapor
HOW TO LIVE: Tips on Reselling Clothes At Secondhand Shops
A few weeks ago I got a few queries on Twitter and in real-life (OMG wozzat?!) on reselling clothes on Ebay and at resale and consignment shops. I didn't realize till I rattled off all my tips and advice that I actually had a lot of experience with this, so I thought I'd share here once and for all--just so I can say "Don't you read my blog?!!!" in my best accusatory manner to the next person who asks me about this. Kidding! I just thought since it's fall and a changing-of-the-seasons, this might be useful to people cleaning out their closets right now. Also, it's a new moon in Virgo, and if THAT isn't an auspicious time to renew your wardrobe, I don't know what is!
Reselling clothes is a minor but fine art in the stakes known as fashion-on-the-cheap, and if you do it right, it's a valuable strategy in keeping a wardrobe updated, refreshed and in a state of I'm-never-bored-with-my-clothesness. I'm only going to cover reselling at brick-and-mortar resale shops, the kind where you bring your used clothing haul in and get credit or cash for your stash--but pipe up in the comments if you want to read any Ebay- or consignment-specific stuff, or if you have your own advice about reselling clothes.
First off, my own experience with reselling has been pretty intense but rewarding. For the past few years (!!!) I've been on a serious wardrobe-reorganizing tear that has actually been totally awesome for my soul in ways that I haven't even anticipated. It's kind of remarkable to realize it--especially considering the rather baroque state of my closet a few years ago--but I have lived out of a beautifully-organized suitcase (yes, SUITCASE) for the past four months and have felt totally satisfied with my fashion stuff. And when you feel happy with your wardrobe, you buy a lot less, and clothes aren't a source of guilt, annoyance or self-loathing--they're 100% fun. Reselling clothes has been key in my whole "Zen wardrobe" approach, helping me to get rid of stuff I no longer want and need and still get decent value for it, and it's helped me to reinvent and renew the basis of my wardrobe in a ecofriendly, inexpensive way.
So, here's some of the best advice that I have when I help others resell:
WHEN TO RESALE VS. WHEN TO EBAY
I find that it's a question of volume here--if you've got only a few good-value items (i.e., good quality, in-season and designer-y) , I'd Ebay them if you're so inclined. You'll get a better return on Ebay if you market your item right, and you don't have to trek out to a resale shop for just a few items. But it's a pain in the ass to list lots of items, so if you've got a bunch of clothes or are looking to rid yourself of lots of stuff at once just to make some room, take it to a brick-and-mortar resale shop. Even if they don't take everything, often they'll have their own "donate" pile to take to traditional charity-shops, which will save you an additional trip to Goodwill.
KNOW THE SHOP & CALL AHEAD
It pays to visit the shop in question and check out what they're selling and who they're selling to. Some secondhand shops tend to specialize in younger clientele looking for designer and trendy clothing; others in more professional and working clothing, and others do only vintage, sometimes of the high-end variety. Do some research via online city guides or Yelp.com or wherever to find out the "retail landscape" of your particular city or town. If you can't visit, pick up a telephone (OMG wozzzat?) and call to ask. Most buyers are usually pretty upfront about this stuff--they don't want to waste time sifting through a bunch of stuff that isn't right for their market, and it'll save you time and energy not schlepping stuff that won't work for that particular store.
While you're on the phone, ask if they have particular buying times, if they prefer you make appointments to see a buyer (esp. if you have a really large amount of clothes to unload), ask about their clientele, what they're looking for at the time you want to sell, what their compensation is (cash, store credit, check if your items sell after a certain point), what sizes they take (I know, sad, but it's true that some stores prefer smaller sizes), and if they'll take any particular items you may have questions on (like, you have a Chanel jacket, but it's got a rip in the seam...etc.) It's a pain in the butt to haul stuff, so be a Girl Scout and prepare yourself by getting all your questions answered so you don't have to bring in unnecessary items.
SEASONS ARE IMPORTANT
Retail is all about supply and demand, and a key piece of advice I give about reselling is to sell only what season the resale shop is buying for. It doesn't matter if you're selling a fabulous Max Mara coat--if you're trying to get rid of it in the middle of July, it mostly likely will not fly. You have to realize that stores have to store stuff physically, and each item they take in must go fast. Maybe some shops may take it, but you won't get the value you're looking for. Call first and ask what season the resale shop is buying for. And if you're just looking to unload stuff fast, then sell unseasonal items on Ebay or wait till you can get rid of them in season. Sometimes if it's a great item, a store will take your out-of-season clothes, but you won't receive the highest value you can get out of it. But again, call ahead and ask: every store manages inventory differently. One time I called in the summer just to ask if a store was buying for fall yet, and it ended up they were looking for cold-weather coats and jackets for some charity initiative and I got a nice penny digging them up from the back of my closet.
MAKE SURE IT'S ALL CLEAN AND IN GOOD CONDITION
This actually makes a big difference in my experience. I've had wrinkled or unwashed stuff (DON'T LECTURE, I WAS IN A HURRY!) that didn't get picked up one time, but then a good cleaning or dry-clean got it accepted the next time I swung by. Buyers tend to eyeball stuff pretty quickly since they have so much to go through, so make it easy for them to spot your gems.
SELL IN THE MIDDLE OF THE WEEK
This is really about selling during that sweet spot when the store isn't as busy and the inventory has been a bit more emptied from the weekend's sales. Whatever the reason, I find selling generally on a Tuesday or Wednesday ups your chances of getting more of your stuff accepted for selling, and selling on a weekend? Forget it. But every store has its own traffic patterns, so use your fancy phone and talk to a real-life human to find out when's the best time to bring something in. But it's been my general experience that non-peak times work best for selling.
AND A BIT ABOUT USING RESELLING AS A WAY TO EDIT AND TRANSFORM YOUR WARDROBE
At some point, if you're good at it and you make it a strategy on dealing with organizing your closet and wardrobe in general, reselling becomes a key piece of refining and maintaining your wardrobe. Basically my m.o. after My Great Closet Cleanout of Summer 2008 (which was an epic of epicness in its own right, I regret not documenting it for nogoodforme) was to really pare down my wardrobe and make sure every item was of such quality that I would love it forever and/or be able to sell it off at a decent resale value if I wasn't so in love with it anymore. Three fulltime years of classes and film school had taken their toll and my wardrobe was pretty much a hot mess. But a hot mess doesn't really work for a Manhattan closet, and something had to be done or else I was in danger of being pegged on the head by a random overstuffed bag of clothing every time I opened my closet door. Inspired by my beau at the time, who managed to go on tour with nothing but a tiny duffle bag of clothes and an extra pair of shoes, I was going to reinvent myself as a clothing minimalist even if it killed me.
It took forever and a lot more self-awareness and a wholesale reinvention of my shopping and consumption habits, which I won't get into here--but reselling became a key part of paring down in a happy, satisfying, non-hairshirt-y way. Basically at the beginning of the season I would clean out my closet for the season, figuring out what I didn't want or need anymore, and then I would unload the unwanted but cool items at Beacon's Closet or Buffalo Exchange. (I unloaded stuff like a Rick Owens sweater and a Chloe blazer--I'm sure someone out there is super-happy with them!) Taking the credit I got at those stores, I'd pick up anything that caught my fancy for the upcoming season and pretty much not buy anything new unless it was a genuine need. Doing this for a few consecutive seasons, I realized at some point that I basically buying clothes only out of the cash and credit I got via reselling, which was cool--it was ecofriendly, cheap and I still got to shop but it wasn't as toxic to my budget and didn't give me that icky feeling of being wasteful.
Of course, there are a few factors that made this work--namely, living in a great resale market like NYC and having access to great clothes in the first place. At any rate, I'm a huge fan of reselling clothes (and buying vintage and secondhand in general), so hopefully the above info will help out a few people who find the process mystifying or overwhelming.
(Don't ask me what the above graphic means. I found it on Google image search under "clothing racks." It's mystifying, no?)
Random Picture Entry: Neil Young and a DOG!!!
(aka the George Harrison and a KITTEN!!! of today)
My dream combo for tomorrow: Jimmy Page and a satanic goat.
Random Picture Entry: George Harrison and a KITTEN!!!
And then I died.
"SONIKKK HATE," by Laura Jane Faulds & Chelsea Fairless Six Years Ago
When I was nineteen years old, I lived in an apartment by the White Castle on Metropolitan Avenue in Brooklyn with Chelsea, who grew up to write the killer blog Cat Party, and our beloved friend Neil Aspinall. The three of us spent the bulk of our time getting stoned, watching Mo Rocca's short-lived reality TV show Things I Hate About You on DVR, eating White Castle emotionally, hating our lives, listening to "Vertigo" by U2, playing with these Bratz dolls we bought, hating Ronald Reagan, and obsessively hating Thurston Moore and Kim Gordon with the fire of a thousand suns.
In today's nogoodforme Snapshot, I mentioned that Kim Gordon and I once bitch stared each other down in the Prince Street J.Crew, which was instigated by how, at the time, my entire existence was defined by my ideological issues with Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore. Asked nogoodforme reader Amy, What ideological issues did you have with Gordon/Moore? I then proceeded to dig up my notebook from Fall 2004, where I came across a thirteen-page-document entitled "SONIKKK HATE: Evidence," which more than explains my Gordon/Moore-related ideological issues of yesteryear. I am now going to type out the entire piece, because it's fucking brilliant.
NOTE: THIS WORK DOES NOT NECESSARILY REFLECT MY PRESENT OPINIONS ON THURSTON MOORE AND KIM GORDON; IT IS THE WORK OF TWO DELIRIOUS AND HATEFUL TEENAGERS FROM THE PAST. I AM REPRODUCING IT BECAUSE IT IS HILARIOUS. PLEASE DO NOT LEAVE COMMENTS ARGUING ABOUT HOW THIS LIST IS STUPID AND OFFENSIVE BECAUSE I KNOW IT. THAT IS EXACTLY WHY IT IS BRILLIANT. I LIKE THURSTON AND KIM SO DON'T WORRY ABOUT EXPLAINING WHY I SHOULD PLEASE.
-In a 1993 interview, Kim Gordon specifies "judgmental people" and "hypocrits [sic]" as 2 of her dislikes. Though her commitment to the infantile Sonic Youth aesthetic may prevent her from acknowledging as such, may we remind Ms. Gordon that H-Y-P-O-C-R-I-T-E is spelled with an E and apparently also with a K-K-KIM
-Kim Gordon is a "self-proclaimed pseudo sex symbol" God how cocky can you be
-Kim Gordon is aging in the same way as Iggy Pop (key words: sinewy, leathery etc)
-OK Sorry the Strokes aren't cool enough for you (although they didn't use to be so lame in fact you losers thought they were cool (or should I say kool) enough to call a song "Sonic Youth Says Hello To The Strokes" but OHHHH They're so corporate now...) At least the Strokes aren't PRETENDING like you KKKim
-Sonic Youth should be FORCED to listen (REALLY listen) to Velvet Revolver's Contraband
-Thurston Moore will never be as 1) Talented 2) Cool or probably even 3) Smart as <3Slash<3
-Sonic Youth: we fucking challenge you to write a song as good as "Welcome to the Jungle" or even "Machinehead." Or Fucking PIANO MAN. If you're gonna dish it out you better be able to take it. Actually fuck- write a song as good as "Hard to Explain" by the Strokes for that matter.
-Why can't you be as chill as Missy Elliott MJB (Mary J Blige <3) and Ciara???
-Sonic Youth promote a subverted version of authority ("First Couple of Indie Rock") that OPPRESSES THE OPPRESSED
-Oprah & Gayle are WAY cooler!!!!
-They hate fun.
+ Continue reading ""SONIKKK HATE," by Laura Jane Faulds & Chelsea Fairless Six Years Ago"
Snapshot: Listening, Watching, Reading, Wearing, Wanting
Listening: Radiohead, In Rainbows, which I finally listened to after YEARS of having it. Okay, that's a bit melodramatic, it was only released in 2008, which isn't that long ago, but I've had it forevs and didn't listen to it till now. Which is weird, no? Also, my parents being the packrats that they are, still have a cassette player, so I've been listening to lots of old mix TAPES.
Watching: Bright Star, which is kind of a dull script but so beautifully shot. And Ben Whishaw is easy on the eyes. Also, I'm Not There, where Ben Whishaw is once again easy on the eyes, but Cate Blanchett's totally amazeballs playing Bob Dylan.
Reading: I finished up the whole Hunger Games trilogy, reading Mockingjay two times in a row--once in a big inhale on a plane, and then a more leisurely reading again. Someone on here (meaning, comments on Snapshot) recommended The Hunger Games and I have to be grateful and appreciative totally and forever, because those books were such great reads. THANK YOU, READER WHO RECOMMENDED HUNGER GAMES! I haven't enjoyed a trilogy so much since His Dark Materials! Next up: if the cooler weather holds, I want to re-read Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, because I love reading that book in the fall. If not, I'll read The Poisonwood BIble.
Wearing: I am wearing my favorite hoodie sweatshirt, cutoffs, flipflops and a Balenciaga bag.
Wanting: I need more money, but I want a vacation so bad right now 'cause I feel BURNED OUT.
Listening: "Monster" + "Born to Hand Jive" by Sha Na Na
Watching: Mad Men, which is apparently now the only thing I ever watch
Reading: reread Play It As It Lays & now I'm going to read all the stories in Angela Carter's Burning Your Boats that I've never read before
Wearing: I've mastered the art of the "messy braided pigtail." So: messy braided pigtails, plus clothes & accessories.
Wanting: I want P.A.G.A.N. (People Against Goodness And Normalcy) to be a real cult so I can join it (see below)
I almost made a whole post out of this vid but then I practiced restraint. Tom Hanks is so good at rapping! I remember going to see this at the movies when I was nine and being so scandalized by the fact that one of the characters was named "The Virgin Connie Swail."
+ Laura Jane
Listening: Obviously! The ONLY song! "Monster" by Kanye West, right? I'm not alone in this. Now that we've figured out that Kanye is John and Jay is Paul, I just care so much about Kanye West suddenly. Suddenly.
Watching: A cellist wearing a purple lace dress give the greatest bitch stare I've ever seen in my life to a seven-year-old boy who went pee during her "set." It even managed to usurp the bitch stare I received from Kim Gordon that time I bitch stared Kim Gordon down at J.Crew five Christmases ago while I was buying my plaid rain boots. At the time, my entire existence was defined by my ideological issues with Kim Gordon and her husband. Perhaps this is still true about me? By the way, I just typoed Kim Gordon as "Jim Gordon." HOW HILARIOUS IS THAT???
Reading: Hella not Ulysses. What's "read"?
Wearing: A knot on the top of my head; this drapey floral babydoll thing I bought at H&M that is probably as "nineties revival" as I'll ever get.
Wanting: Writing career, South of France, nothing else, point finale
Tags: Angela Carter, Ben Whishaw, cellists, Hunger Games, Joan Didion, Kanye West, Kanye West=John Lennon, Kim Gordon, nineties revival, People Against Goodness And Normalcy, Radiohead procrastination, South of France, the messy braided pigtail, when Tom Hanks raps