Pick-A-Day

July 2020
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Whatchamacallit 110: Men’s Silver Satyr Torc Bracelet

Men’s Silver Satyr Torc Bracelet

This is one of my few pieces of jewelry, another bracelet.

I used to wear this Men’s Silver Satyr Torc Bracelet frequently – it weighs less than the previously shown Navajo Turquoise Bracelet, which makes it more manageable on a day-to-day basis.

The bracelet was made by Esculpta, a jewelry company based in Greece. This was not the first product I bought from the company, but it was the first that I let friends see me wear.

Including shipping, I paid 285.75 – based on context clues in the email receipt, I believe this is in US dollars. The same item goes for 265€ plus shipping today. I had to get it custom made because my wrists are thick…

I love it – I probably need to polish it since it looks a bit tarnished – and I should get back into the habit of wearing it.


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

Whatchamacallit 109: Mützchen

Mützchen

This is actually the second Mützchen that I’ve owned – I gave the first one away, a move I regretted.

This was attached to the top of a bottle of fruit juice – a promotion of sorts to encourage me to buy that brand of juice (I forget which) and to learn about the charity, basically the German Red Cross.

In theory, my Mützchen was made by Cornelia.

The vast majority of the time it stays in my pencil jar, providing warmth to the top of a pair of scissors.

When I got my first little hat, I sent a photo of it to a friend, noting that it was too small for my head. She said I had a head it would fit on and could I please send her a photo of the hat on that head.

That particular photo remains untaken…


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

Whatchamacallit 108: Brandenburg Tor – as cookie cutter, again.

 

Brandenburg Tor

Unlike the previous Brandenburg Tor cookie cutter, this one is actually functional: by eliminating the fiddly details that made the previous one accurate, this one keeps only the important lines and shapes, leaving you with the impression of Brandenburg Tor.

This stays with my collection of Brandenburg Tors, in my kitchen, a cute reminder of where I live.


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

Whatchamacallit 107: The Male Nude by David Leddick

The Male Nude

I bought this book in the summer of 1998, shortly before moving to Bloomington, Indiana.

In fact, I ordered it online and had it shipped to Bloomington, only for it to get there before I got there. A friend had to pick it up from the UPS warehouse and keep it for me – which was embarrassing on many levels: first, it’s a big ask; second, I was tiptoeing out of the closet and I wasn’t sure I was ready to tell her. (It turns out that she already knew.)

Since acquiring the book, I have looked at it rarely: it turns out that I’m not the type of guy who looks at books of photographs all that often. In fact, I have a number of these books, many of which I’ve only looked at once and are, otherwise, now on display to visitors, a message about my pretentiousness and/or love of naked men.

The book is still for sale – Amazon USA lists it for $20, albeit published in 2015. Mine is copyrighted 1998. It would be interesting to see what additions and subtractions were made between the two editions.


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

Whatchamacallit 106: Wyoming Truck with the Bronze Boot

Wyoming Truck with the Bronze Boot

It’s like I do not talk about Wyoming enough – but here you are, today’s Whatchamacallit is an officially licensed University of Wyoming truck named, “Bringing home the bronze boot.”

I bought it earlier this year for $60 plus $7.95 shipping (US domestic) – shipped it somewhere stateside, picked it up whilst visiting and then brought it back with me in my suitcase.

Currently it sits near my whisk(e)y collection – so I see it fairly regularly.

The Bronze Boot is a reference to an annual travelling football trophy, housed at either the University of Wyoming or Colorado State University depend upon who won the last football game.

Happily, the Cowboys beat the Rams last November by a score of 17 to 7, so the trophy is currently in Laramie. Since being inaugurated in 1968, the trophy has spent more years in Laramie than in Fort Collins, 28 to 24 years, even though CSU actually leads the overall rivalry since 1899 with a record of 58–48–5.

I take a pretty nuanced view to the University of Wyoming and college football/sports in general: the fact is that if the University of Wyoming was not located a mere 65 miles (105 km) from Colorado State University, then the University of Wyoming would not be playing Division 1 Football Bowl Subdivision football; rather it would probably be in the Championship Subdivision, a step down. It’s even remotely possible that UWyo would be in division II.

But that’s not a debate I should really start here: rather this is a cute reminder to the world that I cheer for the Wyoming Cowboys in all its forms – not just football (even if the truck is carrying the Bronze Boot in its bed).


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

Whatchamacallit 105: Paul Revere and the North Church

Boston, Paul Revere Statue and Old North Church

Last August I visited Boston where I walked the Freedom Trail.

While there’s a lot of good things to say about the Freedom Trail in theory (great idea!), practically speaking, it has many issues.

Certainly, I enjoyed many moments on the trail, including seeing this statue of Paul Revere with the famous North Church behind him.

In fact, I bought this print because I took a very similar photograph of this exact scene, as shown in my blog post, Boston’s Freedom Trail: Simultaneously Genius and Frustrating.

The screen print was bought at a weekly arts market in Boston – it’s roughly 9” by 12”, which is sold on the RustyandIngrid.com website for $46 – I’d guess that is what I paid for mine, give or take a few bucks. I have print number 83 out of 500 and it is signed by Rusty Kinnunen, 2019. I think 9, but that could be a 7. Probably a 9.

The picture hangs on the wall opposite my couch, so I look at it quite a bit – it is a reminder that American can be great, even if it is a disaster right now. It is a reminder that people can do great things, even when oppressed. It is a reminder that from rebellion, greatness can come.

Happy Fourth of July.


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

Whatchamacallit 104: tommy

tommy

I’m not really a cologne person – or as one of my friends calls perfumes and colognes, “smells.”

This bottle of tommy is one of three smells that I own – and I rarely wear it.

But when I smell it, it takes me back to the first time.

He wore it.

Consequently, for the next few years, as long as tommy was generally popular, whenever I smelled it on a man, I was turned on.

I have no idea how popular (or not) tommy is today – I bought this bottle a couple years ago. As you can easily see, I’ve barely made a dent in it. I suppose I could squirt it on my pillows more frequently – but, ultimately, it’s not actually about smelling the scent, it’s about having the immediate ability to do so, if needed.


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

Whatchamacallit 103: Kukui Nut Lei

Kukui Nut Lei

In 2014, I went to Hawaii with a sibling – and we got lei’d upon arrival.

Yes – I went for the hokey Hawaiian tradition of getting flowers upon arrival so that we could feel as if we’d arrived, which of course we had. It was my 49th US State and my sibling’s 50th – one of the few “complete the sets” where I’ve not won.

The Lei came with the traditional orchids – but as fresh orchids are, at best, transitory, I also opted to get the Traditional Kukui Nut Lei – as shown here. This is the more “durable” and long-lasting lei – the lei that lasts for years, so-to speak.

I brought it back to Berlin and hung it with my special scarves, on my wire-man – so I see it as I enter my living room, multiple times during the day.

It’s simple, it sheds when moved around (a new discovery made today), and it evokes many pleasant Hawaiian memories.


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

Whatchamacallit 102: Armenian Alphabet Tapestry

Armenian Alphabet Tapestry

My vacation to Armenia in 2006 was, for me, transformative in many ways.

It was not an easy vacation – I did not (and still do not) speak Armenian or Russian. I also could not read the signs – the Armenian alphabet is unique and hard to puzzle out.

While there, I picked up a small tapestry of the Armenian alphabet – similar to this one. I bought it as a present for one of my siblings, promptly giving it away on my next trip to the States.

That was a decision I regretted: I thought about it quite regularly and wished I had it with me in Germany.

So I asked my Armenian friend to pick one up for me the next time he was in Armenia – he brought me two – this is the smaller (but not by much) of the two.

Seeing it reminds me of visiting the park with monuments to each letter of the Armenian alphabet, somewhere north of Yerevan. It also reminds me of the amazing experiences I had in the country – the amazing people I met, the incredible food I ate, and the challenges of traveling around the country.


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.

Whatchamacallit 101: Sky Airlines Sickness Bag

Sky Airlines

Back in May 2010, I desperately needed a vacation – it’s hard to describe how much I needed to get away in that moment.

I ended up in Antalya, Turkey, for several nights – flying Sky Airlines to and from the city.

The airsickness bag, one of only a small number I’ve ever taken from a plane, made me laugh: the airline’s slogan was “Smile in the Sky” – and clearly that could easily be a euphemism for vomit in the right context, like on an airsickness bag.

The airline went out of business in 2013 – not sure why.

I enjoyed my trip to Antalya – and that was the last time I was in Turkey. I currently do not have any desire to visit Turkey, not even to transit Turkey – all of this is independent of Covid-19 or the refugee crisis.


During the Covid-19 crisis, I am going to try and make a point of writing a blog post about an object in my home.

We’ll see how long this lasts.