Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Young Man/Old Man: New Blog

So I started a new blog. I seem to be constantly adding and deleting blogs, and it's not like I have a whole lot of time for the ones I already have. But I think since this one is about something completely different than this and Strayaway I'll be more inclined to keep up with all of them.

The new blog is called All Through One Lens (no it isn't a photography blog, although I might have to start one of those too, hmm....). This past weekend I went to the Restore Conference at Clemson Presbyterian Church. It was a great weekend and really got me thinking about my worldview. I also bought a few Francis Schaeffer books and those are definitely getting me to look through my life and how certain aspects do or (more often) don't conform to a biblical worldview. So ATOL will be a series of posts looking through my life and how I can better conform to a worldview that glorifies God and edifies me, my family, and those around me.

And who knows, maybe one day I'll post about clothes.

I'm sure this doesn't appeal to most people that check in here, but I would really appreciate consideration and comments from everyone, even (and especially) if you don't agree with me. I'd love to begin thinking more critically about my life, and discussion is one of the best ways to think critically about something.

Thanks

Conor

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Francis Schaeffer on Reading the Bible

A lot of the posts will probably be Schaeffer quotes. I've read Art and The Bible a few times, but am just getting into his main worldview trilogy - He Is There and He Is Not Silent, Escape from Reason, and The God Who Is There. This is a great quote about how spending time in the Scriptures provides a worldview correction - acts as a compass, if you'd like.


"The Bible teaches by showing how God works in the world that he himself made. We should read the Bible for various reasons. It should be read for facts, and it should also be read devotionally. But reading the Bible every day of one's life does something else - it gives one a different mentality. In the modern world we are surrounded by the mentality of the uniformity of natural causes in a closed system, but as we read the Bible it gives us a different mentality. Do not minimize the fact that in reading the Bible we are living in a mentality that is the right one, opposed to the great wall of this other mentality that is forced upon us on every side - in education, in literature, in the arts, and in the mass media." He Is There and He Is Not Silent pg. 68


I know I don't read the Bible every day, but this gives me even more reason to do so.


Conor

Monday, February 27, 2012

Young Man: Random Pictures

Another round. Some from around the yard again, some from the trails at Fant's Grove. The last one is from the side of our church, Clemson Presbyterian. All taken with the same Kodak P&S except the last, which was shot with my cell phone. Same request for comments and criticism as before. Click for bigger pictures. Thanks for looking.














Conor

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Music

As promised, a lot of my posts will be about music. I was thinking of doing music in general as my first post. It scared the heck out of me. So I'm going to focus on one of my favorite lines from one of my favorite bands.

In a Sweater Poorly Knit - mewithoutYou




If I'm a crown without a King, 
if I'm a broken, open seed,
If I come without a thing, 
I come with all I need


Quote starts at 2:07, though I highly recommend you watch the whole clip. I will hopefully discuss mewithoutYou in more depth in another post, including their musical style, but for now I'd like to just talk about this quote, particularly the last two lines.

I think they talk to the inability of man to approach God; the inability of man to have any kind of introductory part in the salvation act (the T in TULIP - totally depraved). As Come Ye Sinners puts it:

The only fitness He requireth
Is to feel your need of Him
This He gives you

They could also be taken as a statement on the worth of any works of man. Our works (and this includes worship) have no value in and of themselves. (This next part might be wrong, please correct me if it is wrong). God accepts our worship - even though it is worthless. It brings to mind Hosea 6:6 "For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings," which Jesus quotes to the Pharisees. The feeling behind the worship (or the sacrifice at that time) more worthy than the actual worship. I don't know. Maybe not.

I'd like to talk about the first two lines too. "If I'm a crown without a King"

I think that's a great way to talk of fallen man. What is a crown designed to do? Bring glory and honor to the one who wears it.  Humans were made to glorify God, and when we don't do that we are not fulfilling our purpose. We are a crown without a King when we are not using all our faculties to glorify God (and I say faculties as opposed to talents, because we should glorify God even in things that we're not good at).

And "If I'm a broken, open seed"

In order for a seed to take root and grow into whatever it will be, the seed (or "old man" if you will allow it) has to break apart and open itself.

I think these four lines together show great truths about life, but also are a great timeline of conversion.

Fallen State - Crown without a King
State of Conversion - Broken open seed
State of Worship - Come without a thing


If you've never listened to mewithoutYou, I'd recommend them. Their music genre definitely will not appeal to everyone. It's more folk now than post-hardcore (what their first few albums were), but their lyrics are astounding. Aaron (lead singer and accordion player) is also a genuinely nice guy (I met and talked to him after a show a few years ago) and really loves and is dedicated to what he does.


Conor

Old Man: Sunday Style

It was cold this morning. After a Friday morning in the 70's. Weird. I feel bad for all the farmers whose crops sprouted up and then froze today.

Really cold for me means tweed and the green cords. Ya you've seen this all before.




The pocket square is there, it just fell down a little and I didn't correct it before the picture. Big, obnoxious red paisleys.

Conor

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Welcome

Welcome to All Through One Lens. As I wrote in the What This Blog Is section, this blog will a place for me to work through (hopefully and eventually) all aspects of my life, and match them up to the worldview as set out in the Bible. If, at the end of the examination, I find that aspect at variance with scripture, I will attempt to set the two in compliance. This is a personal blog, but the Lord might see fit to bless another through my rambles.

Some examples of aspects ripe for examination: music, art, photography, fatherhood, tolerance, jobs, etc. And not every one of these will be one post. I imagine that if I stick with this blog I'll eventually have a hundred posts just about music, whether that be a genre of music, a band, a song, or a two line quote from a song. Ya, I like music. Probably too much. Hopefully these examinations will work that out.

Disclaimer: I have not taken seminary courses, or studied worldview/apologetics/theology formally. I have read some books on my own, and I have been faithfully instructed in the Word weekly for years, thanks to the wonderful churches to which I've been privileged to belong. I am not an expert. There will be errors. Please feel free to criticize, disagree, or otherwise discuss anything here. I will do my best to be humble and acknowledge my errors and faults.

Thank you for taking the time to visit. I hope you find something worthy here.

Conor

A Quick Note

I recently realized that Blogger hasn't been e-mailing me when comments come in like before. I'll try and play with the settings to fix this, but an apology to all those who I've accidentally ignored. I found this out by scrolling through my blogroll and being surprised to see comments on posts I didn't know anyone commented on.

Conor

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Old Man: Guaranteed to Last: First Look

A few days ago, a PR firm working for LL Bean sent me an email about the new book, Guaranteed to Last. They offered me a copy to review, and it arrived today. I got back from a run today and it was waiting for me. I had a training class tonight so I haven't fully delved into it yet, but here are a few shots and some initial thoughts.

Personalized letter from the PR director. Notice the nice footer of Bean Boots

Bubble wrapped, but you can still see how awesome this book looks.

The cover is canvas. It feels very good in hand.

Back cover.

Foreword (by Leon Gorman, current Chairman of the Board of LL Bean) - nice pages and pictures, easy to read print

The book has writing by the author (Jim Gorman) and scans of original ads and correspondence.

Yep, it talks about True Prep


"Drink Hearty, and remember the place you got this cup - L.L. Bean"


Overall, I really like this book. It looks nice, feels nice, and is very well written. The narrative is centered around L.L. Bean's life (at least so far), and each chapter focuses on an iconic L.L. Bean product that came around at that time. Examples include the Maine Hunting Boot (of course, as it was the founding product of LL Bean), The field coat, the boat and tote, and the Norwegian sweater.

The history is fascinating. Like I said I'm only halfway through the first chapter, but the personal history of LL combined with the history of the products give good insight into one of the coolest and most influential companies in American history. I'll be posting more in-depth reviews throughout this week and the following weeks, with focuses on content, book quality, and entertainment.

As of now, I can highly recommend this book. Available from LL Bean here.

Conor

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Old Man: Sunday Style


Cold and wet this morning, and afternoon, oh and tonight. This dictated jeans, tweed, and boots.


 

The tweed is an old high 3/2 roll (seen in this post) herringbone. Great jacket. The shirt is a brown Brooks university stripe and the tie is a PRL madder.


Chippewa boots to slosh through the mud.






After church we went out to see a neat property for sale with some friends. The guy had built almost everything, including a workshop he built from materials he got from an old school he tore down himself. Pretty neat guy, and 25 acres of nice rolling woods. Anyways, since the weather was nasty I swapped the tweed for this jacket and lost the tie.

Dryer weather ahead. Looks like I'll have to hit the trails again tomorrow.

Conor

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Young Man: Random Pictures


My wife and I decided that we would invest some of our forthcoming tax money for a nicer camera. The first priority will be for our daughter and other family moments, then for the blog, probably, and then for nice pictures. Until that time, I'm trying to get better at taking pictures with what we have, which is an old Kodak point and shoot. I've been reading a lot of Ken Rockwell, and if there's one thing that he drives home in every single article I've read (seriously, like every one), it's that good photography isn't dependent on the camera, but the composition and vision of the photographer. So I'm going to be practicing with what I've got and trying to get better with that while we're waiting. 

These are pretty boring; I was just walking around the apartment yard this afternoon, but I think some of them turned out OK for a noob like me. Any pro tips would be appreciated.











I'll probably be doing more posts like this, hopefully once a week, of experiments with taking pictures. So get used to it. Sorry if you hate it.

Conor

Old Man: Watches

Expensive watches are cool, but I'll never really need or be able to buy one. Timex is fine with me.

Here are the two I wear nowadays (besides my heart rate monitor, but that's only for running).


An old Fossil chrono that my wife bought for me for our first Valentine's Day as a couple. It still looks great, but most of the chrono dials don't really work. That's OK. I only really use the main dial.



A Timex Easy Reader I got at Target a few months back. Looks great, works great, cost less than a meal at most restaurants.

For the straps I have, see Watch Straps. I usually have the orange and blue stripe on the Timex and the solid blue on the Fossil. I need to switch it up more often.

Speaking of Timex and Target, I was at Target today and saw the Timex Weekender watch. I think they're great, and they come with a nylon strap already, instead of the crummy fake leather that came on this one. If I were buying a new watch (not any time soon), this is the one I would go with. Looks good, and under $40.


Conor

Friday, February 17, 2012

Abbreviations and Acronyms

The abbreviations and acronyms page is finally up, as promised in this post.

If you don't see something you'd like included, shoot me an email or comment and I'll put it in there.

It started out serious, but that got boring so there are some lame jokes in there. Mostly at my own expense.

Conor

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Old Man: Slip Joints

From my last post, you can tell I like locking pocket knives. They are great for EDC and will handle most of what you'd need it to on a regular basis.

But nothing is as classic and beautiful as a nice slip joint knife (some of the titanium heat treated lockbacks are pretty sweet). My dad has always loved slip joints, mostly Bucks. He always had a nice Buck or two on him. I've had a Buck made LL Bean branded slip joint for a while, but didn't use it very much. Then a few years ago we were in Florida for Christmas and my father-in-law took me to Gander Mountain and I bought this Case knife.


Functional, pretty, and orange to boot.


I think this is a Stockman pattern. Very sharp.

I carry this around in nicer outfits (suits, the EP navy chinos, etc). It's a little classier than the CRKT.

Conor

Monday, February 13, 2012

Young Man: Gear

I love Everyday Carry (EDC). It's fun to see what everyone carries with them daily. Super nerd over here.


Nothing like what the guys on that site carry (as in everything, too poor for awesome stuff). But I like it.

Hillside bandana, Waskerd wallet, ACE hardware carabiner, pocket ESV, Embassy pen, CRKT M-16, Maratac AAA light, Timex on American Eagle strap.


I feel like that is a pretty good carry for me. When I first discovered EDC I went crazy with stuff and paracord (actually that's when I first started playing around with it). I used to carry around this monster too:


That's 20' of paracord (my first try at knotting) with a Gerber Shard, CRKT Torx driver, and SAK. When I hike or go to the station I still keep this in there, but it's too much for every day.


The heart of the carry.

The blade is really big, but it is light and I love the opening system and the additional locking system.

The pen is really heavy, but I've gotten used to it and really like the heft.

My wife laughs at me for keeping a flashlight with me, but I always tell her I'll only need it when I don't have it. I do run with it though early in the morning.


Sorry for getting you involved with EDC Carson.

Conor

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Old Man: Sunday Style

This post has all the best of YM/OM. Crotch shots, wholecuts, and who knows, maybe I'll throw an ACC joke in there (UNC lost amirite?).



AE Westgates


Focus didn't work out too well on this, but you can see the bigger picture. 


Details. 


Other details.



Are you a blogger who wants some free Cordies? Check out the Cordies facebook page for a deal swapping Cordies for a review.

I'M LOOKING AT YOU SAM FRANKLIN

I totally want to see Cordies go through some extreme tests.

Send me an email if you want to take advantage.

Conor

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Young Man: Glowing Endorsements

If you don't read A Guide to Bad Taste, you really should. He is one of the smartest, wittiest, and irreverent bloggers around. His posts are spot on and bordering on blasphemous.

Anyways, he just put up a post about some blogspots (people still write/read those things?) he likes, along with a few sentences of explanation. YM/OM made the list and his justification is awesome.

"Young Man/Old Man

More crotch shots. Also, ACC jokes, some awesome whole-cuts that never get old, croakies, and penny loafers."

Awesome. At least he didn't call me a racist. And he's right those wholecuts are pretty awesome.

Thanks for the shout-out John/Sam Franklin/whoever actually writes it.

(the ADG justification is awesome too)

Conor

Young Man: An Experiment

No New Clothes in 2012

So here's the deal. As I explained in this post, I don't have much (read any) extra money to spend on clothes. I love looking at blogs and websites that have all the newest (or new trying to look oldest) togs. But at this point in my life I don't feel that buying lots of new stuff is viable, responsible, or even right for me. I was thinking about this tonight. I thought about my forced position on spending money, my current job situation (and the de facto uniform of said job), my family's attempts to cut down our consumption overall, and the light bulb came on.

So here is my pledge. For the rest of 2012, I will not buy another article of new clothing.

Here are the caveats:

  • Of course if I need underwear, socks, or undershirts, I'll buy them new. Because, gross. I'm not that hardcore. 

  • If a retailer wants to give me something of theirs to review, I'll accept it new and review it. And if I like it I'll keep it. If I don't particularly care for it or don't need it, I'll sell it here for cheap or give it away (don't get too excited, no-one's sent me anything yet).

  • This means I'll be starting to thrift again (it's been a long time since I've been to a thrift store). However, I'm not going to thrift like I did before. I'm not going to hit up three thrift stores a week, every week, looking for something good. I did this for a year or two, and all it led to was a bent closet-bar, and re-donating most of that stuff. If I need something new, I'll go to the thrift stores around here and look for it (or a reasonable substitute). If I don't find something there, I'll hit up eBay, the forums, etc. If I still can't find something AND I really need it, I'll consider buying it new. But I have a hard time believing I'll need something.

  • This pledge doesn't mean I'll be abandoning my principles of quality clothing. As a matter of fact, quality clothing really works in favor of this. If something is strong and well made, it will last a long time, meaning I won't have to buy new stuff as often. However, quality does not correspond to a certain brand, a certain material, or a certain country of origin (though I'll always defer to MIA if given the choice). Quality can be determined by handling the garment. Thrift stores offer this advantage. 

  • This pledge also doesn't mean I'll be abandoning TNSIL (Traditional, Natural Shouldered, Ivy-League) style. Patrick is a testament that great TNSIL stuff can be found at thrift stores. 


So there it is. I'll do my best to stick to the plan. If I do stray, I'll put up my rationale here and you can all berate me for being a filthy flip-flopper. And if I do find something awesome at a thrift store or on the bay, I'll put pictures up here.

Conor

Monday, February 6, 2012

Young Man: Waskerd Review, Pt. II

Or four months later (see previous review here).

Not much new to add to this review as far as words go. It's still holding up great and I still really enjoy the convenience of the outer pocket. And I still have absolutely no hesitation in recommending it for anyone.

Here's the good part: pictures.




They're not the greatest, but you can see that the leather is continuing to darken, and the nap is flattening out. It's got some scratches (mostly from my keys or knife), but I don't mind them.

Overall, Derek does great work. Go buy some stuff from him and support an American craftsman.

Conor

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Young Man: Stats Analysis

This is why I love stats.

http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=125435641&page=14

An old bodybuilding forum thread that for some reason linked to YM/OM. The good fellows then proceed to call my facial hair the greasiest they've ever seen. It's probably true (it was pretty bad back then). I just had a good laugh. Especially since the thread was called "Sperrys and Polos." True style right there.






Enjoy the game.

Conor

Old Man: Sunday Style

Started out cold, wet and foggy. Ended up warm and sunny. I'm not sure what to do with this.


 J Press ebay tweed, Nordstrom shirt, thrift wool tie, obnoxious green Polo cords





AE loafs.

Just right for this morning and way too warm for this afternoon. I'm used to this later, but not early February. Oh well. I guess I'll have to start putting away the tweed soon.

Conor