When Fuchsias Wander And Anemones Erupt

I like gardens for some of the same reasons I like middle-aged cities. Buildings and shrubs hunker down in place; although things change year to year and season to season, you can find your way around.

Just recently I moved my pot of fuchsias. Now if that isn’t one of the silliest English sentences ever written I don’t know what is. But, my fuchsias are different in their new place. I see them differently, they interact with the green background in new ways, I imagine even they are surprised.

The marigolds and alyssum trailed along, as younger kids will.


While this new spot felt very right, at the moment, I’ll most likely move them back. Right is fleeting. I recommend plant caddies with wheels. Infrastructure is to inspiration as blood flow is to love.

This year my Japanese anemones moved themselves. advancing front and center in the border, like teenagers crowding in front of a group of trick-or-treaters. You let them have the candy, because they want it so, but you think to yourself, “Someone ought to tell them to stand aside.”

Mars Bars, Jujubes, Peanut Butter Cups.

So pretty up close.


But quite tall and leggy. A little pock-marked.


Like teenagers.



They are perfect for one season. 2016 will be most happily remembered as The Year The Anemones Got Too Big For Their Britches.


Besides, at 5pm, 3 times/week, my California summer sprinklers come on. Joni Mitchell titled an entire album “The Hissing Of Summer Lawns.” They say “sssssssssssssssss.”


Were this a piece of art, hung for purchase, I’d scoff at easy sentiment. But as a five minute piece of back yard theater, I inhaled sharply and then ran forward, crying out, “Oh! Oh!”


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A Few Singular Pieces Make Retirement Style Very, Very Simple


In a suburban retirement, one really doesn’t need all that many clothes. Unless one volunteers at a high level and attends glam events. The rest of us can live pretty simply.

This doesn’t preclude style. I find that the best way to enjoy dressing simply is to find best-in-class pieces that I can wear over and again. So, as a jeans, tees, and flat shoes kind of person, I mostly want:

  1. Jeans that suit my body, in both comfort and aesthetics. Exactly what this means will differ for everyone. I like a medium wash with straight legs. You may prefer dark wash low-waisted skinnies. Or stretch leggings.
  2. Tees with something arty to them. For me this means graphics most often, as opposed to unusual silhouettes. I like my clothes traditional in their geometry. Again, your body and aesthetic may prefer an asymmetrical handkerchief hem tunic. The key is to develop your own understanding.
  3. Comfortable sandals and sneakers.
  4. All of the above should be trend-aware if not trend-forward, and in colors that work for me.
  5. And, were I to raise the bar, or try to stay warm, I’d add a jacket, a scarf that’s not shiny silk, and maybe even a hat. But I wanted to show you how I choose the absolute basics.

Above I’m wearing high-waisted 100% cotton Madewell jeans (Now on sale. BTW, I know the way I’m standing it looks as though the jeans sag, but once I move around they behave themselves), a “cropped” tee by SEA of New York, Birkenstock Gizehs, and simple diamond studs, necklace, wedding ring.

Let me first explain why I love that SEA tee. Of course, I do just like the way it looks. But, you know how “marinière” stripes are all the rage? This, my friends, is a “marin.” Van Gogh self-portrait hair reference for extra credit. Mic drop. Intellectual tongue-in-cheek fashion just slays me.


Hey sailor.

Why the jeans? Their high waist on my long torso means I can wear a quasi-cropped tee with midlife impunity. Why Birkenstocks? Because Birkenstocks, in white pearlized patent because I want to load on all the subtle detail I can.

Also, SEA is new to me but I like their stuff.

A Few More Stellar Jeans, Tees, And Flats

As Sturdy Gals know, in their hearts, even a jeans girl likes to dress up now and then. Last weekend most of my close family got together to celebrate my upcoming birthday. Turns out that the simple model of best-of-kind works for a Fun Night Out Use Case too.

I bought this little black Narciso Rodriguez dress in 2009. For you, a similar dress might be navy, gray, or brown. Or fuchsia, for that matter. These sleeves are just long enough for upper arm coverage, but short for Northern  California summer nights. Neckline shows just a enough decolletage and no more, length shows just enough of my knees. So I feel decorous, despite the extremely close fit of the wool doubleknit. Win-win.

The shoes are by Jimmy Choo. I wore them when I got married. They are a pearlized suede with crystal toe-caps and metal heels. Again, loading neutral texture details onto a classic shoe.

Oh, and I curled my hair with that Conair gizmo one last time before giving it to my daughter. The gizmo, I gave her the gizmo, not my hair.

From bathroom selfie,


to hand-on-hip blog pose. I asked my son to take an outdoor photo. “In the middle of dinner?” he asked. “Yup,” I said. Then I handed him the camera with an incorrect setting and had to Photoshop my way to black and white. Eh, you can at least see the dress seaming.



Little Black Dresses In A Range Of Silhouettes, And Alluring Shoes You Can Walk In And Wear To Dinner With Your Family


There’s a lot to be said for style in retirement. We lose our smooth upper arms, keep our little black dresses, and, with luck, gain a boatload of confidence and good humor about our looks. It’s worth investing in pieces that take our simple outfits up a notch, and in the self-understanding to know what those pieces might be.

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How I’m Voting And Why, Even If We Disagree On Several Things, You Might Do The Same, Or, Saturday Morning at 7:17am

Just when we can’t bear to listen to any more politics, it seems we must.

I am voting for Hillary Clinton. I tell you this because it appears that many more voters are undecided than I would have hoped.

There are many reasons why you might vote for Trump which will render my thoughts meaningless. I understand. In particular, your feelings about social issues, particularly issues with religious import such as gay marriage, women’s rights, abortion. Also your feelings about open borders, both inside and between countries, by which I mean (broadly) immigration, race, national defense, trade agreements. Those opinions will tend to narrow choices. They narrow mine.

But for those of you who still consider both, or neither, candidate(s) viable, I wanted to offer an idea very specific to this blog.


I can’t help but believe in our capacity to behave well. I can’t help but believe in leadership. Therefore I want a president who speaks in reasoned tones unless the threatening entity is actual and imminent and listening.

I know, ever since the FCC changed our broadcast rules, ever since the Internet broke into tiny shards, we hear a lot of hate. But it feels like we can still rise above. If the top speaks hatefully, how and where do we rise?

I do understand, only too well, the desire to enjoy Trump’s rudeness. There is a sort of charm in someone who doesn’t care. America likes a bold-faced anything. I liked Trump myself, on The Apprentice. The audacity. The bravado. But I could turn that show off.

You can’t turn off a national leader.

So please, if I could ask a favor, just consider the thought that civility matters. Let’s imagine for a moment that all else is a wash. Even if you’re tempted to endorse the brave business icon, which, I agree, can be appealing, imagine that abrasive bravado talking and deciding about issues that affect your life. Imagine insults as common currency of diplomacy and governance.

I can’t bear it. You? How do you feel about basic levels of courtesy in political discourse? Do you care?

We are going to extend this idea of civility to comments below. I thought about turning them off, dreading vitriol as I do. But that didn’t seem very civil. So we will set rules, trust in each other’s good behavior, and calmly close the door on those who won’t play. As functional societies do.

Do not say anything negative about the candidate you do not favor. And do not reply to other comments unless you want to say, “Hear, hear!” These are strict rules. I trust you.

Have a humane weekend.

A Review Of The Lotte New York Palace Hotel In Midtown Manhattan, A Surprise Bonus Budget Hotel, And Four Exemplary Restaurants

I lived in Manhattan from 1979 until 1984. I’ve visited as often as possible since I left. But to this day I can’t say I have a favorite place to stay in the city. Or a favorite restaurant. Every trip is new.

However, I do have some recommendations, and photos of where I stayed for Fashion Week, and what we ate. For a city so big, and so open to growth, sometimes that which we have experienced most recently is the best On to the details.

The New York Palace Hotel (now prefixed with “Lotte,” was “Helmsley” back in the day)

Last week I stayed at the New York Palace. The room was what I’d call medium-fancy. Incredibly comfortable beds.


Bathroom, again, medium-fancy. Well-done; nice magnifying mirror which I absolutely require to ward off all kinds of horrors, good water pressure, lighting, towels, etc. No separate show separate from tub, but let’s not be princesses, OK?


The view was better than good. In New York I’d rather have a teeny room with a view of the city than a large room lacking city reminders. I love that feeling, “I’m in NEW YORK, baby!”


The hotel doesn’t have full-day food service, which is a little inconvenient, but they do serve a good breakfast. I recommend the French toast. Up these stairs, on the mezzanine. The old Villard mansion part of the hotel is ornate gilt heaven.


Service can be slow. But friendly. In fact, the service throughout the hotel was nicer than usual in a big hotel – the people were very warm.


However, the best part of the Palace, if you are looking for a true East Side stay, is probably its location. Central to UES window-shopping and people-watching, at East 51st and Madison.

(Note that the hotel’s rates can very widely, and are far cheaper over the weekend. I advise you look at a range of dates, and investigate any corporate or group discount offers that apply.)

The Lotte New York Palace Hotel, 455 Madison Avenue, New York City, NY

Bonus: One Very Affordable Hotel I Have Enjoyed And One I’d Like To Try

Sometimes we might want to go to New York but we might want to spend smaller amounts of money. About 10 years ago I traveled to New York on business for a startup, on a budget. I stayed in the Best Western Bowery Hanbee Hotel, in Chinatown. Rates have risen in the last decade, but they’re still under $300. And don’t undervalue the salutary budget and mood effect of being able to step right out into Chinatown for soup noodles and buns.

Finally, next time I go to New York City I would actually like to stay in Brooklyn. Inspired by an article on Architectural Digest about boutique hotels in the borough, I’m intrigued by the Wythe. And this one.

Four Exemplary Manhattan Restaurants From High-End To Down Home

On to food.

Le Bernardin – 155 W 51st St, New York, NY 10019

Sue and I had one night during Fashion Week to eat dinner together. I’d just found out that my LDL cholesterol is high, I had a deep desire to act in a financially unrestrained manner, Le Bernardin, New York’s temple of fish, was right down the street. If you go before 6pm it appears you are highly likely to find a seat at the bar, no reservations required.

I had a Manhattan. I mean, one must, right?


On to the amuse-bouche. One of those dishes which make your eyes roll back into your head. A rectangle of watermelon, something replete with umami, and a spicy mélange of I know not what. Oh man. So good.


Tuna carpaccio, with crispy Parma ham. Do not think you know everything there is to know about raw tuna, because you may not.


Striped bass. In a broth. By the end of the evening the broth and several pieces of very happy bread were history.

I ate the fish too.


We had dessert but I was hallucinating from food glory so I don’t remember it. Chocolate?

Three Affordable And Still Delicious Places to Eat

Milk and Hops: 779 Broadway. A West Side beer and cheese place. That happens to make delicious sandwiches which often use cheese but also a lot of vegetables. A San Francisco vibe.

Westville: Several locations. Modern inexpensive comfort food with all kinds of vegetable side dishes, served by cheery millenials. Feels a bit like the food co-op in college? But better food? Very familial.

Cocoran: 61 Delancey St. Excellent soba, served from a small visible kitchen, to diners at long family-style tables. The real deal. The night we were there it was 90 degrees outside and 98 degrees inside when the AC broke. I had my soba cold. Vibe: New York City or somewhere in Asia, on a summer night, when the food rescues you.

And now all I can think is, what new best things will the next trip bring?

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Brief Internet Support-A-Friend Request Which Involves Looking At 4 Photos Of People Caught In Actions


My friend Laura, the photographer at Baby Picture This, is in the running for a Canon photography prize. I wrote about her work here, and here, these days her career is expanding. I know it’s kind of a big favor, I don’t take these things lightly, but if you could possibly go vote for her picture here on Facebook, I’d appreciate it – enormously. No additional Liking or Signing Up to do, just comment on the post with the number of her photo. (Update: let’s vote even if Germany is done;))

Which is 4.

There are in fact 4 photos to review, theme is Pursuit Of The Shot.

Thank you in advance to all my friends.


Bringing Home Fashion Inspiration From #NYFW2016 And Liking A Big Plaid

Often we who live lower-case suburban lives wonder what on earth upper-case Fashion has to do with us. We don’t see ourselves easily in the Big Trends – shirts without shoulders, coats covered in jewels, heels that tilt so far forward we need a strong headwind as scaffold.

So how to incorporate just enough of something new in our wardrobes that we can feel current? Not trendy, not cutting-edge, just of this era?

We pick and choose. This year, I’m considering the Big Plaid. I do not know why it looked so interesting, perhaps in contrast to the stripes and florals prevalent in recent years? In any case, I could imagine that I might find myself something along these lines.

If you’re looking to give this a shot in a less spendy manner, H&M to the rescue. Alternatively, Neiman Marcus is having a double gift card event, which makes that Current/Elliot shirtdress (which I myself would call a long top thank you very much), available for a good deal less.

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Who Is Feeling Autumnal? Or, Saturday Morning at 8:20am

Feeling autumnal?

Wait, what does that term even mean? In California, a cooler sun, a hope of rain. More brown than green, more red than pink, no yellow in sight.

We use “autumnal” to talk about our lives, too, right? We can feel autumnal, even in the bright sun. Particularly as we age. Here’s what Shakespeare thought. I’ve always loved those first four lines.

That time of year thou mayst in me behold
When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang
Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,
Bare ruin’d choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.
In me thou seest the twilight of such day
As after sunset fadeth in the west,
Which by and by black night doth take away,
Death’s second self, that seals up all in rest.
In me thou see’st the glowing of such fire
That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,
As the death-bed whereon it must expire
Consumed with that which it was nourish’d by.
This thou perceivest, which makes thy love more strong,
To love that well which thou must leave ere long.

But I’m not ready for ashes. Birds still sing, leaves in place albeit visibly veined.

This personal autumn most importantly means that my children, both of them, have reached adulthood. My son is 26, my daughter 29. And they have, in some ways, outgrown my life experience. At 26 I’d started an MBA at Columbia – making a choice that took me in revealing, difficult, and life-changing directions. At 29 I married my first husband, again, life-changing. My kids are taking different courses, all for the better, I think.

Now that I can’t give my kids advice directly from my life, I’m considering, what is my role when I’ve exhausted knowledge but feel sure of wisdom?

The nurturing part of motherhood is pretty easy. Cook breakfast burrito, but new lipstick, nothing but love. Clean sheets for a visit, money for a trip. Our authority, however, is more difficult, and suffers more shifts. My mother had to abdicate so early. The societal rupture of the 1960s, and its impact on women, meant that by the time I turned 14 I was already on a completely different path than hers. By 16 I understood our separation, by 25 I’d resigned myself to a life without maternal oversight.

I now find myself reluctant to give up my old place as leader. I imagine a hike, through the seasonal forest. But mothers and children move from monarchy to democracy. Nature doesn’t guide us.

We just keep doing the best we can.

The other day I was visiting my mother. She looked at me, in one of her moments of remembered behaviors, and asked, “What are you doing these days?” I told her I was worrying about my children. She looked down, and then up, and asked, “Are your children worried about themselves?” “Ah,” I thought. “I never worried about my children, unless they were worried. Because of the kind of people they were,” she said.

Maybe I did have a guide. Or maybe I am my own, from here.

Have a wonderful weekend.

How To Attend New York Fashion Week When You Don’t Have An Invitation Or Even Much Of A Clue


Dress: MaxMara | Shoes: Stuart Weitzman | Earrings: Blue Nile | Bag: Céline | Watch: Apple | Exceedingly rare curled hair: CONAIR

I’ve always wanted to go to Fashion Week. Well, not always. It’s so hard to avoid hyperbole in this kleig-lit era. Let’s say I’ve wanted to attend ever since I started blogging, and NYFW became a thing, and then eventually a hashtag. #NYFW2016, ain’t we modern.


Dress: OAK | Shoes: Birkenstock | Hat: Nordstrom | Bag: Céline

When Sue at Une Femme asked me to make a trip to NYC with her this September, I was tempted. But I was also deep in the throes of sorting out care for my 83-year old mother. I hemmed and hawed. As the time approached, things were settling with Mom; I was motivated. I turn 60 in a couple of weeks,  I felt a deep desire to retrieve the audacity of my youth. If only for a few days.

So at the last minute I asked Sue if it was too late for me to confirm. It wasn’t. I sent a rush of emails to friends and family, made flight reservations, googled the link to Fashion Week’s schedule, and went. (Here’s Sue’s story of our adventures, and more.)

By the time I returned home I’d seen the following:

  • The WHIT presentation, in person
  • Tom Ford’s show, through a window, darkly
  • Arrivals at Zimmerman, on the street
  • Lisa N. Hoang’s show, in person

I’d also attended a Style Coalition suite, complete with champagne, cheese, and hair primping.


Tuesday I flew to New York. Requisite airport bathroom selfie above.

Wednesday Sue and I got up, had breakfast, and headed down to Soho in search of what was what. We wandered those retail streets, ducking into both Isabel Marant (rock & roll socialite) and Morgan le Fay (clothing is art). We missed the Rachel Comey show by just a hair. It was held in an undisclosed location that just happened to be two streets over from our rambles. I didn’t mind. We ate lunch, and headed off to see if we might get into the WHIT presentation – the collection designed by Whitney Pozgay, who happens to be Kate Spade’s niece.

We passed a sidewalk stencil on the way. I felt a little like this baby, reading the world for signs and loving my outfit. I wore this tee, from SEA, and a pair of high-waisted jeans.


The WHIT attendees reminded me a tad of a Whit Stillman movie. They were quite nice, however, and opened the doors to us without a hitch. “Oh,” said the registrar, “STYLE bloggers.”


Kate was there, holding paper and pencil, as must any loving aunt. She goes by Kate Valentine now, did you know? Has a line called Frances Valentine.


Artists stood at easels, surrounding the seated models, sketching.


The clothes reminded me of Cacharel in the late 1970s. Ah the striped sundresses of yesteryear.


Sue and I wandered out. We ate lunch. We went back to the hotel. We changed clothes. We ate dinner. And then we walked a few blocks over to the site of Tom Ford’s show. The TBA location had been strategically leaked to the papers, at “that now-shuttered iconic restaurant, the Four Seasons.” Gawkers aplenty; we had missed most of the red carpet.


Out of nowhere, a young woman, for no other reason than gifts from the universe, said to Sue and me, “Come this way. I know how we can see the whole thing.” And round the back of the building we went, only to find ourselves on one of those random elevated concrete plazas common to the East Side. We peered into tall bronze windows. Through the bead curtains, I’ll be damned, we saw the A-list, seated at white tables, chatting. Jon Hamm next to Cindy Crawford, Terry Richardson sitting silent with beady eyes, a glimpse of Diane von Furstenburg’s red mane, while Carine Roitfeld, eyeliner smoldering, bent down to whisper in the wrap-dress queen’s ear.

Then the show began. We saw the whole dang thing. Imagine our little group, eventually, oh, seven people, noses nigh-on pressed to the windows, watching the full theater of Tom Ford and his glitterati. A fellow nose-presser showed us his Instagram feed of Alicia Keys arriving. The janitor came out a back door and watched, cellphone camera held high. As someone said, when we dispersed, “A real New York moment.” Brilliant. Redemptive, in its way, of an anxious youth.


Pretty. Most of Ford’s stuff is far more brutal. Available now, in a new way of doing business, at Bergdorf’s.

Other people’s glamour becomes far less daunting as you age.

On Thursday, first I met Lauren for lunch. Then my best friend came to town. We rode the subway in 93 degree heat and a car without air-conditioning, took a pedicab ride in Central Park, and ate at Katz Deli. Decades of friendship behind that agenda, very little fashion. So dear.


Top: UNIQLO | Khakis: J. Crew | Bag: Bottega Veneta |Watch: Similar | Hat: Nordstrom | Earrings: Similar

On Friday, my son and I spent his day off together. A return to fashion.


The boy child poses at his mother ‘s request

First he and I headed over to the Zimmerman show. One by one, perfectly undone young women entered the door. The air bent around them. I asked about entry, tentatively, the registrar shook her head. We left.


This woman arrived too late for entry, but very Zimmerman all the same

Next we went looking for Jason Wu, thinking to gawk at more arrivals. Instead we found ourselves outside the show of Lisa N. Hoang. As a young, emergent designer, she had space for We the Great Uninvited. Only ask. In we went. People stood in line.


I stood in line. My son took my picture.


Usual straight hair

The show was so beautiful. Couture clothes up front remind you about fabric, about craftsmanship. Models up close make you worry a little about their skin care regimes. And the audiences – refulgent.

Final walk for Lisa N Hoang’s show at NYFW2016 from LPC on Vimeo.

On to the Style Coalition suite. Champagne, young style bloggers, my son, me. Purple lighting.


I sat in the chair to have my hair curled with this gizmo. As you can see in the photo at top, it worked, at least for a while. I felt giddy that I knew what I was doing, although perhaps I didn’t.


Usual straight hair oingo-boingoed by humidity pre-curling

Finally, thinking to attend Kim France’s meet-and-greet at Claire Vivier’s store, my son and I went back to Soho. To while away the time, he and I shopped for a lightweight black outerwear layer for me. Although we missed Kim France – turned out the event was Thursday, not Friday – I came home from New York Fashion Week with this. Ha! Know thyself.

How To Do Fashion Week As An Interested Outsider


  • Set overarching goals
  • Bring a buddy
  • Develop Plan A with logistics, be prepared with Plan B if required
  • Set aside embarrassment
  • Go for everything
  • Take no failure personally
  • Dress as well as you can, in clothes that you love
  • Get a great haircut
  • Wear tinted moisturizer with sunscreen if you plan to walk anywhere
  • Be very, very polite and cheerful to everyone
  • Show no anxiety. Try not to feel any. Forgive yourself if you do, I as forgave myself the evident clutching of that Céline bag.

Lessons For Next Time

  • Try reaching out to a few PR reps before it all starts
  • Stay at a hotel on the West Side. Crosstown traffic is terrible; most shows in 2016 are happening near the Hudson.
  • If you hold out any hope of being photographed as Street Style, take whatever you want to wear up a notch. You are going to have to stand out, everyone’s so “done,” so vivid.
  • By the way, no one but me is wearing hats in New York City
  • By the way, all the women are wearing short black t-shirt dresses, with anything from white sneakers to Birkenstocks to slides to Ferragamo pumps

I fell short in several attempts. I missed Kim France’s event, we could perhaps have persisted at Zimmerman and gotten in, I left the city before one of my primary link partnerships opened their suite. But none of that affected my sense of success and joy in the experience.


Hat | Top  | Khakis  | Sneakers  | Suitcase: my mother | Bag: Céline yet again

While We Are At It, Some Possible NYC Fashion Trends, AKA Clothes That Looked Kind Of New And Cool Or Else Current And Still Cool

  • Very large plaids
  • Raw hem denim
  • Degradé leather
  • Ornamentation and decoration of all sorts
  • Skirts super short or mid-length
  • Bondage shoes
  • 1970s and early 80s

Me, come fall I’ll probably still be wearing oversized pants, maxidresses, and UNIQLO tees. With my new black H&M jacket. Over and out, Sturdy Gals, the world is ours to seize. That we do so politely goes without saying.


Links may generate commissions. No events I attended required mentions or links for participation; no words or acts were sponsored.


Going For It, Or, Saturday Morning at 8:10am Eastern Time

New York has been extraordinary. And I’m ready to go home.

It was a quick trip but full and audacious. Sue of Une Femme d’un Certain Age and I managed to see the whole Tom Ford show from outside the back window of the Four Seasons. My best friend and I took a pedicab tour of New York, rode the subway on a 90 degree day in a car without air-conditioning, and ate at Katz’s Deli. My son and I got seated at Lisa Hoang’s show, as walk-ins.

I’ll tell you all about it next week. This week. Where are we in the calendar again? And if I’ve been irresponsible and piqued your curiosity without reward, or you haven’t seen my Instagram feed over the past few days, I offer some random tidbits there.

Have a wonderful weekend. Audacity, in measured doses, doesn’t seem to age.

Choosing A New House Number For A Modern Slash Traditional Slash California Slash Ranch


You may remember, we had our house repainted about two years ago. What I haven’t yet told you is that we subsequently began to receive a lot of postal mail that wasn’t ours. Did I understand the root cause immediately? No I did not.

I’ll wait here while you infinitely smarter people figure it out.

Notice anything missing in the photo below? Under the pyracantha berries, interlaced with white oleander for that one-two midcentury California landscape punch?


We’d removed the house number and never put it back. To make things worse, our curb stencil had faded almost beyond recognition. Occam’s Razor at work.

But, I didn’t want to put the old one back up. It’s true mid-century-not-everything-was-modern, charmingly retro, and ironic. But suburbs don’t make me feel ironic, particularly. I’ve been looking for a new number.


I briefly considered color. Red, to be precise. A sole numeral, because my address is single-digit. But I put that aside for all the reasons that I eventually chose a black door. Then I thought about illumination, quite techy and appropriate for Silicon Valley.


Nah. I don’t live in a space ship.


Maybe white, on a black background? Nice, classic, sturdy, but in the end too sedate for my Artsy Cousin dreams.

Our doorknob and doorbell are kitschy, hammered bronze. So I’ve settled on modern, sleek, yes, bronze. Like this.

bronze modern house numbers 9

I like the subtlety, the slight sheen, the contrast of traditional shake roof with white trim to modern typography. I’ll see if can be installed “floating” away from the siding, maybe even backlit with a teeny low voltage bulb.

The low-decibel style that I prefer can only be achieved by very small tweaks. Eschew the pop, focus on the crackle.

Now I can receive all those bills, catalogues of things I’ll never buy, and innumerable coupon sheets with which to light our Christmas fire. My neighbors will have to make do with their own.

Has it occurred to you to switch out your house number? Probably. What did you choose, and how? Something more traditional?

Or wildly unusual?

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