You have four years to be irresponsible. If you’re ambitious, five. Then it’s over. And if you did it right, you spent money you didn’t have, slept through classes you didn’t love, and drank too much. Some of it should be a blur. Ideally, you forged bonds that will never be broken and memories that will never be forgotten. That’s college. Few films capture that...potential...quite like National Lampoon’s Animal House. Released in 1978, it is considered one of the greatest comedy films ever made. In fact, in 2001, the United States Library of Congress deemed Animal House “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” and selected it for preservation in the National film Registry.
The lighting in a bottle that is Animal House was made possible by the hands-off approach of Universal Pictures. Although they landed Donald Sutherland, the low budget comedy lacked sufficient star power. The suits didn’t have high expectations. In the words of studio head Ned Tanen, “Screw it, it’s a silly little movie, and we’ll make a couple of bucks if we’re lucky—let them [director John Landis and crew] do whatever they want.” Well, that couple of bucks turned out to be $141million. The film became a true cultural phenomenon setting off toga parties at campuses across the country.
The heart of Deborah Nadoolman’s costume design was quickly overshadowed by the widespread adoption of the sheet-wearing ritual. Madras shirting, satin baseball jackets, Jennings’ three piece corduroy suit, and Bluto’s iconic “COLLEGE” sweatshirt lent an uniquely American texture to the film. She showcased the marriage between sportswear and clothing that a post-war American youth pioneered. Looking at menswear’s landscape today, it’s quite obvious that Nadoolman’s rich work is, in large part, why Animal House holds “aesthetic significance.” I have pulled together a collection* of pieces I found on eBay inspired by the classic comedy. Follow me on eBay to check out the rest of my shoppable collections at prices that allow you to be, well, a little irresponsible.
*My eBay Collection was created as part of my collaboration with eBay and Style Coalition #FOLLOWFINDIT
Those who go, know. The Harriman Cup is all about the tailgate. More importantly, how you tailgate. Awards for this stuff are handed out you know (along with Best Outfit, Best Dog, Best Hat, and a few awards for actual sporting achievement). Maximillian Sinsteden knows this. In fact, he's banking on this (he was snubbed last year but still walked away with Best Outfit). Max arrives with a U-Haul carrying his beloved beat-to-hell Oriental party rug, ten box hedges he rented from a company in New York, five crates of liquor, two bartenders, and an open bar.
Now it's a party.
Adam Klopp of UVA picks his poison
Swirl striped paper straws, wicker beer pitchers, and mason jars with your initials written in wax pencil were only a few of the details that made The Party Carpet Tailgate so fun
Otis, the German Short-Haired Pointer who took Best Dog, with his owner
Max being sprayed with Champagne at the announcement for Best Tailgate
After blowing out his entire backside before halftime, Adam Klopp taped what he could together and kept riding
The annual polo match between Yale and University of Virginia alumni is a bittersweet reminder summer is on its way out. Most everyone is four or five in by the divot stomp just to cope with oncoming summer separation anxiety. You don't have to be an alum to enjoy the festivities though. Harriman has always seemed to embrace "the more the merrier" ethos—just come in your Sunday best. This, of course, means not a single thread of madras, seersucker, or linen is left on a hanger within a 100 mile radius. If you're a lady, points for donning a hat. Sponsors, including JP Crickets, my friend Karen Klopp's What2WearWhere.com, Harpoon Brewery, and Frava (caffeinated juice...brilliant when you think about it), line the safety zone alongside games of ladder toss, croquet, and a grip of tailgates.
Three hours later, Max humbly accepts the award for Best Tailgate...while being doused in Champagne.
Millbrook, New York in the summer is God’s country. I’m convinced of it. I catch the 7:48am Metro-North Saturday morning and half-consciously witness the city fade into wide open spaces over the next three and a half hours. And then time just stands still. I meet Cooper at Smithfield Farms, Karen and John Klopp’s place. Hospitality is one of their many virtues. The two story house is buzzing with family and friends while still nudging you to get lost in a novel. It doesn’t take long for me to realize this might be the most heavenly escape from the city possible.
Unlike the Hamptons or Nantucket, Pine Plains (and it’s surrounding towns, including Millbrook) is home to rolling farm land—and the Mashomack Polo Club. In a celebration of sport and fundraising, the club hosts the Mashomack International Polo Challenge every year. Brazil is here for the first time to take on the locals in front of the 1,000+ guests and spectators dressed up like they have somewhere better to go afterwards. And neither disappointed.
White Levi 501s are the jeans of choice for the local players
The use of this silk Givenchy head scarf around her hat is smart
The best party wagon I've ever seen, custom built by a retired local polo player