Tuesday, November 29, 2011

My Cars So Far

I was raised in a family that was quite fond of small, European cars and yeah, that kind of thing rubs off. About 10 years ago I snagged a cherry red 1975 BMW 2002. "The Whispering Bomb" just does something to you. It's able to produce all of those amazing driving sensations at relatively low speeds. It's just fun.

In 2004 I lucked into a lightly-used 1999 ///M Coupe as my daily driver. It's a car that elicits one of only two responses. People either absolutely love it or totally hate it. No matter what anyone thinks, you can't go anywhere in that car without every STI-wielding sweet bro trying to take you off the line.

I owned both the 2002 and the ///M Coupe at the same time. It was actually way validating. When someone asked me about the Coupe, they always initially came off a bit skeptical, like I was just some young punk. But when they found out I also had a 2002, their demeanor would totally change, like... oooh, you're not just some punk kid—you're an enthusiast. (Eh, I was kind of a punk kid actually.)

As much as I dig the ///M Coupe, it was clear that wasn't the ideal fit for my personal style. I traded her in for a brand new 2006 MINI Cooper S and fell in love. Driving a MINI, you find out quick that it's an amazing balance of sport, economy, luxury, style and most importantly personality.

When I switched from the ///M to the MINI—of course there was a power difference. However, and I've discussed this with others who have made a similar switch, the MINI is just such an even and all-around balanced driver. You can have fun in every gear. And on the one set of twists on my way into work, I swear the MINIs go just as quick around them (with a little more control even).

Once I got the MINI another surprising thing happened. I didn't drive the '02 as much any more. It's like the MINI fulfilled both my sporting and retro needs at the same time. We decided to sell the '02 to a kid with some decent mechanic skills. He's taken good care of it. We sold it for exactly $2,002.00.

I thought I'd graduated to the ideal vehicle up until I saw the very first images of the Clubman. With the right accouterments, I feel like my 2009 MINI Cooper S Clubman sports an amazing combo of both approachability and aggressiveness. Mrs. Kyality thinks it's cute, yet I still get approving nods from guys in GTIs.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Jerry on Porsches

For those of you who don't already follow the amazing
Motoring Con Brio blog, check out this fantastic clip of Jerry Seinfeld pontificating about his favorite cars. No clue how I didn't stumble upon this sooner! Great find.

Monday, November 14, 2011

What's in your bag?

So I recently ordered a Large Cafe Bag in Cocoa/Wasabi from the Seattle-based company Tom Bihn and I absolutely love it! I've searched far and wide for a simple, clean-lined messenger bag (in brown) that fits my on-the-go job requirements. I'm constantly doing day trips from SLC to places like LA, SF and PDX.

The streamlined nature of your Cafe Bag is perfect. It fits everything I need to cruise through airport security, do a couple of client presentations and carry the little extras that make flying more enjoyable. I snapped this pic and it was recently featured on the Tom Bihn blog.

Here's what I pack on a regular basis:

• Large Cafe Bag (in Cocoa/Wasabi)
Incase Neoprene Sleeve
MacBook Power Adapter
Apple Remote
Zebra Stainless Steel Pen and Mechanical Pencil
Moleskine Classic Pocket Squared Notebook
VGA Adapter
DVI Adapter
Skullcandy Full Metal Jacket Ear Buds + case
Stack of Business Cards
Keys to MINI Cooper S Clubman
iPhone 3GS + iPod Sock
iPhone Earphones + iPod Sock
Dock Connector to USB Cable
USB Power Adapter

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Mind the Gap

I'll admit it. Growing up, I was a true blue Gap guy. This was prior to the Old Navy years, when the Gap was all about simple, stylish, affordable clothes. Then came along the Gap that ironically was trying so hard to not be Old Navy, while doing everything it could to be Banana Republic. It wasn't long until the Gap became a bland, soulless brand. I even let a couple of years slip by without ever stepping into a Gap store.

Then their logo debacle went down. I decided to see what the Gap had been up to. Stuffed in the middle of a rack, I discovered a denim shirt (technically it's a chambray shirt) that was reminiscent of the clothes the Gap was creating back in its heyday, circa '92.

It was new, but old. It was dressy, yet casual. It was perfect and flawed. I had to have it. I can honestly say it's become my favorite article of clothing. I've worn it to business meetings on Madison Ave. and I've crashed in it for a Sunday afternoon nap. It literally goes with everything—shorts, suits, slacks and selvedge.

If the Gap simply took a look at this particular product and began patterning other articles of clothing after this concept—they'd be able to both simplify and grow simultaneously. Think about it, the perfect khakis, the go-to sweater, the wear-anywhere jacket. The Gap simply needs to focus on clothes with character. And let's face it, if they had just redesigned their logo to match this tag, they'd probably have been good to go.