What's "Old's Cool?" Simplicity. Quality. Beauty.
First day of kindergarten and the bus pulls up. It's me, my brother Tripp, and a couple of the neighbor's kids – Kerry and Brian Davin, and I think the love of my life, at least up until then, June Harrelson. I go to get on the bus first, because it's always me first, and who else is there?, when my brother grabs me by the scruff of the neck. I turn around and say "What are you doing?" He says "What are YOU doing? Ladies before gentlemen" and jerks his thumb to the back of the line. I'm about to say I don't see any ladies around here when Kerry and June walk past me, looking down at the fatuous twerp I was (and probably still mostly am) with disdain, and giving a wink and smirk at Tripp. I always hated him!
Should I make a silver fork in my mouth joke? Or should I just say I learned everything I needed to know before kindergarten.
This is a lame non sequitur, but I wanted to also mention an old-school friend Amedeo Panetta, a family man of integrity and old-world charm, who always understood the beauty in the real and the true. He was a jewelry maker, albeit costume, but had a fine, humble, passionate, designer's eye. He was also crazy about artichokes. One night he was telling me about flying on a DC-7 to Italy, and then taking the Queen Elizabeth II back home – you can't cross the same ocean twice he said, paraphrasing Heraclitus. I asked him what it was like because I'd heard glamorous as hell; I'd also heard hellacious – dangerous, smoky, boozy, boring, and expensive.
He went to a drawer in the dining room breakfront and took this fork out. It's from his trip: a standard piece from an American Airlines 'Flagship' in-flight service. But damn, it's real silver. The finesse involved and attention to detail brings me close to tears. In my opinion, this subtle and gorgeous humdrum utensil perfectly incarnates 'old's cool' in spirit and function. These are the archetypes of a classic, aesthetic, original, and principled everyday lovely life that we're striving for.
A Classic Call to Authentic Adventure.
And we believe there are a lot of us out there who think the way things were is sometimes better than the way things are. So we’ve created a brand that incarnates this ideal of authenticity; excellence, integrity, courage, wit and craft, too. We’ll feature a catalog of our own cool, genius loot, as well as a curated selection from around the globe that we think lives up to our own high standards of design and use. We’d also like to introduce you to the people, events and traditions that we are inspired by, and have put all of our tips and tricks for living like you mean it in ‘The Official Old's Cool Education.’
So we invite you to come join us on our naive, quixotic adventure into the past and the future – we'll try, in our own inimitable way, to make every step of the way full of interestingness and beauty, and, to kind of quote Woody Allen, 'un-jejunosity'.
Who's Johnny Mustard?
My folks bought a house in 1964 from the Cruikshanks, an old couple who left their dog Mustard behind since they were moving to a retirement home and couldn't take him. Because my middle name is John, my porn name is Johnny Mustard, according to the old-school rules (middle name + first pet = porn name).
I always thought it had a nice ring to it, and decided to use it as a pseudonym if I ever needed one. Which is kind of ironic because I headlined under my real name when I was actually making skin flicks back in the late '80s. I still remember the director yelling "Put some mustard on it!"