Thursday, November 4, 2010

Its Good To Be Back

Hello there! Wow, it feels great to be back on the Modern Gentleman's Blog. If you are reading this and were once a regular reader then I am glad you have continued to check in during my long hiatus. If your new to The Modern Gentleman and this is the first post you are reading then keep checking in. Here at the Modern Gentleman's site we cover everything from men's fashion, classic cocktails, and the "lost art of living" to business, news, art and everything in between that would interest the involved and sophisticated Modern Gent. It feels good to be back, look forward to regular posts soon!

-The Modern Gent

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Culinary Event of the Year?

Culinary event of the year is definitely a lofty title to attach to an event. Especially when there is so much of the year left to experience. However, unlike other fantastical claims (think Titanic) this is one ship that will not be sinking. The innovative folks at Dinner Party Atlanta (whom I have detailed on this blog before-see "For Every Action There is A Reaction") have come up with an amazing food and wine driven evening experience. The best part about it? You still have time to get in!
So, what is this event all about? Let me throw some components your way, I think you will agree that this is definitely a must-attend event.

1. Outdoor, early evening event in Piedmont Park. (Think cool evening, romantic lighting, fantastic conversation and amazing eats)
2. Cocktail hour featuring original creations from some of Atlanta's most well known and innovative bartenders
3. Eight chefs each preparing a four course original menu of their choosing. Oh yea, the chefs include many familiar faces from Bravo's Top Chef and local Atlanta favorites
4. All products sourced from local farms that are of the highest quality
5. Wine pairings from Georgia's only Master Sommelier Michael McNeil of Quality Wine and Spirits
6. Profits go towards Pope High School and Georgia farms.

Aren't convinced yet that this evening is going to be phenomenal? Then let me tell you that the entire evening (cocktails, 4-course meal, 4-wine pairings) is only going to run you 95 bucks. $95, I might add, that heads straight towards a great cause.

This is one event that you truly do not want to miss out on. If you can swing it, head to and head to the May 1st dinner section. Get some more details and reserve your seat for you and your companions. See you there!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A Cold Beer, Pack of Smokes, and Steve McQueen

Its been quite sometime since I have posted anything to the Modern Gentleman's blog. I was going to apologize for that but then I realized that would mean I was apologizing to fans or something. While I may be a little bit cocky, I am not out of touch-I realize no one was loosing sleep over my lack of posts. So, all I will say is that an extremely busy schedule and a lack of inspiration have lead to my two week hiatus. That's all changing this week though. Just a little while ago I stumbled on Life Magazine's recent post to their website that features 21 candid photo of the ultimate bad-ass gentleman Steve McQueen. Here's the link: STEVE MCQUEEN. I am not going to go into to much details on these photos because I want you to check 'em out for yourself but I will say this; cigarette smoking, beer chugging, gun shooting, and laying in the back of a pick up truck can only be made to look glamorous by, what I would consider, a true Modern Gentleman. If you missed my description of a Modern Gentleman a couple of months ago when I started all of this blog stuff, just look at these pictures. A true modern gentleman is not afraid to get his hands dirty, have a good time, break the rules, or shoot a hand gun in this case. The only responsibility a modern gentleman has is to act appropriately in whatever situation he finds himself in, and sometimes you find yourself with a six back of beer, pack of smokes, dusty pair of jeans and an old t-shirt. I say, dig in.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

What You Should Be Drinking Right Now: Craft Brews

Ah yes, finally another edition of "What You Should Be Drinking Right Now". This one is a little different because as opposed to giving you a specific cocktail to mix up, I have some overall advice. Explore the world of beer. I used to shrug beer off as nothing more than a watered down filler that took up to much expensive real estate in my stomach that could be better utilized with a stiff drink. Actually, a few of my friends and I have had many a heated debate over the phrase "beer is the new wine". While I wont go as far as to agree with that statement in its entirety, I am now willing to give beer a little bit more credit. I am sure you have noticed that many bars and restaurants now have extensive beer lists and the servers and bartenders at these establishments are well versed in the language of the "craft brewery". I have had the opportunity to taste many of these craft brewery concoctions and I have to say, the flavors are really interesting and sipping a new beer has proved to be an enjoyable experience. Some restaurants are even going as far as pairing beers with certain menu items much like you would do with wine. Gone are the times when you could get away with ordering a bud light or miller lite. Go that route and your are liable to get an evil eye from a bartender and maybe even a suggestion to try something a little more adventurous. I am not going to recommend any specific beers to try, I am just going to leave you with this; don't be so quick to judge beer like I was. Give it a chance. Head to your favorite liquor store, shoot over to the beer aisle and pick something up that looks interesting that you have never heard of. Better yet, support your favorite bar or restaurant and ask for the bartenders suggestion on a great new beer to enjoy. I think you will be pleasantly surprised. Happy drinking.

(Picture Above: Organic, Craft Brew-Selection)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Get Out of The Gym: Train Like Rocky.

(This segment is brought to you by the Modern Gentleman's health and wellness specialist DMG)

They gym is not for everyone. Weight training is a great way to gain muscle, burn fat, and get in shape; but if you're like me, then you probably don't enjoy spending 4-5 days a week indoors with a bunch of sweaty dudes talking supplements and hanging out in saunas. The "Get out of the Gym" segment will be a monthly staple in the fitness section of The Modern Gentleman, and I am a firm believer that getting out of the gym and training like an athlete makes exercise more effective and enjoyable.

For this month's segment, it's time to get outside and train like Rocky. In fitting with the "Back to Basics" theme of this blog, here's some classics that require less than $5 and yield results quickly.

Jump rope
. All you need is a jump-rope, some good shoes, and practice, practice, practice. Jumping rope is an essential part of many athlete's training regiments- from boxers to skiers to football players. Jumping rope increases coordination, agility, quickness, footwork, and endurance while toning your shoulders and providing a scorching card workout. Here's some tips to get started jumping rope:

1. Select a rope: Jumping ropes are cheap, and you can usually find a good one at your local sporting goods store or online. They come in several different materials and lengths- just buy a lightweight, plastic speed rope and don't spend much on it. Usually less than $10, sometimes less than $5 if you look around. Typically ropes are 8-10 ft long- most at the stores will be 9 ft. If your 6' tall or less, a 9 ft. rope will usually be fine, if you're much taller than that you may have to get a 10 ft. rope.

2. Technique. Jumping rope isn't something you will be good at you're first time, believe me. It takes practice to get the hang of it, but once you got it-the benefits are huge. Start with skill workouts. The purpose of your initial workouts will be to develop your rope-jumping skills and coordination. Expect frustration at first, but don't give up! There are endless skills to learn to keep your conditioning challenging and enjoyable, but start with basic two foot jumps (the rope will skip once for every jump) with both feet. After you've got that down, move on to alternating your feet as if you are running in place. *Pick your knees straight up and land on the balls of your feet, you're not taking a full stride here. (International Sports Conditioning Association) is a good resource for more advanced techniques.

3. Shoes & surface. Wear a good pair of cross trainers when you jump rope- running shoes don't have enough cushion for landing on the balls of your feet. Also, try to jump rope on a more forgiving surface like a track rather than on concrete; it'll save your feet and ankles a world of hurt.

Got the basics down? Check this guy out for inspiration.

Run Stairs. A park or a stadium will do fine for this. Sprint up stadium stairs like Balboa does in Philly. After that, jog back down and do "mountain climbers" on the bottom step (Running motion, pump your arms, ball of your foot touches the step and alternate quickly. *It's not how fast you get off the step, it's how quickly your feet explode off the ground that counts.)

These two workouts are simple. Jumping rope will take a little more practice, but they will definitely get you out of the gym and provide some variety for your workouts. Only got 20-30 minutes to squeeze in a workout? Try this:

1. Jump rope for 1-2 minutes without stopping to warm up. Jump as quickly as you can based on your skill level and incorporate different techniques throughout the jump. This will get your heart rate up and ready for the workout. *Bump some upbeat music in your Ipod to help keep the tempo up.

2.As soon as you're done jumping rope, sprint up the stadium stairs. When you reach the top, turn around and jog back down, pump out 20 mountain climbers on the bottom step and then drop down for 10-20 quick push-ups. You have just completed 1 set. Take 30-60 seconds to scrape your lungs off the pavement and repeat. You'll want to get in at least 3 sets, possibly 5 based on your fitness level. You'll be shocked when you look at your watch and realize you spent 15 minutes working out and you are completely whipped.

Stay Tuned,


Saturday, March 6, 2010

Saturday Style Note: Hats Off to Hats that Look Great On.

This edition of the Saturday Style Note comes a little bit late in the day thanks to a pretty great party last night. Actually, quick shout to Mike and Derek who put on a great event last night, best wishes and good luck goes out to the Rock and Egg Productions team. Needless to say, a great open bar last night led to a slow and lazy Saturday afternoon. What I wanted to hit on briefly today was hats. Somewhere down the line, us men got a little confused and we thought it was appropriate to wear backwards hats and visors with pre-frayed brims (not so much the visors anymore but there was a time when they were everywhere). Believe it or not, there was a time when hats were extremely stylish and, for the most part, a necessity of a mans everyday wardrobe. Its not to say that great hats dont exist today, actually that's what I am going to show you, its just that the selection for most men got sloppy, right along with the rest of their clothes. Not only does the type of hat matter, but the manner in which you wear it matters as well. For instance, the fedora is an O.K. choice but you have to have a lot of confidence and personal style to tie it into your wardrobe in a seamless way. Otherwise, its going to look pretty contrived. In another example, the military cap is a great casual choice but not if your wearing a tie a blazer, in that case a "drivers cap" or a "news-boy" cap is going to get the job done a little bit better. Without any further delay, here are my picks for the most appropriate hats of the times and some pictures of how to incorporate them into your daily dress.

I like this simple, yet stylish and unique "dress" hat. This style is typically made out of felt and is close to being what is considered a derby. Either way, if you want to put a hat on in a casual way, why not go this route as opposed to a baseball cap?

This is one of my personal favorites-The "Newsboy" cap. I wear one of these out more than a couple of times a week. This type of hat does vary in shape so you have to find one that is going to frame your face correctly. Some get really wide on the sides, some are really "floppy" on top. I like the streamlined style that is narrow and not flimsy or floppy at all. As you can tell in the photo, these hats look great with a cardigan, or a tie and jeans combo.

The Military Cap. I am a fan of these, but this is just about as casual as I am willing to go. However, the variety of fabric types, prints, and shapes you can get with this style adds that extra hint of style that makes it a much better option than any regular old hat. My one recommendation for this cap is to get one that is vintage. No brands, or logos anywhere on the hat. That kind of ruins the appeal to this military type of look.

With these great options you should never feel the need to put on your dingy old baseball cap. Playing a sport is just about the only place that style is going to be appropriate. Take it up a notch and try out one of these great hats the next time your compelled to cover up your mop.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Forget New Years Resolutions. Try out a March Resolution. DMG's Health and Wellness Segment, March 2nd

Another great post by health and wellness specialist-DMG. Enjoy.

Well, it’s March now, and if you look in the mirror you might notice that your New Year’s resolutions have faded into a distant memory. Sure, the first few weeks were great- you were exercising regularly, drinking less (perhaps still getting over New Years Eve), and you may have even lost a few pounds; but, if you are like the vast majority of resolution-makers, by this time you’re goals have gone to the wayside and you have resorted back to old habits.
In a experiment, over 3000 people were tracked with regards to their achievement of a range of resolutions, including losing weight, visiting the gym, quitting smoking, and drinking less. At the start of the study, 52% of participants were confident of success. One year later, only 12% actually achieved their goal. I’m going out on a limb here, but I would venture a guess that of those 12% that “achieved” their goal that year, even fewer are still on track today.
Maybe people fail to achieve their New Year’s resolutions so frequently because they have no self control. Perhaps peoples’ abilities to focus on a goal and achieve it are predetermined or fixed- much like one’s height or eye color. Or perhaps they just had the wrong resolution.
In keeping with Diego’s “You failed because you had the wrong dream” philosophy (Prison scene in “Blow”- a classic. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, rent it.), I believe that people fall short of achieving their New Year’s resolutions year after year because they are simply making the wrong resolution. They fail because they have the wrong dream.
Psychologist Albert Bandura has defined self-efficacy as our belief in our ability to succeed in specific situations. Moreover, the belief that one is capable of performing in a certain manner to attain certain goals. Self efficacy can be measured as a continuum, with two extremes: high and low. Individuals who believe that they have a limited amount of self-control and that they cannot change are said to have low self-efficacy. These individuals might say things like, “I can’t stop ______(eating chocolate, smoking, drinking- pick your poison), I inherited that gene.” These people have little belief in their ability to carry out their goals, and therefore are perennial resolution-breakers. On the other end of the continuum, you have those with high self-efficacy. These people believe that self control is malleable, unlimited, and dynamic. They might say something like, “I can stop___, all I have to do is put my mind to it.” Resolve to be the latter.
Important distinction- self efficacy is not the same as self esteem. “Self esteem relates to a person’s sense of self-worth, whereas self efficacy relates to a person’s perception of their ability to reach a goal.” In order to achieve a goal, you must create a plan and truly believe in your ability to achieve that goal. Tips to get back on track with your resolutions:
1. Work hard to create the “right” resolutions. Have the right dream. If you have made the same resolution a few times and have failed each year, change your resolution.
2. If you have broad resolutions- i.e. getting in shape- create a detailed plan in order to achieve it. Example: Instead of saying “I’m going to lose weight to look better”, plan substitute items on your grocery list (1% milk, fresh instead of frozen, natural instead of processed), create a workout schedule (yoga class Tuesday & Thursday, weights on Wednesday, recreational soccer league on Saturday), and most importantly- view relapses as laughable deviations from the plan instead of failure, and get back on track tomorrow.
3. Make one resolution.
4. Be ambitious, but realistic. Setting a goal that is just out of reach, but not out of sight will help you to achieve it.
5. Resolve to educate yourself. Instead of resolving to lose 15 pounds, resolve to learn how to eat healthier and exercise to effectively reach your goals. Read “The All-Pro Diet” by Tony Gonzalez for a great healthy-eating read. You don’t have to take it as gospel, but Tony Gonzalez is a 10 time pro-bowl selection and a freak of an athlete. Maybe eating like him isn’t such a bad idea.

While you’re at it, educate yourself on the psychology of motivation and figure out what works for you.

Personally, I do not like New Year’s resolutions. Why not make a March resolution? Why not a today resolution? If you lack the self control to achieve your resolution, your resolution should be to increase your self control. Have a higher self efficacy- the more you believe in your own capabilities, the more likely you will succeed. Believe that self control is malleable, and not fixed; without commitment to sculpting your mental ability to achieve greatness, physical results will be empty. Make a plan and stick to it- if you waiver, get back on track as soon as possible. Read.
Stay tuned-