satisfaction is uninspiring

When carried out correctly, a room filled with tension makes for an exciting atmosphere.

Stay away from creating an impression that you have everything you want. There is a sheen of dust over the majority of your apartment pieces and it is clear that you are no longer striving for the betterment of your space. Your one-time desires are now plainly unnecessary, and thus, uninteresting to the viewer. Your guests are being entertained in your apartment, and this complacency often leaves them feeling as if all the potential energy has leaked out of the room with absent-minded design purchases.

Let your inner rawness show.

The more vulnerable you are with your apartment furnishings, the more honest you are being with your guests. Each piece should be a reflection of a distinct moment in your life. The energy it took to make each purchase immediately gives off a more powerful presence. A room filled with tangible examples of your dedication and long-term achievements exudes confidence.

It is still acceptable to lust after objects, even in our recession-altered reality. Still, you must be discerning in your taste. Lust equates vivacity, this is why you should not shy away from your dreams. Instead of filling empty space with an item you don’t fully believe in, leave it open as a glaring example of where you plan to execute your design strategy. It makes no difference that you haven’t reached your goal (yet), your friends will appreciate your motivated honesty and will likely reciprocate by revealing their very own closely-held desires.

Now you’ve created a lively discussion on what your design goals are and how you plan to achieve them. You’ve reinvigorated not only your passion to succeed in attaining your goals, but you’ve also ignited the desire for your guests to attain their own dreams.

Always strive to be the catalyst for the betterment of your guests lives.

on the topic of cigarettes

I always advocate being the consummate host. You should prepare for a party by purchasing correct quantities of alcohol and hor d’oeuvres, cleaning the apartment and setting aside a well-thought out selection of records to play throughout the night.

While people will be appreciative of your good taste and consideration, you’ve likely left out one crucial component. The cigarettes.

I know, I know…cigarettes are terrible for your health and no one wants nicotine stains in their apartment. Understood, but that doesn’t mean you should let your opinions on tobacco affect someone else’s night. Control the cigarette scene by staying out in front of it.

Step one, always have a pack of Nat Sherman cigarettes on hand for those who choose to smoke. These fine cigarettes make it difficult for even the most ardent anti-cigarette crusader to rebuff.

Having an open pack laying on your dining room table could be considered tacky. Step two, buy a vintage silver cigarette case. Now you should feel confident displaying the cigarettes (I would also recommend leaving a pack of nice wooden matches along side the case) and people will be more at ease to ask if they may have one. The kind gesture means your appreciative friends will be more willing to follow your smoking protocol.

“May I have a cigarette?”

This is the question you’ve been waiting for. You can now dictate where you’d like them to smoke and where you want the cigarette butts put out. Thus you’ve avoided those awkward social missteps smokers often make when they furtively smoke in an off-limit area because they are embarrassed to ask where to light up.

It may be your party, but your guests make it fun. Be a helpful guide for your party and everyone will end up happier for it.

what’s on my nightstand

There should never be a television in your bedroom. Period. Reading stimulates your imagination and relaxes you before you fall asleep. Here is what is currently on my bed side table:

In Progress

The Agony and the Ecstasy - Irving Stone (Page 212 out of 758)

A Journey - Tony Blair (Page 108 out of 682)

Winnetka: The History and Significance of an Educational Experiment - Carleton Washburne (Page 36/360)

In The Queue

Black Mischief - Evelyn Waugh

Scoop - Evelyn Waugh

In Our Time - Ernest Hemingway


Foreign Affairs - 2 issues (May/June & July/August)

The Believer - 1 issue (June 2011)

Little White Lies - 1 issue (#35, Apocalypse Now)

a list of things every young male apartment renter should consider

1. Your apartment is a set. Always be prepared for it to be photographed and shared via social networks.

2. The best question ever asked is, “who is this song by?” Never forget the importance of a well cultivated playlist.

3. Anything you set out in your apartment will be judged. Do you really want to be known for having old j. crew catalogs sitting on your coffee table?

4. Cheap magazines equate a lack of taste and hygiene. If you do need to purchase a sports illustrated, make sure it is thrown away before the pages begin to curl.

5. DVDs, more than anything else, date you. Don’t let your high school film dalliances color the way acquaintances view you now.

6. It’s obvious when you’ve bought a coffee table book, for that reason have an explanation ready for every book and be sure to have at least 4 on the table at all times

7. 1 coffee table book is an afterthought, 4 means you spent time curating the look

8. Don’t ever allow your television to dominate a room. 

9. For that matter, make sure your television is tasteful in its proportions. No one is impressed by a 52” television playing ESPN.  No one is impressed by a 52” TV period.

10. Buy a weekend edition Financial Times. And leave it out. When friends come over on Saturday, you immediately hold the intellectual upper hand.

11. Hide your cords. No matter the cost.

12. Your bathroom is one of the most viewed rooms in your apartment. Remember, your friends spend a minute alone in there with only your toiletries, and shower curtain to look at.

13. A dirty bathroom, means a dirty person.

14. Head and shoulders is a nice way to prove your nonchalant manliness, but please, close the cap.

15. If you must drink Bud Light, do it at the bar. In your refrigerator should only be high quality six packs. Removed from the box. Lined up straight.

16. Dust your apartment regularly. People notice and appreciate spotless windowsills.

17. The Bose iPod Speaker system is ugly. I don’t care how convenient it is.

18. A white wall is better than a white wall with a movie poster on it.

19. If you must put up a poster. Wait, check that. Never put up a poster.

20. Artwork is difficult for a reason. Be prepared to wait until you find the perfect piece. And then buy it at whatever cost.

21. A cheap chef’s knife immediately destroys any culinary credibility.

22. Would you ever fill up that goblet of a wine glass? No. So why do you own it? All wine glasses should be of a size that fits a formal dinner.

23. You’ve graduated college, it’s time to buy a nice flatware set.

24. You’ve graduated college part 2, please throw away all plastic cups. That’s not nostalgia you feel, it’s complacency. And above all, they make every drink taste bad.

25. Make your bed.

26. Change your sheets weekly.

27. Change your towels weekly.

28. Always have fresh hand towels available. Otherwise people will seek out your personal towel to dry their hands. Do you want to dry off in that the next morning?

29. Don’t ever let yourself depend on computer speakers. It proves you aren’t prepared to host.

30. Keep fresh fruit on hand at all times.

31. Plastic bottled water is bad for the environment. If you must, be sure it’s glass bottled water, and be sure it’s sparkling.

32. It was expected that you would graduate from college. Keep your diploma in a safe place. Away from your guests eyes.

33. Your book shelf will start most of your interesting conversations. Don’t let it get uninteresting.

34. Cut the chord. Control your media intake. People will appreciate the seriousness with which you choose programming.

35. Don’t be afraid to grow plants in your house. They add life and people assume you are responsible. Aren’t you responsible?