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WWLD? No. 1: Clothing Optionals

Our great friend, Leslie Harpold, passed away in December of last year. In addition to being a swell pal and an old-school web mandarin, Leslie was an endless source of advice and opinion on practically everything.
To commemorate Leslie’s life and to help share her wisdom with folks who never got to know her, I asked our mutual friend, Lance Arthur to answer the question: What Would Leslie Do? Here’s part 1 of 4. — mdm

There are many things I miss about the loss of Leslie, but perhaps the most noticeable to me is the lack of using her as a sounding board for some of life's everyday challenges. She had a level-headed, clear-eyed way of looking at the little problems we face every day, and somehow she always knew the right answer.

Luckily, I have collected some of her words of wisdom to share with you, you lucky reader, and I hope you find them as useful as I do.

Leslie Harpold knew a thing or two about fashion. While you and I may pride ourselves on the ability to put a white T-shirt with a pair of blue jeans, Leslie's knowledge of the why's and wherefor's of clothing choices were more varied but no less practical.

Here, then, are Leslie's Three Rules for Fashion Sensibility.

1. When trying anything new, always ask yourself "Is this going to make me more or less likely to get laid?"

I know, it sounds obvious, but we are sometimes blinded by an item's price tag or its general sexiness when it's still on the hanger or folded up nicely on a shelf. We might also see it on someone else's body and think, 'wow, if that makes them look that good, I imagine it'll make me unmercifully sexaholic!'

It's vastly important that you literally don't believe your eyes. An important step you absolutely must take when contemplating that wardrobe addition to take a look at yourself in the mirror from every angle possible (it'll help to bring along a "true friend" who won't shine you on about how big your butt really is) and decide if what you're wearing is more or less flattering than what you see when you get up in the morning. Sure, that shirt looks nice on the fake people in the window, but how does it look on your body? And more important, when you're out there on the prowl, is your potential bedmate going to look at you and think, "Hot!" or "Eeeyooo?"

2. Everyone looks good in boots.

Do you own a pair of boots? You need a pair of boots. Here's what boots will do for you: Boots add a little bit of toughness to an otherwise dreary exterior. Your pant leg might drape over them, but the feeling of all that extra leather grabbing your ankles will add a bit of sexy pep to your step. And finally, boots will provide one of the best excuses for wearing a heel, and frankly, everyone looks better when they're tall. Leslie was a 6' woman, so she may have been prejudices in this instance (it is, after all, difficult to slow dance with someone if you can't nuzzle their neck) but I have to side with her on that one.

Plus, there are many boot options to choose from. And one never knows when one might find oneself trekking across the desert unexpectedly, right? Invest in a pair of boots, preferably black ones, and splurge a bit because they'll last a long time.

3. When you find the perfect bag, buy it.

Dudes and dudettes, do you know the perfect bag when you see it? The answer will be different for everyone, but it usually involves the perfect marriage of beauty and practicality. It needs enough storage for the things you absolutely cannot do without (which will include, according to Leslie, lip balm, a pen, a small notebook, a Zippo lighter, one pack of cigarettes -- even if you don't smoke, someone else may, and there's no better way to strike up a conversation with a hot stranger than to offer them a cigarette, a Listerine PocketPak, sunglasses, and somewhere to put your keys so they don't end up on the bottom of the bag), as well as additional storage for the sundries that come in handy at some point or another (facial tissues, a digital camera, an extra digital camera battery, a hair brush or comb, lady's unmentionables). But you don't want it to be so overwhelmingly huge that carrying it around makes you look like a Sherpa.

It also has to be stylish, and this is much more a question of taste. But I would also refer you back to Leslie's First Rule of New Fashion. Will said bag, whether it be a large over-the-shoulder message bag suitable for MacBook Pro 17" glorification or small beaded handbag from Italy good only for a lipstick and two condoms, make you more or less likely to get some naked time in-between the sheets? Now, I'm not sure a bag, by itself, is ever going to get anyone laid, but I suspect that there are plenty of bags that may put that second-thought into someone else's head in the form of, "If that's the bag they carry part of their life around in, what must they look like naked?"

And if that perfect bag ends up costing a king's ransom, it doesn't matter in the least. You can afford it. It is, after all, perfect. And how often does one find perfection in one's life? Leslie owned a beautiful black Prada with a simple silver buckle and a handle that managed to stand up when it needed to for easy grasping, and settle to the side for access to the innards. A bag like that, one that knows what it's owner needs and when, now that's a priceless item.

Luckily for Leslie, she had connections and knew who could get her that bag for half-off. Which brings us to Part Two of What Would Leslie Do?: Keeping Connected...

Lance's What Would Leslie Do? Series

About glassdog

glassdog's picture


Lance has been living on the web since 1996, habitating places like glassdog.com (still there), soulflare.com (gone and forgotten) and laconcon.com (hanging about, well past sell-by date). He works as a freelance web demi-god helping other people figure it all out, and lives with his cat, Paris, in San Francisco (rather than the other way around).




An Oblique Strategy:
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