By J. J. Lee
FINALIST - Charles Taylor Prize for Literary Non-Fiction (2012)
FINALIST - Governor General's Literary Award - Non-Fiction (2012)
FINALIST - BC ebook Prize's Hubert Evans Non-Fiction Prize (2012)
A son’s determination to change his father’s final surviving swimsuit for himself is the launching aspect for this strong publication – half own memoir, half social heritage of the man’s go well with – approximately fathers and sons, love and forgiveness, and studying what it ability to be a man.
For years, journalist and beginner tailor JJ Lee attempted to disregard the swimsuit striking in the back of his closet. It used to be his father’s swimsuit. but if JJ makes a decision to make the swimsuit his personal, little does he be aware of he's approximately to embark on a trip to appreciate his personal prior.
As JJ cuts into the jacket, he starts off to piece jointly the tale of his dating together with his father, a charismatic yet afflicted Montreal restauranteur whose demons introduced tumult upon his relations. JJ additionally recounts his personal ups and downs through the yr he spent as an apprentice at Modernize Tailors – the final of the good Chinatown suitmakers in Vancouver – the place, less than the tutelage of his octogenarian grasp tailor, he learns helpful classes approximately lifestyles. Woven all through JJ’s story are tales of the suit’s personal evolution, illuminating how this humble garment has, for hundreds of years, been the superb battleground for the struggle among generations.
Written with nice wit, bracing honesty, and narrative verve, and that includes line drawings all through through the writer, The degree of a guy is an unforgettable tale of affection, forgiveness, and researching what it capability to be your personal man.
Read or Download The Measure of a Man: The Story of a Father, a Son, and a Suit PDF
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Additional info for The Measure of a Man: The Story of a Father, a Son, and a Suit
Isn’t that similar to asserting he's my surgeon, my remaining pitcher, my man? If I didn’t belief him at the subject of the go well with, whom may possibly I belief? And but for the following weeks, i used to be completely, absolutely yes we had picked the incorrect colour of gray. while I lower back to the store, invoice placed me in entrance of the trifold reflect in my Ivy League go well with with a instantly drop, no waist suppression, and hooked vent. Now I observed those weren’t simply phrases. What I observed within the reflect have been rules, rules that had shapes. And those shapes may possibly fill the areas in my middle. If the shoulders of my spirit drooped, or I felt i couldn't carry my head excessive, this go well with could straighten my again. there has been no different go well with love it on this planet. there has been no weight. No historical past. No tale but. simply me. i must MAKE A CONFESSION. MY FATHER’S go well with, in comparison with the matches he owned some time past, doesn’t deserve the effort and time i'll placed into it. a smart tailor may inform me to shop for a brand new swimsuit that matches me and shop myself the difficulty. I realize it makes for a terrible kinfolk heirloom, that it truly is usual, that it isn’t so various from the odd-fitting, hand-me-down matches you will discover in lots of closets. Even an apprentice tailor may inform you that no historical, nearsighted Italian whose center finger has become an immense callus simply because he stopped utilizing a thimble 40 years in the past used to be occupied with hand-stitching it through gaslight. not anyone carved the buttons out of the horn of a near-extinct creature that when grazed at the grasslands of Africa. The buttons are uninteresting brass. there isn't any silk twist, the all-important thread hoarded by way of Simpkin the Cat in Beatrix Potter’s children’s tale “The Tailor of Gloucester. ” The thread on my father’s go well with is maybe business polycotton, offered through the tens of hundreds of thousands of metres and utilized through computer on a construction line. The go well with is with out contrast. the standard of my father’s outfits, on reflection, makes for a superb barometer of our family members fortunes. In 1973 while, on the age of twenty-four, he used to be promoted to day supervisor of the glamorous Kon-Tiki Polynesian eating place and anointed an up-and-comer via the lounge’s proprietor, his outfits have been already impeccable. the single photograph i've got of him from that point comes from my Uncle Jim. It’s a black-and-white eight-by-ten of my father sitting on a wicker chair with a wide oval again. The Polynesian decor indicates it was once taken whereas he used to be at the activity on the living room. I keep in mind the Kon-Tiki had substantial Easter Island—styled carvings on the front, a faux volcano surrounded via a gleaming purple fountain, and partitions lined with bamboo strips. If I have been to bet, I’d say the swimsuit my father is donning is a gray or royal blue wool. easy, but its lighter tone indicates summer time nights and class. it truly is definitely an off-the-rack. The lapel stitches are overly lengthy (I can count number them), yet now not legal. what's awesome is the healthy of the shoulders, the autumn alongside usual traces with no turning his deltoids into ham hocks, one of many risks of tight and unpadded shoulders.