Friday, December 30, 2011

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Passing of time, and place...but its always nice to revisit every once in a while.

A few old family photos from my mom's side...My moms family lived in Media, Pa in a cookie cutter neighborhood of middle class working families, the only thing was they had horses and farm animals on their property which drove the neighbors bonkers, and finally with the little influence from the neighborhood they moved to a 50+ acre farm in Nottingham, Pa. were they had room for the 5 girls, horses, dogs, cats, etc... My grandfather was very proud of this place he called home, and raised my mom and her sisters very tough, while working on the farm. This is a work ethic that my mom still carries on til this day. These were golden years in my elder families life, shortly after tragic events took place in which my mom lost both of her parents, and they were taken from their farm and moved to family back in Media, Pa. I wanted to celebrate A beautiful time in my moms and aunts life with this post, because they all light up with joy when they talk about living on the farm... If you are ever bored and in search of a nice country cruise fill up at your local gasolina and take a ride out to Oxford-Nottingham Pennsylvania area. I haven't been in years but I would always love to take the ride out there to see their old house and barn, which was just one amongst many of sorts that graced that area.
Xmas on the farm...Nottingham, Pa the 50's (Pop pop)

My awesome aunts and pop pop...Tinsel tree!

My mom and aunt in front of their house in Nottingham, Pa. early 60's...

And my great grandfather was a trainman for the railroad...I have his railroad ID card for the yard in south Philadelphia.

Saturday, December 17, 2011


While the tumblrs are tumbling and the blogs are blogging the outlaw brotherhood, I thought it would be a breath of fresh air to pass along a little story and a few pictorials of true sisterhood...not related to the outlaw culture euphemism. The inspiration and story itself was passed along to me from our own Knees in the Breeze. We were on the tele the other night chit chatting about work, family and of course moto's and he asked me if I have ever heard of the Van Buren sisters, I replied "No, why" He just said look them up, he lead on a little bit about what I was in store for, just enough to make sure that I would follow up with his request of further research. Well, I hung up the jack and instantly googled VAN BUREN SISTERS, what popped up was instant attraction, and a story that I fell in love with. I would like to share this true American story of 2 sisters that set out to explore our country in a time when there wasn't even a highway infrastructure, pre Eisenhower. This story is about untraveled terrain, love and companionship of two sisters, that set out to see the country on INDIAN motocycles with the wind in their faces and freedom on their back.

It was the summer of 1916. Women didn't have the right to vote, nor were they considered equals to men. But they did have the same tenacity, courage, and creativity that women have always had, regardless of the recognition they received for their talents and abilities. This is the story of Augusta and Adeline Van Buren, two sisters who journeyed from New York to California, the first women to do so on solo motorcycles.

Gussie and Addie were intelligent young women in their 20s when they set out from Sheepshead Bay in New York City to begin their transcontinental journey. They left on July 4th and arrived in Los Angeles on September 8th after traveling 5,500 miles over hazardous roads. There were no superhighways in those days. They would have to be content with dry weather, although washouts, heavy rains, and mud were often the conditions that they had to accept.

The Van Buren sisters rode Indian model F powerplus 1000CC motocycles that were pretty powerful and big for the sisters size, the ride consisted of mostly dirt roads up mountain tops by way of switchbacks (no guard rails) and rocky terrain, through the cold and mud, along dirt roads and some paved roads only in city limits. They received local help at different times along their journey from getting stuck in mud to having mechanical failure, people were grateful to help once they told them their story. With no mapquest and google earth they even wound up lost a few times, and had to be rerouted by fellow Americans who knew the lay of the land. West of Chicago they were arrested many times. Not for speeding or riding dangerously, but for wearing men’s clothing (women’s motorcycle gear wasn’t invented quite yet). The planned expedition must have been so much fun that once they reached California, they continued on down the pacific coast to Mexico. The sad part about this story is that Adeline wanted to enlist in the Army, and thought that her proven ride would secure her a spot to serve our country as a dispatch moto rider in the Army, but her application was rejected. These two sisters proved to our country that woman can do it with true integrity and will power just like the men can, They play sort of an unsung hero role in the womans rights movement that bloomed just around that time, allowing womans rights in this country to vote and serve.

There is so much beauty in this story the beauty of the woman them selves, the beauty of accomplishing a dream, and sharing that feeling with someone you love, the beauty of our country being so simple and unexplored, and to me the underlined beauty is saddling up a motorcycle and going out and experiencing the freedom that it can offer when your knees are in the breeze.......

Friday, December 16, 2011

On the N8Tive tip...Vinyl Flashback '83 Native Style

Nice post Viva Lux! I have nothing but respect and admiration for the true people of this land!
It prompted me to share this band from the Early 80's called BLACKFOOT. Again, with a good sense of humor, which I know we all share...I'm sure there are true Natives in this band, However, I get the sneaking suspicion that some of these dudes are not native at all. Take a look at how these rockers took it to that Native Level!!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Spiritual guidance...not for sale!

I came across this <---(PLEASE READ) the other day while strolling through tumblrtown, blogspotville, and wordpressington. I was blown away by the amount of research/ history and current fashion happenings that were mentioned throughout the article. I myself am a registered native american indian, and I consider myself to be more american than american indian...however I am a registered tribal member to the Oneida Nation loyal to the Iroquois tribe of indians, my grandmother was full blooded, and I was raised around a lot of indian pride. I have steadily seen the rise of native american culture sneak it's way to the forefront of todays fashion. It's just another example of culture vulturing, and exploiting heritage in a tasteless manner. Let it not be confused some people have been doing it with class and taste for years and it was never an issue ( RL, Pendelton,Minnetonka, Chipewa) because it was merely a nod to american indians and their rich culture, I felt as if those brands were trying to shine light on native culture. The sad part today is that every one is trying to cash in on it and it's lost the homage factor. Native americans were spiritual people and just about everything they did in their lives had meaning, and it was a natural organic meaning that was in tune with the living and spiritual surroundings of the world. That has been lost in translation now that the imagery and patterns, and even wardrobe have been flooded in pop culture fashion. This article hit home with me because I started a clothing line before the streetwear thing took off in the early 2000's called N8TIVE Trading Co. I wanted to be a newer POLO RL with a little more of a streetwise edge... Well, the company didn't exactly take off, and we made a few pieces here and there and it kind of just took the back seat to other ventures in my life, but it sucked because the ideology behind it was heart felt I had a vision of bringing native american awareness to the world and a final goal to actually manufacture and make goods on reservations by native people. FUBU for Indians...LOL!!! No but anyway this article summed up how I have been feeling for the last few years watching this wack bullshit get passed off as cool, 99% of the patterns and image stealing of native styles are bogus! I have watched, like many of us have, things we have been into and feel passionate about get played out and popularized until it is no longer cool to you anymore. I can't wait until native folklore in pop fashion fades away and the real lovely and respectful brands can continue to do what they have always done, and the watered down fakers and shakers will have moved on to the next neon spandex spacesuit style...Just another rant from a guy with grey hair who is getting old and cranky with what the "kids" are doing!!!
Peace and love
Viva Lux

Once upon a time...Me and my father, late70's..

Union pacific homage...

While most were chasing pink and purple bathing ape candy camo....

For my cuzzy young chief Edmund, who put me on with this song...

Charlie ...


In The Blood

Looks so sick!!! you gotta watch the trailer!!

Monday, December 12, 2011


I thought you were dead a while ago, but today when I went inside you and you had only snap back hats because fitted hats don't sell anymore I really felt it deep down in my bones. And I have a feeling that your staff, who looks like they picked out their clothing using darts and a bunch of post it notes with double dares written on them, probably know as much about sports as a giants/yankees fan...

Philly-Mass connection..

via Instant Sleep -- all day every day.

BOSTON, MA - 1962


TRURO, MA - 1977


Sunday, December 11, 2011

Knit wit..

Tis the season, Knit sweater season that is. This post is a look at the american vision and imagery that Ralph Lauren has embellished year after year in every color, theme, material, and size, most of the time on a HAND KNIT sweater. I have collected POLO clothing for a very long time, and the graphic pieces were always the most exciting, because they had a nickname to accompany the piece, or just the plain graphic itself was full of imagery that inspired me to be in to new things that I wouldn't have found on my own. Ralph Lauren's clothing has opened up my mind to new and more luxurious lifestyles that were not always tangible to me. I don't want to get off the beaten path of this post with how much POLO clothing has inspired me and most of my friends, but rather just a close up on one particular staple in his winter line year after year. There have always been strong images of fun times associated with the winter solstice placed throughout Ralph Lauren winter garments. I collected many of these knits until a flood in my basement about 7 years ago wiped out over 20 sweaters and just about killed me, luckily the indianhead was barely damaged and A little hand dye job on the sleeve and it was selvedged . Slowly over the years I have rebought some and even bought some new ones or ones I didn't have before. I never really got over having all my knits ruined, so my collection is still not what it was, but it didn't stop my admiration for these pieces. Here are a good amount of knit graphics through the years from all of the different Ralph Lauren lines. Most of them capture American pastimes that have been on the ropes in the last decade, but there seems to be an American resurgence, and who better to lead the way then one of the most stylish American icons ever RL.
Indy's,dogs, sleds, skis,crests,ididarod,teddies,moose, buffalo,sportsman,mallards,equestrian,cowboys,flags,trucks,snowflakes,snowshoes,sleighs,christmas trees, skating, elk,pheasant,canoes,sports,skulls..........