Wednesday, June 04, 2008


Bad Breakup

Dear Kenneth Cole,

Ken! Ken, Kenny, what can I say? We've had a great run. It's not me, it's you.

Let me start by mentioning how attractive you are. I'm not lying when I say your stuff looks great...on the shelf. I'll admit that's what drew me to you. Nice shelves. Sure you were overpriced, but what hottie isn't? I didn't mind paying full pop at first to be associated with such a glamorous metrosexual.

But you turned out to be an attractive nuisance. It started off slowly: remember the shirts? Granted, that first one was my fault. It was dry-clean only and I washed it. I'm not blameless here. I can be a Neanderthal bachelor at times. But what about the rest of your shirts that fell apart on me soon after wearing? Some of them even BEFORE the dry cleaning? Is the shredded thread Hulk look in this season?

I know competent sweatshop labor is hard to find in this global economy, but why are you charging me the cost of a tank of premium(!) for a garment held together with wishes and dreams?

Then it was the cruel shoes. No! Let me talk! No, I am not done!

The salesman at Macy's men's department said those shoes were "fashion forward." And did they ever look great. The bad news? They were as comfortable as a cell in Guantánamo Bay. The good news? They didn't last long enough to cause permanent damage.

Hey, in your defense, you're not Birkenstock here. You don't advertise your clothes to be worn by humans, only models. Fair enough. My mistake.

You only have one other line of products. Still flush with naïvité I gave one of your sublime briefcases a try. I shelled out a month's rent for a black beauty at your flagship store at the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica. This was no outlet shop back alley castoff.

Right away the hinge broke, but you took care of that. In less than two weeks, I had a brand new replacement in my hand mailed straight from New York. Co-workers marveled at my conspicuous sophistication. Then I went to see Ocean's 11 and noted that the bad guys carried the exact same briefcase. I knew there would be at least two more sequels, the briefcase looked that good.

Ah, but the sequel is never equal to the original, is it? My show pony briefcase suffered a disintegrated latch and all of the metal trim fell off of it. That was the beginning of the end for me. I can't go without any trim.

Mind you, IN THE MOVIES your briefcase stands up to being jackhandled by elaborate criminals penetrating secure casino vaults. In real life, your case can't even hold my paper TPS reports. I am not making this up. Your briefcase was defeated by paper. Not even legal briefs; just regular 8½ by 11 paper.

Imagine my relief when your well-dressed nose-ringed maître d'crap stated you have a lifetime warranty on your leather goods. Sweet! I hand over my trimless wonder.

Three weeks later I pick up my (formerly) beloved hand luggage. The failed latch was reattached with POP RIVETS that didn't even match the rest of the fasteners on the piece. And the missing trim was NAILED to the briefcase splitting the leather and wood. I think we both know who got nailed here.

Look, I'm not gonna lie. I've been wearing Donna Karan, too. Her stuff fits great and lasts forever. And another Cole; Cole Haan, has been sending e-mails.

I'm just one lone paper jockey who doesn't amount to a hill of beans in this retail world. You look so great, I'm sure there are plenty of younger, richer guys out there for you who haven't been burned yet.

But Old Ken Cole has one less jolly old soul. I've outgrown your games.

So...when I see you at the mall, or the men's department or the promenade, we don't have to pretend like nothing ever went down between us. We'll always have Ocean's 11.
But from now on I'll look and won't touch. You bruise too easily, and frankly, I can't afford it.

Have a great summer,

-Jason Rohrblogger


mickmaster said...

Hey Jase,

Sorry it didn't work out with you two. You seemed so good together; I didn't know anything was wrong.

Maybe Tommy Hilfiger is available.


Adrian said...

Sad for you friend...but glad you are staying strong.

Jenn said...

AWESOME!!! YOU ARE BACK! Great post!