Notes & Intrigues, May 2010

• Update On Man Tea sampling: Yogi Tea’s intriguing concoction, “Man Tea” (see post below) was finally sampled, and Manzine noticed a subtle uplift in mood occasioned by the steaming infusion of ginger, carob, chicory, ginseng, aniseed, cardamom, peppermint and other herbs. Verdict? More exciting the chamomile, but not as good as the Himalaya product range which is, surely, what Hilary & Tenzing would have drunk.
• Is this the softest headline ever?
• Manzine is continually intrigued by about prospect of brand extensions – but it would appear a rival magazine have beaten us to it again, first with swimming trunks and now with these attractive boxers. Perfect for wafting around one’s summer house in Z├╝rich on warm Saturday brunchtimes, Manzine imagines…

• Manzine is attending the annual St Bride’s Library Conference on May 27 &  28. Come along. There will be a secret summit in a nearby pub on late Friday, with the express intention of drinking beer against the prospect of turning into a Neo-Con.
  Field Notes – as stocked on the Folk Shop on Lambs Conduit Street - are a cultish alternative to the expensive and increasingly ubiquitous Moleskines. Still, Manzine suspects that the expanses of empty page can be intimidating to would-be note takers when, say, nursing a machiatto and reaching for poetic insight upon the Trastavere fountain, or perhaps attempting to pen some Iain Sinclair-style notes on the Hackney Marshes. See Manzine Issue IV, publishing in Autumn, for our feature, “Ideas On What To Write In Your Moleskine If You’re Stuck For inspiration.” Manzine’s own bulging, dog-eared Moleskine is pictured.
 • The SOTO menswear store on Torstrasse, Berlin, recently produced this intriguing sticker (American readers: we mean “decals”.) In its own subtle way it expresses so much about the state of the world today, no?
• FAQNP A Queer Nerd Publication is an enjoyably oblique DIY pamphlet by Ray Cha. Where else would you get to read “An Ode To Antimorphs”? (Thanks Ray.)
• Look out for Issue IV of The Ride Journal, whose editor Philip Diprose is a contributor to our organ.
• Manzine began a series of walks through Berlin with the artist and cartographer Stephen Walter last week. Pictured is sunset over the Landwehr Kanal in Kruezberg. The walk ended at the Soviet War memorial in Treptower Park, which appeared to be a popular location for skateboarders and jump-bikers. Is it acceptable to practice urban/extreme sports at war memorials? Answers on the back of a set of Sims Pure Juice wheels...

"Man Tea" vs Rewe's 5,0 Beer

Manzine has for a while been intrigued by Yogi Tea's ayurvedic herbal infusion product line "Man Tea" (pictured). Interesting to note that brands and products rarely (these days) address male consumers directly as men. Thoughts? Email us.
It seems to work - Manzine took the initiative, on a rare visit to a Berlin organic supermarket today, to buy a packet of the tea with a view to sampling it. Nevertheless, tonight's choice of drink is the equally manful "5,0 Original" – an own-brand pilsner beer from the reputed German supermarket Rewe which, with its tastefully restrained art direction/graphic design and super low-cost price point (just 38 cents per can), could hardly be more of a wise choice for today's get-ahead Man About Town.
Here's is hoping the Man Tea fulfils its promise of aiding in what will be, no doubt, a man-sized hangover.
Manzine will report in full tomorrow on this interesting taste sensation/experience. 

Brick Lane, Not Park Lane

A revisit to the Last Jewish Trader on Brick Lane, with some thoughts and feelings related to work, family, ambition and history. By Simmy Richman. Photography: Jean Goldsmith

He is not a man given to easy laughter, but there's one joke Leo Epstein never tires of telling. He'll have it at the ready every time a customer comes into his shop asking to see the upmarket stock: "This is Brick Lane, not Park Lane."
Should they probe further, Epstein might reveal that the word "shmatte", the trade he has been involved in for more than 50 years, roughly translates as "a rag" or "anything shabby". There's nothing shabby about a business that has looked after Epstein and his family nicely and finds him now, proudly telling anyone interested in the history of the East End, that he is the last Jewish trader in a street that was once the epicentre of London Jewry.
Epra Fabrics opened on Brick Lane in 1956. Then, there was a Jewish haberdasher on one side, a Jewish bookshop on the other, a kosher butcher here, a Yiddish theatre there, and everywhere rolls of cloth that could be measured and cut to length for anyone interested in a nice bit of shmatte to take home and turn into clothes.

Hi-Viz: Officially Trenny

Manzine always knew the fashion police would one day see sense and proclaim hi-viz workwear as the next big thing. Spotted in Berlin is this billboard for a biowaste recovery service which, with its "Trennsetter*" headline, makes explicit what many of us have long known:

Note the attractive reflective strips on the man's legs for extra visibility:
And also his up-to-the-minute walrus moustache - das ist cool, ja?

Manzine's resident Hi-Viz Man (right) comments: "being highly visible is The New Black, especially if you work in biowaste recovery management."
* NB: Trennsetter may not actually translate  as "trendsetter". Can any native German speakers offer a better translation? Please email us if so.

Manzine stocked at Wasted German Youth, Berlin

Visit Paul Snowden's Wasted German Youth outlet at Memhardstr. 1, Mitte, Berlin. Here's a shot of the shopfront:

Random Rants & Raves, May 2010

032c issue 19, featuring William T. Vollman, Cy Twombly, attractive models and plenty lots more contemporary culture
• A Silva compass when lost in zero-visibility cloud and rain on the summit of Glyder Fach, in late April.
• Meantime Belgian beer
• Rig Out, the menswear zine published though Oi Polloi (Manzine visited Manchester the other week to discuss rainwear with Steve Sanderson).
• Silk polka dots scarves, generally
• The Wasted German Youth shop on Memhardstrasse 1, Berlin
• The Bristol to Bath railway bike path

• Tour De France 2009 King Of The Mountains Franco Pelizotti's recent biopassport anomaly. Perhaps Pelizotti should read this instead, right (thanks to Johnny Deck for the find)
• Sleeping in the back seat of a car, even if it's only for a night
• Those who refer to "t'internet"
• Wondering whether imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, or whether it just plain copying.
• Being obliged to drink beer from plastic glasses when outside.
• Referring food and drink as "nutrition" and "hydration"
Got any more? Let us know