Welcome to The Ivy League Look

This blog presents a historical view through articles, photographs, reminiscences, and advertisements, of an American style of men's fashion of the mid-20th century known as "The Ivy League Look" or "The Ivy Look."

This blog will not present modern-day iterations of this "look"; it will be shown in its original context as an American style worn during this specific era. Author commentary will be kept to a minimum.

This is not a commercial site and links to commercial sites will not be posted.

May 17, 2013

Princeton Charlie, 1968

(click to enlarge)


The Daily Princetonian - 12/8/66

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Princeton Charlie is someone we all know. He wears a rep tie, tweed jacket, weejuns and wheat jeans to JP. He takes a bottle of bourbon to the dance and has a case of Colt 45 back at the room. Also back at the room he has all sorts of red and blue lights wired onto a wagon wheel hanging from the ceiling, a Princeton banner on the wall, a wooden bar and a closet full of cocktail accessories, photographic equipment, binoculars, toy tigers and watches.

The incredible thing is not that there are people on this campus whose life-style approximates Princeton Charlie's. The incredible thing is that this should be taken, even by the campus media, as a model or idea when plenty of freshmen aren't sucked in by this bush-league ethos, and most of the ones that are, outgrow it by the end of their sophomore year. Most clubs aren't even interested in Princeton Charlie, the exceptions being those sad clubs of declasse preppies who imagine that he lives on somewhere "down the street." Princeton Charlie is someone we all know; he is also someone we all want to forget.

The intriguing question is why he is with us still. In a sense he is the ghost of an imagined past. For one thing it couldn't have been that bad; for another he is a little too precisely like the daydream of a mid-west high school senior who has just been accepted at Princeton.

He lives on because the U-Store and Orange Key and the administration can use him. He is a way of getting at underclassmen. He is a way of inducing that false consciousness that is so necessary to move goods in a department store which has more to offer a 30-year-old vacuum-cleaner salesman than a student.

The campus media, including the "Prince," can use him because it is always easier for a writer to employ an intrinsically coherent rhetoric, no matter how much that rhetoric offends his own intelligence, his own taste, his own morality.


The Daily Princetonian - 3/15/68


NCJack said...

LOL, I started at Chapel Hill in 1968, and that description covered probably 75% of the freshmen, and quite a few sophomores. It takes a bit to get the "Wow, I'm collegiate" out.

Richard M said...

And what has replaced him? An improvement?