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Instant Coffee Saturday Edition
Issue 6, April 6, 2002 | ISSN 1499-5085
  • Saturday Edition Feature
  • Graphique by kate Monro
  • International Coffees
  • Mr Brown
  • Tasters Choice
  • Ten Ten
  • Sanka
    Talking fashion.

    DO have more style than fashion//DO wear dirty clothes, but never food stained//DO mix and match, but don't blend//DO layers and never be cold//DO hem, but only with brightly colored thread//DO ask your friends to give you clothes they have that you like//DO dress quickly, cause you can always change//DO dress for your mood and not the occasion//DO wear clothes with holes in them, but no holely shoes//DO wear clothes that are too tight, but not if they hurt// DO show off your beer belly because we're all gonna get one// DO wear baseball caps, but never in the company of friends who are also sporting baseball caps//DO wear clothes, but keep them off your animals//DO wear ties, but never with shorts.

    instant coffee will be overdone

    Send letters to the editor to

    Saturday Edition Feature

    1. T-Shirt Show Online Catalogue Launch

    When I was fourteen my best friend got me a job at Big BrotherŒs T-shirts in Chinook Mall. It was one of those iron on places, where you could get ready-made decals like "I'm with stupid" plus arrow and "I'm not two-faced. If I was, would I be wearing this one?" put on old or new T-shirts. There were hundreds of options from illustrated unicorns in rainbow saturated landscapes to rock band logos. But the most popular selling items were the felt letters. Sure they were mostly used by sports teams, but people also used them to convey their own sentiments (from nasty to nice) or to retell their favorite poems (ie, "If you love something, set it free").

    I really sucked at this job. I never had a steady enough hand to line up the decals or letters. More than not they were crooked and at least three times I remember putting them on completely upside down. I only lasted about three months, but the experience was just the beginning of my discovery of the T-shirt as a creative means of expression. - j.p

    Instant Coffee astonishingly presents the on-line version of the T-shirt Show.

    We know that everyone has had a T-shirt idea so we gathered a few together. Artists from across Canada present their ideas and designs in a catalogue that we like to call a venue and NOW you can see them on the Instant Coffee web-site. No adjective or group of words could fully describe this eclectic, intelligent, super funny, biting, politically astute, nice and pretty collection of ideas and designs so go and check it out at WWW.T-SHIRT.INSTANTCOFFEE.ORG. The shirts are for sale and can be ordered on-line.

    Participating artists: o 1000km Design Büro o Andrew McLaren o Andrew Reilly o Cecilia Berkovic + Kate Monro o Celeste Toogood o Chantal Rousseau o Chris Martin o Greg Hefford o Greg Staats o Holly Ward o Instant Coffee o James Carl o Janis Demkiw o Jess Rowland o Jessica Thompson o Jinhan Ko o Jon Sasaki o Jordan Sonenberg o Kika Thorne o Laura Borealis o Lisa Deanne Smith o Lisa Kannakko o Lisa Klapstock o Marco Bortolussi o Micheal Klein o Natalie De Vito o Nicole Bauberger o Peter Kingstone o Sasha Havlik o Simone Moir o Timothy Comeau o Tullis Rose

    2. New Software Launches, Fashion Crimes Ensue
    By Andrew Duff

    It's six a.m. on a cold Thursday morning. A gawd-awful time to be awake, let alone awake and trying desperately to figure out what to wear. For some reason, several weeks ago, I registered online to go to a Macromedia FLASH MX seminar. I don't even use FLASH! I'm interested in it... but interested enough to be up at 6 a.m. and make it downtown by 8:30 a.m.?!? I must be crazy.

    I settle on black jeans, a black T-shirt, and a burgundy, button-down, long-sleeve shirt. I put on my cool-ass black leather, ankle-high, square-toed shoes. I feel very digital-designer-come-Art-Director, with a splash of wanna-be-capital-"A"-Artist. Oh yeah, that's right!

    Doubtful that I will see anyone I know, but looking good just in case, I head off for the Toronto Convention Centre. When I get there, I'm not surprised by what I see. Yahoos dressed just like me, but with more stylish outer wear... those expensive "Roots" three-quarter length leather jackets, or the retro 70's orange and red sporty jackets. And then there's all the "geek chic" people. The ones that look like they slept in their clothes, shook off the bits of Doritos, and came on over. You could also see the ones that try really hard to mimic that geek look, but with brand-new jeans, brand-new plaid short-sleeve shirts, and brand-new runners from the Zellers near their parent's suburban homes.

    I've come to this event to witness the grand spectacle of a software launch. To listen to the guys and gals in their matching, logo bedazzled, short-sleeve polo shirts and chinos. All "just out of the box," clean and neat. They make me happy, they make me feel safe. They gurgle on about their lovely software and how it will make my life so much easier, my web sites so much more cutting edge. I become convinced that I would be really, really silly not to use their software. Never a harsh word, the occasional fun-loving jab at the competition. Smiles, matching shirts, clean pants, and highly efficient software.

    The seminar ends. I meet up with three friends - friends I haven't seen for several months. We come together in the crush of the exiting audience. Clutching our fully completed surveys, we slowly move toward the long tables near the theatre doors where we will be rewarded with a CD of software demos. Our survey information soon to be added to a giant database, where we will all be reduced to our focus groups, our e-mail addresses compiled for future sale and re-sale. What we were wearing that day will be forgotten, if it was ever noticed at all.

    So, when it's six in the morning and I'm fumbling toward the next seminar, I think I'll just grab my best pair of track pants, throw on my runners, and with a knowing smile slip into that glorious sea of plaid.

    3. Fashion Does Not Exist
    By Leif Harmsen

    I am not a fashion writer. Nobody is because fashion no more exists than does God. Yet self proclaimed fashion experts write and talk about this non-existent fashion, put on fashion weeks and millions obsess at dressing up like characters from television drama. At a Burger King by the 401 near Trenton I saw a nice random sample of Canadians in transit, and could identify the television show part that each was imitating by their dress. I can do the same from the bathhouse to the boardroom. What the gurus divine and peer followers believe to be fashionable keeps changing year by year, which should indicate to any sensible person that those who claim authority on fashion have nothing of any value to contribute.

    It is often practical to wear clothing for warmth, protection and pockets. But clothing looks silly and ugly on animals, Beatrix Potter notwithstanding, and we primates are no exception to this rule. Your apparel is crude when compared to the wondrous human form it obscures. The rag trade simply can not compete with 2 billion years of evolution any more than a neon sign can compete with the sun. Artists never tire of drawing nudes, but the fashion du jour constantly changes because they are too boring to hold anyone's attention for long.

    Good designers serve to style clothing in order to deal with the predicament of clothing as best they can. Like a good DJ, they know their place as background wallpaper at a function where the guests are the main event. Bad designers think their outfit looks better than the people it covers, and will even compromise the underlying flesh in order to achieve a gratuitous aesthetic. Business suits worn under the sweltering summer sun come to mind as a design disaster, as do crippling high heels or anything synthetic. Like all bad designers, bad clothing designers would have us believe that they themselves have something important to say when they do not, and manage only to annoy all but the shallow with their prolific but empty hype.

    A belief in fashion is a tempting crutch for people who lack their own style or a sense of self. It gives them an off-the-shelf virtual identity that in a pinch can stand in for themselves. This explains all the television character drag. Still others comply with whatever we're told is fashionable for fear of being bullied if we appear too different. I fall into this later camp but am bad at it. Between these two camps are a few who style their dress they please, but don't much identify with it. I prefer to be naked because regardless of what I wear it always feels fraudulent, and I don't watch enough television to know how to blend in. The Emperor really did have the best clothes, even if they weren't new.
    - Leif Harmsen

    International Coffees

    1. Moreno Ferrari's convertible clothes
    By Elena Guarneri

    A designer, philosopher and urban observer, Moreno Ferrari taps into the fabric of modern society and creates clothes that morph and change to suit our individual needs.

    A shawl that converts into a curtain ‹ so that we can cloak ourselves with our home comforts only to become a greenhouse or even a portable privy where we can pause from the world for a moment; a jacket that inflates into a chair; a raincoat that morphs into a kite so we can all be children once more. Fantasy? Science-fiction? No, just some of Moreno Ferrari's latest creations. 50-year-old Ferrari is a fashion and interior designer from La Spezia in Liguria who spent his youth amidst swatches of fabric and material, followed by a professional career marked by his studies in philosophy as well as his love of cinema and literature. Carlo Rivetti of the textile group GFT and C.P. Company, saw the designer's work and recognised his potential, allowing him to experiment and create some of his trademark pieces.

    Ferrari deconstructs his clothes and redesigns them as versatile and transformable objects. He reinvents our concepts of home and housing in the light of a society which increasingly demands flexibility and change and privileges those who can mould and adapt themselves to continual evolutions. His clothes are like a shell, a light, manageable and flexible structure which is an integral part of the person wearing it - a protection - like the armadillo's carapace - that insulates the wearer against all instability, fear or turmoil.

    In his search for a permanent centre of gravity Ferrari discovers that the centre of things lies in its very absence and the resulting attempts to locate and relocate objects, places and meanings in the quest for even partial answers. This is one of the reasons why the designer speaks of his creations as "fragile, light and supple architecture (Š) which correspond to a metaphysically precarious condition."

    for more.

    2. A La Mode
    Vogue's pathetic attempt at body-type diversity.
    By Emily Nussbaum, April 2, 2002

    Mr Brown

    instant coffee coffee link
    Like Sugar Cubes, Only Coffee

    selected links
    1. Peaches got 4 stars in the guardian.,3604,666227,00.html

    2. Imitation of Christ Links
    It's just a coincidence that it happens to be Easter, and my submission regards the New York fashion designers that go by the name "Imitation of Christ", much to the dismay of Catholics (they took their name from a Psychedelic Furs song, not Thomas a Kempis). I like them because they take second hand clothes, add a new stitch or something, and then sell it for a grand. They kill two birds with one stone
    - make a lot of money to pay the rent with, and expose fashionistas for the idiots they are. Their last Spring 2002 show (which is held in the fall, because in the logic of the fashion world, you need the 6 month interim to get the stuff into the stores) turned the tables on the fashion folk - when the reporters crowded and in and herded through the doors, they found themselves on the runway, and the models sat in the audience, taking notes and pictures.

    They have even spawned a parody group:

    Chum City's own Fashion Television vignette on them (highly recommended):

    And they're associated with Chloe Sevigny, the actress (which probably accounts for a lot of their attention): (scroll down)

    Review of spring 01 and preview of fall 01

    Amy Spindler is a fashion editor. Scroll down to read her assessment of IoC

    Spring 2001 (Sept 2000) Theme: a funeral (scroll down)

    Fall 2001 Show (Feb 2001) Theme: mock movie premier.
    Reporters had to pay to enter, proceeded to be donated to anti-sweatshop charity.

    Spring 2002 show (Sept 2001) Theme: mirror world fashion show.
    The reporters are objectified by the models.

    submitted links
    A whole website devoted to coveralls

    Two mullet oriented websites

    model art collective London UK

    "computer chip grafiti"

    ic supporter links


    Tasters Choice

    Instant Coffee Toffee Fudge Cake
    By The Canadian Living Test Kichen

    7 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (200 g)
    1/2 cup butter, cut in pieces (125 mL)
    1/4 cup coffee liqueur (50 mL)
    1 tablespoon instant coffee granules (15 mL)
    1/2 cup packed brown sugar (125 mL)
    4 eggs, separated
    2/3 cup all-purpose flour (150 mL)
    1/4 teaspoon each salt and cream of tartar (1 mL)
    1/4 cup granulated sugar (50 mL)
    4 bars (each 39 g) milk chocolate-covered toffee, finely chopped
    Chocolate Glaze
    1/4 cup whipping cream (50 mL)
    2 tablespoons coffee liqueur (25 mL)
    2 teaspoons instant coffee granules (10 mL)
    5 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (150 g)

    In saucepan, heat semisweet chocolate, butter, liqueur and coffee granules over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until smooth. Remove from heat; whisk in brown sugar until dissolved. Whisk in egg yolks, one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Whisk in flour in three additions; let cool for 5 minutes.

    In bowl and using electric mixer, beat together egg whites, salt and cream of tartar until soft peaks form; gradually beat in granulated sugar until stiff peaks form. Whisk one-third into chocolate batter; fold in remaining egg whites. Gently fold in half of the chopped chocolate bars.

    Pour into well-greased 8-inch (750 mL) round cake pan. Run knife through batter to remove air bubbles. Bake in 350°F (180°C) oven for 45 minutes or until top is firm to the touch and crust has formed. Let cool on rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely.

    Chocolate Glaze: In small saucepan, bring cream, liqueur and coffee granules to boil over medium-high heat. Immediately stir in chocolate; remove from heat and whisk until smooth. Let cool to room temperature. Pour over cake, letting some drip down sides. Garnish with remaining chopped chocolate bar.

    Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or until glaze is set. (Cake can be covered and refrigerated for up to 5 days or frozen for up to 1 week.)

    Yield: 8 servings

    Ten Ten

    1. Trudeau, CBC television, March 31-April 1 2002, 8-10pm
    By Timothy Comeau

    I didn't like the look of the commercials I saw for this show, but I knew I would watch it regardless since Trudeau was such a mensch. He was a man who was so widely admired that his death was a national patriotic event for some, but was also so reviled by the western provinces and in Quebec that they're reluctant to put him on the money just yet.

    A. The Ubercanadian Colm Feore played Canada's most famous international musician, Glenn Gould, and now he's played Canada's most famous politician, Mister Margaret. It made sense that he was cast as Trudeau, even though he looks nothing like him, a condition that almost seems expected after so many productions that strive to cast similar features. Because of these two roles, from such opposite ends of the white male canadian spectrum, I've now come to think of him as the ubercanadian, a role previously occupied by Trudeau himself as socialist-peacemaker-intellectual-world-traveler who loved Canada (and who Nixon hated!)

    B. Halifax Having lived in Halifax, I was distracted in the first episode by recognizing so much scenery. I found the Beatlemania allusion filmed at the AGNS particularly laughable, because it's the only time in my life that I'll see that many people running out of the AGNS in joy. I wonder how John Greer feels about having his statue used as a prop during that somewhat awkward sequence (however, I thought was an interesting way to present Trudeaumania by referencing the way Beatlemanina was portrayed on film by the Beatles themselves). Couldn't they have found another location that wasn't so obvious, and one in which didn't trivialize the location by assuming that "no one's going to know where this is, so we'll use this as an urban campaign headquarters"? For the most part they disguised Halifax well. I must say that I saw a clip of the program on the Mike Bullard show the week before, wherein the silent little girl give Trudeau a rose, while he overlooks the scenery from some balcony. seeing the clip I thought that scene had been filmed in Montreal - only while watching the show on Sunday night, with the Haligonian teleology in place, did I recognize the location as being the top of the Westin Nova Scotian or thereabouts.

    C. Stylization Despite the fact that I've recently developed an allergy to stylization that exists only to prettify weak or boring ideas, I like the way it was used in Trudeau to enhance a weak budget and by-default nature of the casting. I thought this was a fair and legitimate use of stylization, which I'm defending agaisnt those who hated this obvious example of "cbc canadiana" - that usually wacky and poorly produced quality of broadcasts that makes CBC's recent American marketing campaign futile. For example, my sister's friend, who watched it with us, scoffed at when one of the dates fell from the top of the screen and then became unsynchronized. Such unexpected effects, in a biopic, was a surprise and kept my interest, whereas a slick and over-expensive American production would have bored me with it's earnestness and had me channel surfing. Considering they wrote some of the script from cabinet minutes only realeased last year, the content was earnest enough without needing to be visually slick. Life in reality is not slick, and this after all, was a re-presentation of a reality.

    D. The Best for Last I've long wished that a biopic would acknowledge the reality of the subject matter by using original footage here and there. My simple reason is so that I could be reminded of what the original looked like, or what the reality was like against the recreation. So, at the very end of the film, here was THE REAL Trudeau, who wasn't as handsome as Colm Feore, nor as tall, delivering an early version of his "Just Society" speech at the 1968 Liberal Candidate Convention. As a whole, "Trudeau" was better served by using archival material, because I was reminded of the reality of this story, and got a feel for the marked difference between then and now.

    E. Completely Gratuitous It was also nice to see Knowlton Nash again via the archival footage, since he was such a presence in my pre-cable childhood.

    Related Links

    Rating: eight out of ten


    1. I like belt buckles and stuff.
    by Anon.

    I have three with motorcycles on them, and my friend has one with a picture of Jesus. Kind of sparkley red, and in the center there’s a Sacre-Coeur. Christ may be a busy guy, but he’ll still take the time to hold your pants up. I like belt buckles almost as much as I like Girl Guide Cookies.

    By Patrick DeCoste

    There are many types of beer-bellies. My favourite has the right balance of visceral and subcutaneous fat - round and buoyant. Beer-bellies should never be hidden under baggy clothes. The ideal garment to gird a beer-belly is the T-shirt. The perfect fit is one size too small, revealing the full shapely round belly, and not quite long enough to tuck into hip-hugging pants. The beer-belly T is easy to accessorize: a few beer stains, bits of food, and some rips and holes to show a bit of furry flesh.

    You may think this genre is most apt for truck driver and plumber types ... but remember Kate Moss? The fashion industry transformed her look from crack-whore-grotesque into runway success. The hottest designers are now hailing beer-belly chic as the new thing. Dragging reluctant burly men from greasy auto-body shops into the glossy pages of fashion magazines. An aesthetic antidote to the flat abs which currently infest the media.

    So if you've got what it takes, throw on your skimpiest rattiest shirt, get out there, and flaunt your beautiful beer-belly!

    3. Baseball Caps
    By Timothy Comeau

    I like b-ball caps cause they keep the sun out my eyes. That's the biggest reason I wear them, since I don't own a pair of sunglasses. I also wear baseball caps cause it's a habit, a personal tradition. This developed in the early 90s. In my high school graduation group photo, I'm the only one wearing a hat (cause it was blue cordroy and it rocked -and it was sunny out that day). While reaching for a hat I'm often reminded of my days in university residence, when I was scolded by a patriarchal figure for going to class with bedhead. "At least put a hat on for god's sakes!" he said. Because of the good times I had then, and the fact that we all wore baseball hats in residence, the tradition that began as a teenager was nurtured. I remember at the time being fond of the Tragically Hip song, "50 Mission Cap", whose main lyric "I worked it in to look like that" seemed to exemplify the relationship one has with ones hat - as you work it in as it accompanies you through these experiences that live on in memory.

    Sometimes I feel more comfortable with something on my head. I've worn other hat styles, but because of the ubiquity of baseball hats, wearing other styles usually draws for more attention than I'd like. You end up talking about the stupid hat you're wearing. That quality of anonymous ubiquity I find appealing. You can do the whole "something on your head" thing without being too warm in a toque, keep the sun out of your eyes, and not draw undue attention to yourself.

    I'm glad that there are no photographs of me from the 1980s wearing acid wash. As well, I managed to make it through the 90s without getting a tattoo. But the one area fashion area where I don't mind following the crowd is to wear the baseball hat, since they are the contemporary tricorn. An example of this is how last summer during the previews for the new Star Trek show, they had scenes with the mid 22nd Century characters wearing baseball hats, which was meant to convey that they were more contemporary then the 23rd and 24th Century characters known from the previous series.

    I've never been that much of a fashion conscious person, having known far more fashion victims than actual fashionable people, but I did become concerned a few years back that I wouldn't date photographs correctly. It's an interesting feature of fashion that one can date a photograph by what people are wearing; to within a decade when you're dealing with obviously 20th Century photos. This is something I like about fashion in general, how it corresponds to that which we know by those two German words: the Kunstwollen and the Zeitgeist. It reveals something intrinsic about the human character's need to belong to some group. As the anthropologists say, we are social animals and we wear clothes that reflect our tribal allegiances. Besides keeping the sun out of my eyes, and my hair in place, they help me date future photographs, and I can feel like I'm participating in a fashion sense particular to now.

    4. Week in review care of 032c workshop, Berlin.

    This is just one of 032c projects

    032c workshop has organized an exhibition and a party for Karl Lagerfeld's portraits of Chicks on Speed, DJ Hell, Casey Spooner, Matmos, Miss Kittin & The Hacker, Peaches and Vive La Fete in Berlin. The Music Looks Better With You - Portraits by Karl Lagerfeld

    generally, it is a daily listing of some choice fashion related web reading and some details about 032c's projects. we found a good link to an article about the crazy prices the average Tokyo fashionista spends on a second hand t-shirt and The Economist's special dossier on fashion luxury companies. It is smart talk about fashion and mediocre talk about art.

    Instant Coffee Saturday Edition is our (sort of) monthly email/online zine. Saturday Edition compliments to Instant Coffee's email list service, which has been promoting local, national and international events to a targeted audience since 2000.

    Instant Coffee Saturday Edition takes submissions. We're interested in graphics, articles reviews and links about music, video/film, art exhibitions, architecture and design for the sections as above ... and self indulgences for the Sanka section. Send submissions to

    instant coffee + march break = workplace work

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