Wait For It… a blog by Andy Ross

Wacky Ties

Posted on November 9, 2010

I collect wacky neckties. My father had wacky ties, his father had wacky ties, and his father before him. It's in my genes. Collecting wacky neckties is my birthright.

I can remember my very first wacky necktie. It was silk, with Bugs Bunny dressed up as an orchestra conductor. It was a gift for my trombone recital in 7th grade. That's how all wacky tie collections start. With a trombone recital.

Since then, I've collected hundreds, nay thousands of wacky ties on my own. Every time I pass a mall kiosk or go to Epcot or receive the Signals catalogue, I think, "It’s go time." It doesn't matter if it's got piano keys or it's shaped like a fish, if it's a tie and it's wacky, I'm buying it.

(I should be careful to point out that I only collect wacky ties—never kooky or whimsical neckties. Kooky ties are for assholes, and whimsical ties are for men afraid to commit. I only buy wacky ties. Period.)

To give you a sense of my collection, I went into my walk-in tie closet and grabbed a random sampling. It won't give you the full scale of my wacky tie collection, but I hope it gives you a sense of its breadth. Here goes:

– A tie shaped like an upside-down carton of McDonalds French fries. (Purchased at the Rock 'n Roll McDonalds, Chicago, 1993)

– A macramé tie with turquoise stone accents. (Santa Fe swap meet, 1992)

– A tie with the word "Jolly" in blinking LED lights. (Traded for during a 2004 white elephant party at the office. I can't believe somebody thought of that as a gag gift.)

– A clear plastic tie filled with water and a toy goldfish. (Ordered from the Lillian Vernon catalogue, 1997)

– A tie with a pocket for an iPod and mini speakers. (Times Square, New Years Eve, 2007/2008)

– A tie made out of recycled seatbelts. (eBay purchase of an Allstate Insurance promotional gift, 2005)

– A tie that changes color based on body heat. (Gift from junior high girlfriend, Kimberly-Anne Snuggins, 1994)

– A chainmail tie. (Medieval Times, 2010)

– A Chrysler Building tie. (The Chrysler Building, New Years Day, 2008)

– A black velvet tie with my face painted on it. (Self-made, 1999)

– A paisley tie. (Ridiculous. Bought in Holland, Michigan, 2001)

There are more ties here, but I don't want to ruin the wonder of seeing them for the first time. Especially the one I’m planning on wearing tomorrow. I want to see the look of surprise on your face.

Okay, I'll give you one hint: Larry, Moe, and blank. That's all I'm gonna say.

Also, golf. There's golf involved. But, that is it. Those are all the hints I'm giving out. You'll just have to wait 'til tomorrow to see my newest wacky tie.