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Truman Says

Tom Ford, Not Quite The Gentleman?

Thursday Styles' Critical Shopper detects a streak of schizophrenia in Tom Ford's new men's boutique.

When Horacio Silva shows up as an anonymous walk-in...

"'Sir, this area is for appointments only,' said the security guard at the base of the stairs. I told him that I wanted to arrange a time for a fitting; he told me he did not know to whom to direct me. When I suggested he try the store manager, he replied, 'Let me see if he has the time for you.' You have to laugh. An unintentionally hilarious parody of a pretentious Madison Avenue boutique, the store reeks of arriviste Anglophilic posturing dressed up as aristocratic gentlemanly refinement."

Some time later, Silva rings up the store and makes an appointment for himself:

"The service offered me, especially by the store manager, Edward Carbonell, who possesses a charming bedside manner and the best skin in high-end men's retail, was exemplary. It was Champagne and smiles all around, but then the entire staff appeared to know I was a Times reporter since I had made the appointment in my name. The security guards were noticeably more low-key -- Mr. Carbonell informed me that he had told them to back off as I was apparently not the only one who had been rubbed the wrong way -- and the whole tenor of the place was friendlier, more inviting."

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