Sunday, June 17, 2007

Coffee with Avner

So I’m making my way through the Marais toward the Left Bank for the Zucca fashion show when I come across this very elegant gentleman, Avner Gruzow, 83 years young.

I ask to take his photo and he agrees on one condition: I sit and have a coffee with him, and tell him about New York (although I knew I would really be the one asking the questions).

Now, I wanted to go to the Zucca show, but how do you pass up a chance to sit and hear a little about the life of a gentleman like this?

Guess what he did? Deep-sea diving! “I was mad for diving,” he said, more than once.

The years have not been so kind to Avner’s ablity to communicate and he had trouble remembering certain words, but from what I could make out, he spent some time living in the Middle East with the bedouins, he owned a camel, he and his wife own a country house in the South of France but currently live on the Left Bank. He travels every year to Antwerp to visit the area where he grew up.

Before we said good-bye, he gave me his address and promised that when I return to Paris he will show me photos of when he was young in the Middle East riding camels and of his diving adventures.

His handshake is still strong (stronger than I expected) so my guess is that although he is 83, we will still have quite a few more coffees together, hopefully soon.


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  1. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 2:40 pm

    what an adorable man :D and a lovely story, indeed

  2. andrea Ratner

    June 17, 2007 at 2:47 pm

    Scott, you are a truly nice person. That was such sweet thing you did!

  3. Pargolo

    June 17, 2007 at 3:02 pm

    this was a lovely story. I enjoy it when I meet someone new unexpectedly, and they have interesting stories to share.

    On another note, I just got the weirdest sense of deja vu, reading this post. Did you meet another elderly gentleman last year while covering shows, as well? i just feel like I’ve seen this before. In any event, thanks for your blog. I enjoy very much the words and pictures.

  4. The Sartorialist

    June 17, 2007 at 3:06 pm

    this ran on but never on my site
    I wanted to make it sure it was on my site eventually

  5. charinef

    June 17, 2007 at 3:10 pm

    it makes me realised that im not the only one who will sit and chat with strangers in coffee house, cause i love how each life story was told and gives me inspiration of life.

    i like your blog a lot.


  6. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 3:13 pm

    Thank you for this story. You’ve reminded us how we should stop and smell the coffee every now and then. We just never know what gem of a person we will come across.

  7. Carolina Lange

    June 17, 2007 at 3:22 pm

    Really lovely story!

  8. Lisa Shobhana

    June 17, 2007 at 3:23 pm

    beautiful! thanks for sharing this story.

  9. Jason

    June 17, 2007 at 3:41 pm

    Just Fantastic!

  10. Dani

    June 17, 2007 at 3:47 pm

    It is really a shame that most of the times we let pass oportunities like this.
    Glad you took the time to enjoy a memorable cup of coffee.

  11. Jonathan

    June 17, 2007 at 3:50 pm

    Thanks so much for this.

    One has to take advantage of these kind of opportunities. People like Avner have seen horizons which we can only dream of!

    A stylish man.

  12. atheniangirl

    June 17, 2007 at 3:55 pm

    Wonderful story!Good old Europe …

  13. cordelia

    June 17, 2007 at 3:56 pm

    So much beauty in an old child’s hand

  14. Carlene

    June 17, 2007 at 4:03 pm

    For some reason this made me teary. I’m glad you chose to miss the show. You’re the best.

  15. jenny

    June 17, 2007 at 4:04 pm

    Amazing to meet such interesting people, seems like you could have like hundreds of coffees with him and still hear something new :D

  16. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 4:06 pm

    no, pargolo is right. as i was reading this i thought you reposted an old entry from a while ago similar to this one. i am pretty sure.

  17. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 4:08 pm

    You are lucky to have met and chatting with him over a cafe.

    Isn’t it interesting to listen to older people tell their live stories. It enriches your own experience.

  18. Athena

    June 17, 2007 at 4:23 pm

    You’re both class acts. How often do you become friends with the strangers you photograph?

  19. Stefan

    June 17, 2007 at 4:24 pm

    Scott, not only do you see what others don’t when it comes to interesting clothes, you also let us follow your mind when it comes to the people you meet. ¨The content you publish reminds me that life is not only fashion. I thank you for that!

  20. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 4:26 pm

    i CANNOT wait till you meet up with him again for another convo over a cup of coffee with two sugars.
    how lovely and heart warming it is : )

  21. Laaw-yuhr

    June 17, 2007 at 4:32 pm

    How nice that you took the time to sit and chat with him and get his story.

  22. A

    June 17, 2007 at 4:53 pm

    I do love the style shots you do more than I can say, but I love these little stories more. When you bump into people you shot before or that time when a lady you had shot showed up on the dust-cover of a book. I like magic, coincidental, unexpected moments like these.

  23. Just an Observation

    June 17, 2007 at 5:11 pm

    I love how U take full advanntage of what U do to live life to the fullest…..and in my personal opinion …definitely CONGRATULATIONS!…as I am a fan and a follower of this approach to life!!!


  24. lintmag

    June 17, 2007 at 5:18 pm

    That bit of bright blue shirt looks very nice on him. It seems like he’s ready to play a game of dice with the sugarcubes – look out Sart!

  25. sofie king

    June 17, 2007 at 5:23 pm

    what a beautiful experience!

  26. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 5:36 pm

    Ahhh.. no wonder. I found you through, so I had deja-vu too.

  27. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 5:37 pm

    I’m not really a fashionista or anything but this blog might turn me into one, because stopping by here is such a delight.

  28. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 6:17 pm

    I too find him absolutely adorable. I love to listen to life stories as well.

  29. Sherry

    June 17, 2007 at 6:17 pm

    I would love to hear more about this man and his fascinating life. I hope that when I am his age, I will have as much to tell about mine.

  30. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 6:24 pm

    These photos are absolutely exquisite. I love that he insisted you sit with him, and love it that you did.

    –anon 12:52

  31. Jennifer

    June 17, 2007 at 6:39 pm

    How very nice! I think the best way to travel is to actually meet the people.

  32. Lisa

    June 17, 2007 at 6:43 pm

    this is just wonderful, in every way…what a lovely story indeed.

  33. Nora

    June 17, 2007 at 7:05 pm

    A beautiful post and a very elegant gentleman. True style.

  34. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 7:10 pm

    he makes a wonderful photo, that’s for sure.

    And aren’t sugarcubes just so elegant and dignified compared to paper sugar packets?

  35. Jesper Bengtsson

    June 17, 2007 at 7:11 pm


  36. threadsandbuttons

    June 17, 2007 at 7:16 pm

    Beautiful, humane portrait of Mr. Gruzow. This entry truly is lovely. I always enjoy running into these little gems on your blog – reminds me of your shot of an old gentleman asleep in his chair. That photo seemed to hold such a story.

  37. Declan

    June 17, 2007 at 7:23 pm

    Your eye for details and your understanding of design is impressive but it is your willingness to share your heart with all of us through your photos that keeps me coming back again and again.

    Thank you

  38. invisible girl

    June 17, 2007 at 7:31 pm

    Thank you for sharing that beautiful story. May we all be so lucky as to share a cup of coffee with a friendly, intriguing and sartorial gentleman.

  39. MacGuffin

    June 17, 2007 at 7:41 pm

    What a wonderful face(and story)! This is the way people should age.

  40. MacGuffin

    June 17, 2007 at 7:48 pm

    Oh, and he has hands are just like my Father’s. I always felt like mine weren’t rugged enough by comparison. Very appropriate for Father’s Day.

  41. SartoriallyAddicted

    June 17, 2007 at 8:12 pm

    Fashion is all about personality and story telling. You did the right thing.

  42. Cut of cloth

    June 17, 2007 at 8:37 pm

    hot heat sweat dripped
    cloth white wrapped
    tip to toe
    sand dust swirls
    heat hot
    I met
    her brown
    dark kohl slit eyes
    our fingers
    yet enough
    I knew….

    this photo tells a thousand tales
    I start this challenge with one
    Can you tel the rest?

  43. DawnFair

    June 17, 2007 at 8:39 pm

    Having coffee and sugarcubes with somebody like that is much better than any fashion show…

  44. Candid Cool

    June 17, 2007 at 8:51 pm

    interesting person to come across.

  45. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 8:52 pm

    That’s a beautiful story. I have experienced something similar recently; a stranger squeezed my hand, and I understood that I had done something good. So amazing that you make time for moments like this.

  46. rmp

    June 17, 2007 at 9:29 pm

    Great story, Sart. Hopefully we’ll see more of him in a few years or so.

  47. Meredith

    June 17, 2007 at 9:36 pm

    Great story!

  48. Renato Parada

    June 17, 2007 at 9:38 pm

    It’s adorable when you made this kind of picture. This is truly my all time favorite portrair that you did. I just can’t take my eyes of yet. Congratulations!

  49. Butch

    June 17, 2007 at 9:47 pm

    Lovely; thanks for this, Scott. Surely style, as practiced so expertly here, is a balm, something that can tie one to living, to life…

  50. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 9:49 pm

    beautifully written and photographed; elegant indeed.

  51. Marta

    June 17, 2007 at 9:50 pm

    great story.
    great pictures as well.

  52. Eli Edmundson

    June 17, 2007 at 9:58 pm

    I love to meet people with such history to tell and ingrained in their faces. I always love to see the photos of older folks that you take as I am not too interested in fashion but think you have a wonderful way with the camera.

  53. Brandon

    June 17, 2007 at 10:17 pm

    That’s a great story, you should title it in your memior “Zucca can wait.”


    June 17, 2007 at 10:31 pm

    Hmm, lovely, its those small things, lala..

  55. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 10:51 pm

    the best thing about being a photographer (i am one too) is meeting all these fascinating people that i at least wouldn’t have the courage to approach otherwise.

  56. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 11:03 pm

    WOW!! that is LIFE! beautiful story! thanks for sharing with us Sart! you are soooo lucky to find people like this…

  57. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 11:05 pm

    Life lessons to be found in unexpected encounters?


    Do let us know if you meet him again.


  58. Blaise

    June 17, 2007 at 11:08 pm

    It’s such a treasured moment to have instances like this, especially from the old ones.. I myself was (and still is) being taken care of by my grandmother, I guess that’s why old people have such a dear place in my heart.. they are just so full of simple wisdom..

    That’s very sweet of you Sart to share this with us..

  59. Luc Wiesman

    June 17, 2007 at 11:20 pm

    Awesome story Scott. Respect!

  60. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 11:28 pm

    SO good!!

  61. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 11:33 pm


  62. Anonymous

    June 17, 2007 at 11:53 pm

    For reasons too complex to communicate, this post means a lot to me.


  63. gila

    June 18, 2007 at 12:02 am

    thanks for the lovely post.

  64. AnonymousJK

    June 18, 2007 at 12:06 am

    I love this site because it is so much more than the superficiality of fashion… There are many lessons to be learned from men like this, and yet we live in a society that has no regard for the elderly. In Europe, South America, Africa and the Carribean, the elderly are treated with the utmost respect! Keep in touch with him Sart – you will never regret it!

  65. mary jss.

    June 18, 2007 at 12:08 am

    How many interesting people don’t we just pass by… I’ve had similar experiences and I feel that sometimes we need to slow down a bit and drink coffee with a nice stranger, it just makes living a little bit better =)

    lovely photos =)

  66. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 12:09 am

    absolutely fantastic :)

  67. alyson

    June 18, 2007 at 12:15 am

    I really appreciate when you add writing with the pictures. I feel like you must have more stories than you let on to. Also, as a student and thus a student of fashion, when I can read something, such as this story, I get such a lovely feeling of connection.

  68. Hamilton

    June 18, 2007 at 12:25 am

    Well done, sir.

    I don’t think I have read a finer bit of writing from you. You nailed this one.

    Handsome foto; handsome writing. Works for me.

    All my best, — mph.

  69. bro brummell

    June 18, 2007 at 12:34 am

    That’s a great jacket. Looks just like the one Cary Grant wears in the first part of ‘Notorious’.

  70. dawn

    June 18, 2007 at 12:45 am

    awww cuuuuuute!
    i love your little anecdotes.. they truly make my day!

  71. dova

    June 18, 2007 at 1:01 am

    I read your page daily. I realised the story I love the most are the ones of people with a story.
    I love this story and also the story abt the barber in milan. the photos of the two old man is one of my favourite image you took. It just warms my heart!

  72. Belinda

    June 18, 2007 at 1:05 am

    I love that you put a coffee and chat with this gentleman before attending a fashion show – the elderly so often get pushed aside and treated as irrelevant, as we (the younger generation) run around thinking we’re so very very important and so very very busy busy busy!!

    I think you are wonderful for giving him your time, and thanks so much for reminding us just how important it is to treat people with genuine respect and affection – always.

  73. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 1:14 am

    that blue shirt is amazing

  74. foodie415

    June 18, 2007 at 1:26 am

    Sart: So did you ever make it to the Zucca show? :) I’ve said it before in response to your previous posts but thank you for taking us along on your journey! Look forward to your future coffee dates with Avner.

  75. Ashley Garmon

    June 18, 2007 at 1:28 am

    We should pause more often and listen to the older folks. They have many wonderful stories to tell. Thank you for reminding me of this. I hope you are able to have many more coffees with him!

  76. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 1:36 am

    What wonderful things have come to you from doing what you love to do, and doing it with such a spirit of kindness and generosity–thanks for another lovely post.

  77. Asian Models Blogger

    June 18, 2007 at 2:39 am

    What a fabulous story, Sart!!

    Do you speak French or did Mr. Avner speak English?

  78. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 3:43 am

    Wow Scott you really are an amazing person. Not many people (let alone New Yorkers!) would take the time to show an actual interest in this man’s life.

    You are the way I want to be – enchanted with life and always interested, be it in the details of life or just life in general

    I too get the feeling you will be having many coffees with Avner in the future.

    Thank you for sharing yourself with the world. You really make this world better.

  79. Lua

    June 18, 2007 at 4:20 am

    Beautiful story!
    Thanks for sharing!

  80. Fredde

    June 18, 2007 at 4:44 am

    Now, there is a splendid photograph. That one I like very much.


  81. suziwong

    June 18, 2007 at 4:49 am

    Go back soon, i can’t wait to hear more of his life.

  82. suziwong

    June 18, 2007 at 4:50 am

    Go back soon; I can’t wait to hear more about his life.

  83. J.Prata

    June 18, 2007 at 5:10 am

    ‘Contingency, Irony and Solidarity’, or about marvellous men living in NY

  84. Cristina

    June 18, 2007 at 5:13 am

    When I have seen the first photo, the first thing that I have noticed has been the hands.
    They are too big, like in a Van Gogh’paint.
    And then I have seen the second photo…the hands are so interesting and they say a lot of things about a person.

  85. Krista

    June 18, 2007 at 5:21 am

    That was a really darling story!I hope that in the future, I too will encounter someone like that.

  86. adda

    June 18, 2007 at 5:38 am

    lovely story, look forward to the follow up with interest.

  87. annabelle

    June 18, 2007 at 6:18 am

    what a wonderfull story…great picts

  88. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 6:20 am

    This is what I want the world to be like. Somehow it only ever seems to be this way here. And, I feel like mentioning to Andrea Ratner (2:47pm) that it does not seem to have been mainly a sweet thing for Mr. Schumann to do but rather an enjoyable one.(which is, in fact, what makes it exceptional)

  89. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 6:43 am

    …this is exactly how old my father would be now. he died a few days before his 79th birthday, 14 years ago. times goes by, and as he is always in my heart i do not think of him every day, but when i found this aged gentleman here it really touched me.
    this generation has been through quite a lot. still they’ve kept themselves together and attach great importance to their looks. a lot of them seem to be having the old fashioned, understated but noble taste and are very groomed at the same time.
    not to mention that they have a lot to say.
    …..still looking for a role model, lads? :)

  90. Diana

    June 18, 2007 at 6:56 am

    These stories make your blog even more valueable.
    I have realized, that I check the photos with more pleasure and attention if you comment them (even with one sentence).
    And the latest longer stories (including this one) are just amazing!
    Thanks for that!

  91. Xavier

    June 18, 2007 at 7:08 am

    See it’s posts like this that make me truly value this blog amongst so many other style journals. Style is about so much more than just clothes, clever colour arrangement and memorable poses put on for the snap of a shutter. Style emanates from the stories, the meanings and secret codes that drive every single move we make in our lives. Brilliant post. Thanks so much.

  92. tim

    June 18, 2007 at 7:13 am

    i’ll say it again..
    lovely story

  93. sixfive

    June 18, 2007 at 7:43 am

    great story, it’s this type of thing that makes this blog so well-rounded.

  94. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 7:56 am

    That was really nice to read about. It really must be great so meet so many people with their interesting stories. Well, perhaps a part of it comes from you ability to make them open up, Scott? Anyway, lights my day:)

  95. Urban Gypsy

    June 18, 2007 at 8:08 am

    Sart, I love your pictures and your stories and YOU! Your blog is so uplifting and positive. Thanks for sharing this with us!!!

  96. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 8:23 am

    Now that’s a character :) Just makes you smile

  97. jojo

    June 18, 2007 at 8:31 am

    this is lovely – I hope he goes diving again

  98. william d. anderson

    June 18, 2007 at 8:47 am

    what a great post. i’m jealous at the moment of some of the opportunities you have on your travels. those are some remarkable pics too. thanks for sharing that.

  99. jessica

    June 18, 2007 at 9:20 am

    that’s awesome. you have an eye for people as well as fashion.

  100. DC Celine

    June 18, 2007 at 9:24 am

    These moments are what make life worth living.

  101. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 9:41 am

    I love this story. Nothing really compares to sharing a trip down memory lane with an older gentleman.


  102. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 9:59 am

    As a collector of vintage wristwatches i would be interested to know what watch he wore when diving all those years ago.

    Also may i ask if you could do something on the importance of a wristwatch to a man’s style [it is the only piece of jewelery some men wear.]



  103. erika

    June 18, 2007 at 10:04 am

    beautiful story. love this kind of thing. mystical pasts housed inside of people. ty!

  104. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 10:16 am

    This story makes me want to pick up a camera, just to have an added excuse to strike up conversations with interesting people. And this man is interesting and elegant (as you rightly put it) not “adorable”. I know “anonymous” didn’t mean ill by it, but so patronizing to use childish descriptors. We should respect our elders not diminish them.

  105. McTickle

    June 18, 2007 at 10:29 am

    This dude rocks!

  106. Tomás

    June 18, 2007 at 10:29 am

    Scott, this is a great moment!
    People we meet by accident that can inspire us.
    Hiden in an elegant man hides a lot of life!

  107. Ilva

    June 18, 2007 at 10:35 am

    Thanks for posting this, the last photo is brilliant! And if you have the time, please see him again and tell us about it!

  108. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 11:02 am

    Sart – you are a good person. The world needs more people like you…..honestly.

  109. glamour girly

    June 18, 2007 at 11:12 am

    I just love the picture of his hand and sugar cubes. You are such an amazing photographer!

  110. whyioughtta

    June 18, 2007 at 11:15 am

    Can’t wait to hear more about Avner’s adventures.

    Love the sugar-cube shot.

  111. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 11:20 am

    you are a nice person…this is a beautiful story.

  112. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 11:26 am

    theres something about this man that melts my heart. loved this entry :0)

  113. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 11:34 am

    Dear Sart,
    It is clear that you also have an eye for the true beauty and value within a person. I love the fact that you skipped the fashion show to sit and talk with this man. And what a story! A deep sea diving, camel-owning nomad…you don’t come across that everyday. I think people could learn a lot from your approach to things.

    all the best,
    Laura in Amherst, MA

  114. Tiffany

    June 18, 2007 at 11:42 am

    Great story.
    Those two pictures are begging
    for a vignette.

  115. tn

    June 18, 2007 at 11:50 am

    A beautiful story and an important moment. You made the right decision. Zucca may be great but this inspiration is greater.

  116. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 12:09 pm

    Do you speak French, Sart? Just curious :)

  117. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 12:25 pm

    This is my favorite post. Thank you.

  118. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 12:33 pm

    this site isn’t only about fashion, there’s a certain humanity you bring to it Scott. Nice job

  119. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 12:40 pm

    I do a great deal of traveling for work…however, I sometimes have the pleasure of meeting people like Avner. It makes all the lines and hassles disappear & reminds me that are many beautiful and interesting people in the world.

    Thanks for taking me on your travels, as well.

    - Roberto (Miami)

  120. JO

    June 18, 2007 at 1:14 pm

    What a treasure! I love meeting interesting people… how nice that he wanted you to join him for a few words… Glad you got to visit with him. Thanks for the lovely post!

    PS – the sugar cube shot is AWESOME! LOVE YOUR WORK!

  121. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 1:15 pm

    This wonderful post brings up the topic:
    As a general rule, interesting person = interesting clothing.
    (As Linda Richman would say.)

  122. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 1:18 pm

    you are such a genuinely great person. its so refreshing to see someone interested in fashion but able to see the good in everyone and resist distractions of the artificiality of it all. i actually saw you last friday the 8th on prince and green, waiting for the kings of leon concert at the apple store. i was tempted to say hello, but you looked as though were on a mission and i didnt want to disrupt you. needless to say, you were looked great!

  123. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 1:25 pm

    Thanks for sharing this story. The photos are poetic!

  124. sk

    June 18, 2007 at 1:35 pm

    lovely story
    i remember reading this story a few months ago, did you post it before?

  125. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 1:41 pm

    Don’t really understand this one.

  126. thatgirl

    June 18, 2007 at 2:11 pm

    I do so love your priorities!

  127. G

    June 18, 2007 at 2:17 pm

    you put a smile on my monday.
    hug from far away.

  128. The Urban Naturalist

    June 18, 2007 at 4:17 pm

    Wonderful post. A gentleman adventurer. Please keep a relationship with Avner.

  129. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 4:44 pm

    Dear Sart, your view of things is one reason why I love this blog. keep on looking behind the facade, this is such a lovely story. did you meet him again?

  130. Vanessa

    June 18, 2007 at 5:35 pm

    For someone that is under twenty-five years, I’ve had my share of meeting people just like this. Given the chance that you slow down and listen, it’s a real eye opener, no matter who you are.

    I’m currently getting to know someone just like this. We exchange greetings, but because both of us are so shy, we rarely have the chance to sit down and have a conversation. One day, I’m going to accomplish this.

  131. Jen

    June 18, 2007 at 6:22 pm

    What a beautiful story, beautifully illustrated. What languague did you speak togather?

  132. Jack Daniel

    June 18, 2007 at 6:48 pm

    Not only a good photographer, but a good blogger / writer as well.

  133. annie

    June 18, 2007 at 8:12 pm

    i read your blog daily (and re-read/re-look at old entries when you skip a day) and this is my favorite entry of yours to date!!

  134. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 8:21 pm

    This was a great story…unfortunately, the last two times elderly gentlemen struck up conversations with me, they tried to hit on me! Its nice to be reminded that they’re not all like that :)

  135. Dutch

    June 18, 2007 at 10:09 pm

    Bravo, Sart. Great anecdote and fantastic photos.

  136. Luisa

    June 18, 2007 at 10:52 pm

    God, it’s posts like this one that make me envy your job so much.

  137. AnastasiaC

    June 18, 2007 at 11:12 pm

    love this warm post!! random meetings leading to interesting conversations and friendships! love it!!

  138. Anonymous

    June 18, 2007 at 11:21 pm

    I hope we get a chance to meet Madame Gruzow, too!

    – desertwind

  139. nini

    June 19, 2007 at 12:33 am

    What a lovely story, the best on your blog so far, I believe. You got a great deal — beautiful photos, and the chance to meet such a remarkable man. Thank you for sitting down with him and for sharing this. Do send Avner our love!

  140. TeMo

    June 19, 2007 at 1:30 am

    After all that has been said, every outfit dissected, debated and analyzed, it is the person at the core that really matters. At its best how we dress is an outward manifestation of who we are and who we aspire to become. Sarto good for you to seeing how the man and style come together and good for Mr. Gruzow for making us pause to recognize its importance.

  141. Kits

    June 19, 2007 at 1:45 am

    Wot a lovely story!

  142. Anonymous

    June 19, 2007 at 1:47 am

    gah! When are you goint to see him again? Please let us visit him again vicariously through you!

  143. caramimi

    June 19, 2007 at 6:38 am

    style and substance. that’s why i love your blog. this story is wonderful — it really made my day. thanks.

  144. Anonymous

    June 19, 2007 at 6:46 am

    I guess everything worth while about this photo has already been said.A true photographer can see beneath the surface and even without the story I know you have succeeded.I just hope you continue to stay as humble and human-just as you did when taking this picture.Thank you.

  145. Olof

    June 19, 2007 at 8:09 am

    I passed up on a similar chance recently. I was at the library and as I left a girl asked me what I had borrowed. I didn’t think much of the situation so simply answered her question and went the other way. It didn’t take long for me to feel very stupid though. I guess I was too shy and unappreciative, and I already regret not taking the opportunity to get to know a complete stranger. But maybe I’ll get another chance. Then I’ll follow your example, Scott!

  146. Anonymous

    June 19, 2007 at 8:37 am

    Still thinking about this post! It’s wonderful and touching.

    I am also saddened by Anonymous 1:41. **sigh**

  147. Anonymous

    June 19, 2007 at 9:21 am

    Your encounter with this old man is truly endearing and moving.

    It´s just great that you found time to chat with him and then tell us about it.

    Asking you to have a coffee with him in trade for his picture is such a wonderful gesture.

    Sart:Thanks for your class and good taste, so uncommon in these days where everything is just irony and commonplaces.

  148. Anonymous

    June 19, 2007 at 11:38 am

    I believe the people who read this blog think people like this gentleman only exist in coffee shops in Paris or Rome or Milan and are some rare breed. This gentleman exists in every coffee shop and bar in every city around the world even the USA. Just open your eyes and ears.

  149. Giancarlo Z

    June 19, 2007 at 1:48 pm

    A’last, The Sartorialist finally comes of age .. Fashion, what right now? Forget it. The style is in the story.

  150. Anonymous

    June 19, 2007 at 2:03 pm

    I go on your site daily (and I was even featured on it once) , but I never comment. I can’t not comment about his man. What beautiful photos. The sugar cube image made me feel as though I was there as well. Please visit with him again and tell us more of his adventures.


  151. The Stiletto Effect

    June 19, 2007 at 3:46 pm

    I adore this photo :) he looks so adorable and stylish in his kind of way!

  152. esther

    June 19, 2007 at 4:17 pm

    Lovely story.. how nice of you of sit with him.. thats awesome.. some people have the most amazing stories.. stories of her chilhood, life, family… I hope you see him again.. so you can tell us more about his life…

  153. Liz

    June 19, 2007 at 4:33 pm

    ummm…. ever stop and think he could be lying? Looks Senile to me.

  154. The Sartorialist

    June 19, 2007 at 6:35 pm

    Just to let you know we spoke English during our conversation

    Thanks to all of you for your kind words. I’m glad you all seemed to get as much out of it as I did.

    I will try very hard to see him again this October.


  155. Anonymous

    June 19, 2007 at 7:05 pm

    I’ve been reading your blog for months now and it’s one of the most enjoyable parts of my day. The way you capture ordinary people in such an extraordinary light; and the way you see beauty everywhere you look is an inspiration. And this is one of my favourite posts ever. Thank you so much for sharing this.
    Cheers from Canada.

  156. Mathias

    June 20, 2007 at 5:20 pm

    this is what distinguishes The Sartorialist from all the other street style blogs!

  157. Jennifer

    June 20, 2007 at 11:42 pm

    Good choice, he’s gorgeous.

  158. Anonymous

    June 20, 2007 at 11:45 pm

    Dearest Sart, Your photos and your stories of this lovely man touch my heart. Thank you for sharing your experiences with this fine gentleman. I hope you do get see him again and share more of his life on your blog. I feel priveliged to have read this little piece of history. As always, xoxox

  159. Girl Spy

    June 21, 2007 at 11:23 am

    You really know how to live!

    I met a lady at a coffee house once. She was waiting for her daughter-in-law to pick her up and take her to dinner with all the grands. She was a quite elderly lady, but dressed really stylishly. She was having a hard time getting her coffee, so I (reluctantly I might add) got it for her and brought it to her table.

    I was typical young New Yorker, didn’t want to stop to deal with some ‘old’ person. That encounter changed my life. We started talking and she said, “Guess what I did for a living?” and I said, “I bet you were in fashion.” and she said, “You are a very astute young lady!” She had been a buyer for Bergdorf’s for years and she had many fascinating and funny stories about clothes, men, marriage and children. Lots of adventures. We ended up talking for hours and she invited me to dinner! I met the family. What a day.

    I love that you truly are a ‘carpe diem’ kind of guy.

    Only one life, gotta live it. Thanks for being such an inspiration yet again.

  160. Anonymous

    June 21, 2007 at 2:39 pm

    Sart, you just made me cry. Beautiful story, beautiful man. Thank you.

  161. kop

    June 22, 2007 at 7:03 am

    His face and his hands tell the entire story! Great!

  162. Anonymous

    June 25, 2007 at 5:03 pm

    What a beautiful story. There really is more to life than just fashion, hm?

  163. Anonymous

    June 25, 2007 at 6:41 pm

    I love this story! It is really very special. I love seeing the world through your eyes. You make me love fashion and remember it is a creative expression not a status symbol or a way of judging someone’s worth on many levels. Thank you for your work!!!

  164. np

    June 25, 2007 at 8:47 pm

    You know how to live right, choosing to sit and talk with this lovely gent.

  165. bomb.ass.ting

    June 30, 2007 at 6:26 pm

    This is the reason why I keep coming back to your blog, Sart. It’s so much more than just fashion. Thankyou.

  166. Anonymous

    July 3, 2007 at 11:07 am

    You know what they say style is temporary but class is permanent

  167. Anonymous

    July 5, 2007 at 12:58 am

    well done
    you have a beautiful eye for people, as your second shot shows

  168. mudrocks

    July 31, 2007 at 1:11 am

    I found it cool that Antwerp in French is Anvers which is similar to his name.

    lol nm Im a geek.

  169. Paradise Regained

    February 8, 2008 at 10:38 am

    Have you had coffee with Mr. Gruzow since then?

  170. Anonymous

    March 28, 2008 at 7:06 pm

    this, I could do for a living, indeed. To sit and learn peoples’ life stories

  171. Keri

    October 29, 2008 at 9:53 pm


    Thank u so much for sharing.

  172. T

    March 7, 2009 at 12:25 am

    i can relate to this. I’m from australia, born in new guinea and when i was in NYC i sat at a small park (i cant remember the name, but it was triangular, as are many in NYC, near the UN) and an old italian man came and sat by me. He told me it was his usual seat and we began to talk. It turned out that his uncle fought in New Guinea in WWII! My Pop also fought on the Kokoda Trail.. it was so nice to have a connection with someone who would otherwise be a total stranger. Thanks for relating this story to us. Hope you get to catch up with Mr. Gruzow. Peace Sart.

  173. Anonymous

    December 3, 2009 at 12:07 am

    This story really touched me. I hope you meet this lovely man again soon.

  174. Alisa

    November 12, 2011 at 5:56 pm

    Best one. It is touching

  175. Sunny

    January 28, 2012 at 10:47 pm

    Did you get to visit this man again?

  176. David

    July 14, 2012 at 10:03 pm

    That is awesome. Have you heard from Avern and his camel riding and deep sea diving adventures?
    If you have, and mentioned such in another post, then my apologies: making my way through your site by use of the random posts section.

  177. Rupert

    January 28, 2013 at 4:43 pm

    Just wondering have you and this Gentleman sat down for coffee again and has he showed you the pics he promised?

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