w: ajleon

Bona Fide Misfit

Definition of a Misfit (Mirriam-Webster)

1 : something that fits badly

2: a person who is poorly adapted to a situation or environment <social misfits]]>

Definition of a Misfit (Urban Dictionary) Basically, an individual. 

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It was a very cold day in January.

The first day of the 2008 new year actually.

9:45am.

I was seated on a gritty olive bench in the midst of two old men fueled by cheap gin, playing chess at Tompkins Square.

Under normal circumstances, I would have been at work, or at least thinking about it.

But this was not normal circumstances.

The day prior, I left the vestiges of what I had spent my early twenties building – a successful career, a corner office, and an unremarkably average existence – behind me forever. To live a deliberate life of purpose and adventure. To pursue everything.

Feeling liberated and terrified, I sat with pencil in hand. Ready to sketch again for the very first time since I was a kid. Since I was both naive enough and courageous enough to share my art and ideas with the world I knew.

And there, at the precipice of what would be the very best or the very worst days of life.

Both Unemployed and unemployable. With just enough money in savings to eek out exactly one month’s rent, and buy my wife-to-be a “sterling silver” wedding band at Walmart.

I thought about how I had always felt.

Outgunned and outmanned. Out of place. Acquiescing to the materialistic ebbs and flows of a Life I never wanted. Just another average, unhappy member of a soundless choir that had been connived by a System of well-intentioned family and friends and teachers to be a good boy and behave.

And for the very first time in my adult Life, I inhaled freedom.

I was a Misfit.

A f*cking Misfit.

And I was going to wear it as a badge of honor for the rest of my days.

__

What emerged from that very unspohisticated sketch session, was the first prototype of what is now the personification of Misfit.

A little dude holding a sword with head held high in Rebellion.

What I conceived of was a Japanese anime rendition of Henry V at the field of Agincourt. Outnumbered 5 to 1. Staring steely into the cold eyes of catastrophic defeat that would have brought England to it’s knees. Refusing to ransom his own life for the lives of his men, and instead taking the front line with them to meet certain death.

It was exactly how I felt.

How I always had.

To me, the Misfit represents not victory, but Defiance.

Defiance in the face of insurmountable odds, and a Society that beckons us to comply.

__

Today I am announcing the launch of Trendy Misfit.

In essence, it is a design and apparel company I created in order to produce handcrafted products for troublemakers, misfits and general riff-raff. Every product is a limited edition concept that sprung directly out of my trusty Moleskin and into the world.

On the first day of each month, I will release a new product that will be available for purchase until the end of that month (or until it runs out). Then it’s gone forever. And each day a product is live, it will increase in price by $1.

I will be sharing the evolution of future products on Instagram or Facebook as I work on them, and if you dig one of them, you can sign up to receive a notification the day before it goes live.

The very first product is a limited edition, handcrafted Bona Fide Misfit tee-shirt.

It boldly features the Misfit I sketched while sitting on that bench so many years ago.

I can’t tell you how many hours went into it. But I can tell you that my DNA is baked in the threads.

And I truly hope you enjoy it.

Oh, and here’s a 53 second video of me sharing talking about the history of the misfit.

From Fargo

Your Fellow Misfit,

AJ

Ps – Can I ask you a favor? If you have just one moment today, would you mind sharing this little work of mine? It would mean the wide world to me.

Pps – If you are an email subscriber to Pursuit of Everything, and are thinking about snagging a Tee before they are all gone, just reply to this email first. I have a surprise for you.

738 words

8.1.13

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