Civil Musings: Stories, Music, Speeches, Thoughts, Things....

  • 2 min read

We came across an interesting article a few months back that has been knockin’ around our skull ever since.  It ruminates on the regional identity of Minnesotans and whether they appropriately still belong under the general umbrella of the “Midwest” moniker.  Through his arguments the author concludes that Minnesota just doesn't have all that in common with the “Midwest” group at large, and instead desires a grouping of more “like-minded states.” 

Regional identity…these are the things we think about.  Ad nauseam.  So we respect the exercise and wish more of us did it more frequently, but take umbrage at the approach and wanted to weigh in on the matter and pick a side, as the author suggests.  Our response was inspired by a moving letter Bob Collins of Minnesota Public Radio penned to the East Coast back in 2011.

  • 5 min read

Brands have the luxury of starting over.  Even age-old brands that have been defined over the course of a century or so can re-invent, re-imagine, re-define.   So what of geographies, then?  Of cities, states, and countries?  What if a city were to start over?

  • 6 min read

Civil Standard is appalled(appalled!)at the recent news of Levi's plummeting profits on account of the "athleisure attire" trend. (Hat tip however to the person who coined the term 'athleisure.'  Way cool.)

  • 2 min read

Aaron Draplin, of Draplin Design Co., speaks on the motivation behind his 'Field Notes' brand.  This is amazing storytelling, and proof that incredible passion for an otherwise obscure notion can lead to great art. 

  • 1 min read

P.J. O'Rourke apparently had it right; not about the February 9th anniversary of The Beatles on Ed Sullivan (that would take no guesswork), but about the avalanche of "one more 1960s changed-the-world-forever thing" that we're destined to endure for the next six years. 

Now I've never had Jeppson's Malort, nor had I ever heard of it until very recently despite a seven-year residency in Chicago - where it is evidently from - a fact clearly obvious to those intimately familiar with the Second City.  As is commonplace in Chicago, Jeppson's has appropriated design elements of the Chicago flag in its logo, clearly signaling its point of origin.  Seems a pretty smart play for what I assume to be a purely regional brand; I myself would have had no interest in this bottle had it not been for the logo.  

Japan...often light years ahead of the States in all things fashion and design...has seemingly turned The Civil Standard Theory into The Civil Standard Ass-Kicking Reality. 

In honor of Super Bowl weekend, a look at one of our favorite ads of all time. Civil Standard approves this message.

In honor of Super Bowl weekend, a phenomenal ad showcasing the power of storytelling. This is emotional brand building at its best.

"Robin Williams iPad Ad Reminds Us the True Meaning of Humanity."
"Apple's Latest iPad Ad Is Probably Going to Give You Chills."
So says Huffington Post and Time, respectively.

Spike Lee reveals that his inspiration for his mind-blowing opening credit sequence in “Do The Right Thing” was inspired by the opening credits in “Bye Bye Birdie.”

  • 1 min read