My Brother, MJ


After Spencer, it was only natural that I get to canonize MJ.

He was here first after all!

For the past 20+ years, MJ has been my best friend. I think you can tell just based on all the photos we take together!

Even though we live in different cities and went to different academies and churches, we did (and still do) a lot of things together. He comes with me to check out art exhibits and see the Philharmonic or my favorite band. I go with him when he wants to go to Anime Expo or the local card shop to play MTG; he’s also the main reason I still play video games or tried out airsoft. He doesn’t mind a coffee or boba hang, even if we’re doing different things while we’re there. He and I joined SAI (the wholesome Asian American Discord I talk about frequently) and used it to expand our social group after college; there’s even a joke that if MJ is there, I’m probably close by. We both have AMC A-List, so we routinely see movies together. MJ and I are the best ones to bring to KBBQ because we’re going to get our money’s worth.

It’s not that we feel obligated to do the same things just because we’ve been friends for a long time, but rather the opposite. We have been best friends because of how our similar worldview, which definitely leads to a few similar hobbies. Trying new things and expanding our interests is a natural part of that and it comes out in different ways; this is because he’s one of the most positive, curious, and “full send” people I know. I like to think that I’ve been very lucky to have a friend that isn’t just due to being similar, but that we both push ourselves to do what we enjoy and perhaps inspire each other to try it for ourselves. We’re almost like brothers (sorry Camden).

And that definitely came into play with menswear. But that didn’t happen for a while. Someone who doesn’t know us well might have assumed MJ was dressing right alongside me, but no, menswear wasn’t on his radar.

It took a while for this MJ to come forth!

As you may recall from my Standing Out essay, my friend group was predicated on being a positive space where each of us could be ourselves. Yes, we had a lot of shared hobbies, but we were also encouraged to also do our own things (provided we don’t over-proselytize), which kept the friend group from becoming too homogenized. All of this is to say that until I met Spencer, I was the only one wearing a jacket and tie. And that was okay– menswear was not necessary for anything I do and certainly not a requirement for being my friend. Obviously, at some point something changed and MJ started to develop his own interest in clothing. And eventually he was dressed up with Spencer and me as if he was doing it with us the whole time.

This is why I wanted to interview MJ in this new podcast episode. I’ve talked a lot about the philosophy behind dressing, but that mainly applies when you already have an interest in this hobby. MJ’s journey represents the stage before that, the how behind the interest. In the pod, he specifically mentions that he could see the passion emanating from Spencer and me; MJ knew that this “thing” we did made us happy and was incredibly fun which was the main draw for him to do it for himself. It was just like me seeing how fun MTG, airsoft, or a niche video game made my friends and being interested to join in.

In the episode, you’ll hear how he forged his own fashion identity through interactions with Spencer and me, how he navigates through his own contexts, and where he thinks his style will go.

MJ’s mix of workwear and milsurp, as well as his daring use of color, is what makes his personal style stand out.

MJ’s approach to menswear is even more interesting when you learn that he doesn’t even have the same vintage starting point that Spencer and I have. MJ’s passion for clothes isn’t even predicated on tailoring or Americana. It may involve elements from those genres, but his POV is based primarily on what he enjoys from clothes in general. It’s funny– despite MJ owning similar garments to Spencer and me (in some cases, actual pieces from my closet), he wears them in a way that is unique to him, meaning that he doesn’t just copy outfits from us.

This mainly comes out in his use of layering and color. The former stems from his need for practicality, presumably brought on by his interest in tech, gorp/techwear, and airsoft; he loves vests, jackets, and pants with many pockets. The latter seems to have a root in his geek interests. Characters from fandoms tend to have a strong use of color, so naturally, he applies that to his own fits whether it’s by being monochromatic or creating an eye-catching palette. As you’ll see below, this is more than just socks to MJ: he routinely wears bold pants, shirts, and jackets.

Both of these differentiators definitely lead MJ to appreciate and get inspired by a wider berth of men’s fashion that isn’t really in Spencer or my wheelhouse. That being said, there are quite a few similarities. This includes the use of wide fit, high-waisted trousers, long shirt collars (and collar bar) and a love of loafers, not to mention a shared mindset on intentionality and Agency of Occasion.

Now that I think about it, I consider MJ as an inspiration on how to dress, simply because of his positivity and openness to experience things that comes out in how he puts outfits together. He just has such a precise view of what he wants to look like and he executes this expression well, a quality that I think make up what a “good” outfit is. After all, without a vintage POV, he’s free to do combinations that I’ve never even thought of as well as try out brands (like EG or 18East) that I don’t necessarily feel the need to own. He also has no qualms with wearing this stuff outside of menswear hangs, as he often gets dressed up for his MTG gatherings or to hang out with his other friends I don’t know. Perhaps it’s our fraternal bond (this is a joke, we aren’t actually related), but it does sometimes feel like I’m able to live vicariously through him; maybe MJ is what I would have been like if I didn’t get obsessed with vintage and tailoring at the start.

What’s even more interesting is that MJ isn’t close to being done with his menswear journey, at least compared to Spencer and me. One mitigating factor is that he currently works retail, which has its own restrictions on dress code. But that’s why I’m excited to see where his journey will go. He is proof that interest in self-expression through clothes comes from passion rather than pragmatism and that it can be fun. MJ is the ultimate person the blog is written for.

And when you look at his style, he definitely represents the original name of this blog: Street(wear) x Sprezza.

Anyway, you can listen to his interview below. I think it was definitely important to canonize his thoughts as well as provide some context behind a few of the takes he’s shared in previous episodes. It’s all about him this time and he finally has my express permission to be on mic for it.

Podcast Outline

12:35 – Guest Intro

16:16 – Origins of Interest

29:52 – Starting the Style Journey

39:41 – Style Inspiration(s) and Thought Process

49:27 – Talking About Co-workers

52:33 – Pulling From Styles Outside of Menswear

1:00:57 – What’s Next for MJ?

1:16:18 – Goodbye

We’ve been pals for a long time.
MJ still likes rugby shirts. I don’t wear henleys.
Are we matching??
Nothing has really changed!
MJ has always been down to dress up because we’ve always seen it as an opportunity for fun!
Perhaps this is due to his cosplay background.
I actually thought that MJ had great style, since he was able to show off his interests in a “cool” way. He always had the confidence to rock what he liked!
Even though we both fully got into menswear at different times, he definitely strived to “look nice” and be on a similar vibe with his friends.
Granted, vintage didn’t appeal to him (even if it was for my birthday).
Of course, MJ wasn’t dressed up all the time.
But he was always around to hang out.
Eventually, this inspired him to try a few things. Can’t go wrong with what MFA suggests: Breton stripe tees, a chore coat, and selvedge denim!
MJ just radiates positivity, passion, and is always down to do things.
It’s no surprise that he’d do this for menswear too.
His early moves in menswear were influenced by MFA and the accessible fashion activity anyone can do: flea markets. As a result, his looks were mainly done with tees and chorecoats.
It worked for him and was easy to slot in his expression.
I think its important to note that MJ never felt pressure to full send right away. He knew what he was comfortable with and he made moves slowly.
It probably helped that most of our activities together were casual. Also note that Scott is also similar, using a chore coat on top of a fandom tee.
I gave him a few things over the years, which he then used to dress up. It wasn’t bad, but he was still searching for the right POV to do (instead of just looking bizcaz).
I liked that he had a look and stuck with it.

The more he hung out with the menswear friends, the more he started to appreciate elements of tailoring.
Like most beginners, his look with ties and chinos were pointed toward ivy.
At some point, his uniform became chore coats with rugbys.
MJ loves chore coats. This cord and velvet version is pretty cool!
You can also see that he enjoyed elements of workwear/milsurp, though the true vintage aspect hadn’t taken hold yet.
MJ also enjoyed military jackets. His first ones were from the mall but were still quite good, like this Uniqlo U jungle jacket in black ripstop.
Here he is wearing an Air Force cadet bomber I grew out of. You can also see that he adopted the mindset that everything is an Occasion to get fitted for.
He also enjoys fleece jackets!
But chore coat and chinos were his move.
It was his way to show an interest in menswear.
MJ always wanted to get into tailoring…so he was able to do it when I gave him the suits I couldn’t fit into.
He wore this brown cotton SuSu suit a lot! I like that he styled it a bit ivy, with an OCBD and a knit tie. Note that he’s still got that bandana, but he’s wearing it as a pocket square.
MJ also developed his casual style more, adding in gabardine shirts and jungle jackets. Banana used again!
Of course, he still enjoyed the opportunities to wear a tie.


MJ always has a slouchy attitude with his clothes. This look with the corduroy patchwork chore, OCBD, and big chinos was always one of my favorites.
He even did the not-a-suit a few times with casual pieces.
MJ really does love his military jackets.
And the casual “suit”.
His other iconic move is the turtleneck base layer. He does it so often to great effect!
It makes his outfits dynamic without relying on neckwear.

He also enjoys kimono style jackets, as he wore them much before I conceived Safincore.

MJ has a penchant for streetwear focused styles as well.
When he’s super casual, he can usually be seen wearing a merch tee and fatigues.
MJ is also a big proponent of aloha shirts, especially worn with sportcoats (and with the runaway collar).
We’re cosplaying in this photo.
Okay, no runaway collar here but still a good look!


He gets good mileage out of that brown cotton suit! I wonder where he learned that from…
His use of merch isn’t just about shirts but caps too! He’s also using the striped tee base layer.
Chore coat, sport vest, workpants, and a turtleneck base layer? Peak MJ!
He has such a strong, consistent look.
It’s definitely appropriate across all of his activities (like getting boba).

Camo chore coat!
I love this photo of us.
Rugby and chore coat.
He definitely loves his rugby shirts. MJ wears them with sportcoats a lot!
Is this an Outfit Repeat?
Rugby, big belt, and short jacket.
Nice use of color here! I like the juxtaposition of vibes as well, utilizing the rugby, fleece, and jaunty scarf.
HIs appreciation of utility is present not just in his military jackets and chore coats, but in his love of vests.
This is an EG vest.
This was my old puffer vest that I gave to MJ when I grew out of it.
He’s always got pockets.
This is the Kapital vest (that I also own). See again his use of color, as well as his appreciation of designer (with the foam clogs).
Another EG vest. It’s such a simple move that adds personality (and utility) to any fit.

As you saw before, he is also the proud owner of an L.L Bean sportvest.
Epic outfit here, putting the sportvest with yellow OG-107s.
He wears it a lot!
A nice gorpy look with a nylon parka.
His use of the kimono style outlayer has also matured over the years. It’s not as dramatic as Safincore, but its still good.
A more r/streetwear look that I like. It’s kinda menswear when you look at the brands: a Kamakura shirt and 18East pants!
Now this is closer to Safincore. He really wears the 18East kimono well.
I’m glad that he still enjoys wearing sportcoats!
Instead of a tie, he throws his sportcoats over rugby shirts and turtlenecks, as those are things he wears more.

This is one of my favorite MJ fits! Very Going Out meets artsy.
When he knows what works, he does repeat it. Nothing wrong with that!

Color coordination!

He makes everything look so easy.

A bit of an ivy-esque look here!

Cool use of the 18East chore coat and jaunty scarf.
Black rayon and a brown suit? Yes, please!


I can’t think of a better person to take care of my Palm Beach jacket (that doesn’t fit).

MJ is just so cool!
This was his Ethan Impression for my 27th birthday.
Even though we’re basically brothers, we definitely interpret sportswear differently.
But I’m glad to have him.
I’m just happy that after all these years, he’s not just a clone of me. He’s MJ and he’s got great individual style!
Though perhaps he was always destined to dress well…

Thanks for listening and reading along! Don’t forget to support us on Patreon to get some extra content and access to our exclusive Discord. We also stream on Twitch and upload the highlights to Youtube.

The Podcast is produced by MJ.

Always a pleasure,

Ethan M. Wong

Big thank you to our top tier Patrons (the SaDCast Fanatics): Philip, Shane, Jarek, Henrik , and Alexander.

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