Tuesday, November 20, 2012

new jacket

Yesterday began with a huge irritant made worse by the person inflicting my woe. I of course added to it with anger taken out on a completely innocent fleece jacket that has been my main jacket for a couple of years.

Funny story about that jacket. It's always been a little snug on me, and like many people, but before many also, I went through a bit of a baggy clothes style. Nirvana was big in those days, but I always preferred Mudhoney. Our clothes were a bit large sometimes with lots of flannel shirts and thrift store pants. So I never wore the jacket and at one point gave it to Momma who then also never wore it. I eventually got it back.

From there I did that whole going into the closet thing I still can't make sense of. My look grew from kinda punk to kinda guy that's getting older and is a little self conscious but still kinda punk. I've nearly always worked in kitchens and have seldom had much of dress code that didn't involve essentially my wardrobe. Even now I wear what I want, though having work shirts from the restaurant and pants I set aside solely as work pants is a new adventure. So I'm permanently jeans and a tshirt dude.

There's also the "motorcycle" jacket, purchased in the early days of Momma's and my relationship from a mall leather goods store. It's still in great shape and I've worn it twice in two years. The unfortunate fleece took its place soon after my accident with the beer and some shots and driving into things. Driving a car and/or walking are fine to do while inside a leather "motorcycle" jacket.

Riding a bicycle is a whole other story. I do know a guy that wears a leather jacket while riding a bike, but the less said about him and his spring loaded bouncemobile the better. Seriously, the bike comes from the biggerst of big boxes and is so awful. I've seen blondes waving from the rear dash of convertibles that were less cushy than this guy's bike. My bike would absolutely suck to ride while wearing the jacket I have. None of that is the point however.

And that's fine. I've learned to layer. I don't want the same level of warmth riding to work in the morning as I will want riding home late in the afternoon, and of course the same for night shifts and the late ride. The fleece was nearly perfect if not as windproof as one might like. It dried well enough if it didn't get too rained on, but sometimes that isn't an option you pick or don't pick, though it did seem to keep the water from you while  riding. And I looked good in it.

I did start to wear it on ocaission soon after coming out. I noticed it, remembered it, tried it on, checked the mirror and wondered where it had been all my life. I seriously love it. I thought about searching for the tiny, broken zipper pieces in the hope that maybe I could super glue it back together. I'm not convinced still that I won't try.

Given that I'm confined to my bike, for the most part, I kinda rely on my layers. I don't have any idea what to expect this winter, though if it's like the last one it will be unseasonably warm and will be behind us more quickly than should be regular. At the same time, given some of the temperatures we're seeing and my general hunch, this winter seems like it could go back to a more normal one.

Regardless, I've replaced the fleece with something made out of some polymer resin goop or some shit. I don't know because I've already stuffed the tags in the recycling. But it is the kind of jacket worn by people who want you to know (or at least think) that they are the kind of people who, when they aren't indoors, can be found outdoors doing stuff in the outdoors. They've also embroidered their logoon the jacket's cardinal directions, breast, sleeves, and back. I hadn't actually noticed that till I got it home, so now I really am going to look like those dudes.

Did I mention that the fleece was actually a women's jacket? Not in that I got it from a woman, because I really don't remember, but it was styled more than a men's jacket, part of the looking good, and not because I look good in women's clothes, though I'm sure I do.

I visited two different stores in my quest to find this jacket, both the sort of stores that sell people stuff to make them look they got outdoors to do their outdoors stuff. The first place had a bunch of ugly purple and blue shit designed to be seen by hunters and other hikers. They were more serious about their outdoors, but I didn't like it. Plus the fact that it used to be a cool restaurant, and the wine racks hold water bottles that can take strafing fire from a fighter jet and still keep you water cold, while the bar where I had my first great mojito looks like The Gap if their customers were also into outdoors.

So I went down the block to the more touristy place and found a lot of possibilities, some of which were even on sale. I tried several on, probably looking odd as I raised my arms, stretched, bent forward, swung my arms slowly. I wanted to mimic somewhat the motions I make on my bike and keep in mind that no matter how pretty something is, if it rides up and leaves my ass in the wind it isn't worth any amount of on sale right now.

I knew I'd found the jacket when I found the jacket. It was marked down slightly and marked as for women. It's also a little more fitted than the men's jackets, and I already felt like I probably at least looked all right in it. I didn't check myself out in the mirror because it just kinda felt gay, but I didn't really need to. Okay, I totally did, but I waited till I got home.

I still haven't worn it on the bike. We had a beautifully sunny day here, and I didn't want to miss any of it. I'd worn a flannel which was just enough. It's big enough to easily fit over layers, but it's not so big that I'm smothered in it. I have worn it outside a couple of times to inhale the fumes of burning plant matter, and so far it seems to work well enough.

And yes, knowing me, someone will ask about my new jacket and I will point to and joke about the nut on my jacket. Yes, old as I am, and that's still my best material.