Monday, December 28, 2009

A Gotta Have

The Carharrt J162 Waterproof  Breathable Jacket

In your advancing years, do you ever get the warm tingles reminisicing about a certain piece of clothing, say, a pair of jeans, a shirt that was THE shirt, a pair of shoes, or even a t-shirt that seemed to be an extension of you?   You felt the most like yourself when you were wearing any of these items.   They were your second skin, your protective armor against the cold, cruel, and disinterested world.  Those items seemed to be indestructible until, unfortunately, they were.  And then.....?  Well, at least for me, there were times of regret that I hadn't acquired a standby supply of these precious commodities as they never were obtainable after passage of time and of deterioration.
Why was I holding on to those hole-y jeans and shirts and flapping shoes?  Because I was holding on to my self or, at least, my self-deluded semblance of self.

I'm having similar thoughts these days as regards a jacket I acquired back in early April, 2009.  The weather in the Middle Atlantic states was measured in inches.  Precipitation of all varieties and me with no jacket with water-proof qualities.  Water-resistant, yes but the level of resistance was worn down quickly by the torrents of rain.  So, with previous experience with Carhartt's products, I thought I'd give this jacket a try; the place I purchased it from had a generous return policy so risk was minimal (and the price wasn't bad ,$110 v $130 on Carharrt's own site).

It's December now and this jacket has been worn in the rain, the snow, the sleet, and even in those most vicious of conditions, the fashion standard capital, a.k.a. Paris.  It came through with nary a scratch nor a leak nor a snear.   Great stitiching, ample qty of pockets (all well-placed...though the jacket definitely leans toward right-handedness), taped seems, drawcorded hem, easy to clean fabric.  Very important element was this jacket's design which made movement easy and unconstrained.   I've worn this jacket most every day from April through May and then mid-September through December.  The color and fabric condition have held up quite well; the black color gives the coat a "dressier" quality that broadens the scope of where you can wear the jacket.
And, as advertised, the jacket is most definitley water-proof.

So, I'm at a decision point.  Do I buy another jacket as a backup, simply hanging it in the future wear closet?   Or do I take my chances that this gem will not wear out or, if it does, the same model (and quality) is available?   My "Click to Buy" finger is getting itchy; I'm reflecting on future happiness.

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I'd say:

Yes, you do. Buy another one, that is. You won't have to check and won't know for years whether there is a better one available. Better not only in quality terms, but also as to the emotional value added to a piece of clothing one has worn for longer periods, with ... love?

(we go out a lot in winter, too, and I always feel grateful for the warmth and dryness I get from my favourite outdoor clothing. It is very important.)

Just my 2 cents...
Go for it. You cannot have too many great jackets. I've worn out some marvelous jackets and still miss them.
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