Thursday, October 05, 2006

Monsoon Season


My dad is a rugged outdoorsman trapped in a life where he rarely, if ever, needs to eat blubber to stay alive. He is brimming with survival know-how and has few outlets for it, so, like a good rugged outdoorsman, he makes do. Usually this means getting a little too excited about the prospect of and preparation for some major disaster and the subsequent living off the land (although all my friends claim as soon as they hear the word "apocolypse" or "nuclear winter" on the news they are heading straight to my family's house), but it also means that we are perenially involved in the great Fashion vs. Function debate. Raingear is the classic example.

You see, "waterproof," to my father, means that the wearer could experience a monsoon, in a sinking boat, and come home to dinner later saying, "It rained? Really? I didn't notice." Not an ounce of moisture should be able to penetrate a jacket that makes such a highfalutin' claim as "waterproof."

"Waterproof," to me, means not suede.

This difference of opinion came to a head when I went to outdoor school in sixth grade. I'd gotten one of those awesome raincoats from the Gap that folds up into a matching little bag and I was stoked to strut my stuff at camp. As soon as my dad saw this coat, however, he deemed it unacceptable, took it from my suitcase, and waterproofed it. I still don't know what the process entails exactly, but soon every seam of my new jacket was covered with white goo--sixth grade fashion suicide. When it rained at outdoor school, I hid the jacket under my cot and used one of those garbage bag ponchos they give to the poor kids.

As I get older, and start spending more money on stylish but maybe not completely waterproof jackets, I have learned to embrace having a dad who's so interesting and able to find food when the bird flu hits. I've also learned to hide my outerwear.

Jacket: WESC, $138, amazon.com

4 comments:

Karinaxoxo said...

haha i agree with you - waterproof jackets are not needed - its not like i go swimming in them.
You must've read my mine because I've been looking for a bomber jacket that is different to the plain black.

Alice said...

Ha! Step away from the seam sealer!

Dads don't understand, do they?

millie said...

when i was in third grade my mom tried to make me wear rainboots to school. i refused (by throwing myself on the floor and screaming that they're UGLY and STUPID and I HATE YOOUUU). she said if i didn't wear them i would have wet miserable feet all day long, but okay do what you want, you'll learn your lesson. so i wore my purple mary-janes and yes, my feet were wet and miserable. but they were cute, and i was happy.
p.s. last year i bought ladybug rainboots like the little kids wear. they were $25 at nordstrom. finally, my feet could be dry AND (perhaps a little too) cute.

Anonymous said...

I remember I had a pair of really-cheap-vinyl-fake-leather but still presentable boots this spring. One nice surprise was to find out how well they withstood rainy weather. I have never spent a spring with toastier feet... that is, until the really-cheap soles gave way and split right down the middle.

Your dad sounds like my kinda guy.

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