Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Got your attention didn't I? Get your mind out of the gutter.
I am a big fan of the mail order catalogs that offer "retro" products from my youth. Vermont Country Store, Lehmans and Woolrich, just to name a few. For a number of reasons, I believe that these things are better made and more attractive to me than the products that are being offered today.
But among these older catalog items, I would see alot of things that made me wonder "who is buying this stuff?" Even I was skeptical. When was the last time you saw someone wearing a pair of rubbers to protect their shoes? We lived in a disposable society. That was my feeling. I never saw a need for the shoe clamps that have grips on the bottom. These are products for somewhere other than the Long Island intermittent nasty weather that we were used to. Winter on Long Island is always cold and raw, but mostly it is manageable snow amounts that disappear after a few days or weeks. Not a constant barrage of extreme weather on top of extreme weather. Who had a need for this north country necessary protective shoe gear? I get it now. When I walk into Physical Therapy in the morning, there are no less than 40 pair of boots left at the door, and yes, rubbers. It was an epiphany for me to see who is buying the rubbers for their shoes. They all live here! I haven't seen this footwear in years! There are snow boots of all types, the popular and fashion necessary Uggs down to the lowliest pair of rubber boots with clips on them, the kind my Father had left over from his army days. I haven't seen this type of snow gear since I was a kid, and here they turn up right at the door of PT. AND they are being worn by young people (I can't believe I just used that term - Oh God) People in their teens and 20's are dressing for the weather. I am still losing the battle with Allison to dress appropriately for the weather, in my eyes, but I am taking comfort from the fact that we live in an area where function is more important than form, for most people. I was made to live here. I see kids walking along with snow pants, and found out yesterday that the elementary schools require snow pants for gym and recess. If you don't have them, and the weather is below 32 degrees (every day!) you are considered "unprepared". I LOVE THIS! This rule is helping to raise a whole generation of smart kids, who dress for the weather. I find this remarkable. Unfortunately for me, and blessedly for Allison, the High School does not have the same rule. Their attitude is that you should know better by now as to what is appropriate for the weather, and if you don't, then freeze your patooties off you big old fool. These are my words, not the High School's, but we are all on the same page. So, as I dress for physical therapy in my appropriate winter gear, which means it is all warm and doesn't necessarily match, and that is completely OK in this world of extreme winter weather, I pity the people who are still living in the "sorta winter" mentality. If there isn't snow on the ground, we just didn't dress as warm as we could have down on LI. It was my own fault, but I dressed for the office, not for the trip to the office. Shame on me. I am learning different rules here, and they are working for me. Allison? Not so much. Oh well, there are some things that just have to be learned in their own time. Learning how to dress like an old person, with rubbers, suspenders, vests, thermal underwear and scarves and hats that don't match the coat is an art form that takes years to perfect. I am nearly there-I just have to get my hands on a pair of woolen pants. That seems to be the uniform for the thermally challenged. Maybe green or red plaid? I am having way too much fun. Oh, by the way, we're having a heat wave - 28 degrees!

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