Craig Wisner

Thoreau on Clothes

“I sometimes try my acquaintances by tests such as this, — Who could wear a patch, or two extra seams only, over the knee?  Most behave as if they believed that their prospects for life would be ruined if they should do it.  It would be easier for them to hobble to town with a broken leg than with a broken pantaloon.  Often if an accident happens to a gentleman’s legs, they can be mended; but if a similar accident happens to the legs of his pantaloons, there is no help for it; for he considers, not what is truly respectable, but what is respected.  We know but few men, a great many coats and breeches.”

“I say, beware of all enterprises that require new clothes…”

Both excerpts from Walden.


2 responses

  1. I share similar thoughts with running gear, I wear the same pair of split shorts for a week or two before washing them, they have to resemble crisp salty bacon before I’ll wash them. Every pair of running shorts I own have small tears on the butt from hanging out at the trailhead after runs or snagging cactus, but I’m half naked out there anyways (so my wife says) so I’ll let the holes run their course. However, with running and footwear i’m a bit of a whore and there’s the constant “need” for new kicks, it was the same way when I skateboarded, always needing that crisp pop from a new deck. I have a hard time running my shoes into the ground, my one true gear vice.

    Lightweight backpacking clothing is pretty pathetic in the durability department, it’s definitely not made for wood burning stoves, campfire evenings, and laying about in the dirt on breaks. As of late, i’ve been relishing in the little ember holes, pin pricks, snags, soot, and tears in my gear… all tokens of what gear is really intended for.

    June 18, 2011 at 10:10 am

  2. Adan

    Recently I repaired two shirt buttons and mended a backpack. I havent tried mending my pants yet, but I think I should, lest I become a gentleman.

    June 20, 2011 at 10:32 am

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