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Which Brands Do Looters Go for?
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iSteve commenter Clifford Brown reminisces about the recent looting of high end shops in Soho in Lower Manhattan:

Fjällräven is a Scandinavian hiking brand. Their backpacks have become ubiquitous in recent years. I am a fan of their hiking pants which are decidedly unfashionable, but also virtually indestructible. When I watched the livestream of the looting of Soho, I took solace in the fact that the mob would not touch the Fjällräven store.

I spoke with the manager of the store and it turns out that the looters did in fact break into the store, but basically did not take anything! Turns out utilitarian high end Scandinavian hiking gear does not appeal to the looter demographic. Who could have guessed?

I joked with the staff of the store that there the looters were likely not that into hiking. The staff being PC automatons brains froze and said “Well, we really don’t know if they like to hike or not.”

What a world.

Looting is one thing, but stereotyping looters is not to be tolerated!

 
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  1. Didn’t you know? They are not hikers, they’re joggers.

    Do try to keep up.

    • LOL: Lockean Proviso
    • Replies: @The Alarmist
  2. Cortes says:

    It was a cheap shot at retail sales staff.

    Yeah, they’re going to share their views on customers with some random arsehole who could be a mystery shopper. Not.

    • Agree: Harry Baldwin
    • Disagree: bigdicknick
  3. Those clothes are definitely not looter-American, excuse me, Looter-American, designs.

    I’ve seen a new trend among 20ish Looter-American females. Yoga pants covering voluminous flesh, and faux fur slide slippers. What’s up with that?

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Womens-Faux-Fur-Slippers-Fuzzy-Slides-Fluffy-Sandals-Open-Toe-Indoor-Outdoor/383582272471?hash=item594f48fbd7:g:6hgAAOSwyEJe5yPz&var=652012243894

  4. SafeNow says:

    I would imagine that Speedo (and other swimsuit brands) are safe. Belts and suspenders will not be looted because they keep your pants from falling down.

    • LOL: Achmed E. Newman
    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  5. tyrone says:

    Nikes ,firearms ,booze…..maybe some snacks for later ,but Fjallraven pants ,thats just begging for an ass beating.

  6. When I worked retail there were a string of break-ins along the strip I worked. One store hit was a well-known ski shop that had tons of very expensive clothing and equipment. Their employees told me that nothing was stolen even though the thieves would have made out pretty nice if they snagged some coats and goggles. Most thieves aren’t really smart enough to plan ahead or assess value so they just search for cash, even if it’s in a safe and the registers are empty

  7. Looting is one thing, but stereotyping looters is not to be tolerated!

    Not even if the looters didn’t loot! – Those are the new rules!

    (When on the bike and or in the woods or while skiing -I’m wrapped up in Fjällräven jackets almost all year – I had dinner in a dark brown Fjällräven hunter’s jacket – which is especially great because it is designed to make only very little noise when you move in it – – very nice to have on while dining on the terrace too at this fresh Juli evening, after a rain front had crossed the lake).

  8. theMann says:

    Simple way to end looting.

    Booby trap high end gear and just leave it where you would have to B&E to take it. Blow off a few hands and that will really put a crimp in the looting.

    Best of all, it can be done surreptitiously, without any show of force.

  9. Kronos says:

    Is that why art galleries are such a staple of gentrification? That unless it’s African or gangsta themed most members of the black underclass won’t bother looting it?

    *Fictional Scenario*

    Two black looters come across this painting hanging outside an high-end art gallery in Minneapolis.


    “Hey man, what the fuk!?”

    “Wat?”

    “That a creepy ass painting dog. Who’d da fuk buy dat sheeet?”

    “White people be crazy man, dat paintin will come out and kill you in yeah sleep. Creepy-ass little white bitch and bitch dog. No matta where I walk, those big ass eyes keep following my ass. Who’d the fuk buy dat sheet?!”

    “I neva wanna get high with dat painting in my room dog, it’s creepy as hell. Let’s hurry towards dat FootLocker.”

  10. An elderly conservative friend of mine who lives in NYC told me that a few years ago he saw a black man walking up his street trying door handles. At the end of the block were two white cops, to whom he reported what he saw. One officer asked him to describe the man.

    My friend said, “Well, officer, you may not believe this, but it’s a young black guy.”

    The officers took this information stony-faced. My friend said that in the 1970s he would have gotten a little smile out of them, but no more. You can’t be too careful these days.

  11. I’m not sure I agree. The previous (and perhaps still current) Big Item was a brand that literally sold Canadian Arctic Research costs for ~$600. They were/are bright orange, so whole the utility of a coat that could keep you warm to negative eighty was questionable, the signaling power that it had was terrific. A huge, brightly colored social proof that you had money.
    It could just be that this particular brand isn’t popular. If you’d have said even 5 years ago that Canadian Arctic Research would be THE LOOK of 2019 no one would have believed you

  12. Twinkie says:

    What a racist brand! Its models on the website are three whites (two blond women and one man) and an Asian woman.

    My wife and I prefer Haglöfs. We joke that if there were a Zombie apocalypse, we’d loot clothes from Haglöfs. Its soft shell hiking pants are excellent. I still wear the two pairs I bought 15+ years ago.

  13. Hodag says:

    The eldest lil’ Hodag got into a tough academic program so as a reward they got to select the backpack (for books and laptop) of their choice. They picked a Fjalraven (sp?). Mrs Hodag would not reveal the price. It is a hot brand among high school girls of a certain demographic – you know the fantastic terrors of the Northwoods demographic.

    • Replies: @YetAnotherAnon
  14. Lloyd1927 says:

    The staff were probably terrified to voice their true opinions and with good reason. Anybody could be recording the interaction with the intent of putting it on the internet. People have lost their jobs and been vilified as “racist” for far less.

  15. Ingebretsen’s Nordic Marketplace is a short stroll from ground zero of the Floyd ryot, in its 100th year, almost certainly the oldest business for blocks around. (Unless you count Target as Dayton Hudson, 1902.)

    They are closed for the moment, except for curbside pickup, but how much of that is due to pandemic and how much to riot is unclear. They were broken into and suffered minor damage. But lefse, blood sausage, and Viking bobbleheads– not the NFL kind– aren’t what looters were in the marketplace for.

    https://www.ingebretsens.com/about/

    Nordicists, pig out:

    [MORE]


    • Replies: @Ganderson
  16. @Cortes

    I seriously doubt that.

    A normal person in that situation – even one who had his guard up – would have at least chuckled at the joke and said, “Yeah I guess not!” and left it there.

    The response was instead a perfect PC one from people who strive to be PC.

    • Replies: @Cortes
  17. @Cortes

    What makes him an asshole in this story?

    In a normal country (which you perhaps have no experience of) a random customer could indeed share a joke with sales staff about the exercise preferences of local rioters. In PC Clown World, you obviously can’t.

    • Agree: Gordo
    • LOL: Cortes
  18. Germanics have a positive attitude towards the outdoors in general and hiking in particular, therefore utilitarian high end Scandinavian hiking gear is an object of intense desire. There were few if any Germanics among the looters in Soho in Lower Manhattan, therefore no “shrinkage” even after the perimeter was breached, so to speak.

    • Replies: @JMcG
  19. Mike Tre says:

    It’s the old joke – looters broke into a shoe shop but when the authorities showed they observed not a single work boot had been stolen.

    • Agree: Kyle
    • LOL: Kronos
  20. Which brands do looters go for?

    A perusal through some of their gangsta/hip hop/standard rap songs basically lists which brands they’re interested in. Established luxury brands that people have actually heard of and have had a major global following for decades, unlike the Scandinavian hiking brand, which tends to set others off as mainly a SWPL in the US.

    A sampling of looters’ wish list:

    Air Jordans
    Gucci
    Dolce Gabana
    Many clothing items sold in Nordstroms, and Neiman Marcus
    Rolex
    Hennessy
    Grey Goose
    Versace
    Polo (especially when the logo is oversized)
    Hilfiger
    Louis Vuitton
    Bentley
    Lamborghini
    Rolls Royce

    Just listen to their music, they’re all there. And more.

    • Replies: @Jenner Ickham Errican
  21. @theMann

    Just wait until Jack D is done with you in court!

  22. Ganderson says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    MMMMMM…. Swedish sausage.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  23. Escher says:
    @Cortes

    Yeah. Next thing you know they’ve been outed as members of the Manhattan KKK on the NYT. God knows there are no other crimes occurring in that benighted place.

  24. I’d say buy American outdoor clothing brands, but many of them have fallen all over themselves to throw money at racist hate group BLM, the most notable being Eddie Bauer, the North Face, and Patagonia.

    I own pieces in all three of those brands, and I am debating if I want to bother trying to sell them on eBay or just take them straight to Goodwill.

    As long as we’re talking about Scandi outdoor clothing, I’d point out that Haglöfs and Fjällräven are Swedish brands. If you’d prefer Norwegian, Helly Hansen and Noronna are both good bets.

    The Swiss brand Mammut was killing it about 3 to 5 years ago, but they’ve really lost their focus of late.

  25. anon[256] • Disclaimer says:

    Leave near a highend shopping district. Last month, everything was boarded up, except for the Vans shore store. I’m fairly confident they were expecting looting and were hoping for free publicity.

  26. @Kronos

    Oh no no no. Here’s how to write Black art-loot dialogue :

    “Happy birfday, gurl. Wut? Uh huh, real Murakami. That shit kawaii as fuck. He call it Superflat. Yeah, das rite, super flat like yo cuz Tamika’s ass.”

    • LOL: Kronos
    • Replies: @Kronos
  27. @Twinkie

    My wife and I prefer Haglöfs.

    Ümm Läüt AG actually makes the best rugged outerwear, I’m surprised ‘connoisseurs’ here haven’t mentioned them.

    • Replies: @captflee
  28. @Yojimbo/Zatoichi

    A sampling of looters’ wish list:

    Just listen to their music, they’re all there. And more.

    That’s why it’s called Cristallnacht.

    • Replies: @Yojimbo/Zatoichi
  29. @The Wild Geese Howard

    That is a fair point about buying American although few of those product lines actually manufacture in the United States. I don’t care very much about clothing, but I seem to be drawn to Nordic brands. I do not think this is intentional, the fit, subdued nature and functionality just works for me. But who knows?

    I like Helly Hansen, but the insignia is somewhat problematic, especially in the current political environment.

    The North Face is a complete mystery to me. There are a few North Face products that are amazing, but the majority of what they produce is low quality. Very diluted brand that I cannot figure out. The North Face seems to be three different brands operating under the same company.

  30. Kronos says:
    @Jenner Ickham Errican

    Where did you learn such verbal craftsmanship/word smithery? I haven’t laughed like that in a while!

    • Thanks: Jenner Ickham Errican
    • Replies: @Jenner Ickham Errican
  31. Mike1 says:
    @Clifford Brown

    It depends how much time you spend outside and in what conditions but Marmot is a great brand for real world cold conditions and is sanely priced. I have a personal aversion to Helly Hansen because I know several of their “influencers” who are pretty fake outdoors people.

  32. @Kronos

    Where did you learn such verbal craftsmanship/word smithery?

    Not sure really, here and there… some have called me a man of culture akin to the famous Dr. Sal Monella, third-shift path-lab supervisor at Mount Sinai.

    • LOL: kaganovitch
  33. @Kronos

    I wouldn’t want that painting either!!

    • Agree: Kronos
    • Replies: @Kronos
    , @Anonymous
  34. LondonBob says:

    Reminds me of this classic interview from when the blacks rioted in 2011 in London.

  35. Gordo says:

    I like Fjällräven, so that will save me the cost of a 23-and-me.

    I would like to post that Caspar David Friedrich painting but I’ve forgotten how to do it.

    Its got to be the most Northern European painting ever.

  36. Turns out utilitarian high end Scandinavian hiking gear does not appeal to the looter demographic. Who could have guessed?

    Or perhaps drunk guys on a summer afternoon just aren’t particularly interested in parkas and warm trousers. Time Preference 101, of course, but nevertheless it might be not all about brands.

  37. @Hodag

    The funny thing is those little Fjallraven bags don’t carry much – they look like the school satchel of a bygone age. But teenage girls love ’em.

    What’s happened to Arcteryx? They were the posh brand for UK outdoor types who thought Berghaus was low-rent.

    (and btw isn’t Helly Hansen big with black people in the States? In London the HH puffa jacket was a gangsta staple not that far back)

  38. Yngvar says:

    Fjäll = mountain and räven = fox, the. So now you know what it says.

  39. Twinkie says:
    @Mike1

    Marmot is a great brand for real world cold conditions and is sanely priced.

    Yup! I have a soft shell jacket from Marmot from years and years ago that is still my go-to in wet, cold conditions. I didn’t pay much for it – I think it was under $150 back when Sierra Trading used to carry quality merchandise. I also like Arc’teryx.

  40. @Clifford Brown

    With regard to Helly Hansen and Noronna, neither of them posted the infamous black square in their Instagram feeds.

    Agree about the North Face. Some of their less expensive stuff is cheesy. There are some gems if you look. Their 3-in-1 jackets would seem to be good value, but good God they are heavy and stiff.

  41. In my observations of stores looted in SoHo and Noho:

    1) Stores with brands popular among the looting demographic: Nike, Supreme, Coach, YSL, etc. The more expensive, the better… but if rappers wear it, it was looted. This is where the most energetic activity was.

    2) Stores with stock that can be easily fenced: This obviously includes some of 1) above, but also electronics stores, etc.

    3) Businesses symbolic of capitalism among the anti-capitalist crowd: banks, Starbucks, Verizon, etc. Usually nothing was taken, just damage and graffiti inflicted.

  42. @Mike1

    I liked Marmot about 6-8 years ago, then they became very unfocused with their products.

    Shame because they really did offer a great value proposition.

    Sad to hear that about Helly Hansen. Though I’m not sure that poseur influencers bother me more than brands that support BLM race hate.

  43. FWIW, in my observations Fjällräven backpacks are mostly worn by female asian NYU students and assorted other geeky looking college age kids. Definitely not your typical BLM/antifa demographic.

    • Replies: @Change that Matters
  44. I have it on good authority blacks are avid bird watchers, so they were probably looking for binoculars and field guides. Fjällräven has missed a market opportunity there.

  45. @Technite78

    Spot on, sir. In Hong Kong, every second female student has a KK backpack.

  46. @The Wild Geese Howard

    TNF is owned by VF (owner of multiple brands including Timberland , Vans, Jansport, and more recently Altra shoes). Most of the merchandise from these brands is overpriced rubbish produced in China, Vietnam and the like. It has spent the last decade trying to emulate Patagonia for a lower price but failed miserably.

    EB is owned by a PE firm as of 2018 or 19. A death signal if ever there was one.

    The only decent hiking boots available these days are custom made; pricey and a long queue for the best. But worth it. My daughter is now wearing her mother’s hiking boots purchased 30 years ago and on their third pair of soles.

    German and Scandinavian companies produce good outdoor gear. There are some niche brands in other places like the UK and NZ for specific items.

    Most outdoor gear is mass produced and will not fit properly, won’t do the job required, and will fall apart before you get your money’s worth. It used to be a good industry, but it’s been taken over by money guys who prefer advertising and bling over quality and durability.

    How the heck did we get here on iSteve? Oh, right, looters… Which reminds me, I can’t recall the last time I saw a jogger hiking in Hong Kong. Or looting for that matter. Although their numbers have risen appreciably over the last five or ten years. Like the South Asians.

    • Replies: @The Wild Geese Howard
  47. ATBOTL says:

    The Marmot Mammoth was literally to die for in NYC:

    https://www.complex.com/style/2019/12/marmot-mammoth-parka-biggie

    When I was growing up in late 80’s and early 90’s, The Tripple F.A.T. Goose was the to die for down parka in NYC. A little before my time, it was the leather Double Goose. Before that, the M. Julian leather jacket with fur collar was the item to kill for.

  48. Kronos says:
    @Giancarlo M. Kumquat

    I just remember that artwork from this film.

  49. @Lloyd1927

    When everyone is looking at the now as if being seen from the future by someone else, then we’ve dissociated, are no longer the locus of our own lived experience. I believe that’s called collective psychosis.

    I’ve noticed that every protester is videoing theirselves with their cell phones. As if actually living through the event isn’t in itself, fulfilling enough. They have to memorialize it to share later. To share with others who were there doing the same thing. A hall of mirrors.

    So everything is scripted. Things unfold predictably. The righteous anger, denunciations, villainizing. the tears. It’s like we’re all in drama school, watching amateur actors muddling through a predictable, boring improv. It’s only exciting when someone drives through a crowd and bodies fly or–as is inevitable–starts shooting.

    • Replies: @Neuday
  50. @Jenner Ickham Errican

    “That’s why it’s called Cristallnacht.”

    Aw yeah, dawg, nam sayin’? Cause dat m-f-in’ Chris’ is all dat.

  51. David says:

    In the late 1980s I worked in an Upper West Side bookstore. A neighboring jewelry store was broken into, but all their valuable merchandise was well secured. In attempt to get at least something for their pains, the would-be thieves smashed through a brick wall separating the jewelry store’s basement from ours, making a hole just big enough to fit a head through. Some books had been pushed off a shelf to allow a look around. As there were only books, they backed out without further damage.

    • Replies: @Inquiring Mind
  52. JMcG says:
    @HunInTheSun

    Fjallraven gear is made in China and South Korea. Its Scandinavian the way Apple is Californian.

  53. @Change that Matters

    Most of the merchandise from these brands is overpriced rubbish produced in China, Vietnam and the like.

    The TNF gems of recent years have been the Apex GTX line of rain jackets. Pretty well made and no one else is offering Gore-Tex near that price point. Yes, Gore-Tex is a bit overrated, and it’s no Columbia OutDry when it comes to stopping rain.

    EB is owned by a PE firm as of 2018 or 19. A death signal if ever there was one.

    Sure, but EBs 800-fill down jackets might be the best value for dollar pieces on the market right now. You get a warm, light, pretty well-made, good-looking down coat for 40-50% of what Mountain Hardwear and Rab want you to pay.

    German and Scandinavian companies produce good outdoor gear. There are some niche brands in other places like the UK and NZ for specific items.

    German outdoor brands? Clothing makers Jack Wolfskin and Ziener are both pretty cheesy. Deuter is mostly focused on packs. Can’t think of anyone else. Agree the UK has some good brands, as does France.

    Most outdoor gear is mass produced and will not fit properly, won’t do the job required, and will fall apart before you get your money’s worth.

    Hasn’t been my overall experience, though I will concur that there are a lot of snowpants out there that seem to be sized for people without any glute or thigh development.

    Which reminds me, I can’t recall the last time I saw a jogger hiking in Hong Kong.

    To expand on your point, it’s kind of depressing how all the models on the outdoor brand and retail sites are joggers and the sort of Heinz 57 mystery meat that one never sees say, skiing, or anywhere else in the great outdoors.

    Thanks for the thoughts, and have a good day.

  54. @David

    Hey, by pushing a head in, looking around, not seeing anything of interest or value to them and moving on, at least they are not like the biblical Philistines.

    The word Philistine as a pejorative apparently means “uncultured”, which I think distorts the original meaning.

    The Philistines took the Ark of the Covenant as a prize in battle, but it was the Lord who allowed them to do this because the Israelites had an attitude. Having captured the Ark, it was of not benefit to them, however, because they were pagans who did not respect the Lord. It was not only of no benefit, it gave them an infestation of mice and a flare-up of varicose veins on a certain hidden-yet-sensitive part of their anatomy, so they because eager to return the Ark.

    I define a Philistine to be a person who steals, plunders or loots something that is of considerable value to you but of trifling or no value to the thief. For example, if someone breaks into your house and steals, say, a piece of jewelry that has almost zero fence-able value but has enormous sentimental value to you because it was worn by ancestors and handed down over the generations

    The looters may be uncultured, but they are at least honorable thieves in the sense that they are not grabbing stuff of minimal utility to themselves.

    • Replies: @nebulafox
  55. Malcolm Y says:

    When my mother was old she had dementia and I took care of her. She had health aides that came to the house and a social worker etc. One day I told the social worker this true story.

    I was a teenager and I fooled around with a guitar and learned to play some things and my dad said lessons would probably help me. Now we were pretty poor so he had to find a cheap way to do this. He worked at large machine shop so he talked to a fellow employee who taught music on several instruments – he was black. So, my dad came back and said – he won’t do it because he doesn’t teach white people. That was the end of that.

    The social worker refused to believe it; she essentially told me I had to be a liar. This; to this day makes me wonder at people who react in this slavish, robotic way.

  56. Neuday says:
    @ThreeCranes

    When everyone is looking at the now as if being seen from the future by someone else, then we’ve dissociated, are no longer the locus of our own lived experience. I believe that’s called collective psychosis.

    I’ve noticed that every protester is videoing theirselves with their cell phones. As if actually living through the event isn’t in itself, fulfilling enough. They have to memorialize it to share later. To share with others who were there doing the same thing. A hall of mirrors.

    The promise of the Enlightenment, the triumph of rational individualism, has become as thoroughly debunked due to incompatibility with human nature as Libertarianism and Diversity Is Our Strength. It’s a thin line between being Social Creatures and Herd Animals.

    Never again should a nation allow its media/entertainment and it’s education system to be run by hostile elite outsiders, as controlling the herd is much easier than we ever suspected.

    But what do I know; I get my outdoor gear at Cabela’s.

  57. J1234 says:

    I spoke with the manager of the store and it turns out that the looters did in fact break into the store, but basically did not take anything!

    I had kind of a boutique-ish retail store, and one of the two times I was burglarized, the perps stole the cheapest item in the store (value, $70) and took noting else (which included many items in the $1500+ range.) Why did they do this? The thing they took was far more garish and painted bright red.

  58. Uncle Dan says:

    Was the store playing classical music? That’s a proven mob repellent. Might have had nothing to do with the ugly hiking pants.

  59. @theMann

    Packages of socks, available on the sales floor in my old, questionable area Wal*Mart, were locked in thick, clear plastic display cases. In order to get my hands on the footwear, I had to call over a key carrying, sales associate.

    I read where W*M has announced that it was no longer going to lockup the hair care products that are popular with black women.

    Your boobytrap idea would only be permissible for products popular with whites, such as bottled mineral water.

  60. kikz says:

    with all the walkable bling being jogged away… the diamond district in NYC was left untouched…. funny that.

  61. @SafeNow

    You deserve more than just an LOL, SN. That joke (right?) takes about 3 seconds to process which seems to be a great comedic pause!

    • Replies: @Inquiring Mind
  62. @Lloyd1927

    There’s one answer to that. Quit being so terrified. PERIOD. Otherwise, it will only get worse.

    (not you, LLoyd, but anyone in this position.)

  63. @Bill Jones

    If I hadn’t done my AF fitness test a couple times in jump boots, I might not think it was a thing.

  64. captflee says:
    @Jenner Ickham Errican

    Don’t know about their gear, but the name is fabulous!

  65. Kyle says:

    I guess you could say the looters don’t know $&@? from Shinola.

    I know nothing about hiking boots but I do know america makes the greatest pair of boots in the world.

    Thorogood 8” wedge sole plain toe, water proof, non insulated, non safety toe.

  66. @Achmed E. Newman

    The joke is not funny because it is sadly true. Comedy requires some kind of “hook” or “punch line” declaring the unexpected, and there is nothing unexpected here.

    This was brought home when the “walk on” American Idol contestant auditioned “Pants on the Ground.”

    Simon, of course, was ready to give this man “the hook”, but Randy right away picked up on what what Civil Rights icon Larry Platt was trying to say with “Looking like a fool with your pants on the ground.” Essentially a cultural self-help message that could get you unpersoned in 2020.

  67. @The Wild Geese Howard

    This brings to mind: what brands across the spectrum did NOT donate to those groups? Would be a useful guide to those of us looking to not contribute to the hate whitey cause du jour.

  68. Anonymous[700] • Disclaimer says:

    We used to collect high-end outdoor gear by visiting hiking destinations that required a downhill walk of at least several hundred feet elevation loss the day after a three-day holiday. Hiking down with backpacks full of cool but heavy gear was easy, but the return slog uphill was a different matter. Infrequent or perhaps first-time backpackers, already dirty, bug-bitten, sore, tired and probably just generally annoyed, would jettison more and more stuff as they struggled up-trail, sometimes abandoning their packs entirely. Many would leave things at the campground, especially cooking utensils that they couldn’t be bothered to clean and repack, sometimes their tents, which they abandoned erected; they couldn’t be bothered to even take them down.
    I always imagined these people to be like those you see in TV sit-coms who decide it would be a fun family bonding experience to camp out and end up miserable in a rainstorm stuck inside a tent hating each other. I suppose that’s how urbanites unfamiliar with the outdoor life imagine it to be.
    I always loved backpacking and camping, and we did it with minimal gear, mostly hand-me-down — my first frame pack was a Kelty from the 1950s that had belonged to some relative, patched and repaired countless times, but it still performed good duty — plus some Army surplus stuff, canteen, mess kit….
    Dad said tents were only to be used in inclement weather, and even then, if you were really an outdoorsman, you could find good shelter in the environment, which he taught us to do. So we slept under the stars, watching meteors streak across the sky, satellites sedately traversing the night from horizon to horizon, discovered the different colors of the stars, saw owls gliding silently by….
    He also taught us how to make what he called a hobo stove out of an old tin can. Just a few twigs would provide plenty of heat for cooking, protected from the wind and safely confined.
    He also taught us how to dig a hole, dump in hot coals, set in it a pot full of stew fixings or bread dough, cover it up and leave it all day, then come evening have a delicious, fully cooked meal. Then you could spread the still-glowing coals out on the ground in a rectangular shape, cover with dirt and use that as your bed, toasty warm no matter how cold it got, and no need for a sleeping bag.
    If we did build a fire, Dad taught us not to make it too big, reminding us of the old wild Injun saying that a white man built a fire so big he couldn’t get close enough to it to get warm, but an Injun knew a fire no bigger than a man’s hand was best.
    Well, anyways, we gradually collected an assortment of expensive outdoor gear that had been abandoned — pressure gas stoves and lanterns made in Switzerland, nesting pan sets, fancy tents, multi-layered sleeping bags good enough for an Antarctica expedition, backpacks, full of all kinds of cool stuff, lots and lots of freeze-dried grub. Some we kept and used, some we gave away, some we sold in yard sales. I still have an excellent goose-down parka that I found tossed aside on a hiking trail the day after Christmas, unused, probably a present, that the own couldn’t be bothered to carry back up the hill. I also have a really neat backpacking tent that weighs only six ounces and can be stuffed in a cargo pants pocket, that somebody abandoned in the backpack they left leaning against a tree. The pack also had an apparently unused Swiss Army knife that I still have, as well as a Paul knife that opens by pushing a button and flicking your wrist, said action opening the blade and locking it in place.
    Another time I found a big locking-blade Buck knife and beside it a pair of rubber-armored Nikon binoculars. My brother once found a Trek mountain bike with front and rear luggage packs and saddlebags full of camping gear that someone had apparently tired of pushing up trail and just left.
    Well, to wrap up, I have never bought any hiking or backpacking clothing or gear, don’t think you need most, or indeed any, of it, to enjoy the outdoors. The only exception would be good cold-weather, waterproof boots, but a good outdoor work boot serves just fine. When we were kids we hiked barefoot and I sometimes do that today. It makes you pay attention to where you are stepping, and you see a lot of things you wouldn’t notice otherwise; in fact, when Dad was teaching us how to track, he made us walk barefoot so we would look down a lot and so notice spoor, tracks, crushed insects, disturbed pebbles and twigs, etc.

    • Thanks: JMcG
  69. Anonymous[387] • Disclaimer says:
    @Reg Cæsar

    Dolph is smart, but no Hedy.

    It’s Hedly!

  70. Just guessing here, but I’d bet not many pairs of work boots were looted either.

  71. Cortes says:
    @JR.ewing.78

    Ideally, of course.

    When jobs are scarce, even low-paying jobs? In an ecosystem ((c) the mayor of Chicago) in which a suppressed smile or raised eyebrow could be your ticket to a media flaying? Good luck with your freedom of expression.

  72. @Twinkie

    Why is venerable American brand Filson’s not getting any love here?

    • Replies: @JMcG
    , @Twinkie
  73. JMcG says:
    @kaganovitch

    I used to buy Filson’s stuff years and years ago when it really was venerable and American. I still have some of their mackinaw wool coats and overalls.
    Then, maybe ten or fifteen years ago I noticed their prices were climbing parabolically.
    I checked into it a little and found that they had been bought out by a private equity outfit and hired on some bigwig from Patagonia to help them move more upscale.
    They kept sending me catalogues full of bearded models wearing 225.00 shirts made in Morocco and China, but I havent paid attention to them in years. They used to have a manufacturing facility in Seattle, but I dont know if they kept it.

    I just checked the Filson website. A wool mackinaw cruiser is now 395.00! A cotton flannel shirt made in Morocco is 135.00.

    • Replies: @Twinkie
    , @kaganovitch
  74. Twinkie says:
    @kaganovitch

    Because Filson is now hipster. If I wanted an overpriced waxed coat, I’d buy Barbour (the lines that are still made in England). When I am in wet, cold environments, I want protective (modern, high-tech) clothing that actually keeps me warm and dry.

  75. Twinkie says:
    @JMcG

    They used to have a manufacturing facility in Seattle, but I dont know if they kept it.

    Still there, but the quality from even that factory has plummeted. The last jacket I bought from Filson still made at that factory had mismatched snaps that wouldn’t fit.

  76. nebulafox says:
    @Inquiring Mind

    There’s a theory that the Philistines were descended from Mycaenean Greeks fleeing the Bronze Age collapse, with Poseidon or Zeus being identified with Dagon.

    If true, then proverbial Athens and Jerusalem were already butting heads much earlier than we thought.

    • Replies: @Twinkie
  77. Twinkie says:
    @nebulafox

    The Peleset are thought to originate from Crete, the Aegean, the Black Sea, or even around Sicily-Corsica, and are associated with the Sea Peoples. It’s possible that they confederated or amalgamated different groups. They were originally a non-Levantine population that became assimilated by the local Levantines once they migrated.

  78. @JMcG

    I have been wearing my double cape mackinaw every winter for 30 years and it’s still in excellent shape. It’s a shame that Filson’s has gone down hill like that. Private equity purchase is the beginning of the end for old time quality.

    • Replies: @JMcG
  79. JMcG says:
    @kaganovitch

    That’s one of the coats I have. I wore it hunting caribou in Northern Quebec in temperatures down to five below zero. It’s a great coat for dry, cold conditions. They keep talking nonsense about wool shedding water, which is ridiculous, but I imagine my son could be wearing it when he’s an old man, please God.
    I hope you get money more healthy years’ use out of yours.

    • Replies: @Twinkie
    , @kaganovitch
  80. Twinkie says:
    @JMcG

    They keep talking nonsense about wool shedding water, which is ridiculous

    Wool does shed moisture better than cotton, but that’s not saying much.

    Wool is pretty good as a base layer in very cold temperatures, better than high tech polyester, but as an outer layer it is not water-repellent enough in wet weather. Certainly nothing like Gore-Tex. Even soft shell is better than wool.

    • Agree: JMcG
  81. @JMcG

    Thank you for your kind words and the same to you.

  82. Anonymous[176] • Disclaimer says:
    @Giancarlo M. Kumquat

    It wants you.

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