Sunday, March 8, 2009

Do I Look Like A Bum?

As my dad got arthritis in his fingers in his old age, it became harder and harder for him to button shirts and unzip zippers. I used to tell him to just leave his shirts buttoned except for the top couple and pull them over his head like I do (it saves time). He wouldn't hear of it. He had to have his shirts buttoned all the way to his neck. He always had to have long sleeved shirts--even in the summer, so t-shirts were out. I did find some shirts that zippers instead of buttons which were easier for him to use because he just hung a paper clip on to the zipper pull thing to make it easy for him to grab.

Thursday morning on the bus when my zipper puller broke off of my favorite L.L. Bean winter parka, I immediately hung a paper clip on the little piece that was left as soon as I got to my desk at work. I used to encourage my dad to get new clothes because he'd wear things so long, that they were torn and worn out. Sometimes I would tell him he needed a new jacket because he looks like a bum. I have to admit, my L.L. Bean parka is on it's last legs. I look at it and think of dad because it is definitely worn out. The down feathers fly out threw the tears in it. My tousle cap that I keep in one of the outside pockets is peeking through a hole in the bottom of the pocket. There are rips all up and down the sleeves.

I did tell my husband two Christmases ago that he could get me a new L.L. Bean winter coat. He got me a short jacket, which is good, but not warm enough for our really cold winter days. Gerard also bought me a very nice looking leopard coat and I also have a nice furry coat I bought for myself for Sundays a very long time ago. The leopard one has hooks that pop open sometimes and does not close all the way up to my neck. Plus, it only has two slit pockets in the side. It's fine for Sundays, but not for waiting for buses every day. The furry one I bought is also just for Sundays and also has only two pockets. It does zip up all the way to my chin but isn't as warm as my L.L. Bean parka.

Why do I hang on to this coat? Because it's warm, comfortable, has the hood, has lots of pockets which I like: 1 on the inside, four slit pockets on the outside, two of which zip, and two big upright pockets that have flaps which button. That is a total of 7 pockets!!!! I love it this coat!!!! So far, I haven't seen one like it and until I do, I'm sticking with it. Even when I do replace my favorite L.L. Bean coat, I'll keep this one for my cats to curl up in. At least they could still get some use out of it. It was worth every cent!

UPDATED 10/4/09: The day has come. It now belongs to my cats. Check out their post about it on their blog here.


The Florida Furkids said...

Sometimes a piece of clothing becomes a part of you!! I love the paperclip story.

Sniffie and the Florida Furkids

Sandee said...

Your dad sounded just like mine. He too would wear things forever. Lot sleeve shirts in the summer too. I live in California so 100 degree temps are the norm. What a delightful story.

As for comfortable things to wear I'm the same way. I've got stuff I've had for years. Much for the same reason you cited here.

Have a terrific Sunday. :)

BeadedTail said...

Being comfortable in a favorite piece of clothing can often be mistaken for looking like a bum but sometimes comfort wins out. Maybe some well placed patches that sort of blend in with your coat would help the hole problem but again, that might really draw attention to the worn spots. Anyway, I enjoyed your post today!

Anonymous said...

I am a pack rat and hold on to everything although the past few years I have given a lot of stuff away, good stuff that I simply can't fit into any more. I have a problem getting rid of my favorite jackets also.

Anonymous said...

I hate to give up something that comfortable.

Green said...

Thanks for stopping by!
I find it so ironic that as the years go by we do so much like our parents.

Susan Cook said...

You can't find the coat on We have an outlet LL Bean store here that sometimes has good prices on their stuff.

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Homestay Mama said...

My Dad was the same way as your Dad. Did your Dad live through the Great Depression? I think that's why my Dad was so frugal all his life.

Anonymous said...

Furkidsmom--The paper clip is still working!

Sandee--It's amazing how much our parents had in common. My dad never wore shorts either.

Beaded Tail--I think the holes give my coat some character. I could probably remove the hat from the pocket so it wouldn't stick out.

Jude--It's nice to hear I'm not alone in this.

Karen--Me too, that's why I always hate to buy new shoes.

Cindy--That's so true! The older I get, the more I understand them doing what they did.

Sue--I love to shop L.L. Bean.

Stephanie--Thanks for the award, I'll have to go get it.

Homestay Mama--Yes, he lived through the Great Depression and that is why he never liked to throw away anything.

Anonymous said...

how sweet of you to think of the paperclip..

Unknown said...

I know what you mean - when you have an article of clothing you love that you can't replace, it's hard to let go! I have a pair of sweatpants like that... :-P I like that leopard coat, btw! Nice!

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Midlife, menopause, mistakes and random stuff... said...

What a wonderful post and a sweet, sweet story.
Some of my very favorite pieces of clothing are so worn ut they are thread-bare but I refuse to toss them :)
Hope your weekend is filled with love, joy and laughter.

Steady On
Reggie Girl

Anonymous said...

I can see my dad and I aren't alone in hanging on to our clothes until they literally fall apart! You are all very kind for not saying I look like a bum!

Lisa said...

Hi! Stopping by from SITS for Saturday Sharefest!

I do this too sometimes - hold on to something way past it's prime because I love it so much or have some sort of emotional attachment to it. I'm not sure if it's good or not, but it is how it is.

Have a wonderful Saturday!

"My Funny Dad, Harry" Book Giveaway

Congratulations to all the winners of the giveaway for "My Funny Dad, Harry" at Red Pine Mountain. I am so happy that four of my regular commenters won! Read what Tim thought of it at Everyday Living.