I need jeans. And I’m not looking forward to this journey.
I have one pair of jeans I normally wear – one trusty pair, and they have served their time. I actually have a second pair of jeans, but they are the rattiest things you have ever seen, and are reserved for yard work and such.
But my usual jeans are my go-to when the weather is cold. I usually wear a coat and tie to work, but the moment I get home, I change into my casual clothes. When it’s warm, I go for shorts, a t-shirt and sandals. But we occasionally get cool temps here, so I have to have my jeans at the ready. The moment I get home, I slide into comfort and enjoy a nice cozy evening.
Alas, their time in service is coming to a close. Oftentimes, jeans start to get threadbare and begin a slow march to disintegration. But this was not the case.
My jeans are still of hardy stock in most areas. But one weakness has presented itself, and I am afraid it is a fatal flaw.
I noticed it the other day at the grocery store. As I was shopping, I went to glance at my list while standing in the produce aisle. I try and make a list and stick to it religiously. Otherwise, I will go to the store for milk and bread, and come up with a trunkload of groceries because, hey, we should make a cake!
As I unfolded my list, the paper tumbled out of my hands and onto the ground. I bent over to pick up the list, and heard the so unpleasant sound of the back of my pants splitting open.
I did the natural reaction, which was to put my back to the wall (actually, more accurately to the broccoli bin) and assess the damage.
I reached back and felt a tear at the left pocket. It was about five to six inches long. I was wearing a T-shirt, and it mostly covered the tear.
But just mostly. I decided to bail on the shopping trip and get home post haste.
Once I was home, I proceeded to survey the damage more closely. This was not good. Not something I could just stitch up and be good as new. This was a fatal tear, and appeared to be one that would continue to grow with each wear. I began to envision myself wearing not jeans, but flowing ribbons of denim trailing behind me. It was not a pretty vision.
So I begin on a quest for new jeans. I have had these jeans for years, as is probably reflected in their fashion. But I don’t particularly care about fashion in my lounging about clothes. If I’m comfy, I’m good.
I will begin the journey by stopping at various clothing places and trying on umnpteen pairs of jeans, each having just a hint of something that annoys me. And then I will loudly announce the price of the jeans in an outraged shock, to which my wife will say, “Yeah, those are $20 and that is super cheap for jeans.”
I will keep shopping until I find the perfect pair, the ones that fall into place just like my old ones did. I know that may be an elusive find. But I will keep plugging away, until I find the new jeans. Or at least until it’s warm enough I can switch back to shorts in the evening.
Mike Gibbons was born and raised in Aiken, S.C. A graduate of the University of Alabama, you can e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @StandardMike.