Sunday, September 21, 2008

Worn in the USA

When I first inherited this jacket in junior high from my brother it had a small explanation point on the back made of...metal studs (!). It slowly accumulated the detritus of personal and cultural references, not least of which would be the cap to a bottle of burbon - great reliever of junior high math class boredom - in the pocket (yup, still there). I paid Susan Yandell about $20 for the backpiece in my first year of high school.....

Somehow The Who became my buffer to the world. Who knew that just a few years later I'd be in love with LL Cool J (still am), dance to Big Daddy Kane, see Run DMC at the Roxy and LOVE Salt n Pepa (still do)?

My jacket had the above patch. My mom belonged to "Another Mother for Peace" and we had these patches, pendants (I think I still have mine) and, if I recall, a jigsaw puzzle. Of course that was the Viet Nam war era, but both the patch and the org are still relevant. Here are a few other jacket attachment faves:
  • Home-made "no nukes" button

  • Button that reads, "We have not come a long way, and don't call us babies"

  • Button that reads, "How dare you presume that I'm heterosexual?"

  • Handcuff keys attached by a safety pin (what? where did I get those?)
On the inside a bunch of my friends wrote their names and myserious messages in ballpoint pen. The thing weighs about 10 pounds and I never wanted to leave home without it. As I recall, I wore it to a job interview. Never underestimate the need for armor!


heidi said...

Oh El... I LOVE this post. And I love that you still have that jacket. And the Gertz badge. Where are the Canal Jeans buttons?? Hmm?

Anonymous said...

Oh, El...(it's your old buddy Ellen Temple, by the way...)what a fantastic time capsule of a jacket - & I do remember it! I think Ricky Pacheco did mine (Bruce Springsteen, though The Who was probably an ever better choice). The Gertz tag, for some reason, is the most evocative item on it for me. Why? WHY??

Looking forward to reading the rest of your blog! All the very very best to you...