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Archive for February, 2010

Put a bellows on your iPhone

File this one under cool photo app.  It’s $.99, so if you’re not paying, move along, there’s nothing to see here.

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I’ve argued about what is considered a Chukka boot and what is a Desert boot.  To be honest, I’m not really sure how to make the distinction, but I will say this.  If it’s made by Clarks, I call it a Desert boot.  This is what I’m talking about:

That’s Steve McQueen on a nice Brit bike sporting a pair of Clarks Desert boots.  Cool, right?

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It’s sunny outside.  Chilly, but sunny, which means I’m thinking about Spring and Summer.  And why not?  It’s been an ass-chapping cold winter (for The South, that is) and I’ve been all Bean Boots and Sorels for months.  I’ve worn all of my Patagonia and Fox River socks every single week since before the holidays, and that hasn’t happened since I moved away from the snow and cold 13 years ago.  So I’m ready to be done with that and I’m looking ahead.

When I think of Spring, I think of no socks.  I’m a big fan of not wearing socks.  I’m sitting in my kitchen wearing Bean Bluchers sans socks right now.  But I’m really thinking more along the lines of tennis shoes.  Not specifically for playing tennis, but more the generic sense.  Brits call the trainers.  Some folks call them sneakers or tennies.  Whatever, you know what I mean.  Something familiar, comfortable, easy, functional, etc.

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I’ve worn LL Bean Maine Hunting Shoes (Bean Boots, Duck Boots) for years and years, and I basically love them.  The pair I’m wearing right this very second I’ve had since I lived in Michigan (where I grew up) and they’ve traveled with me to North Carolina, Texas and back to North Carolina.  They are 10-inchers with the light-duty Thinsulate lining from about 1992.  I love these boots.  But… yes, there is always a but… I’ve developed a wandering eye.  Here’s the deal, I’ve got a few issues:

  1. My foot has grown and my boots are only comfortable with thin to medium socks.  I can’t wear my good, thick hunting socks for extra warmth without feeling like my I’ve pulled my car too far in to the garage.
  2. They’re not 100% waterproof.  I think they were, but not any more.  They are like 98%.
  3. They are not super-warm.  They are fine if you are staying pretty active and it’s not to0 far below freezing.  But sitting or standing around and my feet get downright cold.
  4. I wear them every morning to walk the dogs during the cold months.  I am SOOO sick of lacing and tieing these every morning at 5:30 AM, then take them off soon afterwards.  What a pain.  And my dogs are complaining about how long it takes me.

I thought I had a plan.  I’ll get a fleece-line pair of the Bean Boots that are the pull-on style.  Well, turns out they don’t make those any more.  WHAT?  I know.  They do make a zippered pull-on that could work, but they are not going to be shipping until April.  WHAT again.  I know.  So I had to look elsewhere.  I am forced to go back to playing the field and find a new boot that will make my dreams come true.

So, I made my move.  Yep.  Sorel.  Here is what I went for:

Not exactly a Bean Boot, but in the same neighborhood.  I ordered a 9.5 which should allow me to wear any socks, or even multiple pairs if I get all crazy.  The Sorel website says they are 100% waterproof, so I’ll not need to steer the pups away from those puddles anymore.  And they have more Thinsulate, so they should be good and warm.  And, most importantly, they are pull-ons so they are quick and easy.  I’m excited to see how I like them.

Could these replace my beloved Bean Boots?  We’ll see.

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