When I stepped into Costco last week before coming back to Chicago, I didn’t know that my life was about to be forever changed. This was to be a grocery store trip on my parents’ dime – a going away present after spending the holidays at home in the serene, oh so pure Michigan.
We waded our way through throngs of people for detergent, toothpaste, braised ribs, prime cuts of steak, and all of the miscellaneous snack food that one could possibly think of. Everything at Costco is somehow on sale.
The store is so quintessentially American in its clientele and affinity for bulk items. You want Cheez-Its or Veggie Straws? You’re going to have to buy an entire fucking palette because that’s the only way Costco sells them. It’s a grocery store unlike any other, equal parts disgusting and amazing at the same time.
Now, as all of you know, I’m always at the forefront of fashion. Normally Costco would not be the place that I’d choose to go shopping, but as my mother and I began piling food onto the conveyor belt towards the front of the store to check out, a jacket caught my eye.
It was a Carhartt knockoff made by Bass. You know the classic Carhartt jacket, don’t you? Insulated and made with a waterproof exterior that is perfect for hard labor during the cold winter months? I couldn’t take my eyes off of this jacket.
“Hold on,” I said to my mom. “Let me go check this jacket out really quick.”
It was on sale for thirty dollars and with the amount of money that my parents spend annually at Costco, that price point was perfect. A drop in the bucket compared to trips that they usually make. My mother said something along the lines of, “Say no more, fam,” and just like that, I was the proud owner of a really warm, durable jacket.
I placed it on the conveyor belt alongside a metric fuckton of eggs and some spinach dip. Before I knew it, the jacket was on my person and I was walking back to my mom’s Equinox in hog heaven.
It’s strange to say but this jacket has totally changed me. When I put my wannabe Carhartt on, I considered myself an outdoorsman, a huge fan of trickle-down economics, and just regular badass.
I’m a handyman around the house in my knock-off Carhartt and I could probably get a job on a construction site as a foreman or, at the very least, day laborer just off of my appearance alone. I have a more grizzled appearance when I’m strutting my stuff out in the elements.
This jacket gives me an “everyman” quality that my expensive Patagonia goose down jackets just don’t have. When I have this jacket on I’m a “shot and a beer” guy at the local VFW down the street or the hole in the wall with used needles in the bathroom. To people that see me in this thing, I watch Ice Road Truckers religiously and eat venison because I’m a guy who likes to hunt for his food and provide for his family the old-fashioned way.
I walk into gas stations and convenience stores with my faux Carhartt and people quiver in fear, but also know that my favorite brand of dip is Copenhagen straight. In absence of that, I’ll take a Marlboro Red and your wife while I’m at it. It honestly feels like I get more respect from strangers and passerby on the street when I’ve got it on.
This Bass jacket isn’t so much a fashion statement as it is a way of life. It’s a mask that I can hide behind to truly change my personality. This lifestyle probably isn’t for everyone and I understand that. But next time you’re in a Costco, I would highly recommend, at the very least, considering picking one of these suckers up. I’ve never felt like more of a man’s man than I do when I put my arms through this jacket. Raise hell, praise Dale. .
Image via YouTube