Thursday, September 16, 2010
Sportsman's Footwear and Honorary Rednecks
ADG over at Maximinimus gets worked up about his Belgians, as do KS Legionaire,Laguna Beach Trad and a host of other shoe fetishists. Here in the jurisdiction of Sportsmen, we also get all aquiver over footwear;the divergence appears in the nature of said footwear. While no Belgians grace my cedar-doweled on-deck-circle, I certainly have my share of shoes that might show up in one of ADG's trademark down-leg style shots....the requisite monk straps, Alden tassels and such. There are dirty bucks and white bucks and a few varieties of loafers, a few pairs of cowboy boots and even a pair of slip-on UGGS with a shearling lining and Vibram sole that permits one to tread sockless in the depths of Winter.
Then there is the hunting related inventory. In particular, waterfowl specific shoddery is crucial for the comfort of the wearer given the extreme cold one faces in a Blind or standing hip deep in 40 degree water placing decoys or at 5:00 a.m. in the boat going 30 mph down a river to a blind. That is the kind of cold when the Labs hide behind the hunters to get out of the wind.The hunting footwear truly deserves a post of it's own so I will defer and demur on that topic for now.
However, the kicks pictured above really needed a blast. These neoprene lovelies are warm,comfortable and uniquely styled in a Hunting Club context. The slip on access makes them easy and the water and mud-proof composition makes them practical as Hell for wearing around a deer camp or duck hunting club and going out to the kennels to feed the dogs or attending to other pre or post hunt chores...plus who does not want to wear camo shoes!!??. Yeah, most of you guys I'm sure. Neverthless, I grabbed a pair of these from Cabela's: Bogs Valley Walker in Mossy Oak Break-Up Camo.These are simply fantastic shoes in nearly all categories. Now, you would not wear these to The Cricket Club or even to a restaurant in town. However, as my Southern Buddy Donnie F. says, I am an Honorary Redneck and specifically warranted to wear Camo footwear. He realizes I am a Yankee and from some foreign( to him) realm called the Main Line, but he bestowed this rarified credential on me after an incident at Cedar Swamp in Delaware a few years back.
We were out duck hunting on snotty day of rain and cold wind. Our boat ran over a Crab Pot line in the dark and the prop was hopelessly fouled and we could have been quite thoroughly screwed. I promptly reached into the bellows shell pocket of my 3/4 length Max HD Camo Duck Hunting Parka, whipped out a Switch-Blade, leaned over the stern, plunged my hands into the glacially cold brackish Bay water and cut our prop free. I could hear Donnie laughing over the sound of the wind and the motor when we got under way. Back at the Boat Ramp he remarked that seeing me pull a Switch blade from my coat was the last thing he would have expected. That, combined with a few nice 35 yard shots I made on some Black Ducks that morning, as well as my willingness to sit and drink beer with him all night and enjoy all manner of tobacco products both smoked and chewed, and my abilities with fiery coal and meat,and my F-150, complelled him to bestow the title of Honorary Redneck upon me. I think I was as proud of that moniker as I was the first time a black-robed Judge called me Counselor.
So, in the words of the oft quoted and fabled Assistant Greenskeeper, Carl: "I got that going for me, which is nice."