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Friday, March 5, 2010

everything in it's right place

Security at Heathrow and the handsome, sixtyish woman in the piped jacket has had it.  She glances up at the guard who is having her re-pack the ziplock for a second time.  Out goes another tube of a La Prairie cream.  The zip finally shuts although the bag still looks as if dangerously over-inflated.

The guard beams, ushering her through.
"It's all about minimizing, love."

The woman turns, suddenly seeming much taller,  and speaks in a textbook received pronunciation.
"I have minimized to the point of lunacy"

Shes right, you know.  I look around any given airport and the institutions seem to have won.  The grey blandness of the concourse walls and carpets have found new hosts in those that wearily ride the people movers.  Grey suits, greyish white shirts, grey faces, and perhaps worst of all a disquieting sameness of luggage.  When did ballistic nylon take over the world?

I plop down a handmade  leather overnight bag that also serves as my briefcase.  The brass is scratched while the chocolatey vegetable dyed leather has a pleasing patina from a world of travels.  There is a salt mark from a bitterly cold runway in Winnipeg.  A bit of discoloration via a wet bilge on the boat ride from Marsh Harbour to Elbow Cay.  My youngest wrote his initials with a jagged finger nail on the bottom..  I spilled something oily on it while saying goodbyes in Pudong.

I'm not saying that the other bags haven't seen such travels, perhaps they have.  Little experience seems to be garnered by their own cross continental movements.

If you have to minimize, and sadly we must do so, why not minimize in something that is worth carrying around?  If you are going to only have a few things in the bag why not make sure that they are the best that you can get your hands on?  One of the things closest to our hearts at Imperial Black is wearing something that you care about.  Find something hand made that you will want to keep around for a while.  Be it one of our items or not,  I encourage everyone I meet to seek out true objects of interest.  Real objects crafted by real people.

Next time you are struggling from one concourse to the next, have a look around.  You might see the flash of a colourful sock or a smart orange hemmed cuff and feel safe in the understanding that you are not alone.


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