We have been watching this Jil Sander collar for what feels like years now, wondering who might pay $1480, then $589, and now $147.25 for this item. On the one hand, we were conceptually intrigued by Sander's merchandising innovation — she was trying to appify or unbundle something that had traditionally been considered a part of a shirt or jacket rather than a standalone accessory. On the other hand, there was the item itself, which always made us think, "Damn. Somewhere, there's a really toolbaggy, circumcised leather jacket walking around." Now, months later, the snipped foreskin, er, collar, can be had for a 90% discount. And yet sizes S, M, and L are still available. Verdict: Unsafe at any price!
Q: I was all set to pick up a pair of the MB-approved Kombi Captain Freedom gloves for a ski trip in Jackson Hole, when I discovered that the folks at Kombi have altered the design. (new one here: http://www.snowshack.com/detail/SNW+KB-30324+L). It's like New England getting rid of the Pat Patriot helmet. Some things just don't make sense. Nonetheless, the gloves are still pretty sweet. Do you approve? —Andrew
A: What's worse? New England getting rid of Pat Patriot or Tampa Bay abandoning the winking pirate Bucco Bruce? We say the latter by a nautical mile.
At any rate, we were completely joking about wearing the Kombi Captain Freedom gloves for skiing. (Though we weren't joking at all about wearing the Naked and Famous Snowpant Denim; they are terrific for banging bumps.)
What we're wearing this year is Wigens bearclaw gloves (bottom). Made in Sweden, these not only protect your fingers from Jack Frost, they also double as part of a Halloween costume if you're dressed as a black bear. 100% goat leather plus 100% rabbit on the outside, the only problem with these is they're too warm.
At the 2007 NFC Championship game in January 2008 one of us nearly lost a toe to frostbite even though his feet were inside a pair of Sorels. Yeah, it was that fucking cold.
Meanwhile, everyone's hands were toasty because they were sheathed by Fur Armor's beaver fur chopper mitts. At $189 ($209 for the sheared beaver model) they're a terrific investment for a lifetime of hand warmth, and they're not just for ice fishing or arctic evenings at Lambeau Field; we occasionally pair them with a tweed blazer, scarf, and hat to great effect.
The best part? They're handmade in Bemidji, Minnesota at the Fur Armor factory located on Paul Bunyan Drive. Really. Our only quibble is with the Polartec lining, which we immediately removed and replaced with ragg wool chopper liners from Bemidji Woolen Mills.
Q: It's starting to get a bit cold outside. What do you think about fingerless gloves? --Tom
A: Fingerless gloves are great if you're either a street vendor or bum, since they provide the necessary dexterity to make a hot dog or fish a beer can out of the trash. MBs have no need for doing either, and prefer to keep the extremes of their extremities encased in cashmere, or better yet, fur. The latter are a little hard to come by these days but we've been satisfied with the Fratelli Orsini option at leatherglovesonline.com and they're just 82 bucks.
Q: While I feel confident that I have successfully managed the unfavorable hand of genetic hair-loss with a close cut; and despite a having solid hat collection, every winter I pine for the many benefits of a full head of hair. With that in mind, what's the MB stance on seeking hair-replacement treatments? --Joe
A: Joe, don't cut it too close (see an earlier post on the matter). It's easy for us to sit here with hair up the wazoo and tell you to work with what the good Lord gave ya, but that's exactly what we're going to do. Hair replacement/transplants run into the many thousands of dollars and they're a crap shoot. For that kind of bread you can upgrade your hat collection with this ultra-toasty shaved beaver model (now on sale for $290) and have wads of cash left over for penis enlargement pills.
For the Magnificent Bastard who you think has everything, we bet he doesn't have a wool cardigan lined with rabbit fur. We're pretty sure it's like carrying around the lodge at the Ahwahnee Hotel on your back -- it's that cozy and luxurious. Like the rest of Costume National's Fall 2009 collection, it's now 40% off.