Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Good Stuff

The trusty manager of the neighborhood shipping concierge desk commented on the Great Big Hiking Co-op as he handed over this month's parcel. He went on to mutter about excesses of style in field gear, and I was happy to suggest reading Fifties field guides, like the ones from Harvey Manning. Eddie Bauer wrote as well and offers a dynamite instant cocoa mix.

Both men began advising at a time when pack frames were made of hardwood and sleeping bags of cotton and kapok. Hikers humped canned goods up a trail. Manning remembers the Depression and how personal experience with hunger led him and his buddies to think nothing of going out for a couple of nights with no food at all.


What makes stuff good? How much it costs per use. Divide the cost of the item and the cost of acquisition (time, travel, and lost income on the price) by the number of times you use it. Relatively expensive things are often the cheapest in the long run.    -30-

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