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Wednesday, October 29, 2008

For Our Clerical Readers

Over the years, Father Anonymous has purchased his clerical shirts from various haberdashers, including (in chronological order):  Harbro, CM Almy, Autom, and -- most recently -- Augsburg Fortress's lamentably misnamed "Friar Tuck" line. 

(He resisted these last for years, on the grounds that he didn't want to look like a friar.  That was before the baldness and beer-belly, which mooted his argument.)

Of these shirts -- nearly all of which the cheap SOB still owns -- those from Almy have been the most satisfactory.  The cut was trim, the cuffs allowed for buttons or links, and the dye held at least reasonably well, which is often a problem.  The Autom shirts were inexpensive, and cut from good cloth, but comically ill-fitting.

But we want to say a word about those Friar Tuck shirts because they are, after all, the house blend.  These are the newest in the closet, and, when the first few seemed okay, Fr. A. bought several more, both neckband and tab.  The cut is a bit baggy, and the cuffs don;t take links, but the cloth seemed sturdy and the dye stable.  He now owns six or so, and they are by a good measure the newest ones in his closet.

And every single one is missing a button.

No big deal, you say.  Sew on the damn button.  Yes, sure, but Father A. is impossibly lazy, and his eyes aren't quite up to needle-threading anyway.  Not to mention the principle of the thing.

Do his Almy shirts lose their buttons?  They do not.  His cheap-as-dirt Autom shirts?  No.  His Papist Toomeys?  Stitches as rigid as dogma.  His Harbro shirts purchased in 1992 and since laundered so often, and so violently, that they have faded to a newspaper-grey?  Every single button remains attached.  

Does this happen to anybody else?  Inquiring minds want to know.

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