Dressing Down for Winter

I recently became the proud owner of a deluxe, almost-new down parka, replete with all the snazzy requisite features: a luxurious hood trimmed in genuine fake-fur, numerous handy inside and outside pockets (including the all-important diagonal slits on the sides which allow you to bury your hands snugly while walking elbows akimbo), and storm cuffs to keep out blizzards and other animals. And it's in a manly shade of black with a quilted grey interior; nothing too Champs Élyseés here, no sir. Doing up the zipper's a bit hit-and-miss - what else is new? - but otherwise it's all you could ask for in a winter coat. The way I came by it makes for a funny story, at least I think so. I have a much younger friend who I'll call S - his first initial - to save him the embarrassment of having it publicly revealed that he's friends with somebody so much older. He came by several of these parkas while working on The Hometown Hockey show for several years, which involved visiting a different, usually very cold, Canadian city every winter weekend. Knowing that I was turning 60 this past August and thinking a couple of seasons ahead, S walked through our back gate one sweltering morning this past summer carrying three of these bulky coats. Quite large and Chilean, he looked like a very lost Nanook of the North, by way of South America. He said, "Here, man, try these on. If one of them fits, it's yours." So there I was on my back deck trying on these toasty, mammoth parkas on one of more [...]