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article imageOp-Ed: $#*! my daughters’ dad wears; reviewing Shatner's TV show

By John David Powell     Feb 20, 2011 in Lifestyle
Capt. James T. Kirk showed a generation how to go boldly where no man had not gone before. Splitting the infinitive ("to boldly go") may not have been the best example to set for those of us who obsess compulsively over grammar.
We could look, though,beyond that minor infraction to see the greater good of the Prime Directive.
Now, William Shatner, who has provided us with lesser characters to emulate, such as T.J. Hooker and Denny Crane, gives a new role model to those of us who feel we have earned a certain level of, shall we say, eccentricity that comes with surviving to a certain age.
In the new CBS television series$#*! My Dad Says the Shatner character Ed Goodson spends the entire time wearing a khaki photographer’s vest, regardless of location or circumstance. Oh, yeah, he also delights in going “commando”, to which I like to point out to those in my family who will listen, is one word that has “man” smack dab in the middle. Selah.
Shatner’s vest is similar to the one my wife recently discarded because stuff kept falling out through the holes in the bottoms of the pockets. That well-worn vest was nearly identical to my original photographer’s vest purchased back in the last century, which disintegrated off my back.
These vests were perfect. Back when we had film cameras with exchangeable lenses, I could carry a camera, lenses, rolls of film, video tape, a bunch of pens, notebooks, maps, a raincoat, newspapers, snacks, cigars, and anything else that would fit in the 20 or so pockets. No need for a man bag or backpack when traveling. Just don the 10-pound vest and I was good to go.
My wife decided I needed to look more presentable if I insisted on wearing everything I owned, so she gave me one of those Scottevests for my birthday. These vests are all the rage with people who hate extra charges for airline carry-ons. Disclaimer: This is not an endorsement or a product placement.
As I filled up the vest the other day, I realized that by using my Android smart phone, I can wander around the house with almost 70 items and not look like a tinker rolling onto the ranch.
Indulge me a moment, and be amazed.
My phone has a host of applications that make up a good portion of the list. I’m sure others have many more. Anyway, what follows can be called $#*! my daughters’ dad wears, and, sadly, examples of what I use weekly, if not daily.
Android smart phone; digital still camera; digital video camera; photograph album and video library (we have a grandson); digital voice recorder; note pad; compass; stop watch; GPS navigation system; outdoor thermometer; bar code scanner; bubble level; calculator; calendar; address book; lie detector; alarm clock; dice; egg timer; language translator; night sky map; real-time Houston traffic map; metal detector; music library; police/fire scanner; radios (am/fm/Internet); Federation-style tricorder; newspapers and magazines; dream dictionary; currency converter; vuvuzela and other air horns; bartender guide; white noise producer; wind chimes; flight tracker; Congressional directory; maps; games; Internet browser; and a weather monitor among other applications too geeky to mention.
All of those fit nicely into one pocket of my vest. Non-phone items include press credentials; a steel pen; highlighter; prayer rope; lighter; knife (Gibbs’ Rule #9); flashlight; reading glasses; prescription glasses; sunglasses; contact solution; earphones; Bluetooth ear piece; facial tissue; key ring; and a 30GB flash drive.
Yet, I still have room for a hat; umbrella; water bottle; parka; sack lunch; bag of peanuts; a real book or two (not digital); flip flops; a change of clothes; and a power cord. Oh, yeah, hand-rolled, Central-American cigars.
I could put in a first-aid kit and a road flare, but that would be silly, not to mention incredibly risky given the possibility of the flare igniting while I’m sitting on it. Besides, the TSA drop-outs that frisk fans going into the college football stadium would confiscate it thinking it was a flask, which is ridiculous considering the flask is in another pocket.
The only thing lacking with my Shatner Scottevest is the one item every cool boy wants, but few possess: a real, for sure, Federation-issued phaser. Yes. That’s my next acquisition. Hey, my grandson would love it.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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