I haven’t done one of these in awhile but I guess you could chalk that up to being back in North America for a considerable amount of time now, so not much seems too out of the ordinary here. Sure, Vancouver’s got hipsters and Seattle’s got grunge, but that’s old news. Anyway, I finally found a gem* of a fashion find and it was rampant in the streets of Alaska. All you have to do is look down.
* Not in the literal sense whatsoever, purely a “gem” for the purposes of me writing another sarcasm filled post. Because that’s what this is all about, am I right?
Xtratuf neoprene boots.
That’s “extra–tough”. Sounds fancy, huh? Definitely something I would pair with skinny jeans and a floral top, for sure. Alright, I can’t even kid anymore, these things are hideous. Although truth be told, if I lived in Alaska I would no doubt be rocking them right alongside everyone else. Actually, I did look into buying a pair since my Target brand (hot pink & polka dot) wellies weren’t quite up for the Alaskan extremes and crumbled within a few weeks (and the **adorbzies** Hunter boots I had my eye on were way too expensive and way too impractical). To my surprise however, the Xtratuf’s were no bargain either! Upwards of $100 for these shiny shit brown foot coverings. Then again, I guess that’s what happens when you’re paying for quality and not flash. There’s something to be said for functionality. Obviously, the Alaskans have that figured out.
These boots are literally everywhere; on the feet of small children and adults alike, though they are particularly a favorite for fishermen. I’ve also seen them used as flower pots.
On a few occasions I saw ads for a photography contest featuring and sponsored by Xtratuf themselves. Guys, this is a serious situation going on.
Sure, to the average “lower 48-er” it might look weird to be wearing rainboots when it’s not actually raining but pay no mind because it’s probably still wet from the last time it rained. Make no mistake, Alaskans will sport Xtratuf until the bears sprout wings and the salmon walk up the shore.
As for me, after I saw the price I just couldn’t bring myself to buy them. Even in my current rainboot-less-in-the-Pacific-Northwest situation, it would never happen because I knew as soon as I left Alaska, I would never allow myself to be seen in them again (and I’m not ashamed in the least to say it).
But I mean, if you want to buy a pair, be my guest.
One more picture just to bring the point home: