The good news is I have a pair of jeans that fit, which is a miracle in and of itself. The bad news is that they are wearing out quickly and the thought of having to shop for another pair of jeans makes my soul shudder. To solve this problem I have been adding colorful patches to cover the holes and rips. To date I have almost twenty patches on these jeans.
I wore my patch pants to have breakfast with a friend and several people commented in the restaurant about them. One woman asked me where I bought them and I told her I added the patches myself. She looked shocked and then commented about me sewing on the patches myself, “Who does that anymore?” I told her I did and I told her why. She said she could relate but it’s such a hassle doing things like that she would just rather buy a new pair and move on.
When my grandparents grew up everything was kept in use until it was used up, worn out, or no one else could use it as a hand me down. Things were patched, repurposed and altered until there was noting left to do but use it as a rag. In my generation we have not grown up with that same experience. Everything is not only replaceable it is done so quickly that sometimes the original shine is still evident. Cell phones, automobiles, clothing and even homes have become things to be used up, improved or replaced as soon as the new version is available. The value of things and keeping them around is not always appreciated unless words like vintage, antique or retro are used in the description. I think we miss a lot when we simply replace things by buying new. We do not understand the value or appreciate the item when we simply use it until the newer version arrives in stores.
The same goes for people. We need to appreciate and tap into the value and knowledge of those who have been around for a while. Be it at work, in our community or in our neighborhood there is amazing stuff that happens when we take the time to hear what they have to say. Sure they think differently than we do and that’s a great thing. They know how to repurpose, reuse and reinvent in ways we have never experienced. They have forgotten more than we may ever experience and they have expertise in filling in holes that we may never have seen before.
So here’s to the wise ones who know the value of things and are willing to keep them around. Here’s to those of us smart enough to apply that same principle to the people in our lives who may know just the right way to overcome an issue that is wearing things out before they are really done.