A few months ago, I was thrifting for a new/old pair of jeans, and I came across a pair in the right size and the right brand (which is to say: Levi’s first, Lee second, and — maybe, in a pinch — Wrangler third). Anyhow, I slapped down a fin and walked out with a decent pair of jeans in pretty good shape. A good day of shopping — or so I thought.
I got home, and to my great dismay, I realized I’d not paid sufficient attention to the crotch area of my new blue jeans — they were “button-fly” monstrosities.
Let me just rant for second. I’m a marketing guy by trade, and I understand how style can sometimes trump substance when it comes to consumer goods. But — goddammit — the zipper was invented a hundred freaking years ago for a reason. And that reason was to put the idiotic, inconvenient “button fly” out to pasture. The button fly is a thing that plainly sucks compared to the modern solution that replaced it. If I have a zipper, and I need to spring a leak, I just reach down, tug on the metal handle, and — hey now! — there are the necessary hoseworks. No fumbling with buttons, undoing belts, going half-dropped in the trou department — the zipper is just there, and it’s just plain better.
Today, I came to the bottom of my clean laundry. As always happens on such days, I was forced to don the dreaded 501 button-fly jeans. I endured them all day. But this evening — because I’m a total nerd — as I stumbled into the baffroom to drain the lizard, I began contemplating the possible Rock analogs for the button-fly jean and its sensible, more modern, clearly improved zipper counterpart.
I’m a frequent traditionalist when it comes to the Rock. But have there been bands or artists or genres, or perhaps tools of the trade, that saw clear and sensible improvement when they were supplanted by a better, more modern version or replacement? That’s the question I have. Sometimes progress is good, surely.
Now I feel bad that I called EPG out on my silly Beatles question earlier today. This is the issue on which I most eagerly seek his insight.
That goes for the rest of you, too. As always, I look forward to your responses.