Students attending high school or collegiate human anatomy courses traditionally learn at one point or another that the human salivary glands are responsible for producing saliva, a common substance delivered into a person’s mouth through ducts to assist with everyday actions like chewing, swallowing or spitting into a dip bottle.
This anatomical blueprint remains true for all human beings, except, of course, those on the creative fashion squad at apparel powerhouse Ralph Lauren. Behind the walls of the company’s New York headquarters exists a metamorphosed species of Homo sapiens whose salivary glands function only when an opportunity arises to rip off standard military issue items.
The conglomeration of salmon pant and polo shirt enthusiasts simply cannot resist the mere sight of camouflage, which oftentimes sends the creative minds behind the company’s fashion lines into a hungry-hungry-hipster feeding frenzy the likes of which only Bon Iver and one to three dandelion lemon grass IPAs can sooth.
This extraordinary addiction was yet again evident when it was recently revealed that another military-themed item had been plucked from the clothing lineup of service members gone by.
This time the subject is what the company calls a “Field Jacket & Reversible Liner,” a jacket featuring an “R. Lauren” nametape that, for the casual price of $498, can transform its unfortunate host from battle dress uniform fanatic to woobie devotee in a matter of seconds. Of note, the modeled photos of the item show an individual whose pursed lips appear to be paralyzed — a common side effect of camo-induced salivation.
Additional searching of Ralph Lauren’s catalog furnished a buffet of boondoggled military duds. So, for those who might inexplicably want to showcase a look other than that of the aforementioned 1990s pretend ground combat forces, there are options galore.
First, multiple jackets are available for fugazi aviators, each for $398. These items come replete with sewn on wings, another R. Lauren nametape, major or lieutenant colonel rank insignia, and a fictional unit patch dedicated either to the “Freedom Seekers” of the 5th US-RL or the 118th Division’s U.S.-R.L Air Squadron.
If you or your loved one are experiencing salivating in excess of four hours, contact your doctor immediately.
Still not sold? Fret not. Ralph Lauren has faux mariners covered with the Wool-Cashmere Peacoat, a $3,495 peacocking piece of Navy outerwear that is sure to keep bodies warm — and ostentatiously fashionable — as counterfeit seamen brave the high seas alongside Captain Ahab in search of the white whale.
The noticeable addition of “naval rank insignia enhances the nautical heritage of this classic peacoat,” Ralph Lauren’s website claims. Furthermore, the highest collar in the history of clothing is guaranteed to protect fashionable seafarers from both strong winds and wave after wave of insults by folks who have actually seen open water.
And yet, clothing styled after the big four military services sometimes just doesn’t cut it for Ralph Lauren stylists. Space Force aficionados come forth! Now you can satisfy your interstellar affinity with this $1,098 jacket the company touts as “one of Ralph Lauren’s most recognized ’90s-era designs.”
Because when anyone sees a jacket that looks identical to an item worn by an astronaut performing a space walk at the International Space Station, the first thing that comes to mind is obviously 1990s Ralph Lauren.
Lastly, there’s this WWII G.I. Joe action figure, who, as our friend James Clark over at Task and Purpose points out, looks like a cross between “Mr. Rogers, Vietnam, WWII era aviator, (and) some Life Aquatic/Jacques Cousteau vibes with a side of Denim Dan.”
Offensive. Just make it stop.
J.D. Simkins is a writer and editor for Military Times, and a USMC veteran.