Dir. Norman Tokar Perf. Jerry Mathers and Hugh Beaumont. Gomalco Productions 1957-1963

I hung this jacket on my clothesline in 2006 (photos below). Through that summer, the sun bleached it from black to grey. In autumn it faded to white at the high points, but you could still find some of the original black in the valleys of its folds.

Next spring a colony of weevils built a nest under one of the sleeves. But in summer, a competing colony of earwigs from the collar drove them from the jacket.

Since it could drain after each downpour, the jacket never grew any mould or moss, but by winter the cotton around the bottom began to fray. By that point, I estimate that it had absorbed around a kilolitre of rainwater.

During a cold snap the jacket froze, but its worst enemy remained the intense sun of summer and autumn. By the end of 2008 it looked like an old dog whose fur has gone white.

In dry spells, soot from the cars on North Road solidified in the crevasses of the corduroy. It made me think of a hobo blackened with train-smoke. Underneath it remained as white as the Cleaver family.

I continued to ruin the jacket through 2009. After the spider who ruled it during spring departed, a new colony of insects moved in for the summer. It has stood vacant ever since.

I estimate that over the four years, fifty megajoules of solar energy fell on it (about the amount of energy released by the explosion of twelve tons of TNT).

In 2010, I brought it in and washed it. To my surprise, it seems wearable. These show two friends of mine wearing it:





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  1. Should… should I ask why?

  2. For about the first two years, I kept meaning to bring it in. After that, it amused me and I figured I couldn’t wear it again anyway.

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