Community in Shock as 6th Grader Wears Down Jacket on Ten Degree Morning

Springfield (January 18, 2016) – In an unprecedented move by a seemingly “cool” kid, local middle-schooler Jeremy Whitman, 13, defied the masses by wearing a down jacket, wool hat and a pair of gloves to the bus stop on a frigidly cold ten degree morning. As he strode to the bus stop this morning, his peers and their parents sitting in their warm SUV’s could not believe their eyes: an adolescent boy using common sense in an attempt to stay warm on an arctic-esque day.

Upon entering the school, Whitman was greeted at his locker by a few of his buddies, still trying to thaw out from the walk from the bus into the school. “Hey, W-w-w-whitman, you w-w-w-w-uss, w-w-w-why are you w-w-w-wearing a j-j-jacket? You s-s-some kinda m-m-momma’s b-b-b-boy?” inquired friend Joe “Joey No Pants” D’Agastino, his lips blue, teeth uncontrollably chattering and nipples protruding through two layers of clothing. “W-why are m-my f-f-fingers t-t-tingling?” he added, not realizing that he was experiencing acute frostbite on all ten digits.

Several of Whitman’s classmates were confused by his choice of attire. Some had never seen a coat filled with down, goose feathers, or even cotton while others had heard about jackets from their parents but had never actually seen one for a middle-schooler up close. Since jacket manufacturers like Columbia and NorthFace seemingly have dropped their young adult sizes, parents of children who want to sacrifice being “cool” for being sensible have been forced to purchase used jackets on Craig’s List or eBay under the Retro Clothing subgroup. Additionally, while most of the boys owned a baseball glove, batting gloves or hockey gloves, not one had ever purchased an insulated pair that would keep his hands warm when facing the extreme cold.

A jacket similar to the one worn by Whitman.

A jacket similar to the one worn by Whitman.

Noted ex-Lehman Brothers head of Global Economic Strategy, Peter Williams III, theorizes that the lack of jackets worn by middle school and high school boys is dragging the US economy in ways never seen before. Because jackets are no longer needed, coat manufacturers have been forced to lay off factory workers, delivery personnel and front-office staff. The price of down and goose feathers has struggled on the commodities exchange, as well. But the most significant impact, claims, Williams III, is that oil and gas prices will continue to rise since an additional 700,000 barrels of oil are needed each day to fuel heated SUV rides from homes to bus stops and back twice a day. “It’s a vicious cycle which very well could lead to stagflation or even a prolonged recession,” warned Williams III.

As tri-captain of the C-level travel baseball team UP&UP (U Pay & U Play), Whitman always tries to set a good example for his teammates both on and off the field. By wearing a jacket on such a cold morning, Whitman hopes to inspire others to use basic common sense for all weather-related clothing decisions. “If it rains, I plan on wearing a waterproof jacket or slicker and will possibly carry an umbrella to stay dry. If it’s 90 out, no matter how ‘street’ it looks, I won’t wear a wool hat. Not passing out due to sun stroke is more important to me,” explained Whitman. “I never set out to be a hero or role model, but if one kid, just one, decides to wear a jacket to avoid hypothermia, frostbite, or just to be warm, then I’ll be happy.”

“I’m proud of Jeremy,” commented his mother, Shelia, 44. “Now if I can get him to stop wearing shorts every day…that would be something!”

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