Bye Bye Blunnies

It is with some sadness that I refer you to the Sydney Morning Herald’s report of the imminent closure of Blundstone Boots’ Australian manufacturing as they follow the herd to the greener pastures in SE Asia. I’m not going to launch into a protectionist rant here or bewail the effects of globalisation, nor am I going to get all jingoistic about a bloody pair of boots, bloody good, and all-Australian, though they may (have) be(en).

Make them in bloody Thailand if you must and I’ll probably still be lining up at Redpaths for a pair when my current clodhoppers (pictured above), circa 2002, give up the ghost in another few years.

But will they be the same Blundstones?

Remember Kettle Chips? The Chilli flavoured ones? What a sensation. Expensive, but a whole new world of crisp spicy chipness and, back in ’98, I was on at least one pack a day. Enter Arnotts and, before long, they were a pale, flavourless reflection of their former glory.

I wear my Blundstones every day, everywhere, polish them about once a year and generally treat them with the contempt reserved for one’s dearest loved ones and they, like my dearest loved ones, keep coming back to be walked on every day, year after year. There are plenty of good, long lasting boots out there, but how many can claim to be a truly ‘everything’ shoe, good for a game of footy, good for a movie, good for digging a ditch, good for the beach, good for a swing on the dance floor?

In fact, give my Blunnies their annual polish and I’d be happy to meet the Prime Minister in them (and seldom would a more perfect item of footwear grace a more unworthy backside). They’re easily worth the $100+ now being charged around the place. Unfortunately, apparently, not enough of you agree.

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