People have taken to wearing Camo on Fridays, and not just in the South. It is happening everywhere, even in Los Angeles. Watching TV tonight, Uncle Si on Duck Dynasty mentioned Camo Friday. A friend of mine in Florida has Camo Friday at his work too. I heard a mom with two screaming kids at a grocery store in Tallahassee complaining about her husband’s love of all things camo: shirts, pants, hats, recliner, couch, curtains, wallpaper, truck interior, dog collar, underwear.
“He painted the baby’s crib in camo,” she said. “Painted one wall in the baby’s room like that. He found camo diapers somewhere. It’s embarrassing. Looks like my child was born at Bass Pro Shops.”
I have lived in the Deep South all my life and I hate to admit it, but I am not a fan of camo. Never have been. I’m not a watermelon fan either, which, I know, is tantamount to yelling War Eagle at an Alabama game in Tuscaloosa. Just never liked watermelons. But camo is bigger than ever. And some people are downright obsessed with it.
“I have worn camo every day for 32 years,” said Jimbo, a man most likely named James at birth, but given Jimbo as a handle early in life by people who wear a lot of camo.
I met him at a restaurant in Fort Worth, Texas to discuss his love of camo. We sat down to eat burgers. He flipped his camo tie over his shoulder before diving into the burger.
“This tie cost me good money on the Internet,” he said. “Hard to get stains out of a tie. So I flip it.”
“But it’s camo,” I said. “How would you even see the stain?”
“Oh I’d know it,” he said. “Just because I wear camo doesn’t mean I’m a slob.”
We talked about real barbecue, Texas beer, Johnny Football and prickly pears.
“So do y’all have Camo Friday at work?” I asked.
Immediately I felt stupid. His dumbfounded stare made me feel even more so. I should have known the answer.
“Mister,” he said, pausing to pull his tie off his shoulder. “What day is it?”
Rubbing his hands up and down his tie, he stared at he with Texas contempt.
“Thursday,” I said.
“Not Friday?” he said.
“Every day is Camo Friday, dude,” he said. “I see you aren’t participating.”
“Not a big fan,”I said.
“Then you’re paying,” he said, waving his tie around the table. “For lunch.”
Before we left and before I paid, he ordered three desserts and a large milkshake to go.
I’m thinking I need to get some camo.