The letterman jacket

Andrew is a junior this year and with that comes all the fun stuff of just being a junior in high school. That means there is all sorts of fun expenses too. I will admit that Andrew has taken it easy on us for the most part…he spared us the cost of a class ring.

We kind of splurged on the high school letterman jacket for him. He lettered in Orchestra and due to the fact that both Ben and I still to this day, some 20+ years later, wear our high school letter jackets we splurged and upgraded his jacket for him.

The reason? I want it to outlast ours. My letter jacket is not holding up like Ben’s father’s jacket is. The moths may have gotten that jacket as non-preserved as it was over the years, but my jacket sleeves have rendered it unwearable at this point and it truly saddens me because I did wear it. It did have a lot of meaning to me and I still 20 years later did wear my letterman jacket because I “earned” that and I worked hard to get that jacket. It was a part of who I was and those accomplishments that helped shape who I became. Ben’s jacket is quickly doing the same. We discovered that I actually lettered before Ben did. Both of our jackets have vinyl sleeves in them and the vinyl is breaking down and deteriorating. The wool portion of the jackets are holding up just fine as are the cuffs, but the vinyl sleeves are doing what vinyl does.

So when I saw that they would only charge $75 to upgrade the sleeves on the jacket I asked Ben if he would go for that. He agreed since Andrew had not gotten a class ring and had not really asked for anything else he could have whatever he wanted on his jacket.

Most of what he wanted was already included in the cost of the jacket anyway. The package that the school selected and negotiated with the company included the things that I never got because I could not afford them 20 years ago including his name on the back, his year patch, and up to 2-3 other patches. It would also sew on all preliminary patches ordered with the jacket. It also included the embroidery of his name on the front of his jacket.

My original letter jacket only came with the letter I lettered with. I had to pay for all additional patches and take it somewhere to have all other patches sewn on. Needless to say a lot of my patches are still in a box because sewing them on can get to be a pain.

I know a lot of people do not necessarily agree with giving a child what they want, but he honestly asks for so little and he really is a good kid…and honestly…since the school does not award the jackets to the students, it is a rite of passage to get one and fill it up with letters. There is a place of really soft sentimentally for this mom and dad.

Today he wore his jacket with this big smile and honestly, I cannot be happier to see it…

The front of Andrew’s Klein Oak letterman jacket complete with his Klein Oak Orchestra letter.

The back of his Klein Oak High School letterman jacket complete with his last name, Sansom, and Q.E.D. I have heard over and over, “What is Q.E.D. for?”

Q.E.D. is an abbreviation of the Latin phrase: quod erat demonstrandum. The Latin phrase stems from the Greek phrase that translates into English: “which had to be demonstrated.” The Latin phrase is most commonly found abbreviated at the end of mathematical proofs to state or emphasize the end of the proof as being complete. 

If you know Andrew, you know that this is very fitting for him. 

Andrew has a slew of patches to put on the sleeves of his jacket already. He has a bunch of Orchestra Competition patches and he is waiting for his IB patch. He will also have a couple of patches for the different Honor Societies that he is in. It is probably a good thing he has long arms.

I love you, Andrew. May you always wear this jacket with pride. Remember your alma mater with sweet fondness. Remember it is not where you got your education but how you made the most of it that matters.

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