Fall is finally here. I know this to be a fact for a few reasons. It’s now getting dark at five, which makes me sad because it radically cuts into my day drinking. Sierra Nevada Celebration Ale is now being sold in a liquor store near you, which makes me very happy because it is delicious. Thanksgiving break is just around the corner.

That’s good, because it means old-fashioned hometown degeneracy with the OG bros from high school, scintillatingly awkward reconnections with old girlfriends and as much beer as I can manage to steal from my old man’s fridge. Of course, the real clue that fall has arrived is that come nightfall, it is getting colder than a witch’s tit in a brass bra. I like this, because it brings a little taste of home to Isla Vista.

There is an absolutely awesome mainstay of Northern Californian culture that doesn’t get a whole lot of work down in these southern climes, but one that I like to take out of the unemployment line when it gets cold at night and it’s time to go out and get rowdy. Ask anyone from the northern reaches of this great state and they will readily recognize the incredible power of … the jacket.

There are a few reasons why this unloved stepson of the Southern California fashion scene is a truly dynamic and powerful item of clothing. Whether you rock the tweed, corduroy, weather resistant or jean version over your t-shirt, you can be sure you will be the most bitchingly-threaded bro on the block. Hell, throw a scarf into the mix and you’ll be like Kevin Costner and Sean Connery — untouchable. The jacket also keeps you toasty warm while other less weather-savvy bros are busy freezing their nips off. It can be used to execute what is universally regarded as the ultimate chivalric move by being placed on the shoulders of a frigid lady friend. If you suddenly find yourself in a crisis situation, like a zompocalypse, the added survival value of having a jacket could very well be the difference between life and death. But the most endearing and attractive feature of the jacket, and the one that I miss the most, is its ability to carry all my stuff.

I love Southern California, but the typical male nightlife uniform of tight jeans and an even tighter T-shirt comes up short in a critical capacity — I just can’t carry all my stuff.  This is a problem, because as everyone knows, lack of stuff can seriously wreak havoc on a man’s mojo.

First of all, there’s my wallet. It’s filled with my ACCESS card, my credit card, my debit card, my library card, my Von’s card, my Albertsons card, my Starbucks card, my California ID card, my other library card, my car insurance card, my AAA card, my Blue Cross card, my club card, a wad of assorted business cards and of course any cash I’m lucky enough to get my hands on, so it’s, like, three inches thick. In tight jeans, I might be able to slip in my ID and one credit card, but the whole shebang? No fucking way.
And that’s fine if I’m just going out at 10 p.m. and I’m just going to say guten tag at a friend’s shindig or something, but if I’m facing a day followed by an evening followed by a morning of geographically-diverse debauchery, I prefer to be a little more thoroughly equipped. On any given night I might be humping my wallet, a pack of cigarettes, a lighter, a smart phone (which is essentially a slightly smaller version of my ThinkPad notebook), a pack of gum, an orange pill container filled with weed, a small grinder, rolling papers, a stick of chapstick, a small flask of whiskey, three to four condoms (It’s important to build yourself up. You never know), a penlight, a keychain with two bottle openers in case one breaks and any other assorted psychotropic goodies that I might have on my person at any given time. All in all, we’re talking about what feels like 15 pounds of assorted tomfoolery — the kind of weight you just can’t handle unless you are rocking a jacket with many, many pockets.

So I’m stoked it’s jacket-wearing season. But the arrival of this cherished article also has me wrestling with a curiously baffling and slippery question: How in the world do girls in I.V. manage to survive without jackets?

I’ve always been amazed at how women in I.V. manage to stroll around dressed in the awesomely revealing way that they do and not freeze to death during the winter. I guess this might explain the appeal of UGG boots, although I’m not really sure if that’s taking it far enough. All I know is that if I’m going out in 50-degree weather in nothing but a miniskirt and a halter top, I don’t care how thick my beer blanket is; I’m going to want something furry on my feet, hands, head and of course, my willy. Fashion be damned.

So somehow our lovely lady friends manage to stay warm.  But there is more pressing question, a true mystery, that with some careful research and study I hope to someday answer for the betterment of brokind:

How, despite the sexy outfits and lack of a jacket, do girls possibly manage to carry all their stuff? Stay tuned.