I wonder whether any of your readers feel the incredible pride I experience when I am completely dressed in mackintosh or leather? I don’t know what it is that actually makes me feel like that other than perhaps vanity – because I know I look my best when clad from head to foot in shining black mackintosh, or in glossy black leather jeans and black leather jacket with leather boots and leather cap and gloves, and sometimes both! Or perhaps it’s because I seem somehow to identify myself with my clothing, so that I almost “become” mackintosh or smooth black leather. I only know that when I climb into my gear I seem to take on its personality. No one but a rubber lover will know the utter surrender of sliding into a pair of rubber pants and feeling the cool supple rubber moulding itself to every contour of one’s body. No one but a leather lover can know the excitement of drawing a pair of leather jeans over ones calves and up over ones knees and thighs until they zip and clip themselves in a close embrace about his waist. What is more completely satisfying than the soft caress of supple leather over the full length of your leg and up over your entire body?
Slip into a mackintosh and sense the folds enclosing you with their rustling and marvellously redolent protection. Breathe in the heady scent of rubber as you button up the mackintosh and belt it tightly – all mackintoshes need tight belting – and fold the high collar about your throat and chin. And a rubber sou’wester, too, fitting superbly over your head and fastened snugly beneath your chin.
I live in Wimbledon, and walk thus dressed regularly over the Common in all weathers, and I feel as if I had a million dollars. If only I had! What wonderful outfits I would buy for myself and my girl friend, who is equally fanatical. (How expensive it all is, isn’t it? But how wonderful, and how worthwhile). Best of all is walking in the teeming rain when the wind blows so hard that one has to lean against it in order to walk at all. Then the rain beats against your leather and your mackintosh like a living force. You take pleasure in watching the cold water streaming down the front of your mackintosh and on down your leathered legs so that they gleam and shine superbly. Water drips too from the brim of your sou’wester and is dashed onto your cold wet skin which feels like rubber itself, exposed as it is to the elements – and just as waterproof. And beneath it all you are hugged closely by warm rubber pants and sliding rubber or leather shirt. For me, at these moments, there is hardly a worry in the world that cannot be dispersed – for the time being at any rate – by the marvellous feeling of utter protection all this gentle waterproofing affords.
I have never written like this before about leather and rubber but I have been prompted to do so now by your marvellous magazine, and which has so much for everyone of us who bows to the glories of mackintosh and the dominance of leather. I have loved them all my life – mackintosh since I was a small boy wrapped up, unwillingly I may add, in shiny rubber by my mother; leather came a lot later I suppose when motor cyclists, God bless them, began to straddle their saddles in their beautiful leathers – and a new, more vital world opened up for me.
If you decide to publish this letter, thank you very much. I just wanted to pass on my ecstasy and let out a paean of praise and triumph for the sheer glory of it all.
– L.P. (Surrey)