though it may sound as if i doth protest too much, i rarely, if ever, discuss superheroes. i do recall at one point in my childhood owning one or two batman accessories, though i'm pretty sure it didn't stretch quite as far as running around the neighbourhood with a batwing shaped cloak tied around my collar. those are the sort of indiscretions that can garner a fellow some quizzical looks nowadays.
it would appear also that the current crop of movies featuring the likes of superman, batman et al have little impact on the youth of today. as i made my way home from another reputedly hard day at the office, due to some highly un-customary sunshine, there were many of the local kids scurrying around the estates in joyful glee. in all the many years i have lived here, i doubt i can ever remember seeing any local children dressed as roy rogers (remember him?), batman, superman or any number of equally imitable characters.
it seems that we may have been expected to grow up with our very own superheroes, thus while we were happy to watch adam west and burt ward as the original crime-fighting duo of batman and robin, from whence arose the phrase kerpow and other similar attempts at belligerent onomatopoeia, modernity has added a thick layer of gravitas to such proceedings. nowadays, bruce wayne converses in deep gravelly tones, inferring that he may be a tad more serious about his responsibilities than was the case in the orginal abc tv series of the late sixties.
but the world of the superhero has arguably changed every bit as much for the caped practitioners as it has for those of us enamoured of their exploits. for instance, it seems most likely that the batmobile would now require to adhere to all manner of safety laws and emission controls before it would be allowed to exit the batcave. and superman is now pretty much stuffed when it comes to a clandestine change from mild-mannered clark kent into the man of steel. mobile phones (or cell phones as they are probably referred to in gotham city or metropolis) have meant that phones boxes, as they once were, are pretty thin on the ground.
it has also occurred to me that clark kent had need of continually wearing his superman outfit below his suit, shirt and tie. you wouldn't figure that he'd feel the benefit when he went flying to the top of those tall buildings being lept in a single bound. unless, that is, the man of steel's blue jumpsuit and red underpants are made from merino wool?
though my own superpowers rest entirely on the ability to play a rolling triplet half-time shuffle with a confidence you'd scarcely believe, the tentative notion that i might have something in common with superman are not as strange as you might suppose. this is a contention i would place entirely at the sleeves of svelte's latest long-sleeve merino baselayer.
by now, most of us are acutely aware of the anti-odour properties proffered by merino wool. this allows garments such as the baselayer in question to be worn with impunity for far more days than was formerly socially acceptable. to put this to the test, (and you must promise not to breathe a word of this to my work colleagues) i have been wearing the v-neck baselayer all week. though none of my daily tasks could conceivably be described as strenuous, i have troubled the merino just a tad by continuing to wear it 'neath a long-sleeve cycle jersey one more than just one early evening scoot around the principality.
i think it probable that my colleagues are too polite to make mention of any untoward aroma i may subsequently have brought to the workplace, but my own daily personal hygiene strictures have ensured that i do not present them with the opportunity. thus, i am able to be clark kent during the day with all the mild-mannered interaction such a position demands and swiftly change into jeremy powers when i get home.
i was a little querying over the v-neck, as opposed to cycling's more regular round neck, but in practice it offers a style i am mostly unused to, yet comfortable with. on the bicycle, a fully-zipped jersey renders any lack of merino around the neck a less than onerous state of affairs. the sleeves are of a particularly well-judged length with close-knit cuffs, preventing either from leaving the safety of my wrists.
the only problem i foresee is explaining why i've started wearing my underpants on the outside of my jeans.
the svelte v-neck l/s baselayer is available in navy blue in sizes small to xl, retailing at £55. a short sleeve version in pastel colours is available at £45. | svelte l/s baselayer
friday 18 march 2016..........................................................................................................................................................................................................