Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Mini-Mil and New Belgium Trippel

A month ago, to the day, I sent BC this message
I think I've found my next pair of boots.
I just didn't think it would happen so fast. On Monday I had the misfortune of using a broken oil dispenser and managed to get LMTV transmission oil all over the McRae Desert boots I got issued in Kuwait. Oil doesn't hurt the boots functionally, but it does permanently change the appearance of the tan, flesh-out leather. If I were deployed, I wouldn't sweat it, but in a garrison environment, around as much rank as I am, they had to be relegated to PT and personal use only.

My oily old McRae Hot Weather Desert Boots, after attempts to clean them
These are a great example of the standard combat boot; I wouldn't be surprised if Uncle Sam has over a dozen companies churning these out. They're pretty good once their broken in, but not exceptional in any way. As you can see, they have a thick sole with 2 different types of rubber glued to the upper.

I had intended to get some cheaper Panama-soled version of this standard combat boot at a surplus store when I discovered they carried the Tactical Research Mini-Mil I'd read about in February. They seemed just as cool as the article and only 10 bucks more than the best price I'd seen online. How could I say no?

Tactical Research Mini-Mil TR101
They came with strange tubular laces like you'd find on cross-training shoes. After switching those out for more standard military laces they fit even better. The hand test says they're the same weight as the Nike combat boots that a lot of guys wear, but with a very minimal sole not unlike the Merrell Sonic Glove Barefoot Running Shoes I use for PT. I got 9.0 wide and there's plenty of room for my foot to spread out without feeling lost. I've only worn them for a day, but I really like them so far. They've got my recommendation if you've already got some experience with minimal footwear.

New Belgium Trippel Brewed With Coriander

Good, but not great. I appreciate the inventiveness that drove the New Belgium brewmasters to say "Hey, let's throw some coriander in a golden trippel" but this recipe isn't anything special for me by itself. Maybe the right food pairing would wake it up?

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