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Ask Chris Black: What Do You Wear When It’s Raining?

Photo: Yimmy Yayo

If you’re looking for the most powerful hair dryer or handiest chef’s knife, those things can be easy enough to find. Other objects of desire are a little more taste-based. What’s the next status water bottle or hand wash, for instance? Regular readers of the Strategist will know that we’ve turned to resident Cool Guy Chris Black (he’s a partner at brand consultancy Public Announcement) to help us answer both of those questions, and to get more of Chris’s advice, he’s now answering reader questions for us in a regular column. If you have a burning question about the next fanny pack or Noah rugby shirt, drop us an email with the subject line “Ask Chris” at

What do you do when it rains? What’s your rain jacket and umbrella?

When I was 24 and getting my start in the music business, I had a life-altering traumatic experience. Leaving the Paramount Hotel (LOL, Epic Records’ choice) I got stuck in a torrential downpour in Times Square en route to an important meeting at the Sony Building. I showed up looking like a lost, wet dog. Since then, I have HATED the rain.

So when God decides to take a piss, I prepare. I am not one of these people who think umbrellas are useless. I have a few, but just cheap ones. If I were to invest, I would go for with a chic black 62-inch windproof model from GustBuster (great name). Full coverage, baby.

A high-tech jacket is also necessary. I have a rotation. I’ll do a Patagonia Men’s Torrentshell jacket when I need a hard-wearing classic.

Photo: 18-01-15 reidprebenda PM1 B8 jentricolello M

If I am feeling more sleek, I’ll do my Veilance anorak (full disclosure: I do work for Arc’Teryx).

On other rainy days, I will rock this Stone Island jacket (arm patch off, of course), because I want to feel like I am at Glastonbury watching Oasis reunite.

For footwear, I wear the Sundowner Gore-Tex Boots from Vasque when I want to wear something understated and functional.

Otherwise, I lace up my District Vision sneakers, because they are both waterproof and a colorful stunt. Both keep my dogs dry. Obviously, I take this shit seriously. Showing up fresh in spite of the elements requires preparation.

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Ask Chris Black: What Do You Wear When It’s Raining?