My friends, I have failed you. A year has gone by, bringing with it another Velociraptor Awareness Day, and I had no post prepared. I will be optimistic, and assume that most of you learned enough last year to survive a few extra days. To be truly assured of one’s survival in the battle against these ferocious creatures, new knowledge is always necessary. Since I already covered the basics of survival, this year I will turn to a more specific topic, and one that’s more relevant to this blog: style.
The Question of Fashion in the Face of a Velociraptor Attack
The biggest problem with deciding the optimal attire in case of an encounter with the velociraptor is this: one must choose between speed and protection. Velociraptors are quick–definitely quicker than you–but there is a remote possibility that you might be able to outrun them (or at least, you might have a longer life trying to outrun them than trying to fight them off). If this is the case, you’ll want to dress with speed and agility in mind; spandex, flats, and small bags are all good choices. If you know that your running abilities are lacking and have no compunction tearing out the throats of potentially-cute predators, your best option is to armor yourself accordingly. Start with the basics—Kevlar—and work outwards. But don’t fret! All this talk about spandex (ugh!) and Kevlar (double ugh!) does not mean we need to cast off our style aspirations. There are many ways to dress safe, smart and stylish.
Speed and Agility
Many runners wear athletic shoes on the street and change into heels or other fashionable footwear in the office or at home: this is not a wise choice. The time it takes to change shoes is valuable escape time—and bending over to change footwear puts one’s head at the level of the velociraptor. To be truly alert, one must wear running shoes (or other acceptable shoe) at all times. No one has been documented as successfully outrunning a velociraptor in high heels.
Aerodynamics are key when dressing for speed. That means bulky, large garments or hats should be discarded in favor of skin-tight spandex. Fortunately, leggings-as-pants are a good option that is also in style—for maximum aerodynamics, choose wet-look leggings or those made of PVC. Leather leggings may also be a good choice, but they may constrict the legs’ flexibility, and also clash with running shoes. Avoid long, flowing garments (such as dresses or long coats) which may be snagged by a velociraptor or caught on a passing tree branch. Hair should be worn in a ponytail, never ratted, curled, or teased. For maximum speed, consider a bathing cap or helmet.
Of utmost importance, though, is a lack of weight. Do not make a habit of schlepping around large bags, especially if those bags are filled with raw meat, eggs, or anything else that might attract a velociraptor. Every pound added to an outfit is a pound that could cost a life. Essentials (keys, cell phone, assault rifle, concord grape juice) should be kept in a small bag, preferably a Prada backpack, that can be slung on the back while running.
Velociraptors often attack when their victim is at great disadvantage—in inclement weather, for example. In this case, crampons or other traction aids would be a smart addition to any anti-velociraptor arsenal, especially in cooler climates.
Armor and Strength
While Kevlar is the most obvious choice when one contemplates a velociraptor attack, it does have its drawbacks. For instance, Kevlar is mainly used for protection of vital organs—heart, lungs, kidneys—which are not the parts that a velociraptor will first attack. Since these predators stand crotch high, the most vital parts to be protected are the crotch and legs.
Because of this, Kevlar is not always the best choice (although there are unconfirmed reports of velociraptors feasting on kidneys). To better protect the nether regions, full-body armor is a better defense. Plate armor is often effective, as is chain mail. Unfortunately, the downside of these is that they are often quite heavy, and restrict the wearer in everyday activities.
There are, however, more livable alternatives. Combat boots are coming back in style, and provide more protection than regular footwear. Thigh-high boots, too, provide more support in this situation. Boots (or other legwear) with studs or metal plating—also in fashion at the moment—can also be beneficial. Other forms of protective legwear—chaps, leather pants, shin guards—may also be useful.
For one who is betting on fighting off a velociraptor, a bigger bag is better—preferably a bag that could be used as a weapon, with as many studs and spikes as possible. It should fit any necessary anti-velociraptor weapons, including the aforementioned assault rifle and concord grape juice. A bowie knife or katana might also be effective at close range. Care should be taken with accessories also—they must do double duty as weapons. Brass knuckles are always a good choice.
However much fun fashion can contain, there is a point when it becomes dangerous. This point is, of course, when fashion attracts the attention of velociraptors. The designers of these fashions could be classified as a menace to society, and should be ashamed of the danger they pose to their fans and copycats.
Avoid wearing clothing that looks like prey. This means that feathers, fur, and reptile and animal patterns are all more susceptible to velociraptor attack. Fabrics like velvet and chenille that are man-mande can also look like the fur of small rodents or deer, and are therefore also potential hazards. Bird-claw necklaces, sherling jackets, feather headdresses and the like are potentially dangerous garments.
Unlike magpies, velociraptors aren’t compelled to collect all things shiny, but reflected light will catch the eye of any potential predator—including the velociraptor. Glittery, polished, or mirrored jewelry is often not the best choice when posed with velociraptor-related dressing. Neither are reflective sunglasses, rhinestones, or sequined clothing. The aforementioned studs can, with this information, be a potential hazard. Because of this, choose studs with a dull finish, or those with a patina.
Velociraptors have a keen sense of smell, so choice of perfume should be considered deeply. Avoid any perfumes that smell like animals, rotting meat, or any other bodily fluids—especially avoid perfumes with a musk base. Sometimes perfume can act as a camouflage against attack: florals do this admirably well, but only in a proper outdoor setting. Perfume with a concord grape component might also act as a mild deterrent to a velociraptor attack.
With proper care and consideration, it is completely possible to be prepared for a velociraptor attack in a stylish manner. Not only can style and safety coexist, they can lean on each other for mutual support and improvement. As improvements in velociraptor knowledge and anti-velociraptor technology emerge, leading designers can package and distribute these ideas in usable, stylish ways to fashionistas and not-so-fashionistas alike, thereby saving lives, raising awareness, and keeping up a general level of style.
In memoriam of those who have lost their lives in velociraptor attacks, please take the time to learn how long you would survive chained to a bunk bed with a velociraptor. To learn more about velociraptor attacks, please visit the American Society for Velociraptor Attack Prevention.