pressing on...flannel


The real fabric of our lives

As a computer science degree-holder, I am required by law to like flannel. But when you think about it, its power stretches so much farther than just being simply clothing material. Some reasons why...

So now that you've seen a few of its many benefits, I think that you'll agree with me that flannel is the fabric of choice for any casual occasion.

Flannel Quests

2006 2005 2004 2001 2000 1999 1998 1997 Traditions


On October 19, 2006, the foursome of 1122 made their 8th flannel quest. This was a interesting trip for several reasons:


The details of the 7th trip to Alabaster is somewhat lost to history. It was the second trip made by all four of us, and I do recall that it was the first time that I did not buy any flannel. Kelly did, however, so that kept the streak alive. We also went back to the traditional Johnny Rocket's meal.


On October 12, 2004, 1122 Productions made its 6th trip to Alabaster. This was a commemorative quest for several reasons. The first was that it was the first time that Kelly had made the trip. This, of course, meant that it was the first time that 1122 Productions was represented by a quartet; the first of many years, I hope.

It was also the first time in three years that a quest had been conducted. With Ricky and I both in the working world now, and with Tammy and Kelly being somewhat less flannel-obsessed than the two CS majors, the odds weren't all that great of bringing home a carload of flannel like in the early days. However, for at least a night, this "old man" felt like a college sophomore again.

We actually started the night with a bit of a break of tradition. Kelly had never been to Johnny Ray's before, and while she will obviously have many chances to go when she is in Birmingham permenantly, it was decided that we would go there for dinner, then have milkshakes at Johnny Rocket's afterwards. This proved to be a nice change of pace, as the barbecue was good and plentiful.

On to the quest! We took the trip to Alabaster, and upon arriving confirmed Ricky's story that our destination was no longer called Alabama Thrift Store, but was a part of a chain known as America's Thrift Stores. Change was the order of the night, so it seemed. (Does this report seem silly enough to you yet, reader? I hope so...I'm writing it that way on purpose. Lighten the mood, for when I get all introspective later on.)

The store was as if we had never left...and some of the items surely hadn't left since we'd last been there. As is tradition, we looked all around the store, and there were actually quite a few purchases that were not flannel-related, mostly by Ricky and Tammy. Some good finds included a glass Coca-Cola serving tray for around $5, and a hardcover of The Dilbert Principle for $1.98.

But I know what you're dying to know...what about the flannel? Fear not...flannel was purchased. However, I was the only person to actually buy any. Practically all of my winter clothing is currently packed up, so with the colder weather I knew it would be nice to have something warm to wear around the house. However, I only bought one. Eventually, I know that I'll be making a trip to the thrift store with flannel to give, not to buy. Times change.

But the quest was as fun as ever. Afterwards, we went to Johnny Rocket's for our milkshakes, and got the waitress to take a few pictures, which will eventually make their way to various portions of the 1122 webspace.

All in all, it was a lot of fun. Growing up is great and all, but every once in a while it's nice to harken back to a day when getting home at 11:00 at night didn't imply that you weren't going to get enough sleep for the next day (or that you were immediately going to sleep, for that matter). Flannel quest may not have the same traditions as before (although we did the Jars of Clay tradition...I saw to that), or even be much about flannel anymore, but it's still pretty special, if for no other reason than it's another way to celebrate what I know will be a lifelong friendship.

I didn't get you all misty-eyed, did I? Sorry...flannel flannel flannel!


This might be a problem...other than the fact that there was definitely a flannel quest this year, I don't really have any details as to what else went on! So just figure that we went to Johnny Rocket's and the thrift store like we always did, and you'll be fine. :)

2000 - FQ2K

On October 20, 2000, Ricky and I, as well as Ricky's girlfriend Tammy and our friend Andrea, made our yearly trek to the Alabaster thrift store. Given the whole year 2000 craze, we figured that this quest needed a fancy title...we decided on FQ2K.

Ricky wasn't really looking for flannel so much this year, as he's out in the real world now, and can't really wear it at his job. However, Tammy and Andrea were searching for something to wear to the upcoming BCM Hoe-Down. And of course, I'll take all the flannel that I can get.

The hunting was good this night. I went into the night with specific colors and color matches in mind (blue/green, purple/silver), and the thrift store did not disappoint. I found what I might start calling the "Official 1122 Flannel Shirt". It features two of our colors (blue and green) prominently, and the third (gray) is subtly intertwined amidst other colors. I did find a purple and silver flannel, although it wasn't nearly as nice as the aforementioned 1122 flannel. I also found a really nice and thick dark blue and white flannel that will surely get some use once winter comes around. Finally, I found what I may consider the dark horse of the year (much like last year's brown flannel. It's a garnet/maroon-tan/gold shirt that features a checkerboard pattern.

In addition, the girls each found a good shirt for the Hoe-Down. Tammy found a really nice and colorful flannel that actually fit her. Andrea found a GAP flannel (how about that?) that was purple and green.

Overall, the night was a rousing success, and the new flannels complement my current selection well.


On October 22, 1999, Ricky and I, accompanied by Tammy and our friend Johnna, made our annual pilgrimage to the Alabaster thrift store. This was the third annual Flannel Quest, and anticipations were high in hopes of reaping the harvest of that wonderful flannel goodness.

However, this year the pickins' were somewhat slim compared to the bounty in past years. Ricky only found one new flannel, though he did find a few t-shirts that he liked. I only scored two new flannels, but both were interesting new pick-ups. The first was a red and green one...I think it's going to do well both in the regular rotation and as a Christmas special. :) The other one was a brown flannel. I really didn't like it at first, and nearly passed it up. Then I decided to go ahead and take a chance on it. And I'm glad that I did. I like it more each time I wear it. And unlike last year, I didn't buy any "faux-flannel" acrylic shirts!

So overall, a good time was had by all, and while the flannel was not as plentiful as in years past, the quality was still there.


On October 22, 1998, Ricky and I (as well as our friends Jennifer and Karey) took a trip to the Alabaster thrift store. This was the second annual Flannel Quest, and visions of flannel were dancing in our heads (well, Ricky's and mine, anyway).

Our dreams came to fruition. Ricky scored four great shirts, and I thought that I had five. Unfortunately, when I got home I realized that one of the shirts was made out of (get this) acrylic! I mean, how stupid am I not to notice? I mean, it's a nice looking shirt and all, but it's not flannel. Oh, well...I shouldn't complain. And I'm was still a great event, and the flannel findings were festive. Flannel Quest '98 was a great success!


Unfortunately, this night, for the most part, is lost to history. This page was not around at the time the first Flannel Quest took place, and I never thought to write about it then. Looking back, here's what I remember...

I'm pretty sure that we went on a Wednesday night, which would make it October 22, 1997.

Only Ricky and I went on this Quest. This was the only time that we have made the Quest by ourselves. (We later figured out it'd be even more fun with other people.) I remember that I got seven flannels that night. Unfortunately, I hadn't learned at that point to search for quality and good color combinations. Looking back at some of those early finds (which I still have), I have to wonder about what I was thinking at the time. I've learned well from the lessons of that night. After we quested, we stopped by Ricky's house and chatted with his parents while we washed our new flannels. Ah, the memories...


Over the four years that we've had Flannel Quests, we've created some great traditions. And of course, I'm all about tradition. Below are some of the Flannel Quest traditions.