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Rated 4 out of
Misunderstood & under ratedBack in The Day, there were certain things that a Man had with him where ever he went. A pocket knife. A watch. A pocket comb. Keys. A pocket lighter. A hat. And...a "handkercheif". I remember, when I was a boy, seeing my grandfather unload his pockets. It was fascinating and when I began to acquire these accoutremant of manhhood and carry them about myself it made me feel Grown Up.
I remember my grandfather had a small drawer in his bureau where, neatly folded and rolled and standing next to each other like little soldiers in formation, were a half dozen pristine white Hav-A-Hank cotton handkercheifs. Each day he would take a clean one, fold it neatly, and put it into his left rear trouser pocket.
Somewhere over the years I guess I became too cool to carry a handkercheif. Or wear a hat. Well, when I moved backed to Florida the widsom of my grandfather returned to me and I began to collect hats (not caps). I also began to search for a good, modern version of the old Hav-A-Hank. And there it was, in REI. I picked up the red version of the "Mini Multitowel" and it serves extremely well to wipe the tropical sweat from my face, clean eyeglasses, clean the occaisional spill, offer to a teary-eyed damsel in distress. It soaks up like a sponge and dries in a flash making it handy for cleaning the face of a small child or the paws of a wet dog. In the red color it is handy for flagging down the wife in a parking lot or draping over a seatback to quickly relocate it at the end of an intermezzo. It is extremely light and low bulk; never know it's there until I need it. And it will be there, the next time blood comes gushing from a wound which demands immediate attention. Yes, as no doubt my grandfather knew, a man with a handkerchief has a high hero potential. And in certain situations a man without a handkercheif is likely flumaxed. The "Mini Multitowel" is better than any I have ever carried.
But it is not faultless. It appears to be made by the "N-Rit" company in Korea, N-Rit being a Korenglish squishism for "Natural Spirit". This company apparently makes the majority of travel towels on the market, rebranded. I own a good ten or so of different types and the nylon/poly blend material of this one is quite unique. Very reminicent of the light silk fabric bandanas I own, or even the wife's prized Hermes scarfs. Almost that light.
I own a couple of N-Rit branded ones, both larger, from this same material and love them all. The Mini is for me definietly an about town item. Calling it a "towel" at 15" square is more than a bit of an aggrandizement. It's too small to wear as a bandana: I use the N-Rits for that. They are around my neck on every bike ride and whenever I venture afeild or afloat. At 23" x 25"they are still not the ideal size; that would be about 30" square. Though the Mini might be perfectly sized for a child's neck. The Mini is certainly not large enough to use as a travel towel. The only bath you might dry off from with it is a "Marine" bath. The larger of my N-Rits, well you might get by with as a towel if you're not too particular about being quite dry.
Unlike the N-Rits, which have a sort of doily scalloped edges, the Mini has sraight edges, not overstiched or sealed. And so alas, after a coupe of years in my back pocket they are fraying. There are also threads pulling loose from the center. My only complaint really.
The fabric of all of them is more odor resistant than most travel towels. This may well be because of the thinness which does nto allow as much bacteria to take hold. They will begin to smell eventually, however, until they are properly (hand) washed. Easily done. I am considering giving the Mini a treatment with "Mirazyme" deoderant, or perhaps a silver-solution disinfectant, to see if it improves odor resistance. I am also considering a Permethrin treatment for the N-Rits. Wouldn't do that with the Mini as it is too likely to come into contact with food or drink.
All in all I am very pleased and will be buying another 2 or 3. I'd say, if you're a guy and you don't have a handkercheif in your back pocket you need to fill it with one of these. That's why men's pants have two pockets, you know. And if you are an independant minded lady, you would do well to give up a tiny bit of precious purse space to one of these, too.
Happy travels, all.
Date published: 2014-03-26
Rated 3 out of
REI Mini MultiTowelDiabetic, so I get sweats, great for wiping brow on the go...