I’ve got it all figured out. Why it struck me only now, I do not know, but of this I’m certain: I discovered the real reason behind the army’s uniform.
One only needs to ask a simple question: what does an army do? The simplest answer: it fights. And in order to fight, its soldiers need to stay in fit shape. But alas! With today’s technology and mass media, obesity and heart disease are as common as a Facebook account, and troops have a hard time marching up and down the square. For this, a perpetual remedy is needed, one that will make them exercise and get back in shape during their entire waking hours.
And for this specific reason, the uniform was invented.
Not convinced? Imagine the following:
10:00 AM, the middle of July. The sun shines in full glory. It’s 32 degrees Celsius outside. Being so close to the sea, the Tel-Aviv air features a remarkable 80% relative humidity. For most people, the outfit of choice would be a pair of sandals, shorts, and a thin t-shirt. I suppose there should be a pair of underwear in there as well. Everything is lightweight and airy. Seems like a reasonable pick.
But the alternative that many youngsters take is the uniform. Well, in essence, it’s not that different. Just some woolen socks, leather boots, underwear, long trousers, an undershirt, a buttoned shirt, ID-tag, beret, and various insignia. Oh, and you have to tuck your shirts in. For comparison:
How does this contribute to the physical welfare, you ask? Well, two main reasons, both pertaining to weight.
First, it should be easily agreed that the less you weigh, the better. You can run faster, jump farther, lift yourself higher, etc. As it is made out of thick, insulating material, the uniform guarantees enhanced sweating action. Up to several liters can be perspired just in the process of putting it on and standing about, not to mention performing any sort of physical activity in it. The more sweat you lose – the smaller your weight, and the better you are to do exercise!
Second, the uniform is, literally speaking, heavy. To compare: the shorts, t-shirt, and sandals altogether sum up to less than 0.7 kilos, our of which 400 grams are the sandals. In contrast, the uniform and associated accessories total 2.8 kilos, out of which about 1.6 are the shoes. Yup, one shoe is heavier than the entire summer outfit. So in essence, whenever you walk down the street, you are lifting little dumbbells all the time. This constant exercise helps build up muscles and eliminate fat, both of which put you back in shape.
By the way, if you see any contradiction between the two reasons given above, don’t fret about it. This isn’t “science” or “logic” where we have to worry about such petty things. Just ignore the contradiction and live happily.