Not irrelevant:

In British slang an anorak( /ˈænəræk/) is a person who has a very strong interest, perhaps obsessive, in niche subjects. This interest may be unacknowledged or not understood by the general public.

This is a light windbreaker I purchased from The Gap. It can zip itself into its own container (like a nylon Transformer) and the universally-comprehensible icon makes seem like something from Ikea, or the United Nations’ gift shop. I remember really liking it because it was bright red, a fact I will later append to my Big List Of Stupid Mistakes from my childhood.

Even when I got it, I knew that this is not an anorak. Canadians are forced (by law, I believe) to learn the ways and customs of aboriginal people and their funny-looking apparel. I learned about mukluks and parkas and Inuit pocket squares. Apparently, The Gap assumes an anorak need only be sufficient to shield one from a light drizzle.


The word anorak comes from the Kalaallisut word anoraq. It did not appear in English until 1924; an early definition is “gay beaded item worn by Greenland women or brides in the 1930s”.

Zing. Wikipedia is on fire today.