Iteration, iteration, iteration

“If it ain’t broke,” it’s easy to say, “don’t fix it.” How unambitious. How very much and completely the wrong way to look at things. No — if it ain’t broke, you have your ready-made safety-net for if or when you make a pig’s ear of things, and it really does end up broke. If it ain’t broke, what excuse for not trying to move whatever it is on just a little?

Coming up this week is the fourth iteration of the tour jacket. It is ambitious, the tour jacket. Never a jacket to rest on its laurels. Over the past three years, it has undergone three, annual, iterations. Set your watch by them almost. The first was in 2011. Cotton-drill, two-way patch-pockets, a fold-down collar, and a cycling-friendly internal strap based on those of old hunting jackets — which, back then, was something of a novelty.

One year later, cotton-drill gave way to the more serious heft of 11-wale corduroy, and a collar-facing of wool-cashmere was added for the comfort of the chin and the nape. Then, last year, came the third evolution of the tour jacket. More of a step-change, this one. In came the all-weather wonder-cloth Ventile cotton, and a much larger and rounder collar, this time of wide-wale cord. The back-hem was lengthened — the hunched cyclist’s modesty in mind — and at the shoulders came a gusseted “action-back” underpinned by stretchy space-making Airtex. Inside, meanwhile, the convertible back-strap remained, and was joined by a series of headphone-socket loops and a smattering of aeration holes.

Tomorrow comes the tour jacket mk. 4. Iteration, iteration, iteration, and again iteration.