He speaks about clothing with distaste. He believes that there is no need for new clothes for you can make the old work. "A man who has at length found something to do will not need to get a new suit to do it in; for him the old will do..." I agree with this to some extent. Today, there is many instances where a person will buy new shoes, or a new jacket when the one said person already has, is sufficient. But the ensuing line pushes the thought to a much stronger level, saying that there is no need to buy anything and what you have will work,"bare feet are older than shoes, and he can make them do...". Although in theory this can work, many unnecessary hardships arise from it.
Succeeding Clothes, came the section known as Shelter. As always, Thoreau's words are repugnant towards the necessities of the regular man. He does not deny that shelter is unimportant, for every animal has a shelter, but what humans have made it into, is. Similar to clothing, Thoreau's "if it isn't broken don't fix it" attitude falls in sharp contrast to the accessorizing ways of the common folk. "However, if one designs to construct a dwelling-house, it behooves him to exercise a little Yankee shrewdness,". I believe this is true, although I fall victim to it myself. In truth, we do need anything but a house away from the elements, but the temptation for impractical comforts is too high. Another thought-provoking section of Shelter talked about the strangeness of mortgages and loans. "in modern civilized society not more than one half the families own a shelter." This really is bizarre when you think about it.
I am impressed once more of how Thoreau is able to see all these everyday experiences with such an alien view. His writing is like a slap in the face, saying "Wake Up!" to society. I find it extremely intriguing.