By Mark Heinz, Outdoors Reporter
Keith Lindsey said the inspiration for one of his best-selling products came to him while he was in the woods doing what bears are widely purported to do there.
“I was chasing a couple of lost cows in the woods and the urge came upon me, you know what I mean,” Lindsey, who lives near Jacksonville, Texas, told Cowboy State Daily. “And there I was, at 60 years old, hugging a tree with my knees hurting.”
After a lifetime of horseback riding and other strenuous activities, Lindsey said his joints weren’t what they used to be. And he knew that others must being going through the same pain while trying go about their necessary business in the outdoors.
He has a background in product development, so it seemed only logical to develop something to solve the dilemma of taking a deep-woods deuce.
Simple But Effective
Now 63, Lindsey is the founder of Air Boss Motion Decoys, an outdoors company in Jacksonville. The company specializes in hunting decoys, but one of its best-selling products is the “Krapp Strapp.” It’s a device that allows users to lean into a padded strap, thereby taking the weight off their joints while answering nature’s call.
He founded Air Boss Motion Decoys after retiring from a corporate career. So when following a basic urge led him to an esoteric inspiration in the woods that day, envisioning a simple, yet effective, design came naturally.
“The Krapp Strapp is available only by direct shipment from our website,” he said. “We probably move 50 a week.”
With a large number of outdoorsmen, hunters and campers in Wyoming, he said the Krapp Strapp has found its way into some Cowboy State backpacks.
“Yes, we’ve sold some to people in Wyoming,” he said. “Montana, Colorado, all of those places. The hikers love them up in that country.”
‘Tethered To A Tree With Your Pants Down’
When shown a photo of the Krapp Strapp, noted Wyoming outdoorsman Paul Ulrich agreed it would be great for older adventurers or other people with joint problems.
But he was incredulous about its practicality for younger, fit hunters trying to pack light in grizzly country.
“Reminds me of the scene with the goat in ‘Jurassic Park,’” Ulrich told Cowboy State Daily. “Nothing easier for a predator than a meal tethered to a tree with its pants down.”
Karl Brauneis, a retired forester from Lander, told Cowboy State Daily that he thought the Krapp Strapp’s design was ingenious, though he’ll probably stick to what nature provides.
“That’s too cool. Think I’ll steer around that one, though, in search for a good log,” he said.
That Dumping Cousin
Lindsey said he doesn’t mind that some people buy his product for laughs.
A significant number of customers are women, and not only because they must squat to do what men can do standing up in the outdoors, he said. They sometimes buy Krapp Strapps to chide the men they know.
“Everybody has that cousin who, every time you’re trying to go to do something, he’s gotta stop and take a dump,” Lindsey said. “Well, many of my women customers are buying a Krapp Strapp as a novelty gift for that cousin.”
The first run of Krapp Strapps had a pocket on only one side of the user’s end, he said. On his wife’s advice, and to make it more appealing to women, he’s since added pockets on both sides.
“The pocket is for your toilet paper, of course,” he said. “But women like to have those scented wet wipes and bacteria gel – the hand-cleaning supplies. So, now you have pockets on both sides for everything.”
Backing In To New Markets
Along with outdoors enthusiasts, he said people who work outside in remote places could also benefit from Krapp Strapps, so he’s hoping to grow sales in that market.
“If you see those road construction crews working way out there with miles between towns, you know they’ve got to take a dump somewhere,” he said. “I’d like to convince those guys to have a Krapp Strapp in every utility truck.”
What’s In A Name
Lindsey said it’s part of his company’s strategy to give products catchy names by switching out and doubling letters.
“So you’ve got the ‘K’ in Krapp and the ‘PP’, the double Ps,” he said. “Catchy names help people remember our products.”
He’s also proud that his products are 100% American made.
“We make everything ourselves, right here in Jacksonville,” he said. “We like to make things the right way, just like you folks in Wyoming do.”