26 November 2005
Fine for parking
"Beware the Frabjous Brassiere-Latch,
A commentary by the late Allan Sherman, circa 1973:
Dear Reader: If you have tears, shed them now for the ardent young lad of those years, on the night of his first conquest. Pity him, sitting there in the front seat of a borrowed car, both emboldened and embarrassed by the throbbing of his own erection. This boy had to know not only how to dress and undress himself, but how to disrobe a silent, uncooperative girl in almost total darkness, with one hand from behind and with no practice except a few stolen moments in the attic with his sister's brassiere and his mother's dressmaking form.
Wish him well, for this will be his first live encounter with the diabolical American brassiere-latch. Pray for his quivering fingers as they make first contact with this engine of torture, with its treacherous snarl of hooks, snaps, clasps and traps.
Women's brassiere-latches in 1940 America looked like innocent little pink satin rosebuds, but each one secretly contained a special spring-loaded delayed-action guillotine, ready to snap off unwelcome boyfingers at the slightest movement of the concealed hair trigger.
Build a better mousetrap, the saying goes and with the brassiere, Yankee Ingenuity did exactly that. But the true stroke of genius was the new bait. The old-fashioned mousetrap was loaded with cheese; nobody cares much about cheese, except mice. But when American Know-How reloaded the brassiere with tits, every heterosexual male in the country was hopelessly trapped. (Remember at that time, tits were available only in brassieres. If you wanted a tit, you had to open up a brassiere to get it. It was something like eating a lobster. Trouble, but worth it.)
This passage has troubled me for many years what the hell were they putting into those undergarments beforehand? Kleenex? but it never occurred to me to challenge the basic truths at its core: I still have scars from an encounter with underwire.
And it appears that things have not necessarily improved for the next generation, either.
(Via Michael Blowhard.)Posted at 11:38 AM to Table for One