I’m still not sure if there ever is an age range in which wearing a slim strip of cotton up one’s bum is truly acceptable. Now that I’m turning thirty-six, well on my way to old ladyhood, it’s way past the time that it feels appropriate to wear dental floss as undergarments. I also realize that nobody, including me, wants to see a pair of granny panties. The problem, however, is that there seems to be only two ends of the spectrum: underthings fashioned out of spider web silk or underthings fashioned out of bed sheets. Neither one of these options is optimal.
And so begins the search for Suitable Underwear. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a bit of inexpensive experimentation:
I’ve definitely attempted the low end of the spectrum, standing in Target staring at the wall of sad, packaged panties, trying to talk myself into a six-pack of Fruit of the Loom. Here’s how the process plays out: “They’re bikini cut, that’s got to be okay,” I reason with myself. I toss the package in with the Swiffer Wet Jet refills, eye makeup remover, eight roll pack of Bounty, and $5 bargain DVD. I push the cart away from the undies section. I quickly stop short, say aloud, “Oh hell no!”, surreptitiously remove the offending package from my cart — ashamed to be seen with them — and shove the pack of over-dyed cotton back on the rack. Fact: Nobody wants to get busy with a girl in Fruit of the Looms, and frankly, no one should.
Well, if they’re using too much dye, you don’t want them trailing off your caboose anyway, just on general principle. Then again, one should not listen to me on this subject, since (1) I tend to render the plural form as “Fruits of the Loom,” by analogy with “attorneys general” (which is correct) and “Astons Martin” (which is not), and therefore obviously don’t know squat about underwear, and (2) I’ve bought basically the same drab (no, not olive drab) boxers for twenty years, and therefore obviously don’t know squat about underwear. Not that anyone expects any better from a guy as old as I am, but still.
A step upward, then:
I’ve tried buying low level “designer” undies: DKNY, Calvin Klein, and the like, and those are no better that the random brands I find on the rack at TJ Maxx for $2.99. I’m not willing, at this juncture in my financial life, to drop the kind of cash required to stock up on La Perla.
I belong to the school of thought that says that expensive lingerie is good for show, not so good in actual use: Harvey, caught up in the sheer passion of it all, suddenly rips off Sheila’s antique lace, and Sheila, instead of thinking, “Oh, yes, take me, take me now,” is thinking “You miserable son of a bitch, I paid eighty-nine fifty for that.” To say the least, this is not the sort of thing that strengthens a relationship.
On the other hand, one should not listen to me on this subject.
Still, what’s a girl to do? I can’t in good conscience recommend she go commando.