Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Getting hit by a truck, and other good reasons to buy new underwear

Tired of making the same old "eat healthy, get my finances in order, clean the house regularly" New Year's resolutions, the ones that you commit to every year, only to burn out by the 3rd week?
(I know, I know... not this year. Says you on January 7th. Talk to me next month, m'kay?)

I have a New Year's Resolution that I make - and keep - every year.
Buy New Underwear.

My grandmother told me that it was important to always be wearing nice underwear, in case you got hit by a truck and ended up in the hospital where everyone would be able to see your undergarments.

I will pause here to say that reading those words leaves me feeling profoundly disturbed on several levels:

1. Hit by a truck? Really? I suspect this might have also been a lesson in holding her hand and looking both ways before I crossed the street.

2. *If* I were to be hit by a truck and end up in the hospital - or hell, if I am in the hospital for any reason - I would like to think that the people tasked with saving my life would be concerned with more than the condition of my undergarments.

Those two concerns aside, it is a good idea to wear underwear. Nice underwear is just a bonus - and a bonus everyone can appreciate. As someone who wears pants only when absolutely necessary, it might surprise you to learn that I do not include underwear in my "no pants" lifestyle. In fact, before a night of drinking I used to follow the "2 panty rule" to be sure that I would not find myself pants-less at an inopportune time, and also ensuring that I would always have a clean pair on hand for the next morning's walk of shame.


I am like the Boy Scouts of Underpants: prepared for anything. I embrace the wearing of undergarments wholeheartedly, for reasons of both form and function. From my first visit to Victoria's Secret in junior high school, to purchase fistfuls of the shiny, slippery, brightly colored and ill-fitting string bikini underwear that was so popular in the late 80s and early 90s, I have been enamored with underpinnings. Lingerie. Unmentionables to some, but a topic verging on an obsession for me.

It was a big leap in middle school from cotton briefs to silky underthings - one that threw my mother for a loop. "These are disgusting." she informed me in the laundry room. "Inappropriate for someone your age. And this satin doesn't breathe. You are going to end up with an infection." (Side note: this commentary was a very effective way to get me to do my own laundry. Kudos, mom.

Even the threat of a dreaded yeast infection could not keep me away from Victoria's Secret and their sale bins of underwear. I went from bikinis to thongs (which almost caused my mother cardiac arrest) to boyshorts and then back to thongs, eventually settling on a mix of all three. For 12 years I have lived far from Victoria's Secret, but I have continued my annual tradition of buying new underwear each new year. (Also on the annual to-do list but much less interesting: changing the water filter and cleaning the car - but those are usually delegated to other people Sam.)

We always ask for socks and PJs and tshirts for Christmas, things we wear every day and also need replacing at least once a year, but I am not sending my mom out to buy me new pairs of Hanky Pankys. Gift certificates to The Walking Company, sure. Lacy things? Not so much.

In what I consider to be a mind-blowing display of maturity, use of the lingerie laundry bag, and ability to follow washing instructions, I assessed my underwear drawer and came to the conclusion that I didn't really need new underpants this year. I decided to hold off, even though I was in LA and surrounded by places to buy anything and everything I could ever want. And then I took this "mature" business even further: I took my Walking Company gift card and bought orthopedic shoes instead. That's practically the same thing, right?

No comments: