Margarita once asked me what kind of underpants I was wearing – or something like that – and I said boxer-briefs. As a matter of fact, I generally wear boxer-briefs. I’m wearing boxer-briefs right now.
But this past weekend, I had an experience that brought home a glaring and heinous flaw in the design of men’s underwear with staggering force. That flaw? The inexplicable open fly. Why? Why does every pair of underpants, from tighty-whities to silk boxers to my favorite boxer-briefs, have the expandable hole directly in the crotch?
Don’t tell me for a minute that it’s to make bathroom functions a step easier; that’s crap. That’s like saying you never unbutton your pants, just crank down the fly. Maybe at a picnic when you only have one free hand because you’re holding a beer, but that’s about it. Every man knows in 95 cases out of a hundred, you just pull the whole kit and caboodle down and out of the way.
Yet the hole remains.
On a well-worn pair of undies, the seams can stretch a little bit. There might be a little flap in the ass-fabric, the waistband might have lost some elasticity. When the crotch-portal starts flapping open uncontrollably, then you have a problem.
I pitched the second game of a double-header on Saturday, and after the a shitty game, I was getting into some shorts because I was sweating like Michael Jackson at a boy scout Jamboree. I don’t know if it was the friction of the snug-fitting baseball pants, or the one-footed, spread-eagle jouncing as I peeled the high socks down that did it, but suffice it to say that one moment I was looking up to hear the coach remind us to clear the dugout and the next I was staring down at my own crotch with dismay, surprised to see that a new teammate had joined the post-game meeting.
You know how embarrassing it is when you find your fly open – with underwear on underneath. Imagine how you’d feel with your genitals on full display in front of sixteen disgruntled teammates and six hundred-some fans in the stands.
I had two options: go the baseball-jokey-jokemaker route and start dancing and describing eerie pelvic figure eights; or tuck the offending party out of sight and pretend nothing had happened.
I tucked, pulled my shorts on, and tried to act casual (should I whistle? Shit, these shorts don’t have pockets!), but the looks I got from a few unfortunate teammates assured me that no matter what I pretended, like the fox and his sour grapes, like a rape victim who suppresses her memories until they eat away at her very soul, I couldn’t change the truth.
And the truth is that I think I’m going to start wearing speedos instead of underwear. Because even a bright lime-green banana-hammock could not have been more inappropriate than that.