Every morning I do two things at breakfast: I eat a bowl of cereal and check Flipboard on my tablet. While I can hardly profess to being a news junkie or, for that matter, current with just about anything, I’ve come to enjoy Flipboard’s quirkiness in which stories it aggregates and chooses to show. I have the app set up in a way so that I can quickly scroll through my own curated topics: top stories, world news, U. S. news, business, sports, technology, celebrity, science, fashion, and food. In ten minutes, I’m informed (or “informed,” if it’s slow news day) and on my way.
But every now and again, Flipboard likes to throw in a curve ball, and they usually throw it into the “top stories” section. Things like…
“15 hottest sex scenes from Netflix shows!”
“DO THIS in bed to please your (wo)man (and yourself)!!”
“SEE Kim Kardashian’s latest SEE-THROUGH outfit!!!”
Ugh. You get the picture. Yeah, right there next to terrified humans and dumb presidents are clickbait-y articles. This is what Flipboard now thinks I want, because I now see stuff like this every day. And yes, sure, sometimes I do click on those articles because I’m a dumbass who might harbor a little FOMO on occasion, but they’re mostly fleeting annoyances. Yes, sometimes, Flipboard really makes me say WTF. Such as when this picture popped up right next to a story about disaster relief in Puerto Rico.
To which, I literally said, out loud,
WHAT THE FUCK ARE CROTCHLESS PANTIES DOING ON MY FLIPBOARD?
Beneath the picture appeared the following headline:
The link goes to a site called “Who What Wear,” which, I swear, is one of the most asinine fashion sites I’ve ever seen. (Sorry to be so judgey. If you like, then I hope you like the crap outta it.) I’m willing to bet that some of you reading probably think that many fashion sites are empty and brainless, and you have every right to think that. I think that about some of them too, which are little more than low-hanging fruit. I have a couple perennial favorites, such as W and Vogue, which are really just holdovers from when I used to read those magazines, and which also feature their fair shares of idiocy. regardless, even though I’m not fashionable, I do like to follow fashion as it happens.
Anyway, back to the underwear. The “Who What Wear” article cheekily (oh, the puns will abound) calls these drawers “peekaboo bottoms.”
Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha O, rly??????
Oh, and by the way, should you scroll down further on that “Who What Wear” page, you’ll see how S&M lite is also “new” and “trendy” in the forms of elegant “harnesses,” which would, undoubtedly, be the perfect addition to your power suits and Monday morning meetings.
Folks, look. I like underwear. It’s part form, part function, and all good. I don’t give a hoot what anyone chooses to wear underneath it all. And I don’t have a problem with what these particular pieces of underwear are; I take issue with calling such things “new” or a “trend,” because they are neither. People have been cutting up and into their underthings for centuries in order to fit whatever…well…? Just…whatever.
I know that over the past few years, a number of clothing options and accessories that might have once been considered taboo are now mainstream. Well-heeled “stripper shoes” come most immediately to my mind, because that’s what my friends and I used to call them in the late 90s and early aughts. Here’s a basic example, 2-3 inch platform in the front, spiky heel in the back:
With the return of platform shoes in the 90s, various interpretations of these shoes popped up in a few stores. If you were brave enough to take the plunge and actually buy a pair, you knew that they came with a certain stigma. (Granted, I grew up in small-town America, so my adolescent views were colored as much.)
Today, that stigma is is all but shattered, as you’d be hard-pressed to not find some version of a teetering platform shoe in most women’s wardrobes. (I still have a pair myself, though they are more 1940s coquettish than towering glam.) “Stripper shoes” are just shoes today.
Going back to underthings, maybe I’m just old and dumb, but there’s not a single cell in the fashion-oriented part of my brain that believes that crotchless panties will someday become as ubiquitous as stripper shoes. No matter how pretty or lacy or demure — “bottomless” drawers are still fucking bottomless drawers. Period. (The same goes double for those ridiculous “harnesses” or harness-type items. Seriously, why anyone would pay hundreds of dollar for “harnesses” that are little more than three straps sewn together is beyond me. Invest in an actual goddamn harness, wear it under your work gear, and be done with it!) Maybe there’s something to be said about incorporating such items into one’s everyday gear, something about control, power, owning one’s sexuality, owning one’s self, fighting against stereotypes (or plain, cotton drawers), and so on. And I get all that. None of these ideas is new, and I don’t know that investing in uncomfortably sexy underwear that’s advertised as the “next best thing” is money well spent. (Though maybe it is according to this surely scientific HuffPost article: “2 Women Test The Theory That Expensive Lingerie Gives You Confidence. Here’s What Happened.)
Y’know, the first time I ever saw underwear like this, it was in a catalog of gag gifts. No kidding. My folks used to get mail-order catalogs of all sorts back in the day, and one of them advertised stuff under the guise of ” fun gifts for the whole family!” At the back of the catalog were the more “adult” items. Nothing pornographic, mind you, just oddball things and true gag gifts like dirty joke books, trophies in the shape of toilets, whoopie cushions, and, yep, crorchless underwear, for both men and women! While they didn’t show the underwear modeled, I’ll never forget just how hilarious a gift the catalog thought these things would make between a couple.
Jeezus, how times have changed.