FREEDOM COMES
IN MANY STYLES

 

At 51 years old, I decided it was time for a monumental change in my life. Knowing it would be a shock to my wife, I chose an opportune moment at the breakfast table to break the news.
     "I want to be free," I said nonchalantly as I downed the last drop of my nutritional shake.
     She didn’t bother looking up from her newspaper. "See ya. Have your lawyer call my lawyer."
     "I don’t want to be free of you," I replied. "I’m talking about setting Oscar and the twins free."
     That got her attention. She may not have cared much about me walking out the door, but she had a soft spot in her heart for Oscar and the twins.
     "That’s right," I said. "After 51 years, I’ve decided to get rid of my Tidey Whiteys and change over to boxers."
     "That’s what you wanted to tell me? You’re changing your underwear?"
     "It’s a huge decision. First diapers for three years (I was kind of slow) and then Tidey Whiteys for 48 more years. Oscar and the twins have never really been free for any extended period. I think it’s finally time to let them go."
      My wife wasn’t convinced. "There must be more to it."
      And there was. For years my sons had walked around the house in their boxers, and even done some spur of the moment swimming in mixed company when no real bathing suit was available. You just can’t do that with Tidey Whiteys.
      "All right, I admitted, "I want to walk around the house in my underwear every once in awhile."
      The kids were gone, the shades were drawn. She looked across the table and nodded at my t-shirt and Tidey Whitey underwear I was wearing.
      "And not feel like an idiot," I added.
      Convinced that any look would be better than the current one, my wife agreed to join me on an underwear shopping spree at Macy’s. Vowing to never spend another day wearing Tidey Whitey’s, we went that afternoon.
     The choices were mind-boggling. To my wife’s dismay, I quickly ruled out the classic boxers, which had all the different prints on them and looked just like bathing suits. The fabric was a little rough for me, and they were a little too baggy. I thought they’d bunch up on my leg when I pulled my pants over them, and I couldn’t have that.
     Oscar and the twins might have been happy with them, but I wouldn’t, and I’ve got the veto power. Usually.
     In the end, after much searching and no help from any salespeople (where’s an underwear salesman when you really need one?) we chose a glorious silk number with a lovely print, along with a standard grey cotton Jockey boxer and a racy black all-cotton Calvin Klein signature model.
     Over the next three days, I wore each one, parading around the house each morning to my wife’s horror and then getting dressed and experiencing the texture and feel during the day under my clothes.
     The silk, I decided, might work if I lived in Zimbabwe, but it was a little chilly when the fog rolled in. Freedom should be warmer.
     That left the Jockey’s and the Calvin Klein’s. There was nothing really wrong with the Jockey’s, but let’s face it, when you think of Jockey underwear, you think of Tidey Whitey’s. On the other hand I couldn’t picture Calvin Klein wearing anything but boxers. And besides, they were black and if I was going to make a change, I was going all the way.
     "I’ve made a decision," I announced from behind the bedroom door on the fourth morning. "Are you ready for the new me?"
     "Wait a minute," she replied, and I could hear her drawing the curtains and shades throughout the house.
     "There’s no need to hide anymore," I shouted. "They’re boxers. No one will know I’m walking around in my underwear, and if they did notice, they won’t care."
     To prove my point, I headed for the front doorstep, where I picked up the paper and then straightened up and paused while I perused the morning headlines, resplendent in my black Calvin Klein boxers.
     Oscar, the twins and me---free at last. At least until I got yanked back in the door.

 

 

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