I do it to myself really.
I sat down, innocent as can be, to write a whimsical tale about how underwear in the store might react when it sees a fat person reaching to buy it. That’s all.
Funny premise. Whimsical. Everything you expect from a visit to the ol’ Manion website. A quick chuckle at someone else’s expense and then it’s off to read something less stupid.
But then I thought about it further, always my first mistake, and suddenly realized that if I make the underwear sentient, the question of when it became self-aware has to be explored.
Not so whimsical. You could argue that it’s downright metaphysical.
Is cotton conscious in the field, basking in the sunshine and waiting to be harvested? Full of hope and wonder?
Is it conscious as a bolt of cotton sitting in a warehouse waiting to be shipped to the manufacturer? All rolled up and waiting to see what it’s about to become? Anticipation running through every fiber?
And is that where the expression ‘cut from the same cloth’ comes from? Pima cotton, Egyptian cotton and supima cotton, like three separate branches of the military.
But underwear is more than just cotton, so self-awareness can’t begin before manufacturing. You have to take the elastic, be it plush or picot, into account. That settles that. Certainly nobody is accusing elastic of being conscious, but I defy you to name a brand of underwear that doesn’t include it.
So are we saying there is a touch of divinity in the machines that take cotton and elastic and make them into underwear? Do they roll off the production line self-aware or does it take being placed into a bag and branded before they become cognizant of their surroundings? “I’m Hanes therefore I am.”
When and where does this magic happen?
And are they aware that they are size XXL before they see the enormous sweaty consumer lumbering towards them? Does someone break the news to them? “I’m afraid I have some news, you might want to sit down…”
Certainly once they know that they are XXL, they have come to terms with the fate that awaits them (I swear on all that is holy that I wrote ‘fate’ as ‘fat’ on the first pass)(probably should have left it). Or do they just assume that all underwear is created equally?
S, M, L, XL, XXL… like five branches of the military. Is XXL considered the Marines of underwear? Made from sterner stuff. And is XXXL underwear Delta Force?
Using this logic, when the XXL underwear sees a fat person reaching to buy it, it is stoic about the whole thing. Despite knowing that they are about to be dropped into the soup.
Not very funny really.
Unless you picture what ‘the soup’ entails and can imagine a pair of underwear saying “I love the smell of skidmarks in the morning.”
The horror. The horror.
Did you just glance down and look at your underwear, and imagine for a moment it was conscious? Did you read the above in its voice?
What does your underwear sound like?
You’re going to have to carry that around for the rest of the day.
Now go read something less stupid.