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by J. Scott R.

When I was twelve my parents bought me a dog that, as it turned out, hated going for walks. At the mention of the word "walk" by any of us she would promptly disappear without a trace. This proved to be a valuable lesson some twenty years later when my wife called out from the bedroom, "honey, I need to go bra shopping." Upon hearing those words I quickly and quietly made my way to the garage. "Honey? Did you hear me?" I heard my wife's voice in the distance as I headed through the kitchen.

My refuge was disrupted by my wife's voice five minutes later. How did she find me so fast? It always took at least twenty minutes to find the dog, but then again I couldn't squeeze underneath the couch. "Why didn't you answer me?" "Oh, I'm sorry," I replied, "I didn't hear you." This only invoked "the look" from her which clearly communicated that resistance was futile. "I said that I need to go bra shopping, and I want you to go with me." "I'm sure one of your friends would love to go with you," I suggested. "But I want to go with you," she again replied, this time in an almost pleading manner that told me that I was pushing my luck. I sighed, resigning myself to my fate. "I'll go get the keys," was all I could say.

Now, I enjoy a sexy bra as much as the next guy, but I would prefer to see them modeled live as opposed to hanging lifelessly from a metal sales rack. Besides, hanging out in the lingerie department all day seems kind of creepy. People will think I'm either a pervert, or worse, completely submissive to my wife.
"OK," I told myself as we entered the mall, "make the best of this." Visions of Victoria's Secret danced in my head, but my wife quickly put the kabash on that when she informed me that she needed to buy more than one bra, and that the best deals were at department stores. For anyone that has never actually ventured into the lingerie section of a department store, it's like a sea of endless fabric. Just the sight of all those bras was enough to wear me out, and yet my wife felt the need to inspect each one as if she were going to find a winning lottery ticket. "I'll be in the hardware section if you need me," I announced as I took in wave after wave of lace, cotton, and lycra. "This isn't Sears," my wife replied. "They don't sell tools here." The last nail in the coffin. I wasn't going anywhere.

The first rule of bra advertising states that the picture of the woman wearing the bra on the tag in no way resembles how the bra will look on a real person. This is easily evidenced by the labels of the "plus size" bras with size 2 women. If I were a woman and was subjected to this I would end up hiding in my attic stuffing my face with a bagful of McDonald's hamburgers (2 for $1 - I admit that I do love a bargain, just like my wife) and burning every issue of Vogue magazine I could find.

"Oh, honey, look how pretty this fabric is", my wife suddenly says gleefully. "Don't you just love it? I only wish they had it in sea foam." Sea foam? What the hell is sea foam? Anyway, I reply, "What does the color of the pattern matter? Nobody sees it." "It needs to match my outfit, and besides, I'll see it every time I get dressed," she replies, and then adds playfully, "and you'll get to see it too, if you want." OK, stop, timeout. Two points here. First, the only time I see my wife in her underwear it NEVER looks like that, and some of it appears by the design to probably have been created to be worn by nuns. Second, can you imagine if men wore underwear to feel good about themselves? We'd be busy rubbing our legs together at meetings like crickets to feel the soft smoothness of our custom french bustie boxers with the patented air pump that makes a man confident in all of the right places. For men, buying new underwear is simple. If it was originally white, and is no longer that color, you buy new underwear. If the holes have gotten so big that unwanted air conditioning occurs frequently, you buy new underwear. And finally, if the elastic strap is so loose that you need a belt to wear the underwear then it's time to buy new underwear. End of story.

Three hours and three bras later we finally made it to the checkout register. As we walked out the door, my wife turned to me with a smile and said, "You know honey, I really appreciate you coming with me. This was just like shopping with a girlfriend." And with that comment, my experience of emasculation was complete.


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