Leslie's Omnibus

Bus Fumes

I have a girlfriend who absolutely loves her some pantyhose. She likes the fishnets. She likes the lacy ones. She likes the textured ones. She likes the patterned ones. She likes the ones with the shadow designs at the ankles. She likes the sheer ones. She likes the opaque black ones. She likes the glistening ones.

Me? I hate 'em.

I'm convinced pantyhose were designed by men as part of a plot to keep women stupid. How can I say that? Well, for one thing, no matter whether you're a size 0 or a size 240, the elastic wasteband on pantyhose is always no bigger around that you would normally be able to pull over your wrist. That means that all circulation is cut off from the waist up. And it's pretty hard to be intelligent when not one single molecule of oxygen can reach your brain.

What's even worse is that they've got a built in self-destruct mechanism designed to trigger at the worst possible moments in time. Not true, ladies? Ever try to gracefully exit a car... on a date... and have your pantyhose snag and leave a big honking run up the back of your leg? Or have something similar happen just before you're supposed to make a big presentation that could make or break your career?

My most humiliating pantyhose moment ever? It came, unwittingly, at the hands of my sister, the brand junkie. She had just switched (or so she said) from using Marshall Field's store brand to Jockey brand, so she offered me half a dozen brand new pairs of the Field's hose, still in the package.

On a beautiful Monday morning, I pulled out a new pair of stockings and put them on. I noticed an odd crackling noise, but didn't think much of it... then. I got on the bus to go the the train to get me to work. By the time I got off the bus and onto the train, I noticed that the waistband of my pantyhose appeared to be loosening noticeably and rapidly, so I made my way to the nasty, icky bathroom on the train, hauled up my skirt and yanked at the waistband. With one good crackle and a puff of dust, the elastic gave up the ghost. In horror, I stretched the waistband out as far as it would go and tied a knot to keep the hose up. I quickly yanked my skirt back down and made my way to a seat.

As soon as I sat down I heard a quiet "zip" and felt the unmistakeable creep of a run go from my big toe northwards like a shot. Then another. Then another. Cripes!

But it got worse. By the time the train reached Union Station, I was wearing spider webs with baggy knees. I hurried for the CTA bus to the office. No seats were available, so I grabbed onto a railing.

We had a cowboy bus driver who must have thought we all wanted to ride the mechanical bull at Gilley's once before we died, as he whipped around corners and bounced through potholes like a madman.

I was holding onto the rail with both hands for dear life when the elastic waistband snapped.

I clamped my knees together and prayed.

It didn't help.

I had to get off the bus and climb a hill to get to the office with my knees clamped together. By the time I got to my office, the waistband was around my knees and heading for my ankles. I sat down and my desk and peeled off the shredded remnants. (Actually, the whole mess just kind of sighed and collapsed on its own.)

Yep. Reduced to a Carol Burnett comedy routine by a simple pair of pantyhose. Is it any wonder why I hate them so and avoid wearing them like the plague?

1 comment:

k said...

How I LOATHED wearing those things! And worse yet, trying to deal with work environments where not wearing pantyhouse seemed to constitute an act of such depraved immorality that immediate firing was hardly enough punishment.

So I've heard some good pantyhouse stories in my time. But - I must say, yours takes the cake. I bow to your valiant Pantyhouse Rescue Efforts of that day. You acquitted yourself heroically.

Including Circular Filing them at the end. A kinder fate than they actually deserved, IMO. You showed them mercy.