Last week I walked down Franklin Street for a meeting. A man was working on his car, crouched on the street to get under the front seat. From his hat, I know he’s an A’s fan, but otherwise I only know that he needs a belt, more effective underwear, and perhaps a bit more time in the sun.
Gone are the days when my horror at seeing someone’s half-naked butt in a public place was confined to the ranks of America’s plumbers. As indignant as I may have felt at the time, I’ve come to think of that as the golden era of the Mostly Clothed.
It seems that any time my husband and I happen out of the house to spend some tine in the world, one or the other of us will go into “red alert.” We notify the other verbally with either “BBC” or “GBC” and an eye dart to mark the location. (That’s Boy Butt Crack” or “Girl Butt Crack” if you didn’t already guess.)
The first time I witnessed this post-plumber phenomena I was at a once-favorite Irish pub in northern Illinois, where we lived for quite a time. A young woman, a friend of a friend, was seated at the bar and her lacy t-bar panties were hugging her hips, while her pants lagged behind at mid-butt level. Her friend and I looked at each other in shock and with some admiration. “Wow. That Emily sure is something!”
At the time, I had no idea this would become a trend. In the intervening years, I have thought that surely things would even out, that the low-on-the-hip pant fashion would be met by lower full coverage underwear and belts to keep America beautiful. Or maybe to make America great again, which would explain the random republican talking points.
Alas, 15 years later and it appears there’s a new moon on the horizon and it’s one with some real staying power.