Monday, April 16, 2018

I'm Back...And I'm Wearing Clean, White Underwear

I'M BACK!

I've missed all of you!

Most of all, I've missed the enjoyment I had writing humorous essays.

I can't remember the last time I wrote something funny?

I just got back from a visit to the Erma Bombeck Writer's Workshop where I was made an ERMA Ambassador this year! (I KNOW!) Fancy.

Anyhow, the workshop always has a writing competition that I submit to, so I thought I would share my losing entry here:


Clean, White Underwear

The best advice I’ve ever received is “make sure you have on clean underwear.”  My mother uttered those words daily to her busy family whenever we left the house. Travelling to ball games, church functions and social activities, the mantra became so entrenched that I often preempted her farewell with a nod and a “got it” as I left the house. One afternoon before a basketball game, I’d been instructed to wear my dark uniform, but at the last moment, was directed to wear white. Moms were called and everyone’s uniform made it to tip-off, including mine, with only one small problem: I had on clean underwear, but it was bright and colorful, and glowed as bright as the midday sun.

 It was eighth grade. I was embarrassed. And mortified. But it was before cell phones existed, so no evidence exists other than that now two-fold advice: “make sure you have on clean, white underwear.”

Lesson learned.

Truth be told, it is advice that I continue to carry into my fifth decade. I take pride knowing that my clean, white underwear accompanies me everywhere. I flirted with Victoria Secret when I was younger. Who doesn’t want to look sexy? On occasion. But I’ve always been more about comfort and coverage than wedges and strings.

Mom, now 80, continues to be vibrant and full of life. We travel together, share dining experiences and watch Britcoms on PBS. One day, she overheard me offer a friend, her well-worn suggestion.

“That’s good advice,” she remarked.

It is good advice, but as can happen over time, could stand to be improved upon. We were enjoying a weekend together at my place, when I went brought a load of laundry in the living room to fold. “Let me help,” said Mom.

“Sure,” I said. “Dig in.”

“You sure have a lot of drawers,” Mom said holding up the last pair of underwear. “I guess you did take my advice.”

“Sure did,” I said.

“Why so many?”

“For the last two years, every time I sneeze, laugh or cough, I leak. Now, in addition to the clean, white underwear I’m always wearing, I pack an extra pair for just such occasions.”

Silent for a moment before motioning me close. “You know they make products for when that happens,” she whispered.  “But I really like your idea better.”

We spent the rest of the day laughing until time to say goodbye. “Here,” I said handing her a package.
She opened it and laughed. “Thanks!”

It was a pair of clean, white underwear in her size. “There’s one to get you started,” I said as she walked past.

“Got it,” she nodded.

Lesson learned.

I'm happy to have this first post out after a year away!

Thanks for reading!

3 comments:

Donya said...

So fun and funny! And so like my mother's advice! (Who at 83, still carries extra underwear in her vehicle at all times.)
Although since I like to wear summer white-- and sometimes those things are now thin-- I wear clean, flesh tones to keep from having anything show. And, I have plenty of them, all in the same style, thanks to the same "issues." But since I travel a lot, I carry "those products," too. I wrote a little story about pulling out a wrapped pad in the airport when I was reaching for a package of pocket tissues in the midst of a runny nose. Turns out those "absorbent products" feel similar when swimming around in my purse.

Rajean said...

My Mom and your mom would be friends (both nurses) and went to the same Mom school. Grins.

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

My mom always taught us to always wear clean underwear, but it didn’t have to be white. I do remember wearing underwear with the day of the week on it, which, I am sure could be seen in white pants also. I guess I was a walking calendar.

Welcome back!

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