I freely admit it. I am not a person known for bravery. I think I have written of the time that our son Michael was down from Denver for a visit with friends for the wine festival in Colorado Springs. His friends got back to the house before Michael, we were asleep and they didn’t have a key. They went around the house and knocked on the door to the deck off our bedroom. Startled awake I bravely cowered behind my wife on my side of the bed and tossed a decorative pillow at the door blinds shakily calling out “Go!” On another talked about occasion, my wife and I had gone down to Lake Pueblo with some friends to spend the weekend on our sailboat. My wife and I were berthed in the main cabin while our friends had the v-birth which had more privacy and offered an accordion door. In the middle of the night, I was awakened by a sound and looked around momentarily forgetting where I was. All of a sudden, a light appeared about the cracks of the accordion door as one of our friends was using the head. Disoriented from waking suddenly, I called out in a falsetto only slightly less shrill than a shriek, “Who’s there?!?”
I like to feel that I learn from experience and have slowly built my courage up to an acceptable level over the years. I am even much better with heights which once terrified me. My mom was found of telling people about going to local high school football games when I was just a wee lad and rooting on the Orangeburg Indians (now the Orangeburg Wilkinson Bruins). We would sit on the first row of the bleachers with me holding on to Daddy’s necktie with a death grip that almost caused my father to pass out because we were up too high for me. But as I said, I am much better now. I can even climb up to the roof of my house and clean the gutters with only minimum butterflies.
However, there is one phobia that I cannot shake which reared its head as I entered adulthood and refuses to back down. Bras. Not bras to be found in the laundry or on my wife, those are perfectly acceptable (and in the case of my wife rowrrrr). No, its when I am out shopping in a department store with or without my wife and I pass the women’s undergarment department with its petrifying WALL OF BRAS.
I cannot say why this disturbs me so. I have never had a problem going to the store on an errand for my wife and filling a makeup, pantyhose, or feminine hygiene request – even when I had to ask for help from a female employee or was singled out at the register for a price check. In these instances, I am both poised and brave. But show me the women’s undergarment department displays and I want to run.
I am unphased by the considerably more handsome young men in much better shape than I modeling men’s briefs or boxers on men's underwear packaging, but there is something just not right about how bras are displayed. On the occasions I must pass by bras in a store, I feel that the array of cups are casting their unnerving glares in my direction, looking through me. And the signs on the displays, have they no shame?!? Padded, strapless, underwire, on-and-on a needless bombardment of information that I don’t want to know. I mean, really, boxers are not offered in underwire or any other options other than plaid or solids, and if men want padding they just use a rolled up pair of socks (I hear).