How times have changed. Back when I was growing up, women wore skirts and dresses, wearing shorts was considered daring, not for the faint-hearted. But now everyone, even women with hips as wide as a Good Humor truck, wears tights. Everywhere there’s a parade of butts and crotches, everyone seemingly oblivious to the fact that their anatomical details are on full display. Me, though I don’t get it, I recently joined the crowd, buying my own pair of black sausage casings to wear to Pilates. When I put them on and headed out the door, my wife said, “You can’t go out in those.”
“Because I can see your package,” she said, pointing you-know-where.
“Look,” I said, “the whole female population of this country is sauntering around with their packages showing, I don’t see why I can’t.”
“It’s different,” she offered.
I was about to say, “A package is a package,” but I realized we were headed into no-mans-land, so I just said, “See you later,” and headed off to Pilates.
Needless to say, none of the women blinked when Tony walked in. Usually I’m the only male so it’s seven to one, and though I never paid much attention to it, I didn’t ever see one female checking out my package.
So I’ve joined the tights-wearing crowd. I even have a couple pairs of form-fitting, stretchy-fabric yoga shorts that I wear in the warmer times of the year. So I’m good with tights. After Pilates, I’ll even wear them into Trader Joe’s or the Giant, I mean, c’mon.
But not my wife. She gives me a slightly-horrified look every time I head out the door. But times are changing. Recently, she even went and bought herself a pair of tights.
“Hey, you look good in those,” I told her.
“Thanks, but they’re just for in the house, I’m not wearing them outside.”
“Because I’m too old.”
“What? Is there a tag in them saying ‘Not to be worn by women over 65?’”
“No, it’s just a feeling I have. It’s just not proper.”
“Well, it’s proper for the rest of the world, I don’t see why it’s not proper for you.”
“Because.” She said, slamming the door on the conversation.
So though I’m far from being a Millennial, I feel kind of hip in my Pilates class, wearing my tights with the seven thirty-somethings wearing theirs. Like I’ve broken the tights barrier.
But I wonder what our kids will say when they see them. Will I get wrinkled-up noses and smirks of distaste along with remarks like, “Dad, you’re not wearing those?” I’ve already figured out my response, “Yup, I am, just like speed skaters and gymnasts in the Olympics—or pro football players–why am I any different?”
I can imagine rolls of the eyes and slowly-wagging heads in response. Then I plan to say, “Your mother even has a pair.”
To which I’ll inevitably get looks of shock like they just stuck their finger in a light socket.
Maybe I need to start a movement, “Men can wear tights, too!” the whole nine yards, buttons, placards, get Under Armour or lululemon to sponsor it, bring men’s tight-wearing out into the open, rid tight-wearing of the opprobrium and shame. Make it so mainstream, tight-wearing will even work for casual Fridays. You’ll see news anchors wearing them, on camera in skin hugging tights, packages on display for the world to see.
Now maybe politicians will draw the line at wearing tights, I mean, I don’t think you’d want to see them on the President or Mitch McConnell. Egads! Certainly not particularly appealing images and probably not appropriate for either the Capitol or White House. You don’t see anyone even wearing shorts in those places.
They probably don’t belong in churches or courtrooms either, Justice Sotomayor or Franklin Graham shouldn’t get caught dead wearing them, I’ll give you that.
But anyplace else on anyone else, it will be wide open.
So jump into your tights, men, and head for the barricades. The fight for tight-wearing freedom has just begun!