When you start packing on the pounds, there are signs. Your pants fit too tight. Your button down shirts no longer button around your midsection. Your friends and relatives start saying things like “So, your gym membership is still active right?”
But in my life, as per usual, things were much less subtle.
One of my co-workers is leaving the newspaper so on Friday we all took her out. I had to pick Will up from daycare and then meet MJ halfway between the bar and her work. I arrived first and as I was taking Will out of his carseat he threw one of his toys on the ground. I squatted down to pick it up, but lost my balance and staggered backward, eventually falling to the ground in a bizarre cross-legged position.
And that’s when I heard the sound of humiliation and shame.
I didn’t have to look down to know what it was. The draft I was feeling on my inner thighs told me all I needed to know. A glance at my nether regions showed what I suspected: my jeans ripped from my coin purse all the way down to my right knee. Right there in my company’s parking lot. Thank God my commando days are long since gone.
The first thing I did was check to see if any of my half-dozen or so co-workers had seen what just transpired. It looked like I was in the clear. In addition to freely showing off my junk, my second major issue was a cranky 2-year-old — who had just impatiently sat through a 35-minute car ride — who now had to be put back into his car seat and driven to K-mart so his fatass father can buy a new pair of pants.
And this leads me, dear readers, to my third and final problem: going to K-mart with my barn door open.
But what choice did I have? I needed pants. I couldn’t send Will in to buy them and I wasn’t about to leave him unattended in a K-mart parking lot while I went and purchased some khakis. So I parked the car, grabbed Will, pulled my shirt down as far as it would go, and marched into the store.
Walking into a retail outlet with your cock & balls on display is enough to attract attention. Now combine that with the fact that I was holding a 2-year-old child who was screaming like a maniacal banshee. Thankfully, two things assisted me in this potentially humiliating experience. First, as some of you might remember, I’ve ripped open the crotch of my pants in the past while curling so I’ve gotten used to the embarrassment. Second, I severely underestimated the sketchiness of K-mart’s ordinary clientele on any given Friday night, which means I wasn’t even close to the oddest person there.
The trick is to hold your head up high and proceed confidently, as if nothing is wrong and you’re sporting the newest fad. Only two people noticed me and had the fortitude to ask me what happened. I muttered “rabid wolverine” at the first guy, never breaking stride toward the men’s department. The second person was an older woman who stopped me and said “Son, you have a problem with your pants.” Really?? As if I didn’t know a thin layer of cotton was the only thing separating Capt. Happy from all the shoppers looking for the Blue Light Special. So I shot back with “The only problem with these pants is that they’re not crumpled up on your bedroom floor.”
Just kidding. I didn’t say that. I gave her a round house to the skull instead.
Don’t get me wrong, being a fat guy whose pants buckle under the weight of my ever-increasing girth is helpful for blogging purposes. But it’d be nice to wear clothes that don’t suffer catastrophic failure at inopportune times.