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It’s All In Your Underwear

December 18, 2008

I just picked a pair of my (soon to be ex) husband’s underwear up from the bathroom floor and put them in the laundry basket that was approximately 6 inches from where they lay. Now, I’m a slob, so I have no right to judge, nor would I.  But the thing is, this is my bathroom, really. My laundry basket.  We haven’t shared a room in months, as we’ve been lovingly and patiently navigating the next stage of our relationship. So I didn’t really want to pick up his underwear.  And it offered forth an unwanted flood of ruminations on underwear, and what it means. And what’s under the underwear, and what it means. And I came to the shocking realization that I think it all starts there. Foundation garment indeed – I think the foundation of my next relationship is all in “his” underwear, whoever he may be.  And it’s certainly in mine.

Back track now, to a conversation I had months ago with a friend, a man, who is contemplating the state of his own relationship.  He was putting away some laundry, and we were talking.  As he took one item after another and folded it, he paused with a pair of “her” underwear in his hand.  “What do you think of these?”  They were cute.  They were sort of sheer, some kind of earth tones, vaguely lacy string bikini. They were my idea of “granny panties” for women under 70.

That’s what I told him. He felt the same way.  Turns out, however, they were “her” idea of sexy panties. I didn’t ask what their sex life was like – none of my business – but from my perspective if one partner’s idea of sexy is the same as the other partner’s idea of “granny,” there are likely to be problems.

I’m a thong girl, and I’ll admit it outright. I like lacy, skimpy, sexy,  underwear.  I just do.  I like my body, a lot. I like that it gives me pleasure, and that it can give others pleasure.  It occurred to me this afternoon that I want my lover to look at my underwear – whether it’s on the bathroom floor, in the laundry basket or on my hot body – and think “yes, that is exactly my idea of sexy. Damn!” I want to be the exact personification of my lover’s fantasies – not because I changed myself to be that, but because we both had the exact same ideas when we met.

As I’ve often blogged before, mostly in wonderful back-and-forths with Suzanne, I also hate pubic hair. For whatever reason, I always have. (And, to be clear, I was raised by a hairy feminist and a gay guy in a house without television, and in hippie progressive intellectual private schools, so I don’t think it was media messaging, I think I like what I like because it’s what I like, the same way we all do.) That is also in my underwear.  It is a reflection of who I am. And not only do I make no apologies for it, I am also uninterested in compromising it. No pubic hair on me, and none on my lovers either, that’s just the way it has to be. And I don’t want that moment where I take of my sexy panties have someone gasp in horror. Or vice versa, don’t want to take someone’s off and think, “shit, how am I going to get out of this?”

I have heard people say that they can love – or at least accept – any variation of woman.  And that’s great, if it’s true.  But in my experience, most people’s deepest fantasies are in fact fairly narrowly held. And as I get closer to 40, I’m realizing how important they are.  Seriously.

I don’t want to meet a guy who can learn to like thongs and a clean shaven girl, I want to meet one who knows that’s what he wants, and is damned stunned to have met one that is the incarnation of his deepest held fantasies. Why? Because we spend all day talking to smart people, funny people, witty people, adventurous people – all the other things that I know matter in a relationship.  But that stuff is everywhere.  What makes real lovers different is that they come home to each other and live in the utterly intimate space of fantasies manifested.

I think I want to start there next time.  I think that on my first date with someone I am going to ask what kind of underwear they are wearing. (And there is a right answer, I cannot date someone who wears tighty-whities because I would know that our idea of sexy is too different.) Then I will ask them if they shave their pubes. (And there is a right answer.) Then I will ask them what kind of underwear they like on women. (And there is a right answer, which is not “whatever.”)

Once that’s out of the way, we can talk all night and probably have a blast – but I will know then and there if I’m spending time with my next really good friend, or my next lover.

I simply do not what to date someone who doesn’t know what they like.  Or who likes things that are not “me.”  And I do not want to be in a relationship with someone who thinks he can or should compromise on the things that turn him on. Whatever they are – he deserves his needs met, for real. As do I.

Because the truth is, all that other stuff – brains, humor, perspective – is the stuff of friends. And you can never have too many friends. But the stuff in your underwear, that’s the stuff of lovers, and I am too picky about that, and too clear about what I want, to waste my time  with someone who would be perfectly happy with any old woman they “got.” I want a lover who wants ME, exactly as I am, and is unbelievably psyched to realize that I exist.

And I want our underwear to lie in a pile 6 inches away from the laundry basket together.  And I want to pick it up and be so psyched about it.  I want to take it out of the dryer, clean, and wonder when is the next time that I get to pull the short, black, boxer briefs off of his hairless bits and live out all of the fantasies that I so rightly deserve.

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