Tuesday, March 04, 2008
THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING PANTS
Until his mid-forties, pants had always played a passive role in his longstanding and uneventful wearer/garment relationships, for example his various pants over the decades slipping on, buttoning, zipping and belting like a breeze though summer air, with a minimum of effort and no concentration, leaving him free to think about what stylish shirt, what fancy tie, with no unsettling stomach muscle contraction, no semipermanent exhalation, no extended dancing on one leg and then the other, no forcing last year's pantslegs up slowly over thighs like filling a sausage skin with another sausage (it wasn't all new muscle) until one day the sausage complex threatened to split in the advent of ubersausage and he had to get new pants.
He was who he'd always been; how could there be this much more of him and who else was he kidding? It was all some kind of temporary quirk; in the cellulite of his mind's eye he kept ordering the same size pants he'd ordered the previous time, but they kept getting smaller and smaller until let's face it he couldn't stay dressed unless he didn't breathe. So he didn't stay dressed. Gave it up. T-shirts. No need to sacrifice himself upon the pyre of fashion, at least in a permanent pants kind of way. He needed another way, a temporary sacrifice, on the prominent altar of himself.
So at last he did what any man in his situation would do: he thought about running. Not away, not from, but toward: toward a future more like his distant past, toward the slim trim him he once was and would be again, the him that awaited still, somewhere inside that belly ahead on the jogging path; no need to buy all new sizes, he was the same dimensions as before underneath there somewhere and that's where he was going: beyond, to within; back into the lightness of being, of being containable by a waistline that wouldn't have to run anymore, he'd think about it after dinner.
This is not autobiographical.