Christmas morning and my brother’s and I are sitting around opening our stockings. I get soaps, batteries, toothbrushes. They get soaps, batteries toothbrushes. One year my mom went with a camping theme and got us all travel clocks, headlamps and battery powered minuscule radios. It was always pretty practical stuff once we got past the age of 10. But one thing that never changed through the years was my brother’s getting underwear in their stockings.
Is this odd now that they are in their thirties? I thought so, until I asked a few friends and realized that all of their mom’s still got them underwear. Maybe not in their stockings, but at some point over the year. Most guys I know would wear tattered underwear and spend that six dollars on a six pack or save up for something more exciting than a new pair of boxers. Is this because they know their moms are going to be supplying them with underwear? Or are their moms filling the void because they know their sons won’t do so and the mothers cringe at the thought of what their sons might end up wearing were they left to their own devices?
Maybe I find it odd because, as a woman, if my mom got me some underwear, it would be the kind with enough fabric to cover a small car. Boxers and the like are different. The most racy pair I’ve seen were silk with hydrants on them (and are for sale for $5 if you click here). Men’s underwear are straightforward (stripes, polka dots and solids) or cute and funny with some prints. You don’t need to consider the multitude of different styles that women are faced with (low-rise, boy cut, thong, g-string, mid-rise, etc.), and that’s before even approaching the idea of fabric choice, color, print and so on.
Maybe because of the staggering number of choices and the inherent difference in our preferred underwear my mom stopped buying me any to open on Christmas morning. Maybe at some point I rolled my eyes. And most likely, my brother’s didn’t.
But I still think it’s a little weird that my mom buys my brother’s underwear.