Monday, April 8, 2013

Pants Adjustment

Today I saw something I rarely see.

It was in the 80s today, temperature-wise. Today happened to mark the first day of the year when I actually felt uncomfortable, at times, due to the heat -- or more accurately, the sun bearing down on my head. Many people were wearing shorts; however, due to the unexpectedly abrupt increase in the warmth, a great many, myself included, still had on long pants. I did decide to wear a t-shirt, before I knew how warm it was outside. Lucky guess.

As I was walking on campus, I passed by a number of students who were taking advantage of the balmy conditions and were hanging around on the grass. In one small group, a girl was standing on the outside of it. Presumably thinking she was discrete, with no one nearby behind her to notice, she engaged in some pretty obvious pushing, pulling, tucking etc of her shorts from the back side.

It interested me, not out of any perverted interest, but because such "adjustment" is not something you see girls do often. They're far more discreet than guys, who will often jostle themselves in quite public places because frankly, fixing the discomfort takes precedence over being 'socially correct.'

It caused me to think of this image:

Which I think captures the cultural context -- because girls are so much...shall we say, "better behaved?" than guys, it's given many of us the impression that some bodily functions simply don't occur in that gender. When was the last time you ever caught a girl in the act of farting? (On rare occasion you might see one belch) But us guys even make jokes to the extent of intentionally farting on each other. Not that this is wrong, or anything. It simply reveals a different attitude towards bodily functions. By and large, guys think they're funny. Now, we know females have the same basic physical needs that we males least in theory...and that's why it's a joke. It's also a joke because those who live in our society know exactly what it's referring to. The mystery of how women manage to cultivate an appearance, in the eyes of men, of being superior physical beings not afflicted with yucky stuff like farts and poop, which have the potential to be turn-offs.

For this reason, I viewed the girl I saw tugging on her pants in about the same way that a bird-watcher might react to an uncommon species of bird -- as a rarity that few people ever encounter. It made me chuckle.

~ Rak Chazak

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