I went to Target today with the goal of finding a maxi-dress. This is a dress that (ideally) is made of cotton like a t-shirt and goes down to your feet, but is lightweight enough to wear in the summertime without feeling like you’re stewing your giant porkchop haunches off. It’s very roomy and only a little hippie-ish, and apparently, no one in St. Louis carries non-ugly versions for cheap.
So I didn’t leave with a maxi-dress, but since it was Target, I did leave with one regular dress, a bag of Hanes undershirts, a bra, razorblades, and Shaun of the Dead on DVD. I’m planning on going to New Orleans in October and Seattle shortly after, so probably this should be the week that I start scaring myself out of spending so much bloody money.
While I was in the bra section and thinking about what a shame it is that Victoria’s Secret can’t manufacture a garment that costs less than $40 and is capable of lasting a full 6 months (because come on, it’s not like I have militant boobs or anything), a family of three walked behind me. The mother said to the maybe 3-year-old boy, “Hold my hand and close your eyes until we’re through the underwear section.”
I have no idea if she was kidding, but his eyes were closed and they were holding hands when I turned around, so I assume it was legit. And I admit that this is based purely on my own assumption, but I’m willing to bet that she’s just fine with allowing her kid to watch violent cartoons and/or play similar video games (3-year-olds can play video games now, just ask my nephew who will pwn you on Wii Boxing). Now, I’m all for putting limits on things a young child sees, especially when it comes to gratuitous sex and violence. You don’t want to fuck up their brain too badly, at least not until they’re in elementary school. But not wanting your kid to even look at underwear? Lady, I’m being straight with you here…that’s not going to stop him from growing up too soon, okay? It’s going to turn him into an adult panty fetishist who maxes out his credit card by ordering vending machine goods from Japan off the Internet.
Some parents have some really messed up priorities. It’s okay for a kid to eat a separate meal every night since they only ever want chicken nuggets, but at the same time their parents are spending $6 a gallon for organic milk. Or the kid enters preschool as a hardcore Ultimate Fighting fan, but any show that airs two male characters kissing is verboten (as far as I’m concerned, Ultimate Fighting is way more gay than two dudes kissing on the lips). Wouldn’t it be better for your child to see two people relating to one another in a consensual sexual situation than for them to see those same two people beating the shit out of one another? Which example do you think would more likely result in a functioning adult capable of expressing themselves without causing injury to everyone they meet?
And underwear isn’t sex. Based on the sex I’ve had, underwear is more of a barrier than an accelerant. For me, underwear serves a practical purpose. I wear it to prevent chafing, to defy gravity, and to maintain a private level of decency that has nothing to do with sex. The sex kind of underwear is completely impractical, both because of its cost (astronomical amounts of money for tiny little scraps of synthetic fabric to wedge up my ass is not the kind of money I want to spend) and because of its retail presence (you have to go to special stores for sex underwear, which means they don’t sell it at Target).
Preventing your child from seeing practical underwear at a big box retailer is just fucking weird, and tells me more about your sex life than I care to know.