The Rise and Fall of British Pants.
I hope, Dear Readers, you have not been unduly concerned about my relative silence. I have indeed been struck dumb for a brief period by a most extraordinary event that has been the source of great consternation in this green and pleasant land. There has been a national scandal of truly tremendous proportions which has stirred the nation into vile and voracious argument. I have been lying prostrate in my bed, shocked to the core, by some terrifying news; for there has been unleashed upon the general public the breaking news that one of our most revered and distinguished broadcasters, a bastion of the BBC has soiled his pants…sorry his reputation … with the revelations that…
Jeremy Paxman’s pants aren’t giving him sufficient support!
Now I know “pants” in America actually means “Trousers” but in the UK pants are undergarments with a multitude of other names such as knickers, boxers, g-strings, hipsters, jockeys, y-fronts, thongs, briefs, shreddies and if your particularly common; cheese graters. In other words; they are items of clothing that cover your botty.
Or not as the case may be.
Because the fashion seems to becoming somewhat “aerated” over recent years. Why has this happened I just don’t know. Did it begin when Sharon Stone supposedly revealed all in Basic Instinct? Maybe. But the arrival of thongs has been the curse of womankind ever since. Pants just keep getting smaller and smaller and you know what... It’s a pain in the arse (literally) if you’ve got a big botty like mine. Yep, I like my derriere well and truly covered.
In fact the majority of women hate thongs because they are just so damned uncomfortable. If men were made to wear the equivalent, which is like wearing an overly tight elastic band, I’m sure they wouldn’t be wearing them just to keep the good wife happy.
And do men actually wear G strings? Please do tell. I’m happy to receive comments on this subject ( However, gentlemen readers please state if you’re extra small, small, medium, large, extra large or extra, extra large - as it may have an affect on the speed of my reply) Fortunately, Mr Turley doesn’t wear thongs and thank goodness for that ’cos I’d just die laughing. (I mean I like turkeys but I’m not keen on the dressings - except stuffing of course.) The only man fit to wear a g-string is Rod Stewart because any man who can parade on the stage in leopard skin leggings must also have a keen sense of inappropriate attire in the nether regions.
I do however have to admit to actually having bought a pair of Union Jack patterned thongs for my friend’s husband…. But this is because they already had 5 children and I thought it might be a good idea if she could see him coming.
Of course there are number of reasons why I DO like thongs and here they are…
1.With some sticks and dried beans you can make an extremely effective catapult. And if you wear your thong you can easily gets past security at the House of Commons and give Mr Brown the pummelling he deserves. (Keep the beans in your bra and say you’ve got lumpy breasts and that way you’ll avoid an intimate body search.)
2.Stuck on the motorway? You can easily repair your fan belt without any help whatsoever.
3.If you’re doing the DIY you can always use them as an impromptu face mask. (Make sure they’re clean though or you might have even more difficulty breathing.)
4.You’ve entered the three- legged race at the school sports day but they’ve run out of rope; whip off your thong, wrap them around your ankles and you’ll be away…..
5.When you’re out playing “jungle” in the local woodland you can cut them at one end tie them between two trees at ground level and make a useful tripping device. (And if you’ve got plenty of time you can dig a hole too and cover it with ferns; the kids won’t know what’s coming and I guarantee you’ll have a
Anyway back to our esteemed presenter Mr Jeremy Paxman the host of Newsnight and University Challenge. You know, I’ve grown rather fond of Jeremy over the years. His arrogant, cynical attitude towards politicians, notables and indeed students has increasing appeal to me. (Not that I exhibit any of these traits myself; I’m a shy, sensitive gal.) I concur with Jeremy that most of these politicians need a right good whipping (and, of course, as we all know most students need a right good whipping just to stay awake.) In fact Jeremy makes me feel a little weak at the knees. (I’m only talking figuratively here as obviously with my somewhat stout disposition it’s a physical impossibility to be “weak at the knees”. Indeed, I was recently offered a position with the English Rugby Squad but I declined on the basis that they offered me my own changing room.)
You see Jeremy still has principles and in doing so he has now become a Crusader for the quality of Marks and Spencer’s underpants; a noble endeavour indeed. Because despite M & S protestations everyone knows that their goods aren’t the quality they used to be. No longer can you rely on your pants to stay up; instead you may find them round your ankles at a dinner party. And one thing us Brits like is security; we like to have faith in our pants; we want to know that they will withstand the test of time, an overdose of brussel sprouts and indeed invasion. You may recall the famous speech by Winston Churchill;
“We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the field and in the streets, we shall fight in our pants and our vests, we shall fight in our socks and long johns; we shall never surrender.”
A truer statement has never been made. Although, I have to admit I just don’t fancy Jeremy anymore; I’d always imagined him in Calvin Kleins and not holey, saggy M&S pants…..
On a final note, last year Jeremy gave a wonderful speech on the decline of British broadcasting which didn’t receive the publicity it should have. You can read in full at;
To which I say; well done Jeremy; keep the good work (and your pants) up.
© Jane Turley 2008