Monday, October 30, 2006

Request Challenge 1: P-----s

Imagine playing a C on a piano. Now imagine playing C# at the same time. A minor second is dissonant, and that's the first thing you figure out the first time you fuck around on a keyboard. Now. Imagine a pale, hairy old man, wearing nothing but an untied bathrobe and some dirty socks sitting on the piano bench, breathing through his mouth, legs akimbo, plumbing damp and dangling, picking his ear with one hand and pound a minor second with the other.

That's how I hear the word "panties."

There are combinations of phonemes that are obviously gross. Mung. Bubo. Those are horrible words. Even if "bubo" actually meant "attractive man who makes delicious brownies and lives in the money tree in my backyard," it would still be an ugly word. Ditto for the word I hate more than any other word, which is a word my grandmother used to use, and which was really completely secret outside my immediate family until I told it to a class of seventh graders to drive home a poetry lesson on Gertrude Stein and the importance of sound in poetry.

What I won't do for the children.

My point is that "panties" doesn't quite fall into that category. The "ies" suffix on the end of anything makes my butt clench a little, but I can say "floaties" or "boobies" without much of a problem. "Panties" is horrible on another level because it has nothing but embarrassing connotations. It's horrible in the way that fifth grade sex-ed is horrible, when your teacher is trying extraordinarily hard to be chipper and upbeat and honest about how blood is one day going to exit your vagina of its own accord, and she opens a pad and slaps it right on her knee, on top of her stretch pants, and says "Look! You just stick it right in your panties!"

But for real, that's the first thing I think of. Mrs. P and maxi wings fluttering on her thigh.

And then there's the diminutive sense to the word which seems gross to me. Men don't wear "panties." They, in fact wear "boxers." For Christ's sake. Women get the word "panties" for their underwear, but men get the word for a man who beats another man to pulp? If men get "boxers," I'm going to start calling mine "assassins," or "ninjas" or something.

I've got to do laundry--I'm down to my last pair of Lizzy Bordens.

I don't call my bras "shirties," so I'm not calling anything "panties." Can we just agree on saying "underwear" and call it a day? And work on finding me a bubo to marry?


Anonymous Rebecca said...

From here on out, my underwear will be referred to as ninjas.

I thank you for that.

12:59 PM  
Anonymous anonymous mom said...

i prefer "unmentionables". i feel so blanche dubois when i say "unmentionables" in a breathy whisper.

from "unmentionable" to worn on the outside - we've come a long way baby.

3:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is your grandma's word that you hated the most?

Inquiring childies want to learn.

10:28 PM  
Blogger What'sHerFace said...

Ha. Like I'm gonna fall for that. Me and those seventh graders are taking that word to the grave.

1:28 AM  
Anonymous brad said...

maybe the answer lies somewhere within the world of digital pets...

12:12 PM  
Blogger What'sHerFace said...


12:20 PM  
Blogger What'sHerFace said...

Besides, that person who wants to know the word is anonymous. Maybe I'd tell them if I knew they could be trusted...

12:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fair enough.

BUT ... since I haven't requested a topic yet, I request that your topic be a TREASURE HUNT of sorts. a "WORD HUNT," if you will -- You would basically and cleverly disguise (absolutely not a problem for you) that word in a dedicated posting.

If you're feeling nice, you could give us a clue ... or better yet, make us somehow earn the clues.

Is that lame?

You know, Sanborn's Kryptos has yet to be solved... Just throwing that out there.

11:04 PM  
Anonymous anonymous mom said...


4:21 PM  

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