Chuck (charlesofcamden) wrote,

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Too Big Yet Not Big Enough

I’m here today to discuss that most mundane of shopping tasks – the purchasing of everyday, utilitarian underwear, although I could also subtitle this post as “Another Reason Not to Shop at Macy’s.”

When Marshall Field’s became Macy’s a while back, I was only too happy to finish paying off my account with them and cancel my credit card, though I will admit that I still wander into their State Street store from time to time – it’s just so darned convenient given where I work in the Loop. Shortly after the changeover to Macy’s, I was pleased to learn that they actually carried underwear in my size, which wasn’t the case when it was Field’s. What’s my size, you ask? Damn, I knew someone was going to ask that. Well, these days I can use either a 46 or a 48, which is just a little beyond what most places carry. But at our brand new Macy’s, the underwear rack displayed a complete line from small to medium to large to really large, and I happily stocked up.

But underwear, like all other works of humanity, must eventually fall to ruins with the passage of time, repeated laundering, and everyday friction. So I left home a little early this morning and stopped at my friendly neighborhood Macy’s to buy a few new 3-packs. As you may perhaps have heard coming, it was not to be.

They still carry some sizes, to be sure. Small – check. Medium – check. Large – check, to a point. In the Jockey brand aisle (aka, the cheap stuff), they went up to size 44, with a hard stop right there. No wait, let me correct that – they had two 3-packs in size 54 (hence the title of this post).

OK, so I couldn’t get the cheap stuff this time. There were still aisles and aisles of more expensive brands, so in I dove. Alas, the story was the same with regard to sizes – a hard stop at 44, if not smaller. Frankly, some of these brands had rather alarming photos on the packages that made me only too glad they didn’t have my size. By “alarming,” I don’t mean that they were too racy for my taste or anything. No, I mean alarming in the sense that some of these brands seemed to have been tailored so as to hoist, scrunch, funnel, and otherwise reshape a part of the male anatomy that, IMHO, should be either treated with TLC or left the heck alone! A few of these products, or at least the photos from the packages, looked as if they would be more at home in a Bondage Boutique on North Halsted (not that there’s anything wrong with that) than at eye level for the casual downtown shopper.

In retrospect, one could make a case that Macy’s wanted to open its new store best-foot-forward and fully stocked. But it’s been a while, so now we’re getting a good look at Business As Usual. As for me… well, I still need to buy underwear. Hmmm… is there a Big Man’s Store on North Halsted? And if I saw a store there with that name, would they be selling clothing? So many questions…

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