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Active Bottoms

Active Bottoms

I’m not going to lie to you—I just bought a pair of workout shorts that promoted “tummy control”. Cuz if I can wear shorts that have a “power mesh insert” that will help me discover the figure I never knew I had—I’m buying them. I’m buying seven. And besides, if you can shove your power into my mesh and my insert—I want to date you.

Look, I’m all for clothing that has tags attached to it that read: “You will unmistakably discover that our exercise apparel offers you an unparalleled feeling of control and support, allowing you to feel confident in every shape-defining step you take.” This is better than a Ph.D—right?  The literature also states:  “Stretch fabric for a sleeker look.”

Sure, why not.  Hell, give me a stretch fabric poncho with matching stretch fabric moccasins—now that would look sharp at an employee Christmas party.

A few weeks ago I was in the department store Ross, Dress for Less. And like all hard working, tax paying, law-abiding lesbians, I started out in the men’s section.  After debating whether to get briefs or boxers—I decided on an, egg timer. I then strolled over to the women’s athletic wear and found myself in the section labeled: Active Bottoms—which used to be my stage name. And that’s where I discovered the figure enhancing, visually illusional—yeah, I just made up that word–body sculpting exercise shorts. There were lots of them in many colors even in chipotle. So I grabbed 8 different pairs—the dressing room limit—and headed over to try them on.

The lighting in the dressing rooms is always horrific–even in Guam. And this didn’t help matters as I stared at myself in the mirror thinking—I look like a muffin.  But as soon as I put on the shape enhancing fabric, I was transformed from a muffin into a long and slender crêpe. My new attitude grew as I continued to try on other metamorphic shorts. I felt so good I started to sing and dance around like Liza Minnelli in Cabaret. What good is sitting alone in your room.  I belted out. Come hear the music play. Life is a Cabaret old chum, come to the Cabaret. I crooned as I twirled around flinging my legs up with wild abandon until—I kicked myself in the head and then was led out of the building by the security guard.

As I walked to my car I realized what I had purchased was going to change my life for about a day. I’m not that naïve; I know it takes more than just a power mesh insert to feel good about myself. It’s really about inner beauty, exercising and only drinking 2 beers for breakfast instead of 5. So don’t judge me, America. I just turned 51 and I’m proud of my love handles. And when I take off my tummy-controlled shorts, I affectionately shout to my lover–look out below! Life is a Cabaret old chum, come to the Cabaret.

Book Monica Palacios for your upcoming university and cultural events that focus on: LGBT, Chicana/Latina, Theater, Women, Gender, Performance, Race, Class, Sexuality, Vegetarian Food.
This post first appeared in Epochalips in June of 2010.

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2 comments

  • Catherine Paplin says:

    I love you, Monica! Thanks. I ALWAYS start out in the men’s section….but finish in the women’s, heh. Catherine

  • Wallis Stern says:

    O my, Monica! I really DO identify…and I’m even admitting it publicly LOL! Very funny piece, for which I thank you.
    Active Bottoms of the Lesbian Nation UNITE! Hmmm….I feel a t-shirt slogan coming on LOL!
    Thanks for the laugh. I needed it!
    Best regards,
    xoW