Break on through to the other side...
You've been thunderstruck...

I just made you say "underwear"...

Why is buying underwear so damn difficult?

As a guy, I have a natural aversion to clothes shopping. It's pretty much just par for the course; or so I've been led to believe.

But, shopping for underwear is, by far, the worst aspect of an already detestable chore.

A couple months ago, Neil at Citizen of the Month, wrote about the difficulties he had deciding amongst tight whities, boxers, and boxer briefs. He was a bit perplexed. Which offer the best comfort, the best protection, the best coverage, and the best breathability and freedom for "the boys"?

Well, Neil, I hate to have to break this to you, but choosing amongst these three styles is the least of your worries. Disheartening? Sure. But it's a fact that you must face; and the sooner you do so, the better off you'll be.

Even though you may now have decided which style you like (for me, it's boxer briefs), you are now relegated to the task of choosing both the make and model.

Say whaaaa?!?!

Okay, think of it in terms of car shopping... choosing amongst an SUV, sedan, and sports car is akin to the tighty whitey/boxer/boxer brief decision that has already been made. But now that you have chosen "sports car," you must choose the maker such as Ford, Dodge, Chevrolet, etc. (Hanes, BVD, Fruit of the Loom, etc.) as well as a model such as Mustang, Charger, Corvette, etc. (Comfort, Comfort Flex, Classic, etc.). Oh, and "etc." is no exaggeration, let me tell you. There are far too many "models" for our own good.

But the difference between car and underwear shopping lies in the fact that you can test drive a car. Such a privilege does not exist with your underwear. Oh no. And, yes, I understand and agree fully with the rationale behind this decision. But it doesn't mean it sucks any less.

Comfort is of the utmost importance when dealing with your twig and berries. I'm sure comfort is just as important for women, as well; I only pray the "twig and berries" are removed from the equation. So knowing how your undies are going to fit would be appreciated. As it stands, though, we cannot know until we buy. And underwear is anything but cheap. A single pair can run as low as a couple dollars each to as high as $30 a pair. That's one helluva blind investment.

Trial and error in underwear sampling is a pain in the, well, not the ass so much as the other side. In eight years of donning boxer briefs, I have found a few that I can stand wearing but only one single pair that I truly love. It is the world's greatest pair of underwear. It fits perfectly, it cradles and protects, and the fabric in the legs does not quit (think how socks stretch after being worn for too long); but, at the same time, they are also not stiff and unforgiving like so many others. It's like wearing bicycle shorts... full flexibility and maximum breathability.

Comfortflex_1 As would be expected, of course, I have never found another pair of these beauties.

And, to boot, they're beginning to show their age. The first time I saw an age mark in this pair of undies, I was ready to cry. I was in shock and denial. No! These are supposed to be my indestructibles! The pair I would have until the day I died!

This is clearly not what was meant to happen. The Gods of Crotch Comfort are conspiring against me.

This week, I began a Web search, in earnest, for replacement pairs of my beloved Hanes Comfort Flex and found one seemingly reputable dealer that carries them, Beall's in Florida. They are even Amazon's official third-party supplier of this brand and style. Well, maybe not "official" so much as "only." Sadly, I was actually in a Beall's in Leesburg last September when I was visiting my grandmother. But, underwear shopping was the furthest thing from my mind at that time. Damn!

Now, I find myself debating the purchase. We're talking $15 for two pairs of undies before shipping charges. And, while the online description claims these are the same type, the picture looks very little like the pair I've come to know and love.

Do I? Don't I? Should I bronze this pair in memory of their honorable service?

My head hurts.

And the boys just ain't feelin' the love.