Much ado about underwears


As ridiculous as this  sound , many women in Nigeria doesn’t just understand what it means to be clean ‘inside out’, it just elude them , most are perplexed on how they should go about their ‘unmentionable’s business’ . They seem to know the right cloth to wear, the right accessories to adorn, but excuse me  , they are just plainly clueless when it comes to their undergarments  (pants and bra).

To anybody that has a budding relationship with English Language, you’ve probably have  heard of this phrase ‘don’t ever be caught pants down’ , whoever came up with this phrase had in mind ‘Nigerian women ‘ . Day after day  the western world creeps fastly into our system, it has taken over almost everything , ranging from clothes to shoes to bags to watches , even our hair has been gladly  replaced by the Brazilian , Indians of this world, now it is so  normal for a layman to  rattle the names of ‘JIMMY CHOO’, ‘ESTEE LAUDER ‘, XOXO’ , e.t.c  in the fashion world , but sadly enough one thing that has refused to be learnt and glued in our minds is our underwears . We simply don’t care about these most intimate garments that lie everyday next to our skins. What I see on most ladies are not pants nor bras , they are simply ‘rags’ to cover our p****c areas.

One funny thing about  the season am in now as a young lady is that I get to be naked often , when I say often , I mean regularly , and I get to see a lot of naked bodies  too , though not between the sheets but during the usual  wedding ceremonies , when we friends of the bride get to sleep in the same room. The morning after the engagement party is one show I perversely  look forward  to because there , we the fashionistas  will get to judge the best looking bra , the slinkiest  pants , the sexiest thong and woe betide whoever is found with the torn ones. The only one always excluded from this judgement is the bride because she will have wisely thrown to the bin ‘the scary undergarments’ in readiness to meet her groom.

Gone are the days when the sins of wearing torn, dirty undies are easily forgiven by husbands, but times are changing , it has become an offence not restricted to the hubby’s jurisdiction  , but to the general public.  It is embarrassing enough to have, what we call ‘unmentionables ‘sneak a peep’ outside here and there from ladies’ clothes, but it is shameful and unforgivable for the underwears  to be dirty or torn.

Bus rides in Lagos  make me squeamish  and uncomfortable  , not because of the unruly ,eccentric behaviour of the drivers and conductors , because I am kind of used to that , but it is always nauseating   to be subjected to the unholy ,pornographic display of pants and bra . Many times , I have to close my eyes and take a journey into the spirit , so as not to throw up at the sight of these irritating pieces called undergarments .

Before you go ahead to cast me as a self righteous soul , I know it’s  extremely hard being a woman in this age especially in Nigeria  , but no one is asking you to do  designers’ with these undergarments .It’s certainly no one business if you buy pants from ‘Victoria Secret’ or bras  from ‘La zenza’, just be like me and buy regularly from that woman that sells at dozen prize in Balogun market.

p.s: this piece was originally published in NEXT ON SUNDAY on November 15,2010.this is my unabridged copy.

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