The Curious Case of Bedroom Bottoms
Ihave a friend who is a justice of the peace in the mainland, and when I ate out with him I asked what cases he’d heard recently.
“Same old same old—pilfering, purloining, peculation,” he said.
“Can you think of any interesting ones?” I asked him.
“Oh yeah,” he said after some thought, “There was this crazy case of voyeurism.”
“Really? Peeping at hot girls in the shower?”
“No. Peeping at ugly men in the john. They caught him red handed in a public bathroom.”
“So, is the gay lifestyle becoming common i n the mainland?” I inquired curiously.
“That’s what I thought at first.” My pal said, “I looked at him sitting there sulking with no defense attorney and kind of felt sorry for him, I asked him if he wanted me to appoint one for him, but he declined. He wanted to defend himself in court. I told him it was best not to fly by the seat of his pants, but he insisted. He said no lawyer knew more about his case than he did.”
“Know what?” I was growing more curious with each passing moment.
The old judge debriefed me on the situation, “Underpants!” He exclaimed, “Said he was the self- proclaimed ‘ Sultan of Skivvies,’ with his own factory and everything.”
“Which factory? If it’s a famous brand, I might have heard of it here in Hong Kong.”
“He has a factory, but he said he didn’t have his own brand but that he was just the underwear supplier to every brand in the world. But if he had to do retailing too, he would have no time to do any research.”
“Research on the planet’s perfect underpants! Said he wouldn’t give up even a single opportunity to check out the dudes’ jockey shorts.” The judge explained.
“But it’s just underwear. I mean there are just so many kinds that a person could wear.”
“That’s what I said. But then the defendant got his shorts in a knot. He looked at me with this look of contempt and told me I didn’t know what the flippity jibbits I was talking about, which really cheesed me off. I told the guy he’d better explain the profundities of the underwear and fast, or the only undershorts he was going to be wearing would be the ones with black and white stripes.”
“So, what did he say? That silk skivvies are the best?” I asked.
“He said that no material could ever be more comfortable than good cotton.”
“Cotton?” I said incredulously. “Everyone’s unmentionables are
cotton fiber. What’s so special about that?”
“Not regular cotton, he said you need to use Sea Island cotton. Better yet, Egyptian cotton.” The judge said.
“What is Sea Island cotton?” “He explained that it’s an American product, and he said that only the kind that’s at least two inches long can pass QC, and that every length of material has to be certified by the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists.”
“What’s Egyptian cotton?” “It’s even finer than Sea Island cotton, and the material made from it is smoother than silk.”
“How could anything made of cotton be better than silk?” I questioned skeptically.
“He said it depends on the count.”
“What do you mean ‘count’?” I asked confused.
“The amount of cotton fiber used in every square inch of cloth is called ‘ count.’ Normally cloth has a twenty count.”
“So, what about Egyptian cotton?”
The old judge sat there in front of his steak and coffee relating what the “Sultan of Skivvies” had told him, “Every square inch is a two hundred count. Every count is a double weave.”
“Wow!” I exclaimed.
“Oh yeah,” the judge said with a shake of the head, “But, I didn’t appreciate mister ‘ Sultan of Skivvies’ letting me have it like that. And in front of the whole courtroom. Then he had the nerve to ask me if one color of cloth made into five different styles sold better or if five different colors made into one style sold better.”
“What did you say?”
“Of course, I chose the five different colors. The guy said that my answer was ‘ really, totally, completely, absolutely and all otherwise, just plain wrong.’ He said that when people get used to wearing white they will never consider another color, and that one color made into five different styles was the better seller.” The judge related.
“Did he tell you what color most men wear?”
“That’s the reason why he was in the bathroom ogling the undershorts. He said, according to his statistics, black was the best- selling color. But lately red had become increasingly popular, and it was all because of a local superstition. He said that in Cantonese the phrase ‘daai hung, daai fu,’ meaning literally ‘big red big pants,’ sounds like another phrase ‘daai hung, daai fu,’—‘big red big money.’ Therefore, now they all want to wear the red ones, so that they can get rich by the color of their undies.”
I couldn’t help busting a gut. “So, what about the girls? Does he also have research on women’s panties?”
“I’m a judge. I have to maintain a stoic demeanor. How could I ask him such a question with a straight face? But a clerk sitting in the courtroom, who just happened to be a woman, couldn’t contain herself, so she asked him
if a woman’s bra and panties should be the same style and color?”
“What did he say?”
“He said it depended on the market.”
“What’s that got to do with markets?” I asked.
“It has everything to do with markets. He said in America, the big manufacturers like Triumph sell so many bras that, who has time to worry about the panties?”
“Different women, different demands…” I said.
“That’s what the clerk girl said.” The judge replied.
“What did the ‘ Sultan of Skivvies’ have to say about that?” I asked.
The judge replied, “He said that was another level entirely. If a girl has the money to spend at Victoria Secrets, then of course the bra and panties have to be a set, because it looks good when a girl takes it all off for her husband.”
“Yeah, he’s got a point there,” I concurred.
“But, then the ‘ Sultan of Skivvies’ looked right at the clerk girl and said, ‘You’d never have a chance like that in your life.’ She was so peeved by the remark that she just about ran to the witness stand to choke the guy to death!”
I was just about to split my sides, “So what was your final judgment?”
He laughed and said, “He knew so much industry insider jargon that I just pronounced the guy innocent and let him go free. And besides…” he added “I haven’t had a good laugh like that in a long time!”
( From Anold Monk from a Lonely Temple , SDX Joint Publishing, Translation: Chase Coulson)