Sunday, January 3, 2016

How Do You Hold Your Pants Up?


Highlands Ranch, CO

Belt or Suspenders? Age old question. My answer is "both". Not at the same time, of course. I wear a belt with dress and casual pants, and I almost always wear suspenders with work jeans. They give me more freedom of movement and help avoid "plumber's butt".

During our Christmas visit with my son and his family, my youngest grandson Ben (oops, not anymore, he now has a younger brother, Daniel, age eight weeks) became fascinated with my suspenders that he called overalls. We had a discussion about the difference between suspenders, overalls, and coveralls. Having gotten that straight, Ben protested vehemently that he would NEVER wear suspenders!!! This protest repeated several times over the next few days. Finally, the challenge was on; "Me thinks thou dost protest too much". I got together with his two older brothers, and we hatched a plan. I would buy suspenders for all of them and then we would all wear them to church on Sunday. We would shame Ben into wearing them.

Shopping for boy's suspenders on the Saturday after a Friday New Year's Day was an unintended adventure. All the usual places had them available on–line, not so in the stores. At Wal–Mart, Target, JCPenney; the clerks looked at me like I was crazy. At Wal–Mart, I checked out adult suspenders, hoping they might be adjusted small enough to fit the boys. That idea didn't work.

I was being drawn in a direction I didn't want to go ... a shopping mall. I hate them and everything they represent, but occasionally a man must rise above his principles. Today was that kind of day. I soon found myself in Park Meadows Center, an upscale mall with all the overpriced department stores packed with their kind of people (those who pay extra to get torn jeans). I struck out at the anchor stores: Macy's, Nordstrom, Dillards. However a clerk at Macy's suggested I try the kid's store "Janie and Jack". I never heard of it but that means nothing. Of course, it was at the far end of the mall, and I was already a million miles away from my car. But this had become a quest, and I refused to quit.

At Janie and Jack, my query was rewarded with "Yes, what size?". What size??? Suspenders don't have sizes; they are adjustable! I was so happy to hear yes, I didn't care about the rest. So I bought one size 8-10, and two size 6-8.

I followed my trail of breadcrumbs back to my car and headed home. By now it was almost dark and my quick errand had turned into a full afternoon shopping expedition. When I got home, Ben was still away at a friend's house, but Andrew and Josh were home and eager to get on with this game. They had fun trying on their suspenders while waiting for Ben to return.

Ben was surprised and disappointed that I had gotten the suspenders. He thought I was joking. Protesting resumed but this time his brothers were wearing their suspenders and got all over him about being a wuss.

This morning we all got dressed for church wearing our suspenders. Sunday church dress is pretty casual here. I only had the one pair I brought from home. Adam wore a good looking pair that have been decorating the back of his dresser drawer for several years. Andrew and Joshua looked great in their new suspenders. So did Ben, but he fussed a lot.

The boys got the best of me, however. They attend Sunday school classes and do not accompany adults to church service. Being out of sight and out of reach, they just kept their jackets on.


Gramps, Joshua, Andrew, Ben, Adam


So here is the question. Why are suspenders plural?

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