Monday, January 09, 2006
Here they are folks! The boxers that
control my destiny!
So I was getting divorced and living alone a long ways from any family members in 1992 or 1993. Most of my underwear were getting pretty torn up from the constant use. I was at a Target store at the mall in Sioux City when I decided to buy some underwear. As I stood there, I realized I had never bought underwear before. I had always worn briefs, but it really hadn't been my choice, it had pretty much been my mother's choice, my ex-wife following my mother's lead and continuing to buy me briefs.
For the first time, I realized there actually was a choice. I picked up a package of boxer-briefs and a 3-pack of boxers. Having always worn briefs, I was pretty much set on white, but I couldn't find any plain white boxers. The 3-pack had one white pair, one white pair with vertical green stripes and one white pair with vertical blue stripes.
After 27 years, changing to a different style of underwear was weird but manageable. I never took to the boxer-briefs, but the boxers became a favorite. I started buying boxers after that. Briefs still have a place in my life, particularly if I'm doing anything active (my boys need a home.....) but for day to day, boxers became my choice.
Of that original 3-pack of boxers, I still have two of the pairs of underwear. The plain white ones were tie-dyed by a friend's daughter last week (she was tie-dying underwear for her father and asked if I wanted a pair done as well). The pair with vertical blue stripes have become somewhat special to me.
Of that 3-pack, the blue stripped ones were always my favorite. I can't really tell you why they gained that status initially, but they've become even more special over the years. While at SDPTV, my boss's girlfriend had a friend that she wanted me to meet. We'd never really been able to get together, and frankly, I've never really liked being set up, but I ran into her at a bar the weekend before Halloween one year. We kind of hit it off and she asked me to call her sometime.
I didn't call her, not because I didn't like her or find her attractive, but because I'm a ridiculous procrastinator. Since she knew my boss and knew where I worked, she called me at work. We had a nice conversation and decided to go out that coming weekend. I nearly cancelled because my High School was playing for the State Football Championship on the Fridday we decided to go out. I decided that since I had put her off for a whole week already and hadn't called her when she asked that I should just go out with her as planned.
When I dressed before the date, I picked the blue stripped boxers for no other reason than they matched the shirt I was wearing. I picked her up at her house and we drove to Sioux Falls for a movie and dinner. The movie I chose was Pulp Fiction, a friend had seen it and told me that it was great. I realize that it probably wasn't a good movie for a first date (Forest Gump was playing at the same theater and she was a social worker, but I'd already seen it), but I figured I might as well see a movie I wanted to see.
She ended up loving Pulp Fiction, which told me that her and I would have the same twisted sense of humor. When a character accidentally got his face shot off by John Travolta, we were the only two people in the theater laughing. Damn it, it was pretty funny, I think everyone else was just shocked.
We went to a little sports bar in the same mall for supper. My high school football game was on the TV. She was sweet and told me to sit somewhere that I could watch the game. I told her that I didn't think that would be polite and sat with my back to the TV. We ordered and she went off to use the restroom. I turned to watch some of the game. In the last minute of play, Douglas scored a touchdown to win the first ever state championship for my high school. My date returned immediately afterward.
We had a wonderful time at dinner. She liked beer almost as much as me and could talk intelligently about it. She could talk about a lot of things intelligently, actually, being exceptionally intelligent, and had an amazing sense of humor. I spent an amazing evening with this woman, I saw one of my all time favorite movies, saw my high school win a state championship and generally had the best date of my life. That was confirmed later that evening. I finally got home on Sunday evening, just in time to see the premier of Dennis Miller Live on HBO. Yeah, it was most likely the best weekend of my life.
About six months later I was completely sick of working at SDPTV had broken up with the woman I'd had the marvelous first date with and started looking for another job. I saw an ad in the paper that seemed to fit my skills, sent off a resume and was almost immediately contacted for an interview. I drove to Forest City, Iowa, had a great interview and was offered a job on the spot. I accepted on the spot then drove to my aunt and uncle's for Easter.
It was on the drive to my aunt and uncle's that I realized I had worn the same pair of blue stripped boxers to the interview that I wore on that great first date. Lucky underwear? Who knows, but a little over a year later, when I applied for a job back in Rapid City, I wore the same underwear to the interview. Again, I was offered a job on the spot. It worked again in Oakdale, Minnesota, I wore the lucky underwear to my interview and was again offered a job immediately following the interview. When DirecTV purchased that company and I interviewed for a job with the new company, I wore the blue stripped boxers again. I wasn't offered a job immediately, but I did eventually get offered a position.
I am not a superstitious person. I don't believe that this one particular pair of underwear has any special powers to make things go exactly as I wish them to. In fact, of the exceedingly "lucky" things that happened to me while wearing those boxers, the girl turned out to be the one I wrote Two Condoms about and the jobs in Rapid City and at DirecTV turned out to be two of the worst experiences of my life. But things that I thought I wanted at the time worked out the way I wished. Lucky? I don't know, but I will admit that wearing a pair of underwear to a job interview that has a proven track record does inspire comfort and confidence. Even if the underwear weren't lucky, they couldn't negatively impact any situation they were in, could they?
Things happen to your body over the years, though. My ass, in particular, got pretty big from working in a TV operations environment for so long. When I wore the lucky underwear to the DirecTV interview, they barely fit. By the time I was laid off from DirecTV, they didn't fit at all. I was unable to squeeze myself into them when I had job interviews. Even if I could have barely squeezed into them I wouldn't have done it for an interview. I wouldn't have been comfortable, and while I don't believe in luck, I believe the comfort level that particular pair of underwear afforded me was a benefit. If they weren't comfortable, I wouldn't wear them. That said, they were usually in my briefcase when I interviewed.
Back in November, Echostar Communications responded to an on-line application I made on their website. We set up an interview for the next day. After I hung up, I looked for the blue stripped underwear. I had seen them somewhere recently, but couldn't remember where. I eventually found them in a box of stuff in my bedroom closet. Having really cut down on the beer drinking and snack foods due to lack of funds, I had lost a few pounds since moving back to Rapid City. I held the underwear in my hands and looked at them. Would they fit? I tried them on. They did.
I wore them to the Echostar interview in Cheyenne. The interview went extremely well, and I was 90% sure they were eventually going to offer me a position. They did, I've documented my feelings about this in previous posts, but the fact is that I wore my "lucky" underwear to a job interview and I got offered a job. Again.
I wore them Tuesday as I was in Cheyenne looking for Residence #27. I loved the first place I looked at, but ended up looking at other places. By the end of the day, though I was calling back on the very first place I looked at.
I have no idea how this move to Cheyenne is going to work out for me. I'm optimistic, but that doesn't really mean anything. Any place or any situation can end up screwing you over. Things that look good, things that you really want can end up turning into a living hell. We don't always have complete control over how things turn out.
I probably didn't wear that pair of blue stripped underwear from 1999 to 2005. Those were not the best years of my life, but they weren't unbearable. I did get some things I wanted, better yet, I ended up with things I never knew I wanted. I met a couple of guys named Andy at a chance meeting at an open mic and started playing music somewhat seriously. The blue stripped underwear were in a box in my closet, having no bearing on the birth of Patient 957 or Slappy is Jebus, or Bruce's Haircut or whatever the hell we were calling ourselves at the time. I was on national TV, on my favorite TV show, something I had dreamed of since I was in college. I met some of the best people, made some of my best friends over those years.
Good things happen, bad things happen, things turn out differently than you expected. They don't depend on a "lucky" pair of underwear.
I'm hanging on to them though.
Just in case.
I do, however, have this lucky black, lacy bra...
If you happen to find a friendly, attractive woman in the bra that really counts as lucky. In such a situation you may be well on your way to WwtK.
One guy, I will definitely send you an email from time to time.
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