Design Flaws

In April 1997, 
I was five hundred
and twenty-four years old,
writing for an international
men’s underwear magazine,
while learning
how to weave
underwear like those
I was writing about.

I wove filamentic underwear
of spider silk dyed
a glow-in-the-dark neon pink.
There were no other
underwear journalists like me.

When I met the man
with the big, black hat
he said, “I saw
that you were trying to sell
underwear made
of vanilla ice cream.
I do not think this
is such a smart design."

He told me that he was
a major underwear investor
and worked with designers
from all over the world,
and that he and I
had to go out and talk.

In the meantime,
underwear ideas
kept coming to me:
underwear made from whale songs,
underwear made from unicorn spittle,
underwear expressed in seven dimensions…
I was trying to bring close to our bodies that which we often miss about the nature of reality…

Then, in a flash,
it all came crashing down.
I had no more ideas
about how to make underwear.
I stopped
being able to write about underwear.
I got a job in a call center, helping people troubleshoot
their malfunctioning, robotic lovers.
I tracked down the man in the big, black hat.
I found him running a logistics company out of Boise, Idaho and called him.
I asked if he ever thought about his underwearing days.
He sighed and said of course.
He was an underwear man for life.
He said he probably thought I was, too.
Design Flaws

13 thoughts on “Design Flaws

Sock it to me

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