If there’s one thing I’ve noticed about many men that I haven’t personally browbeaten into submission, it’s that they don’t seem to care that much about what they wear. And the only reason I have moved to Europe is that I’m willing to sacrifice men’s charming command of my mother tongue for their ability to pair a scarf with a button-down. I’m aware that the average guy doesn’t know how to pair a sweater vest with a tie, and even I have my limits when it comes to how much time a man should spend in front of a mirror, but there should at least be one part of their outfit that is classic, flattering, and still utterly masculine.
Now, it is a well-known fact that the majority of European men prefer to wear briefs or those adorable little David Beckham-esque trunk things, and even within that large umbrella of skintight undergarments exists an array of styles. Yet regardless of what brand, color or cut they choose, one thing is certain—it will be far more attractive than that slovenly, nauseating, oh-so-American abomination known as the boxer.
Its billowing folds of fabric seem to convey a desire to hide all form, pillowing and padding whatever unflattering tapered khaki or jean is forced to cover it. Whereas the brief aims to cradle and emphasize the beautiful, sculpted male form, the boxer seems to resent it. I picture a boxer hating its life from start to finish. From its birth, somewhere in the dark recesses of a Chinese sweatshop, made from the most unfortunate acrylic materials, to its bitter, brutally delayed end when it is threadbare, covered in skidmarks, and completely discolored after about 200 washes too many.
I can hear the chorus of men I know screaming, “But briefs are gay, Chelsea!” And to that I say, grow a pair. Wearing briefs is gay in the same way learning how to dance well is gay. It’s an attractive, flattering, useful quality that women like and lazy heterosexual men have convinced themselves they don’t need to do. Back when we had something resembling a society, men actually took pride in looking as put-together as possible when they left the house, and women were content to cook brisket in a corset and welcome you home with a blowjob and a whiskey sour. Make some connections here.
The brief seems to hug the top of those ever-so-lovely soccer player’s legs, saying, “Ooh la la! Wouldn’t want to cover those up!” Its slightly indecent but still extremely masculine cut at the top makes utter Ken Dolls out of the flat-stomached men that wear them. And, in perhaps the best feature of all, they are (as the name implies) UNDERwear. You don’t see them sloppily gushing over the top of ill-fitting pants, as though the jeans themselves were vomiting. No, they rest politely and demurely at the hip (where they belong), making them all the more provocative and lovely when they’re revealed.
Men’s fashion is a dying art. And simple details are what make it entirely. Let’s start by not wearing pee-stained windsails as undergarments.