Tag Archives: underpants

The cycling pants of shame

London was not built for cars.  It’s a well know fact that driving your clunker through the city is the slowest and most expensive way to get around.

The fastest – and incidentally cheapest – way to travel is on two wheels.  It was with this in mind that I decided to brave the rough roads of London and embark on that momentous expedition:  my first cycle to work.

Previously I had only been able to gawp in envy at the fit elite – all honed arms, and sculpted thighs – as I trudged from the tube station, chocolate bar in hand.  Now I would be one of the noble few.  I could see myself wizzing past the commoners as they watched my bum disappear into a distant land of endless cool.

Being a cheapskate, I had acquired my little sister’s bike in exchange for paying our dad 40 quid to cover a window she broke (I’m not the only one in my family with the ‘oops!’ gene.)  However, my sister had originally bought the bike when she was 14 years old and into pink.  Florescent pink.

In spite of this rather embarrassing inconvenience, I was undeterred.  Armed with my little-girls bike and an oversized helmet my local bike dealer had duped me into buying, I set off into the unknown.  I was certainly prepared.  I had packed some spare underwear to ride home in, just in case I sweated more than usual.  Knowing that this was a distinct possibility (due to the fact I hadn’t exercised in about a year) I had packed the oldest, grimiest, most granny-like pants and bra I owned.  What a pro.

Things were going well.  The sun shone as I headed towards Paddington, a vision of enviable cool.  As I turned the corner into Spring Street, a rather attractive bearded gentleman shot me a grin.  ‘Amazing.’ I thought to myself ‘Even dressed up like a demented 12 year old, I’ve still got it.’

It took me about six seconds and a hundred yards to realise what was really going on:  My backpack had come unzipped.  My tights were wrapped around my back wheel.

My underwear was strewn back down the middle of the road.

Let me level with you.  Spring Street is littered with cafes and restaurants – basically involving quite a lot of people sitting outside, people watching.  Right now they were watching me.  Me, and my skanky underwear.

In a mad panic I threw my bike to the ground and ran back down the street, my oversized helmet bobbing from side to side as I picked up my abandoned items.  With every ounce of dignity I had left (er… not much, for those of you who were wondering) I jumped back on my bike and rode away.

It’s been three long and difficult years since ‘the incident’.  After therapy, prayer and a lot of strong liquor, I finally feel that I’m ready to move on.  So, at the end of this month I’m going to face my fear: buy a bike and re-try the cycle to work.

I’ll be packing good underwear.

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How not to attract a man (and other fun stories)

Life. For most it passes by with the occasional fail. For some, however, (cue: me) life is a series of slightly humiliating disasters of hilarious, yet epic proportions.

For example, take my track record on interaction with attractive men. For some reason this area of my life seems to resemble a Will Farrell movie.

Rather than moan, I thought I would share my in-depth experience with the bloggasphere in the hope that some of you may avert dating disaster by following this one simple, yet highly effective rule: don’t. copy. me.

Over the next few weeks I will share a few of my most embarrassing moments in the hope that some good can come out of the more ridiculous things that I have done have happened to me (against my will. Through no fault of my own. Whatsoever.)

Part 1: The slide of horror

I was ten years old and on my way back from a walk in the welsh mountains with my trendy parents (yes – my mum and dad were cooler than me even then. Not a good sign of things to come.)

Upon passing a small park I begged my weary parents to stop and let me play for a few minutes. In retrospect I now realise that the park was, in the words of my mum,  “a bit run down” (i.e. a total dive/ death trap) but all I saw was the possibility of five whole minutes of unbridled fun rather than the fact that this was Not A Good Idea.

On entering the play area I realised I was not alone. There was another kid sharing the space with me, and not just any kid.

A Boy.

When I was ten A Boy was a big deal. Especially one that was a little older than me. I struck my best confident walk, striding up to the rickety slide that towered above me. I climbed the stairs tentatively, making sure that the wind didn’t whip my flowery elasticised skirt over my head. I made it to the top. He was watching. Result.

Throwing myself onto the slide I began to wiz down, trying not to bang my elbows on the large iron hooks that poked upwards along the sides.

Allow me to narrate what followed:

Young girl begins descent. Girl’s skirt catches on hooks. Girl’s torso flies through centre of skirt with technical flare.

At least this is what the onlookers remember. All I can recall is starting the descent with my skirt on and finishing in my underpants, skirt still half way up the slide.

I wish I could tell you that this is an isolated incident in an otherwise uneventful life. But we both know that I would be lying.

Next week : Part 2 – The Tuscan pizza of degradation