“Do you know,” said Rocky to the Soupster, whom he had trapped in the supermarket’scanned-beans-and-tomato aisle, “that when they recently measured the major U.S. cities to see which was the laziest, they counted how many people wear sweatpants?”
“Couldn’t those people just be returning from the gym?” the Soupster asked.
Rocky reached forward and vigorously snapped the elastic waistband of the navy blue sweatpants the Soupster wore. “Were you just returning from the gym?” he asked, pithily.
“Well…” said the Soupster.
“Wearing sweatpants may be a sign of the decline of the American Century,” wailed Rocky.
“You’re taking this extremely seriously,” the Soupster told him. “They’re just cheap, comfortable pants.”
“You’ll see,” said Rocky, turning the corner and heading for the dog food aisle.
Rocky had his effect. The Soupster suddenly felt naked in his sweat pants. He wore the indelible proof of his sloth, visible to everyone. And what was worse, the place where Rocky had snapped his waistband did not go back to its normal shape. Now his pants felt like they were starting to slip.
The Soupster had stopped wearing sweatpants until they fell apart (although he was still tolerably tolerant of sock holes). He had stopped wearing light blue or gymnasium grey sweats, figuring black and navy were more respectful.
Respectful! So he did feel apologetic. And as the idea formed in his brain, it felt as though the waistband of his now-cursed pants slid down another half inch.
The Soupster cradled the can of beans and two cans of tomatoes in one arm and yanked his waistband up with the other hand. But as even the Soupster knew, yanking upone side of a pair of sagging sweatpants does not help them stay up – it may even be counterproductive.
Those who know, know that the worst sweatpant accidents occur soon after trying to yank the pants up by one side. The Soupster would take no chances. He held up the sweatpants at the waist with one hand, while he paid for his groceries and carried out the bag in his other hand.
There’s a walk you can do to minimize the pants’ desire to slip and the Soupster did it. Yet, by the time he reached the side of his car, it was but his hand that held the pants aloft.
He should have put the grocery bag down and used that hand to fiddle with the car doorhandle. He should have kept his grip on his waistband no matter what. And he certainly should have looked around before he embarked on any plan to get the groceries into the car and keep his pants up. But he didn’t.
The Soupster let go of his waistband to open the car door and his pants slid all the waydown to his ankles.
Rocky, who had left the store behind the Soupster, walked over and stared wordlessly. Finally, he spoke. “Soupster,” said Rocky, “Even for you, this is low.”