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Don't ask me how the topic of the conversation came around to this--I'm not sure I could reconstruct the convoluted pathway--but on Sunday several of my older friends and I were talking about "unmentionables" and such.

My eldest friend (she's 93) said that back in her salad days the aforementioned garments were called "naughties" and any reference thereto was cause for much giggling amongst her sisters and friends.

Unmentionables, naughties, underwear, panties, corsets, bras, the list goes on and on, and that's just for women. Then there are singlets, shorts, briefs, boxers, jock straps and other unmentionables for the other sex.

We wondered why undergarments were so unmentionable that when Madonna wore a brassiere on the outside, the nation was shocked. We're still uncomfortable with the sight of drooping jeans exposing shorts (and a whole lot more). I must admit a certain fascination as I ponder the question: Which will win, gravity pulling them down or friction holding them up?

Naughty naughties.

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