The Boxer Story

June 10, 1999

One weekday, I was at the 57th & 7th station of the N & R subway line heading downtown. I was at the top of the stairs to the subway platform when I noticed a train had just pulled in. I ran down the steps as fast as I could, and jumped into the train just as the doors closed.

Since it was midday, there was no problem finding a seat. As I sat down, I heard a very audible “rip”. I looked around, and a women near me said, “Sounds like you ripped something.” I asked her if I were to stand up if she could see if I ripped my jeans. She said, “Sure.” I stood up, and she told me that my pants were fine. I checked my shirt, jacket, etc. but could not find the rip. Then she suggested it might be my underwear. Here I am in the middle of the New York City Subway, and I have to figure out if my underwear is ripped. So, I nonchalantly sit down and put my hand down the back of my pants, and, sure enough, my boxers were very ripped.

Now, on a normal day, I wouldn’t care, but that day was not a normal day. I had a doctors appointment that afternoon, and there was a very slight chance that he could ask me to remove my pants during the examination. Luckily, there is a Gap store about two blocks from my office.

I ran over there after getting out of the subway, found a pair of boxers and went to the cash register. The cashier took my boxers and asked if that was all. I said, “Yes”, and then realized that when a man buys only one pair of boxers in the Gap, it could look like he had an “accident”. So I sort of related the whole story of ripping my current pair in the subway. She just looked at me through the whole story like I was crazy, then said, “I don’t think your girlfriend’s gonna buy that story”. To which I explained that the story is all true. I even offered to take my pants off right there to prove it.

She declined.