It was a damp Tuesday morning when I made my way to the Sports Authority in Memphis. The day before, I had received our church’s new soccer uniforms. They were crisp and beautiful– robin egg blue accented by tangerine piping– and I felt especially pleased that I had designed the whole look on my home PC. It was only later, sleepless in bed at 2am, that I realized something was missing. I had the cleats and the striped gym socks… but what about the undergarments? I knew I couldn’t disappoint my fussy teenagers, particularly since this would be my first season assistant coaching the team.
The Sports Authority is a veritable temple to manhood! I was intoxicated by the fumes of fresh polyester as I made my way down the boys apparel aisle. Yet once I stood below the plastic sign that announced “Jockstraps!” I was singularly perplexed. There were none to be seen! Could it be that June was high season for supportive athletic underwear? Maybe every other summer coach had already done his shopping? Was this my first true managerial crisis?
I waved down a rather sassy young man with a peroxide bouffant. He took delirious delight in telling me that their jockstrap supplies were exhausted. “You’re not the first man who’s come in here trolling for boy’s jocks, “ he sneered. With that, he flittered away and I was left in a headlock of confusion.
Back home on my trusty computer, I embarked on a fruitless quest for reasonably-priced under items. The internet seemed to offer a plethora, but did I really want something all the way from Taiwan? The local options on Craigslist quickly devolved into the macabre. There were numerous postings by young men selling pairs they had already worn. They emailed me photos and price lists. Often, washed undergarments had different values than the unwashed ones. I tried to maintain my composure as I clicked open these messages for some were… quite revealing to say the least. Maybe I should imagine myself as a doctor, I told myself, and not be intimidated by the flood of sweaty male anatomy enveloping me.
After a frustrating hour in that bazaar of the bizarre, I went over the Google Images and began my journey anew. It was odd seeing the sorts of sites that advertise “teenage boy jockstraps” and “male jocks” and other terms of that nature. Human buttocks are a disconcerting sight. Fleshy and pert when young, with flashes of red like a Pacific Rose apple on a fine summer day. How that quickly falls apart with middle age! But there, surrounded by these specimens better suited for a physician’s handbook, it dawned on me that I had crossed the tracks. I was now on the wrong side of the internet.
Yes, it was the homosexuals. The homosexuals were pumping up this illicit exchange of male jockstraps. Yes, it was the homosexuals trading and parading these garments that traditionally evoke fun and locker rooms and male bonding. Yet here, they were bastardizing a perfectly healthy clothing choice, twisting it into a weird fetish object of hardcore gay deviance.
As in any market economy, the massive homosexual investment in jockstraps has driven up prices. Numerous studies have shown that the gays have more disposable income than normal people. They don’t tithe at church, nor do they support spouses or children. Most flitter away thousands on a simple weekend’s leisurewear. And it’s not just that they were outbidding each other on Craigslist for HandsomeJoe32’s “just back from the gym” Charles Archer’s with the mesh vent, they were inflating the rest of the market beyond the reach of regular consumers such as myself.
When a market gets so heated that there are bidding wars and resource hoarders, you know we’re headed towards a bubble. We saw this with Obama’s 2008 housing crisis. My suspicion is that we’re barreling along towards another bursting balloon in the homosexual undergarment sector. One could argue that this is the simple nature of capitalism. One might say that such financial “corrections” force the economy to adapt… While all that may be true, I still can’t help but be angry. Does no one care for the children damaged by this frenzied black market of skin-tight sportswear? Won’t somebody think about the boys and men all across America who simply need a little support down below when they’re on high, closing in for that stunning shot on the goal? No, I guess not. It seems that the gays, blind to the joys of fraternity and competition, have ruined yet another building block of American masculinity.