Tuesday, 12 April 2011

K is for Knickers


I have posted before about the joy of a pack of smooth, new, white knickers, so I won't revisit that subject. No. Today I want to talk about a particular pair of knckers; the knickers I shall never forget.

At my grammar school, we had to wear navy knickers for PE (with white "knicker linings" underneath, although I've never worked out how anyone could enforce this bizarre rule in a girls' day school). The navy knickers were the kind with elasticated legs and waist. Safe knickers, if you're running about or hanging upside down from the wall bars.

But my mother, a stranger fo convention, bought me bright, royal blue knickers*.

How I hated those knickers. Quite apart from the fact that they were Not Allowed, they showed me up. While everyone else was leaping about in regulation navy knickers, I was cringing on the sidelines in my royal blue ones. Apart from anything else, how on earth did my mother find them? I have never, before or since, seen royal blue knickers. School knickers were, bottle green, grey, possibly maroon - but royal blue?

Eventually, my mother bought me navy ones, but they weren't the right kind. They were brief, revealing, not the kind you want to wear for doing handstands (I've no idea where she found those, either). I never did have the right knickers, and the memory of the Wrong Knickers has remained with me all my life. While I have worn many pairs of knickers during my life, those royal blue ones (and their little navy successors) are the only ones I can remember.

Mum, how COULD you?

*Those knickers feature in my novel The Birds, the Bees and Other Secrets, so they were of some use in the end.

21 comments:

  1. Most enjoyable post about something essential.

    Yvonne.

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  2. Delightful post. Moms are somethin', ain't them? :-))

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  3. We had to wear navy knickers and they had to have name tapes in them. I remember having to line up at the all girls's school I went to, for inspection by the Headmistress who peered down all our knickers to see if we had name tapes. My Gran was horrified. 'I'll go and peer down hers' she threatened. That was before I became a rebel. Two years later I would have told the Headmistress she wasn't getting her thrills by checking my undies.

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  4. Hehehe! Mine were brown, and the white 'liners' always ended up blotchy pink!

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  5. Love it! Knickers is such a better word than underpants!

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  6. Thanks for the replies, all. Lynne, how amazing about the checking of the name tapes (no CRB checks then!), and how exactly were you supposed to lose your knickers? We didn't take ours off!

    Jinksy, brown knickers....hmm. I think I prefer my royal blue ones.

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  7. Poor you - can just imagine the bright blue. And I remember those regulation navy knickers. At least you made use of the story!

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  8. Royal blue? That's a very unusual colour for knickers.

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  9. One of the advantages of going to a mixed school was that we weren't subjected to this whole gym knickers torture. We had to wear proper shorts - they were still horrible (navy nylon) but at least they were shorts!

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  10. Thanks for the sympathy, Rosemary!

    Patsy - that's my whole point! Where in the world did she find them?

    Alis, you were a very lucky girl!

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  11. Oh the joy of knickers!

    When living down South it was green thick knickers to 'protect' us while doing PE and games! I could never understand why it was okay for children to run around in knickers - did boys where shorts - I can't remember? - while adults didn't. Didn't really bother me though.

    Moving further North the knickers became blue - to match the climate perhaps?

    The joy of waist high knickers - will I invest in them soon as I approach my dotage? Life moves on full circle!

    Anna :o]

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    1. At long last I am wearing bottle green knickers, they feel soooo mmm nice and comfortable. I would Sooooo love to find another genuine knickers wearer/lover soon!!!

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  12. Navy knickers were just awful. If we forgot to put on the right pair before we left home we'd have to rely on a kind friend to lend us a spare pair. Failing that, it was a matter of borrowing a dusty, elastic-less, motheaten pair from the gym cupboard. No wonder I hated PE.

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  13. Anna, I am in my dotage (ish), and I promise you I wil never, ever wear waist-high knickers.

    Joanne, at least you wre able to borrow the right knickers, which was more than I could!

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  14. I used to wear them for pe

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  15. Oh I just LOVE bottle green school knickers, that lovely soft stretchy material and heavenly tight knickerleg elastic gripping your------ mmmmm it is too much, I just want to be in them again !!!

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  16. Great blog I love my old navy blue pe knickers like the bottle green happy days they were

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    1. Paula, do you still have your bottle green knickers? I would LOVE to have some more !!

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  17. Yes still like my old pe knickers

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  18. I too liked the school knickers as we used to have to wear them under our kilts here in Scotland back in the 50's. Navy blue or bottle green were the knickers of choice for the kilts and were very necessary to protect the world from the sight of boys being indiscreet boys lol. Thats a lovely story Frances and brings back some memories but remember us boys who had to wear those knickers too. I didnt mind them at all and recall the nice soft feel compared to what was on offer as boys underpants at the time.

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