Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Pants Off New Year

As with all January 1st’s, the first day of this new year was greeted by my crossing out 2014 at the top of the list of last year’s resolutions and writing 2015 in my best and boldest handwriting, resolved, yet again, that this would be a year where I finally get on top of the rotating resolutions.  Basically those resolutions fall in two camps,  those things I’m going to do more of including writing, exercise, spending relaxed time with Husband and Drama Queens and laughing with my friends, and in the red corner,  things I am going to do less of, such as eating, moaning and procrastinating.

There is a comfortable familiarity to the whole thing.  My resolutions and I are old friends, there’s a mutual understanding about expectations and reality involved.  However I can safely say that as the fireworks blazed their spectacular way across the Sydney skyline, and 2015 blasted in, in technicolour, it never occurred to me that one of my resolutions for 2015 should be to remain fully clothed at all time in front of impressionable adolescents.

On New Year’s Day, I was floating round the kitchen in my pyjamas feeling secretly rather pleased that here I was on a beautiful Sydney morning, all the windows and the doors open to the garden, surrounded by the Drama Queens and an assortment of their teenage friends.  Carried away by my Martha Stewart, Gracious Hostess able to relate across the generations image, I was directing the morning breakfast traffic and trying to get to grips with the coffee, tea, green tea requirements when somehow the Moka coffee pot got knocked over and boiling coffee went all down my pyjama clad legs.  I did what Martha Stewart and most self respecting 50-this-year-olds would do, and whilst shrieking in a fire engine like manner, ripped off my pyjama bottoms and hopped naked from the waist downwards round the kitchen.  In the midst of all the agony I looked up and met the horrified gaze of Drama Queen No.2’s 18-year-old boyfriend whose goals for the New Year clearly did not include a full frontal of his girlfriend’s mother before 9am on New Year’s Day.  The horror of the situation and the wide eyed nature of various teenage gazes was enough to have me ripping the pyjama bottoms back up as I exited the kitchen at speed to sit in a cold shower for 30 minutes.

The whole episode led to a number of interesting observations:

Firstly burns are unbelievably painful.  I was very lucky in that the pyjama bottoms were flannel (of course an obvious choice to sleep in, in high summer in Sydney) and having a thickish layer on my legs definitely saved me from the worst of the hot coffee and getting under cold water immediately was crucial.  I still have interesting red patches on my legs that are moving from sore to itchy but no blistering so I am pretty sure I have been really fortunate and escaped any kind of permanent damage.

Secondly there is a clear generation gap with regard to pyjama etiquette.  In reviewing the whole mortifying experience, the Drama Queens’ main concern was of course the fact that their friends and romantic interests had been mentally scarred by the experience of seeing their hostess perform a type of portly Highland Fling, naked from the waist down, rather than their mother’s brush with pain, suffering and potential actual scarring.  However the girls were quite clear that in their opinion the debacle could have been avoided had I been wearing underwear under my pyjamas.  I was brought up in the no underwear under pyjamas camp but completely unrealised by me this is apparently a complete no no in teenage circles.  I am going to make a mass generalisation – people my age in the UK generally don’t wear underwear under their pyjamas but perhaps I’m wrong?  Let me know – which side of the night-time knicker line do you fall?  Also very grateful if anyone has an answer to the question, why do Australian boys and men under the age of 30 wear underwear under their boardshorts when they swim?

Regardless of outcome of the pants/pyjama debate I am adding a new resolution to the list.  “Stay fully clothed at all times unless I are sure my audience’s eyes are going to pop for the right reason and that there is no clapping their hands over their eyes in horror type reaction involved.’


  1. I am crying with laughter! And I'm with you - I absolutely fall on the no knickers side of the PJ debate, but funnily enough had a debate with Kleine Jongen only two days ago about that very subject. He told me it was "disgusting" to suggest no undies under jarmies. When I proceeded to initiate a discussion about air flow, and the associated benefits of occasional unrestricted genital movement, he held out his hand and said assertively "Mum. Stop. You're going to embarrass yourself. Everyone...absolutely everyone wears undies under their pyjamas". I was incredulous and have been thinking about it ever since, and do so hope that you generate an international discussion on this important issue, because it needs to be resolved.

  2. No pants in this house under the pj's (and yes, we're British. Well, I am. My boys half are). I wonder now though whether my sons' opinions on this will change as they get older...