Ladies in Shorts

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FAIRLY SPOKEN:

Ladies in Shorts

By MARGARET LATROBE

Don’t know about your town, but in our town the shorts-measuring brigade has begun its pleasant duties. (This is as much a part of summer as sunstroke and poison oak.)

For those of you with weightier preoccupations than the length of ladies’ shorts, let me recap summer’s folly: Come the heat and stupidity of the dog days, certain members of the pretty sex climb into garments calculated to expose their lower extremities to a high degree. That is, girls wear shorts.

Shorts shock that portion of the populace that doesn’t look good in same. And they pelt the police department with shrill cries of pique.

So the constabulary looks forward to the annual heat waves as more fun and less work than a bank robbery.

*          *          *

WOMEN ARE SAID to be vain. That’s not so. One look at a few shorts-garbed dumplings trotting about the supermarket on varicosed, knobby and quite unleg-like legs is sufficient to convince us otherwise. Vanity, my eye!

These dames are bereft of all pride, caution — even hope. They have looked in that triple mirror, shuddered, and decided the weather is too hot to contemplate such a formidable problem. With a skill born of years at wriggling into a 10-way stretch girdles, they make size 14 shorts do the work of size 20.

Then they buy some more groceries. (Studying up for size 44.)

*          *          *

ON THE SHORTS QUESTION, doubtless the etiquette authorities bemuse themselves with such refinements as appropriateness, taste, and condition of servitude. But the cops and I are more direct in our approach to the basic issues involved. They measure garment; I maintain they should measure the wearer.

If milady toddles abroad exhibiting legs more suitable to the circus than to Main street, I say clap her in irons. Let the judge sentence her to  30 days on a 600-calorie diet. And when she measures up to less than 120 pounds, permit the wearing of the shorts.

What about the varicose department? Black lace hosiery as on chorus girls. Leg make-up as in bottles. Or maybe a dress — as a last resort.

Hammond Times (Hammond, Indiana) Jul 17, 1956

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