Ake's Pains debuted in the University of Akron Buchtelite in September of 1977. The school's reputation as an institute of higher learning has still not recovered. Ake's Pains returns after a brief 32 year hiatus. It's back, baby!

Monday, March 6, 2017

Getting Inside My Shorts (A Brief Evaluation – Part 1)

Four years ago, I “came out” as a boxer-brief wearer and revealed my unabashed preference for this style of underwear.  Since then I have purchased numerous pairs of various brands as needed, typically using gift money on post-holiday sales.  A couple years ago, I even splurged and got two pairs of high-priced Jockey’s ($20 regular price), which I wear for special occasions (long travel days, etc.).

I was totally satisfied with my underwear inventory until Facebook ads started appearing on my feed, touting superior, high-tech, superb-fitting, shorts. Suddenly, I started to feel that my current underwear was woefully inadequate.  Naturally I was curious, so I clicked one of the ads.  Of course, this was a huge mistake.  This alerts Facebook you are interested in this type of product, which means you are deluged with even more ads for these products, every day, until you die.

This marketing attack was too much for me to resist. Now I was totally dissatisfied with my current skivvies and yearned to try these awesome garments, which promised to pamper my man-parts. But there were several brands advertised, which one should I buy? So, as a public service to men dealing with this critical issue, I decided to buy four different pairs of high-end (insert snicker here) boxer-briefs and review them here in my blog.  This is an actual, serious, review. Rest assured, I will treat this subject with the somberness that I apply to all other topics.  I promise not to inject any puns, absurdities, or other frivolous attempts at humor, in dealing with this serious issue.

I informed my wife of this project because I needed her to wash all four pairs of shorts together, so as to provide a controlled, scientific environment for my evaluation.  She was not at all pleased that I was spending over $100 for blog posts (this is a two-part series) and wondered why this underwear costed so much. After I explained these briefs featured the latest odor-control technology, inexplicably her whole attitude changed and it seemed she was actually looking forward to the shorts arriving.

However, she did order me not to post any photos of me modeling the shorts on the blog.  I know this is a huge disappointment to my female fans, but you will just have to settle for your fantasies.  Posting these photos would have also risked “cease-and-desist” orders from the vendors, fearing tremendous sales loses if millions of people saw me in their undies.  

The Contestants:

Tommy John

Tommy John promotes its product as a “ballsy investment” and you know I like a company which speaks my language.  The product assortment ranged from $31-$48, including a pair containing titanium.  I choose their most popular “Second Skin Boxer Brief” which featured:

-         A contour pouch to “nestle the boys”

-         A horizontal fly for “quick access when nature calls”

-         A stay put waistband

-         No riding up, no wedgies 

The “Second Skin’s” are available in seven classy colors.  I choose the Merlot, because like a fine wine my grapes have gotten better with age.  Using my 15% online discount (on the $34 list) and after the website froze on my first attempt, my order after shipping costs totals $33.85.

Mac Weldon   

Mac Weldon claims they designed their boxer briefs from the ground up, with a no-roll waistband, stay-put legs and mesh cooling zones, for optimal comfort.  They come in three styles.  I choose the “Silver”, named not due to the color, but because it contains actual silver, which has anti-microbial and anti-odor properties.

Of course, I must always remember not to wear these shorts on airplane trips.  It would be awkward to have my underwear set off the alarm (similar to a woman’s underwire bra) at the security check.  If a cute TSA rep asked the question: “Sir, do you have a weapon in there?” There are oh, so, many replies I might give. But there is only one correct answer to this question and I’m not sure I trust myself to just say “No”.  Also, it would be darn embarrassing if the lead story on CNN is “Man’s underwear sets off airport alarms, delaying flights around the country for hours”.

These shorts are only available in five colors and three were out of stock, so I had to settle for the “True Navy”.  The price was $34 and I used a discount code to get free shipping.

Me Undies

Me Undies offer the “ultimate” feel-good undies which:

-         Are three times softer than cotton

-         Have comfy, durable, flatlock stitching

-         Feature a soft flexible waistband

-         Have a “generous pouch which gives your stuff the support it needs without feeling too tight”  

In perusing their website, I was a bit concerned that Me Undies also makes women’s undergarments. I’m sure though that the men’s and women’s stuff is made at different factories, on different machines and from totally different materials.  For some unknown reason, I spend extensive time on their website and I must say that the young, blond, woman modeling the lime green, “Lacie Thong” is rather impressive.

Me Undies is one of those fun, relationship-oriented, Internet retailers, so popular with Millennials.  They have an “Underwear of the Month” deal where they will ship you a fresh pair every month, although it seems to me that a month is a long time to go between changes.  Me Undies has by far the best color and pattern selection. Their “Bold” and “Adventurous” lines include many gay colors, and of course I am strictly using the archaic definition of that word.  I don’t really know why you would ever wear one of those fancier styles, unless you were at a party and everyone was running around in their ….. oh …. oh no, …. let’s just forget I ever mentioned that. 

It turns out that Me Undies are priced more mid-range than high-range. However, I decide to keep them in this study because they do so much Internet advertising and I already own some similarly priced underwear for comparison. I choose the very conservative, manly, Classic Dark Emerald, to package my jewels. The final price with free shipping and first time discount (off of $20 list) is only $15.

Duluth Trading Company

DTC does not directly advertise on Facebook, but I included them due to their high rankings when I did an Internet search to make sure I wasn’t overlooking any good shorts.  Their Buck Naked Performance Boxer Briefs received rave reviews from several sources.  They promote the shorts as: “No sweat. No stink. No pinch.”  The briefs are designed to wick sweat, control odor and stretch with you when working or working out. I choose the Deep Orange at $22.50 list, however after a hefty $10 delivery charge and tax, the total comes to $34.35. 

Price & Delivery

Now it is interesting that the totals for the high-end shorts came in at $33.85, $34.00, and $34.35 respectively.  There is of course no price-fixing here because the three companies all got to these prices in different ways.  And I can assure you as someone with many years of professional pricing experience, that this is a complete and total coincidence. 

Mack Weldon and Tommy John shipped my stuff first, a day or two after my order.  Duluth and Me Undies shipped one day later, the Me Undies arriving last, coming from California.  While the packages from Tommy John and Mac Weldon were very discreet, the ones from the other vendors were not. The Duluth Trading Company package had “Buck Naked Briefs” printed in large letters.  The day after the “Buck Naked’s” arrived, when I went out to get the mail, I thought I noticed the blond mail lady flash a smile and give me “the eye” before she drove away.  But it wasn’t because of the Buck Naked’s, it was because she had just delivered my Me Undies and that is some package! (see photo).  Oh My!

Next Post: The Evaluation and Rankings! 

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