Site Meter Elsie's Space: The Itsy Bitsy...
Location: New England, United States

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Saturday, June 24, 2006

The Itsy Bitsy...

Ha. I'm a mother, so it could go either way. The Itsy Bitsy Spider? Nope, but kudos to Little Richard for the best rendition ever. The Itsy Bitsy Teeney Weeney.......Bikini. Yup, that's it. I just found out that the bikini is celebrating her 60th this summer. I grew up having a love/hate relationship with the bikini but still feel obligated to say Happy Birthday.

I got my first bikini at age 11 from my best friend who brought it back for me from an exotic vacation. She wore pink and brought me a matching green one. How I wished mine was pink, too. She had a blooming body. I was still a little girl, and it was frustrating. She looked like Barbie while I was Skipper running to keep up. I adored my friend but hated that bikini. I was secretly relieved when I outgrew it by summer's end.

Fast forward five years. My own body had finally blossomed, startling even me. Boys took an interest, and before long I had my first real boyfriend. He wanted me to wear a bikini. He insisted upon it and chose one for me (no control issues there). As his dutiful girlfriend, I obediently wore it. But I was rather reserved and never was comfortable, especially one day when "the girls" decided to see for themselves who else was on the beach. Horrors!! The following summer both the boyfriend and the bikini were gone. I was, once again, relieved to go back to the one-piece.

Forward again another few years. Now 19, I've grown to my full 5'8" and am athletic and hard bodied. I'm in college and making my first island journey. My girlfriend insists we go shopping together to prepare for our great adventure. She talks me into buying a bikini, one I'd never, ever wear at home. It was in the Bahamas I learned about the mystical, magical powers of the bikini. Gee. Smart girls realize that, when wearing this magical suit, young men are easily manipulated. We spend a week in the sun getting lots of attention and all the free booze and drugs we want. After that, I use the magic bikini every time I go away. Oh, the power.

Five more years pass, and now I'm out in the workforce. The big convention is coming. It's the first I'll ever attend. And my boss, in his most fatherly, gentle, tactful way, tells me that he thinks it would be best if I not bring a bikini to the resort. He's concerned it might cause a problem with some clients and/or their wives??!!! I was shocked, but had no problem with that at all. I would never wear a bikini on the job anyway. In fact, I'd given up the magic bikini a few months earlier on my last island excursion. No need for one any more. I finally was becoming my true adult self. And besides, I could now afford to buy my own drugs. The bikini was history for me.

Twenty years later, I still have no desire to wear the teeney weeney bikini. I just wish I could. But those days are gone. Sigh. Not long ago my little one saw a photo of me on a beach in a bikini. She asked my mother who it was. "Who do you think it is?" "Well the face looks like mom, but the body definitely doesn't (Mom seemed all too happy to pass this story along to me). Sigh again.

It's official. I passed on the bikini torch a long time ago. I'm certain there's a girl out there today who's just learning about the magic. So to her and all the others who come after us: Be careful. Have fun. Enjoy. Because later, when you're all grown up and loving your life, you look back and realize that the magic didn't come from the bikini.


Blogger Peter (the other) said...

I like that, a history through the lens of bathing attire. As a young male, I would undress a suitable, attractive woman (in my mind), no matter what she was wearing, so a bikini didn't have such the effect, it only allowed you to see what you already could "see" anyway. It is a magical gestalt, that makes someone attractive to me, sometimes I just refer to it as a smell.

8:51 PM  
Blogger Elsie said...

I should have been more clear -- most guys were easily manipulated (c'mon, you have friends and know this is true). The smart ones were more difficult because they, like you, looked beyond the bikini. No doubt you would have been an extreme challenge, and I'd have been the one buying all the stuff.

And I like your term "magical gestalt." Anything going on you'd like to share? You know how I love a love story.

6:55 AM  
Blogger Peter (the other) said...

Nope, as I say, I'm happy! (not gay, happy). I am finding myself in a common trouble for a middle age fellow, my falling in love machine is either turned off, or else it thinks it is still thirty-five years old. I refuse to be so un-cool as to chase younger women, so I do without. I leave it to a higher power to present me with the situation that happans, if ever.

11:07 PM  
Blogger Elsie said...

Peter, I'm glad you're keeping your options open. You don't have to chase younger women in order to attract their attention. And don't discount women your own age, you could be pleasantly surprised!

12:14 AM  

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