Mission Underwear Control

Eight summers ago I was living in Palm Beach. The off-season population of that wealthy enclave shrank to 10% of its winter height. A few of the fabulously rich remained in their mansions during the off-season and they ventured outdoors once a week to shop at the Publix supermarket off Royal Palm.

Mostly I saw dutiful off-island workers tending to the vacant estates.

The Mexicans and Haitians were only allowed on the island from 7am to 5:30pm and worked nine hours a day in 90+ sweltering heat.

The police surveilled the construction sites for any lingerers.

After 5:30pm no one was allowing on the refuge of the rich.

Unless they belonged there.

Actually I was the poorest person on the island. My income was $350/week to take care of a crackhead Airedale named Pom Pom. $300 of which went to my family in Thailand. Living on $50 a week was nearly impossible and my revenge on the idle rich was to abstain from bathing in sweet water.

My daily ablutions was performed in the ocean or swimming pools. A sabbatical from shaving enhanced my scruffy appearance as well as my torn jeans and shredded shirts. At Publix the rich shoppers wrinkled their noses in the supermarket aisles. I smiled politely at their disgust and I picked out my daily jug of wine.

$5.99 for 2-liters.

A bouquet of dead weeds and the taste of gutter water, but it worked at getting me fucked up.

Bad wine sweated from my skin, but I didn’t smell dirty to me and neither had a Japanese scientist orbiting in the International Space Station who wore the same experimental underwear over four months. His fellow astronauts were ignorant of this lengthy test and he said, “The station crew members never complained, so I think the experiment went fine.”

The underwear were supposedly anti-static and flame retardant, which must have been helpful against dingleberries and wet farts. Still the racing stripe must have been impressive.

Koichi Wakata had to have smelled worst than me.

But maybe in Space farts don’t smell bad.

I doubt it, then again I never smelled dirty in Palm Beach.

At least not to me.

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