With my pants down…


Okay, this title might be a little misleading, but it does sort of reflect the topic of this article. It is also not a lead-in to something pornographic or to bathroom humor either. Although….the bathroom does become involved.

Perhaps I should start with the water heater. We recently had a water heater conk out on us and with admirable speed, a new one was installed. What I didn’t know, however, was that after the install, someone would be coming to check…something, I’ve never been quite clear on just what.

At any rate, I was busy working in my living room, with a large picture window and a window also along the door (check the picture) on a hot, sticky afternoon this week. I had finally succumbed to the misery of the heat and removed my trousers. It was a huge improvement, and I continued to work from the comfort of my chair in a short shirt and my underwear.

I was writing an article about unexpected events and the thought passed through my mind, “Wouldn’t it be terrible if someone rang the doorbell now and here I am?” It was only a passing thought, though. I wasn’t expecting anyone and people simply do not just drop by my house. I mean, come on–there’s a pandemic; people stay home, right?

At about that time, I heard a footfall on the front steps outside and then the unbelievable happened: someone rang the doorbell. I was frozen…in my chair… in front of the windows…with no idea where I had put my pants when I took them off. I didn’t want to look out to see who it was, but the dog immediately set up a barking, letting whoever was outside know there was something inside.

There was no hope for it: I was going to have to make a dash for the bedroom. With no throws or pillows for cover, I jerked my shirt down as far as I could and hoping the dog would keep the visitor distracted, I flashed by the windows and made a beeline for the bedroom. I looked frantically for the discarded pants–no luck. With the doorbell still peeling, I grabbed the first trousers I could find, pulled them on and went to the door.

It was a repairman who needed to inspect the new water heater for…I honestly did not register what he needed to see; I was way more concerned with what he might have already seen. It was also at this point that I realized that my pants were on backwards, thus explaining the weird feel of them.

The worst part about this, was that it was an awkward situation already and I have ever had a talent for making an awkward moment worse. So, in giving the repairman permission to look at the water heater, I added, “Sorry it took so long, I was sitting here without any pants on.”

This poor man looked at me with that look on his face which clearly said that he would be unable to unhear that which he didn’t want to hear in the first place. He quickly donned his mask, completed his inspection and ran for his truck like HIS pants were on fire.

That was disquieting, but my week of impromptu undress was not over. I went walking on a hot morning this week and came home so sticky that I threw my clothes down to the laundry room on my way to the shower. While I was in the shower, the dog suddenly went into an hysterical fit, which should have warned me. I figured someone had driven by and I continued the shower.

The dog redoubled the fit, however and, remembering my hapless repairman friend, I turned off the shower. It wasn’t possible that someone was at the door again…with me in a worse state of undress…again.

As soon as I turned off the noise of the shower, I could hear the doorbell. Jumping from the shower, I grabbed a towel, but I had already traumatized one repairman this week; it would have made me serial flasher if I had gone to the door in a towel.

Thanking my lucky stars that the path to the bedroom from the bathroom didn’t cross any critical windows, I sprinted, half-dried, for the dresser in my room. Anyone who has read this far will understand when I say getting into any kind of clothes was impeded by the fact that clothes do not slide easily on a sticky, wet body.

All this was done to the music of the doorbell and the dog’s wild barking. When I finally made it to the living room, admonishing myself on the way not to explain the reason for my tardy appearance to yet another innocent worker, I discovered it was my cousin…from Denver…that I thought was still in Denver. Astonished, I opened the door, dripping from my head to my foot in very damp clothes…never mind what I had on under them and how did I greet her and her daughter? “I’m sorry it took so long, I was in the shower and I didn’t have clothes on.”

From now on, I’m gonna need a twenty-four hour notice before anyone approaches my door. In addition, it’s important that you know that I am now fully dressed at all times, even in the shower!


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