Why Shorts Scare Me

Shorts. The bane of my existence. I haven’t worn these puppies in a long time. Why, I hear you asking? Well, my friend, I’ll tell you the whole Lifetime-story.

There comes a time in every young girl’s life when she becomes appealing to the opposite sex. Unfortunately it usually occurs way younger than is actually appropriate. I was probably about 9 years old the first time I got honked at from a moving vehicle. It scared me to death. I’m not saying this to brag, because mine is not an isolated story. It seems these days all you have to be is a over a certain height and under a certain weight to get attention from the honkers and cat-callers.

I quickly found that the article of clothing that drew the most attention were shorts (I hadn’t even gotten to the age where I wanted to wear mini skirts). It should tell you something about me that I never wore shorts again until college. It didn’t matter how hot it was outside, I was not about to ask for anyone to look at me. Luckily, at the time I was in middle school capris were pretty popular, so that was my saving grace. In high school I had to brave through each summer in jeans. Long jeans. Yikes.

In college I finally bought a pair of shorts…and wore them. I thought I’d finally conquered my fear, but it turns out I’d only gotten over it in Pittsburgh (where I spent my freshman and sophomore years). Whether because the ‘burgh is not a particularly aggressive city when it comes to picking up women, or if I was just not an ideal woman to the average Pittsburgh male, I didn’t have to worry about it there.

Visits to Atlanta brought it all back. You see, I have a condition that’s very common for women in the African American community. Politicians call it a “large posterior.” 18th-century European doctors called it “Steatopygia.” MC Mix-A-Lot referred to it as “Rump-o’-smooth-skin,” “juicy double,” or simply “back.” Shorts only exacerbate the situation. I, once again, hung up my shorts and pulled out the jeans.

But now! I’ve lost about 15 pounds. Not much, but enough to shrink my backside. Is it enough to be able to walk around unnoticed, blending into the crowd like a ninja? We’ll see. This summer. When I face my fear. Look out for the sequel to this Lifetime movie. Will the title be an uplifting Shorts 2: The Homecoming? Or the more ominous The Day She Wore Shorts: The Yvette Downs Story?

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