Christmas and the New Year are always a time of over indulgence. Too much rich food and alcohol means that I, like many, staggered into 2010 feeling like a poisoned pup. But thanks to Mother’s Nature’s winter wonderland, instead of staggering out for long, brisk walks with Dylan, I merely staggered to the nearest sofa, clutching handfuls of peanuts or chocolate roses in one hand and the TV remote in the other. Last night I contemplated my shape which is fast beginning to resemble the snowman the girls built in the garden – only taller!

And so, like thousands of women, I am embarking on a phase of increased exercise and healthy eating (I hate the word diet – but you get the picture). Hunger pangs stalk my waking moments and in an effort to combat them I turn to day dreaming about the various items of clothing that languish in my wardrobe waiting for the day I might fit into them again. Sometimes these daydreams get very exciting and involve shopping trips during which I purchase things like high heeled, thigh high boots, mini skirts and all manner of sex kitten clobber. Then I come back to earth when I remember that I have never been a sex kitten – even in my teenage years. The fact that I was head and shoulders taller than all my friends, ruled out high heels and my legs ruled out short skirts.

God gave me the long legs but he got the width measurement all wrong – surprisingly. And so in my youth, my legs were at least two sizes too big for the rest of me. To compound his error, God also gifted me with two knees on each leg. Of course I still have big, lumpy knees – only now they match the rest of me!

But my long legs have caused me fashion headaches for as long as I can remember. As a child, I had to wear tights to school in the winter and I don’t think I ever owned a pair that fitted me. I pulled them on and up and things seemed fine, until I began to walk. And so I developed a winter walking style all my own – which involved two normal strides and one giant one as I attempted to subtly manoeuvre the crotch back to where it belonged. It was a losing battle and as I arrived at school my tights had travelled south towards my knees where they thankfully got stuck, saving me any obvious embarrassment, other than the wrinkled gathering of spare tight at each ankle!

As a young adult, in the early 80’s, I was often told “you are so lucky, being tall, you could wear anything”. I heard this so much that I began to believe it. So in a rush of enthusiasm off I went to purchase the seasons must have – a satin jumpsuit. It was purple and I thought very sophisticated in a Challenge Anneka kind of way (Anneka Rice – do not post a comment asking who she is – ask your mother). I decided that a formal Gala Dinner (big in corporate Ireland in the 80’s) would be the perfect occasion to christen my new outfit. Big permed hair, silver blusher, glitter eye shadow and my purple satin jumpsuit and off I went, delighted with myself. But not long into the evening I began to realise I was having problems standing up straight. If I did, the neck at the back of my suit was pulled downwards with the resultant pulling northwards of the front. Again my crotch was a feature of this wardrobe malfunction and visions of camel’s feet also come to mind. I did little dancing that night.

Fast forward to about ten years ago. Having recently given birth to my third child, I had abandoned any thoughts of getting my girly figure, albeit with all its shortcomings, back again. I needed some help and who should come along with just what I needed but those two witches, Trinny and Susannah and their magic knickers. Magic knickers were guaranteed to lift your bum, hold in your tum and were designed to stretch up all the way to just under your boobs. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a pair. I know I paid a fortune for mine which were purchased in a proper lingerie shop.

It was Christmas and me and him were meeting some friends for a posh dinner. I excitedly pulled on my magic knickers and my new festive outfit and took a look in the mirror. Definite improvement – a lot of the lumps and bumps had magically vanished. God Bless Trinny and Susannah and off we went. It was as we were walking into the restaurant, waving at our friends that I had the very disconcerting feeling of my magic knickers magically rolling themselves back up as though their job was done. Just like my school tights I think that my magic drawers were designed for shorter women. And so I spent an uncomfortable night looking lumpier than ever as my own excess poundage came up for air, joined by a redundant roll of expensive undergarment.

So I am not under any illusions in reality about shaping myself into the me of my dreams, six feet tall with long, sexy legs and a figure to die for. Just a bit less like snow-woman would be good. Wish me luck!

Photo by Markusram on

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Writing and Talking.... on the radio, on the telly and in the papers.

9 thoughts on “HOT LEGS”

  1. He Barbara,
    You forgot to mention your sexy basketball skirt, which although fine in first year by the time we were in sixth year was positively indecent! Magic knickers wonderful except for the problem of trapped wind! I must remember to put up a photo of myself on Facebook so everyone can see that I have been blessed with the most wonderful pair of pins myself!! Good luck with the no-diet, healthy eating plan – does that mean no more scones for guests??

  2. Thanks Maureen. I have to say an advantage of my magic knickers rolling down was NO TRAPPED WIND. And there will always be scones… for guests! Thanks for the comment. p.s. do you know I still have that basketball skirt and gaze at it fondly every time someone discovers in the attic. I just look at the waist and smile!!!!

  3. Oh Barbara – I so identify with the tights! Mine used to do that too!

    You had me laughing out load with this post! . . . especially –

    “so I developed a winter walking style all my own – which involved two normal strides and one giant one as I attempted to subtly manoeuvre the crotch back to where it belonged.” – lol

    In fact reading this bought back a memory of mine that I just posted on a streaming now.

    Thanks for the laughs – x

  4. He Barbara,

    If I comment on your blog that does not give you permission to post possibly? the most gruesome photo of me on my Facebook (fellow bloggers you don't know who you are dealing with here!!!) especially as you know I do not have the technical skills to upload an updated fantastic one and will now have to wait till my teenage son comes from school and explain the photo to him and ask him to delete it. Would love to comment further but feel a trip up to the attic coming on to rummage through some of my own old school photos!!!! I reckon if I look hard enough I will find a few for your lovely legs competition!

  5. Barbara

    absolutely hilarious barbara. I am afraid as i am not quiet as tall as you they just dont work for me either! there is nothing as bad as that feeling when you think all is well and the next thing they roll down and then you have another problem. keep on the writing you certainly made by day.

  6. laughing out loud. i've had the same problem with tights etc, only mine have always been too long! i'm 5 ft 2 inches and rotund, so i have to buy the larger size to get over my hips, but they were always sized for taller girls, would have to pull almost up to my neck 🙂

  7. Thanks everyone for the great witty comments.
    @Niamh – actually went looking for a photo of the purple jumpsuit but as I think it only ever had the one outing, there is no photo! But did find some other funny ones which is why @maureen is a bit stressed about facebook!!!

    @michael – is actually my friend Ann who left a comment when logged in as her husband – just in case you think my life is far more exciting than it is and that I have male friends who also wear magic knickers!!!!

    @patty – welcome and thanks for your comment. I think that magic knickers and tights are definitely not designed with women in mind! Makes one wonder – who designs these garments? And take note women like Kate Moss do not need Magic Knickers!!!

  8. Really enjoyed this Barbara! Laughed at the description of the tights walk.

    I do remember you in the white eye shadow in the glam days of the 80's!

    It must have been a man who designed the magic knickers! They actually roll on me. Giving me a more prominent middle bulge just below the one I was trying to camouflage. Yikees! I know too much information. 🙂

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