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An interesting response to Chuck Hinman Long Johns story

Here is an interesting response to Chuck Hinman's "Long-John Weather in Nebraska" -ROBERT H. STONE

Mr. Hinman:

My son sent me a copy of your December article, "Long John Weather in Nebraska." Like you, I was born in Nebraska (Kearney) and, like you, I wore union suits in the winter time around the house and to school as a boy. We moved to Colorado in the mid-1950's and I became a city boy. Since I had a paper route, I didn't mind long underwear and wore them about six months out of the year.

Undressing for phys ed was embarrassing to me as a teen-age boy as well. And sometimes my underwear would poke out the bottoms of my jeans when sitting at my desk. I wasn't as inventive as you, though. I just always wore my unionsuits, rain or shine.

Fortunately, some of the other boys wore union suits and other long underwear to school as well so there was a kind of camaraderie between us. Besides, coach told the other boys to knock it off when they poked fun of our long johns, and the novelty soon wore off. The one time I was really embarrassed was when I forgot my gym clothes one Monday morning. We were into basketball season then and coach made me play the whole hour in just my unionsuit and socks. I never forgot my gym clothes after that!

The funny thing about unionsuits and cold weather was laundry day. Mom would hang our unionsuits out on the clothes line. In the winter time they would freeze so hard, you could bring them inside stiff as a board and they would stand up all by themselves. Remember?

I guess I wasn't too traumatized as a boy because believe it or not I still wear unionsuits (red ones) to this day. I am an appraiser so I work outside some most everyday. My grandsons think grandpa's long red underwear is the funniest underwear they ever saw. I'm 58 years old and just can't get away from having my long johns being poked fun of. But, my 14 year old grandson decided they weren't so bad after all and wanted a unionsuit to wear snowboarding. So, we got him one this past Christmas. I think his little brothers were jealous. They'll probably get those red long johns for Christmas next year.

Union suits will be around for another generation, at least.

Thanks for a smile and a nice memory. I hope my son sends me some more of your articles.

s/R. E. Corlis

This story was posted on 2010-03-02 14:47:04
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