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So our recent move into the city has necessitated finding new shopping haunts. Some of it has been easy – like groceries, thanks to the Farmer’s Market. And some has been not so easy – like pantyhose. Seriously, think about it. Where do you buy pantyhose in the city?

It has to be said, I’m picky when it comes to hose. Wait, when am I not picky? Nevermind. I like certain brands. And I’m hard to fit since I’m fuller than most “normal” sizes, but smaller than most “queen” sizes. The fact that I’m short, with full legs and a big ass don’t help matters any!

Over the years, I’ve found a few go-to brands that fit right and give the best bang for my buck (read – they don’t snag in an instant). Sure, I’ve tried others, including the ones by Spanx – which do fit and shape beautifully, but they aren’t the most sheer things and they snag if you breathe on them the wrong way.

Sadly, around the city, I can only rarely find my usual brand. And no matter which brand I find, it seems there are only two sizes in stock: Anorexic Mini-Fairy and Linebacker-in-Drag Queen Size. Since I am neither, I’m kinda outta luck.

I generally skip hose during summer, but in Fall, I like the things. They’re kind of a necessity under clingy dresses and pants (well, they should be if you’re over 35 and/or have some jiggle). So the cooler weather had me searching for them and getting frustrated.

And then I remembered this magical device: the internet! Cue angels singing, please.

A quick search and I found more options than I ever imagined. I ordered several pair of my usual and then decided I might as well try something new and different. You never know, there may be some new great thing waiting to be discovered.

I settled on “Silkies” – they came highly reviewed, I know people who swear by them, and they have a wide range of sizes and lots of info on choosing the right size. That and let’s face it – the idea of shaping hose that squish the tummy and thighs while lifting the butt sounds like a win, right?

I perused the sizing info, carefully calculating and reading all the FAQ available. I read up on the different styles and sheerness levels and finally settled on the ones I wanted to try. I was excited.

Then they arrived.

First impression: Holy cow, they look like support hose! These were not anywhere near “sheer” in my book. But I can live with that for Fall. It’s OK.

Second impression: Holy cow, what is up with that panty? I’m used to control tops, but these things looked like Grandma Panties From Hell.

I should have taken the hint and returned them right then and there. But, despite my propensity for potentially negative sounding humor-based rants, I am an optimist and I like to think about the positives. I kept them.

And then the day came when I planned to wear them.

A valiant effort had both legs on and up over my knees, and I was feeling some serious compression. So, thinking positively, I of course thought, “Wow, these are going to be great shapers!”

The fact is, whenever I let go of the hose, the rolled up part constricted down like a tourniquet. I wiggled and jiggled, tugged and yanked and worked them inch by painful inch up my legs, finally reaching the upper thigh and panty area.

I took a deep breath and braced myself for the fun of getting this nylon restraint device over my hips, and I pulled.

Whoosh! The entire panty slid up over my hips to my waist with no resistance at all. No resistance, and no compression, “control top” or “lift” either. It was actually not even tight.

Maybe I put them on wrong. Consulting the instructions (yes, they came with instructions) I tried again. Same result.

I finally decided that apparently, the size that is supposedly “just right” for me is not anywhere close. Somehow, the makers seem to think that those in my height, weight and size range are giant potatoes with toothpick legs. Seriously, these things are meant to fit mile-long, thin legs topped by a gargantuan stomach, hips, ass and waist. What else can explain to the too long, too tight legs and the almost loose panty?

I peeled them off and reached for my usual brand and started the debate – I bought three different styles from Silkies, do I return the other two, or hope against hope they might by some miracle be different?

Well, at least I can always keep myself stocked with my usual favorites…