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The Slice: One-piece resurgence, with four drawbacks

Sun., June 30, 2013, midnight

Enjoying the sight of women in swimsuits just got more complicated.

According to recent reports, one-piece bathing suits are making a comeback. For fans of modesty and hygiene, this is happy news.

But men need to be careful. Because one-piece suits can seem relatively tame, there’s a tendency to relax one’s vigilance against the pitfall of ogling. And no one aspiring to be a gentleman wants to be caught, you know, staring.

So let me spell it out. Here are four reasons women’s one-piece swimsuits can get a guy in trouble.

1. When there are not obvious expanses of feminine skin all but shouting “It has been 1.5 seconds — avert your eyes now!” a daydreaming man can find himself unabashedly looking at a woman in a one-piece. And looking. And looking … until he and many of those around him realize he is transfixed by the womanly form in his field of vision. That’s not good.

2. A little extra fabric does not necessarily mean one-piece suits require that a male overly tax his imagination when speculating about how the lady in question might appear in, say, private settings. So just because it’s not a bikini he’s seeing, a guy can still find himself stepping briskly down the path to perdition, so to speak. Or at least he might run the danger of looking like some goofball wearing $1 X-ray specs purchased with a comic book coupon decades ago, still wondering why they don’t work.

3. Because some styles of one-piece swimsuits do, in fact, make it harder to see the whole truth, the careless heterosexual man will fix his gaze in laser-like fashion to get past the suit’s various ruffles and frills. That can be interpreted as rudeness. And no amount of protesting that you are hard-wired to be interested in well-turned, uh, ankles will get you off the hook. You aren’t 13.

4. A woman’s most fetching feature is her smile, and somehow substance-implying modest swimsuits only serve to make that expression even more dangerously beguiling.

Today’s Slice question: Where does the West begin and end?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email Hayley Murdock would name her boat the “Richard Russet,” on which she would be dictator. Get it?

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