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May 18, 2008

Idea for a New Invention: Aluminum Foil Underpants

Think about how great it would be to have underpants that are not only lightweight, disposable, and shiny, but also could be used in a pinch to wrap up leftovers. The obvious drawback: comfort. No doubt greater minds than mine at the Reynolds Corporation are already hard at work trying to figure out how to make aluminum foil underpants comfortable, but America has a long and storied tradition of backyard tinkerers using a little elbow grease and a whole lot of good old-fashioned American ingenuity to solve seemingly insurmountable problems. The Wright Brothers did it. So can I.

One possible solution: not caring. If I could somehow convince people that the benefits of aluminum foil underpants outweigh the detriments, then maybe they I could get them to ignore the almost certain chafing and bleeding. One drawback of this solution is that I think I would almost certainly be closing off the children’s market, since I think parents put a far higher premium on their children’s comfort than they do on their own. Getting adults to ignore their own bleeding thighs would probably be a lot easier than getting them to ignore the bleeding thighs of their precious offspring. Plus, since children would probably enjoy reflective undergarments even more than adults, it just makes good business sense to figure out how to make aluminum foil underpants so soft and comfortable, even a newborn baby could wear them.

What about bunny fur? Bunny fur is certainly comfortable. If I could figure out a way to use bunny fur as a lining for the aluminum foil underpants, that would be a solution. Elmer’s glue might do the trick. Squeeze Elmer’s liberally on the inside of the undies, sprinkle on a handful of bunny fur, voila! Instant bunny-fur lined aluminum foil underpants. Of course, while this solves the comfort problem, it creates a host of other problems. For one thing, once you’ve lined your aluminum foil underpants with bunny fur, they become a lot less useful in the area of “wrapping up leftovers” because you run the risk of getting bunny fur all over your food. Some people might not mind this, but personally, I would never want to be in a situation where I’m throwing away a perfectly good piece of leftover lamb shank because I don’t want to get bunny fur on it from my aluminum foil underpants. Plus, who is really going to want to take the time every morning to sprinkle bunny fur into their underpants? Even if you include the Elmer’s glue and a bagful of bunny fur with your purchase, it’s still a huge time suck.

What about wearing regular underpants underneath the aluminum foil pants? That way you’ve got the comfort traditional of regular underpants combined with the practicality and futuristic look of aluminum foil underpants. The way it would work is, you would put on your normal underpants, then simply wrap aluminum foil around them. One advantage of this method is that it creates a “one size fits all” solution since you’re really just taking regular aluminum foil and wrapping them around your underwear. Whatever size your regular boring underpants are, that's the size your new exciting aluminum foil underpants will be. Another advantage is that your old underwear maintains a "safe zone" between your leftover food and your gonads. It’s also an environmentally solution because people wouldn’t have to throw away all their pre-existing underpants, since their old underwear actually becomes an integral part of their new underwear. Best of all: this solution exploits technology that we already have, namely the ability to wrap aluminum foil around stuff. Problem solved.

No doubt there will be naysayers who will say, “What’s the point? You’re just wrapping aluminum foil around your panties.” I am going to give you some comebacks for these killjoys so that you can concentrate less on them and more on enjoying your new aluminum foil underpant lifestyle. One simple way I like to tell people off is to turn the tables on them like so:

Jerk: “Why do you have aluminum foil wrapped around your underwear?”

You: “Oh yeah? Why don’t you have aluminum foil wrapped around your underwear?” Devastating.

Another technique is use the “historical reference.”

Jerk: “What’s with the shiny underpants, pal?”

You: “That’s what they said to Isaac Newton, and look what happened to him.”

[Note: you can also use biblical references here if you are a religious person. E.g. instead of “Isaac Newton,” say, “That’s what they said to Azariah who helped put Joash on the throne of Judah.”]

Or you might try this tried and true comeback:

Jerk: “I notice you’re wearing aluminum foil over your traditional underpants. How come?”

You: “If everybody decided to jump off the Brooklyn Bridge, would you?”

As you can see, the naysayers just make themselves look bad when they try to put you down. The simple fact is that any bold new innovation is going to initially be met with scorn by certain Luddites who are terrified of progress. That’s understandable. After all, underwear technology hasn’t changed much in several thousand years. People today are wearing pretty much the  same kind of underwear that cavemen wore: boxer briefs. But change is inevitable, and the question you have to ask yourself is, do you want to keep up with the times, or go the way of the cavemen, who were killed off by the dinosaurs? Aluminum foil underpants are safe, healthy, reusable, disposable, environmentally friendly, and (not least of all) extremely attractive.

It must be obvious to you that I could have kept this idea to myself, patented it, and made a fortune. But I didn’t. Instead, I choose to give this idea to the world free of charge in exchange for leaving Earth a slightly better, shinier place than when I arrived.


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One thing aluminum foil underwear is not: edible. Don't try this at home, kids. (Ouch! My dental fillings!)


Perhaps sequins and a sewing kit would be more marketable? If I may be so bold to critique your otherwise genious idea...the folds of the tin foil would most likely chafe and make that "crinkly" sound upon any slight movement,even if worn over the panties/underoos.



"Whatever size your regular boring underpants are, that's the size your new exciting aluminum foil underpants will be." <--Made me laugh and spitter-sputter which sounded a lot like a hose when you first turn it on.


"I would never want to be in a situation where I’m throwing away a perfectly good piece of leftover lamb shank because I don’t want to get bunny fur on it from my aluminum foil underpants." <---Is one of the funniest statements I've ever read.

And a special personal thanks for using the word "underpants" more times than the word "panties". Women can use the word "panties" in all it's glory and it effects me not. When men say or write it -my inner monologue hears the hoarse whisper of a wrinkly Italian High School Janitor: "Nicesh pan-teez ya got deh girlie-girl".


Might I suggest a better, if less shiny solution? Saran wrap (or 'cling film' to us Brits).

Much more comfortable than foil, equally useful for wrapping leftovers, and whilst not shiny in a futuristic way, it's see through, so everybody can see one's junk. Which for us ladies, provides a 'window shopping' opportunity that would have saved many an awkward scramble to come up with an excuse for laughing.

And, being waterproof, if you get caught short, you can pee in it without wetting your trousers. Although the ensuing huge bubble of pee, swelling around your loins, might cause alarm to onlookers.


Yeah, Reen ..."panties" is kinda creepy/molest-y sounding. Therese's well thought out undie plan had me amused at how in depth you've gotten us to think about alternative forms of undies.


Thank you for validating that, Cam.

And here's one more for the road: "How about a lil somethin' somethin'?"


And Tee - you're scaring me...in a most DELICIOUS way.


I have to say that I had never heard of Michael Ian Black over here in the UK until today, and I've scoured the intergape and youtube, and this is the funniest man I have ever seen and read.




I think Iain's comment should be the strap line on your next book/CD.


Iain, I know just what you mean. He's so funny and clever that you can't help but feel compelled to write and say so.

Michael, your blogs are so very entertaining and seeing you live is always a special treat. Thanks so much for all you do.



One thing that has been overlooked is how people will see your shiny new underpants. A woman above mentioned saran wrap providing window shopping perks.

Does this futuristic underpants utopia come with a clause for pantlessness?
If so, I'm on board.


One of the real benefits to men having Aluminum foil underpants is that now, no one can read our thoughts.


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