Several years ago when I was still smoking cigarettes I was living outside Haddington in East Lothian and writing some music. I was nearly out of cigarettes and at that time felt that I had to smoke to write.
So as stocks were getting low I rushed off to the local pub to get some more before it closed, not really considering my appearance. I walked into the pub and it was empty except for the barmaid and 3 people sitting at the bar.
As I approached the bar one of the three, a guy with a bit of a cocky tone, said “are you very strong?”. I thought he’s a bit of a smartarse, I thought he was opening up some wind up type banter ‘cos I am quite a big guy and the rest of it, so I replied “strong relative to what”. He shut up and I thought – ‘that shut him up. One-nil to me.’
I asked the barmaid for some Marlboro lights and the same guy who was listening in then slightly sarcastically offered to sell me an opened pack of 18 for twice the price a pack of 20 is normally.
I got change and went to the machine and they had no Marlboro lights so I went back to the bar.
Then the guy said “Can you lift heavy weights” and I looked sternly at him right in the eye (trying to be cool) and said “Heavy relative to what?”
Again silence. Arsehole nil, me two! Yee-ha!
I then asked the guy for the pack of 18 and he sold me them for a more reasonable price.
Finally totally deadpan, and with perfect timing (just as I was setting off to leave the pub) he went
“Do you wear Big Pants?”
The two people with him sat there in total silence.
I was non-plussed and stopped dead in my tracks.
There was a pause. Now I wasn’t sure where he was heading. I thought furiously. “Big Pants? What is that about?” I couldn’t work it out.
I knew time was of the essence to maintain my cool.
So I thought – “I know this guy is winding me up. I don’t understand the last question. But….aha!….I can deal with him by sticking with my comeback question. It’s worked so far – After all I am 2-0 up on this guy.”
So I said “Big relative to what?” and set off out the pub.
I came out of the pub with my fags thinking – “ I dealt with the local smartarse with three ironic rapid fire comebacks. 3-0. 3 fucking nil. I am so fucking cool”.
It was only on leaving the pub that I looked down and realised that I had on a large pair of old stretched off-white XXL cotton boxer shorts, the arrangement of which I clearly hadn’t checked before leaving the house.
The shorts ( or should I say ‘pants’) were pulled up extremely high with the waistband well above my navel precisely at the widest point of my mid abdominal bulge. These ‘big pants’ were sitting over my T shirt. To make it even worse my quite old jeans were kind of sagging down very low and almost hanging off my arse. There must have a good 10 inches between the waistband of my boxers and the waistband of my jeans.
So I had this giant big pant / comedy overweight victorian wrestler/weightlifter thing going on.
I completely laughed out loud all the way home in the car and marvelled at the incredible job this guy had done, with the beautiful sequence of deadpan questions leading up to the classic and devastating question “Do you wear Big Pants?” – which has become a catchphrase in my household.
The score was rapidly revised from ‘Arsehole 0 Me 3’ to ‘Comedy Genius in Pub 7 Arsehole with Big Pants 0’.