One wouldn’t think there would be long to say about men’s underwear, but Marshall Undin has found 625 pages of anecdotes, manufacturing methods, and fabric qualities about the subject.

So Schlong brings the reader backward and forward in time, through the various ups and downs of men’s underthings. Undin discusses the codpiece, the jock strap, the tighty-whitey, the silken boxer, and the long john in excruciating detail to the point where one wishes all men would just start going commando.

But alas, no scrotum is left twisting in the wind. Marshall Undin goes through great lengths in the introduction to explain that he will not be discussing the free willy.

Undin’s explanations are precise to the point of tedium. His explanation of the construction of a modern jock strap takes 100 pages, going from the productions differences between various types of elastics, to the construction of the protective cup. A full fifty pages is devoted to Calvin Klein’s revival of the tighty-whitey in the early 1990s. Undin does not include any of the Calvin Klein ads featuring the then-twenty-year old Antonio Sabato Jr, but does include photos of the Calvin Klein factory floor, as well as several diagrams of the dissected underwear

The most interesting part of So Schlong is the chapter devoted to myths of male underwear and the novelties they spawned, such as the underwear with cooling packs for increasing sperm count. This chapter also has the most interesting illustrations: patent diagrams for the anti-erection brief filled with corn flake powder; deodorizing briefs with “perfume pockets”; long johns that let the scrotum “breathe”. Unfortunately, this chapter is also the shortest in the book.

Undin writes with complete seriousness and without an ounce of wit or mirth, leaving the reader to make comments to themselves Mystery-Science-Theatre-3000-style.

Unlike Calvin Klein, Marshall Undin is unable to make men’s underwear interesting.

Advertisements