During high school, my peer group was sixteen going on twenty-five and most had long legs for kicking pom-poms and wrapping around their senior boyfriends’ waists. When they stripped down to their thongs, my eyes bulged with wonder. “Don’t they hurt?” I’d ask. “No,” one girlfriend quipped, “It’s as if you already have a grundie so there’s nothing to pull out.” So I wore thongs too, until I discovered the boy short, and that was the day the thong was banished from my underworld.
I thought the thong-thing would be passé by now, what with all the developments we’ve made with visible-panty-line technology. Alas, judging by the number of pages dedicated to the thong in the latest Victoria’s Secret catalog, it appears to be here to stay—firmly wedged between fashion’s cheeks.
Wondering if my fellow females were suffering for their invisible panty lines, I thought to create a non-thong support group where we could burn our thongs and share favorite non-thong recommendations. My girlfriends gave me enough who, what, and why to ensure that a) We will all be at ease in our undies now and b) I will be very at ease—and accurate in my visualization—next time I need to make a speech in front of them!
Drum roll please …
Our Top Bottom Pleasers
Who: The “I Want to Feel Sexy on Any Given Wednesday” Girl
Why: These are my picks. The lace doesn’t cut that sensitive area of my thigh and they don’t scream “VPL!” under my tight tooshie pants. The Veronica number is just simply H-O-T in my favorite shade of blue. A co-worker swears by the Mary Green shorts, explaining that they are ridiculously comfortable and when purchased in packs, ridiculously cheap.
Who: The “I Want to Ride High in the Sky” Girl
What: Calvin Klein Naked Hipster 
Why: As a girlfriend aptly put it, the Naked Hipster, “feels like a soft cloud around your crotch.” Thank you, Calvin!
Who: The “I Only Worry About My Own Comfort” Girl
What: Lululemon Hot Shorts 
Why: Lululemon undies are usually rolled up and stashed in bins near the cash register. That way you can pick up a rainbow array, as I did, whenever you’re craving that last minute at-the-counter add-on. These fit perfectly and are a no-show under tight slacks and yoga pants, though one friend gave the tip about cotton undies, to make sure they don’t bunch up, screaming out panty lines.
Who: The “I Only Do Cracks with My Hands” Girl
What: Patagonia W’s Active Hipster 
Why: I love Patagonia founder Yvon Chonaird’s One Percent for the Planet  mission for a more sustainable corporate model and the fact that these briefs look quite sustainable themselves. I only wonder the return policy on the panties if they ever fall apart, like the fleece jackets I’ve sent back in the past.
Who: The “I May Not Look the Part, but I’m Naughty Underneath” Girl
Why: A friend gave Honeydew a shout out for its ultra-soft materials and great colors and patterns, which reminded me that I had a pair of these once and can second her emotion, they just must have run off with my thongs.
Many friends said, “Gap Body all the way,” but one friend said they fall apart after a week. I’ll let you decide, but I bet those Smooth Cheekys would feel good on my smooth cheekys.
Who: The “I Really Just Lay Back and Scarf Soy Bon-Bons” Girl
Why: Okay, so some of us just like to walk into lingerie shops that don’t allow beverages just to see what making a hundred grand a year might feel like. Cosabella and LaPerla are those shops. That or else you’re lucky enough to have just scored a new boyfriend who has yet to get in your pants, and hopes he will if he buys you a few pairs of these!
Why have all of those Boyshorts, when you can have Lily’s Girlshorts? I tried these once and my thighs looked like this photo—I need to get me a pair.
Apparently, the Sex and the City star that friends say I remind them of the most (hint: she wore glasses on Square Pegs) prefers these high dollar numbers. When I become a star in my next life (or get tan or maybe a raise), I’m buying the La Perla Pink Lace Short.
Who: The “I Guess I Asked For That Spank” Girl
Why: For The Love Parade in San Francisco this summer, I wore a turquoise waist apron with a cherry on the front pocket. In the back, I wore a pair of rumba shorts with little red cherries on the bum! The first time I got a little spank from a stranger it was fun, but the fourteenth time it hurt. Thank god good House music and love was in the air, or else I might have hit someone back!
The hot lamé numbers are perfect for Halloween, Burning Man, or that Saturday night when your honey expected microwaved leftover soup, but instead you made him a three-course meal with gold lamé for dessert!