Shorts vs Panties

This morning I opened a new pack of undershorts that Joanne picked up for me.  Wow – seven pairs of new Fruit of the Loom shorts.  Out of curiosity I asked her what she paid for these.  She said it was $5.99 for the pack of seven.  Okay that’s $.85 each – and these babies have double stitching, the extra overlap for the trap door that we guys need – all in all just a real classy piece of workmanship.

Then I asked her what she pays for her panties. She said normally $8-10.00 each.  Of course those are much simpler in design – no trapdoor needed.  Just a bag with a couple of holes in it.  Now I may be oversimplifying the issue here, but why are they ten times as much money?

It’s because for guys we’re talking about a necessary and functional item.  For women it’s a matter of style and grace and beauty.  I’ve always told people you can make a living selling things that people need; e.g. washing machines, transmissions and light bulbs.  But you can get rich selling things that people want – chewing gum, vacation trips, motorcycles and ladies panties. 

People don’t “need” my books.  But I sell hope, inspiration and imagination that just happened to be packaged between two book covers.  People “want” that.  It sounds like an elementary business concept – but what about you — are you selling what people need or what they want?

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10 Responses to “Shorts vs Panties”

  1. Bill Seaver - MicroExplosion Media Says:

    Great post Dan. You made me laugh out loud too!

  2. Justin Lukasavige Says:

    Great post Dan; I tell business owners that all the time. My wife just bought a pair of panties for $.25 today however. You might point Joanne in the direction of the clearance rack at Target.

  3. David Tinney - No Hype, No BS Says:

    Dan, you’ve knocked it out of the park with this post! I’m still laughing!

  4. Jay Peroni Says:

    It is so true..needs versus wants. We often confuse a want as a need (plasma TV, 400 cable channels, high speed internet) instead of true needs (food, shelter, clothing, caring for God’s people). I am amazed. I went to and was amazed at how we as Americans are so blessed compared to many parts of the world.

    One point about the underwear: My wife looks better in underwear than me so $8 to $10 – I’ll take it;)

  5. therealmotherlode Says:

    Too funny, Dan!
    Shall we expect to see an entry on the “boxers” vs. “briefs” dialog?

  6. Damon Says:

    Well, “hope, inspiration and imagination” are needs. What good is a life lived without hope? What’s more needed in this world than inspiration and imagination?

    Not everyone believes in Christ. That’s fine. But some of the basic tenets of the Christan faith are that we have hope and faith in a God who has promised to make our lives worth something; we are inspired by others in community, and we hope to one day live in a world beyond imagination.

    People need identity. People need to know who they are. Bread on the table, bacon in the freezer, and gas in that tank, those are mundane. People “need” lives that mean something.

    P.S. Boxer Briefs for the win!

  7. edwincrozier Says:

    I might have to disagree. I think people need what you are selling. They just don’t always know it.

    Thanks for the laugh.

  8. Leah Tove Says:

    Oh, I laughed out loud, too! I’d buy those packages for my husband IF I bought his shorts.

    I suggest you got to a TJ Max if you have them in your area or come down to our store Ashevlle, NC. You can buy your own designer shorts at a huge discount…she’ll can even go with you and buy hers at a discount!

    So glad to have found your blog!

  9. chris Says:

    I enjoyed reading the post.

    I do want to play devils advocate with the last paragraph.

    You mentioned that you sell hope among other items. Not specifically related to you, but at what point does hope become hype?

    When does possibility overcome probability?

    The rational side of me sees that too often something packaged as hope is really hype. MLM anyone?

    And that the stories of someone running with possibility are really overshadowed by those who saw possibility and ran into probability.

    Again, I’m not pointing the bony finger of indignation at the writer of this blog. But being someone who trying to become a consumer of and a ultimately a user of hope, I have keep finding that when the wrapping paper of hope is stripped from the package, too often hype was the contents.

  10. Ludmilla Says:

    Great advice, i’m glad you’re enjoying it.

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