As I write this, I am keenly aware that I have elephant ankles.

No, my extremities are not swollen.

It’s a throwback reference to a TV commecial that featured a little boy pointing and laughing at a lady whose pantyhose had bunched around her ankles.

Let me just say, it’s only funny when it happens to somebody else.

And yes, I still wear pantyhose.

They cover a multitude a sins.

First and foremost, they create the illusion of tan, smooth legs. Move quickly and no one has any idea that you raced out of the house without shaving that day. Just sayin’.

And anyway, whose bright idea was it to go bare-legged and spend the bulk of the day with your feet sticking to the inside of your shoes?

All I know is, it was a big deal to get to wear said pantyhose.

The rite of passage was right up there with being allowed to wear makeup.

All the ads made it sound glamorous and like the height of fashion and feminity.

“Our L’eggs fit your legs. They hug you. They hold you. They never let you go,” went one ditty.

Because, you know, “nothing beats a great pair of L’eggs” went another.

Even sports legend Joe Namath participated in a memorable commercial where he donned a pair.

No one tells you, though, that there should be mandatory training involved before operating them. Or at the very least, the package should come with directions.

They are, after all, tricky to maneuver. Dangerous, even.

If one had even the slightest hangnail or callous, there was the danger of snagging or poking a hole in the nylons.

To say nothing of what happens when they run. Truth be told, you’re lucky to get more than one wearing out of them.

Call it a golfer’s plight — a hole in one.

I mean, you simply cannot be seen in public if that happens. Unless, of course, you pretend that the run “just happened” and wasn’t actually a pre-existing condition and you were just too lazy to switch it up as you left home that day.

No, having that occur leaves you with two options — toss ‘em or snip and tuck.

The latter was a make-shift way of salvaging them. I mean, who is going to throw away a perfectly good pair of pantyhose if one leg is still functional?

In that case, the wise thing to do was to cut off the leg that was no longer viable and then partner two legs to make a whole pair.

Again, the illusion is intact. No one ever need know, unless a very strong wind kicks up and bares your, shall we say, assets.

But back to my elephant legs.

I bought an off-brand recently, another thing to avoid. If they are not the texture of preference, there is a risk involved.

All legs are not created equally, and it’s a tricky balance to get hosiery to fit well from top to bottom. 

Unfortunately, once you get them home and open the package, it’s too late to remedy that.

Guess one could say you don’t have a leg to stand on.