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Clothesline: Two women’s drop-tail bibs put to the test

Call away, Nature. Even if I’m wearing bib shorts.

So the other day I had an experience that I’m sure most 20-something women have had. I showed up to my dad’s house for a bike ride, and he answered the door dressed in the same outfit I was wearing. As all women discuss the fit of their clothing with their fathers as well, so did I as we rolled out.

The jury was decided that the jersey was a showcase of human ability, while the shorts were a train wreck.

“I can’t stand them,” I responded to his question about what I thought about the shorts.

“I know! When you try to go to the bathroom, the bib comes up way too high in the front and you have to take your jersey all the way off to go,” he vented in response.

I blinked at him, awed that he would actually think that would be the reason that I had snubbed the shorts. “Yeah,” I responded slowly, emphasizing the irony in my voice, “but that didn’t really occur to me.”

Neither pair of the bib shorts on review here were those anecdotal shorts, but both have acknowledged the fact that when women wear men’s bibs, we always have to take our jersey all the way off to answer the call of nature, and the designers have taken sympathy on us for the challenges we face when removing layers in a Porta Potty.

Gore and Pearl Izumi have approached the dilemma in two very different ways. Pearl’s Women’s P.R.O. In-R-Cool bib short uses a drop-tail system and the Gore Alp-X Lady bibs use a patented two-zip system.

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