Warning. The following may be upsetting. Reader discretion is advised.
Picture a pair of jeans, powder blue. The rise stretches higher and higher until the belly button is but a distant memory. The ankles taper to the shape of sugar cones. They are too short, and the socks show. The back pockets, well, they're big enough to warm a Clydesdale on a cold winter's morn.
Dun ... dun ... dun ...
Urban Dictionary describes them as such: jeans highlighting the flat curvature of the 40+ buttocks ... Extremely high waist, and always a yucky shade of blue or black.
You've probably seen the old "Saturday Night Live" skit. A group of middle-aged moms frolic about in their nightmare denim slings.
They rub their jean-swaddled rears while an announcer speaks:
"Introducing Mom Jeans, exclusively at JCPenney. Mom Jeans fit Mom just the way she likes it. She'll love the 9-inch zipper and casual front pleats. Cut generously to fit a mom's body."
A singer in the background croons, "Give it up, give it up, put on your Mom Jeans."
Mom jeans have been thrust back into our consciousness.
President Barack Obama donned some majorly dweebish denim while bike riding during his campaign. He struck again last week while throwing out the first pitch at the All-Star Game.
The blogosphere went nut-so:
"Dude, seriously: What's with the mom jeans?
A look at the video confirms they came this close to exposing sock when he simply walked across the field.
Those jeans WERE pretty awful. Michelle needs to get him to throw those hideous things away."
This type of jean is disturbingly unflattering, for sure. It should go back to 1992.
But are they really "mom" jeans?
"I think I'm pretty cute, actually," said Kelley Simpson, a size 6 St. Petersburg, Fla. mom who makes beaded jewelry on the side. "But my kids kind of think I have 10 years left to live, and I'm 45."
Most moms today are more style savvy than the Keds-clad parodies polluting the Internet.
But are they all? What of her own mother, now 65? What does she wear?
"Oh yeah, my mom wore mom jeans," she said. "She still does."