“Nightie” Story : Humor “Out of Uniform”

Link to my original post in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal ->  http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2016/01/nightie.html

Humor “Out of Uniform”

Story of the Nightie

This morning I wanted to give my “Better Half” a surprise gift – a “Nightie.

So – I went to a boutique.

I saw some lovely “half nighties” (short nighties) hanging on a rack (these are the type of “nighties” my wife likes to wear at home).

While I was selecting a suitable “nightie” for my wife – a salesgirl appeared and she asked me: “Sir – can I help you?”

“I want a good ‘nightie’ for my wife…” I said.

“Sir – these are not ‘nighties’ – these are Ladies ‘Kurtas’ – ‘Ladies Long Kurtas’…” the salesgirl said to me.

I beat a hasty retreat.

And – I remembered this story from my Navy Days.


Hilarious Memories of my Glorious Navy Days



I was – and maybe I still am – an old fashioned prude – and a bit puritanical by nature.

Let me tell you a hilarious anecdote – a result of my rather prudish behaviour, which happened long back when I was in the Navy.

It was the evening of the Navy Ball – the much awaited grand finale of the Navy Week in Mumbai (then called Bombay).

It was decided that all ship’s officers who did not live in the Navy Township (NOFRA) would assemble with our wives in the home of a shipmate who lived in NOFRA near the Navy Command Officers Mess – the venue of the Navy Ball.

We could park our scooters/motorcycles near his house.

(Yes – those days most navy officers had scooters/motorcycles – and could not afford cars)

We would then all walk down to the Command Mess Lawns for the Navy Ball.

Accordingly – my wife and I reached my shipmate’s house half an hour before the commencement of the Navy Ball.

Some officers and wives were already there – some trickled in – and our shipmate had generously opened a bottle of rum – and told us to help ourselves while they got dressed.

My shipmate came out of his bedroom smartly dressed in Navy Uniform Dress No. 6 – “monkey jacket” – bow tie – miniature medals and all.

He said his wife was getting ready.

It was almost time for the Navy Ball.

We were anxiously waiting for his wife to get ready.

After some time the bedroom door opened – and my shipmate’s wife stepped out.

I was most disappointed to see that she had still not got ready.

“What is this Ma’am? The Navy Ball is about to start and you are still in your nightie?” I blurted out.

The lady looked at me with an expression of total shock – it seemed as if she was stunned.

Slowly – I could see her shock turn into anger.

She was looking at me with blazing eyes.

She pointed towards the clothes she was wearing – and she shouted at me: “You are calling this a “nightie…? This is a haute couture designer dress. Do you know how much money I spent on this exclusive custom made dress…?”

“Haute Couture…?” I mumbled – I had never heard the term “haute couture” before.

I looked at my shipmate’s wife with regret in my eyes – and a contrite expression on my face.

But I saw the expression on her face change from anger into anxiety – and soon the expression of anxiety changed into one of panic.

My shipmate’s wife looked at my wife – the she looked at the other ladies – and she said: “Tell me – is this dress really looking so bad?”

After that – my shipmate’s wife burst into tears – and she ran back into her bedroom.

The fact of the matter was that my shipmate’s wife was very chic and fashionable.

She had got this most fashionable skimpy western style dress exclusively “made-to-order” from a top designer (“haute couture”) especially for the Navy Ball.

Being an old-fashioned prude – I did not realize that what she was wearing was not a “nightie” – but an exclusive haute couture latest fashion skimpy dress which she had got specially made for her by a leading fashion designer.

My wife gave me a glaring look and told me to disappear – lest I say or do something even more stupid that would further aggravate matters.

Then – my wife and the other ladies went inside to console my shipmate’s wife.

It was decided that all the gentlemen would proceed for the Navy Ball – and the ladies would join later.

I apologized to my shipmate: “I am very sorry – I did not mean to insult your wife.”

“Oh, come on – forget it,” he said, “In fact – after hearing your comments – I almost burst out laughing myself.”

“But your wife must be angry with me?” I said.

“Don’t worry – she’ll be okay – she spent a fortune on that designer dress – that is why she is so upset,” he said.

Later – the ladies joined us in the Navy Ball.

My shipmate’s wife was the centre of attraction in her haute couture skimpy fashionable dress.

I wanted to apologize to her – but my wife had given me strict instructions to keep my mouth shut – lest I put my foot in my mouth again.


Many years later – my wife was shopping in the Ladies’ Garments Section of a famous Mall in Pune.

I was just hanging around.

Suddenly I saw the same chic and fashionable lady – my ex-shipmate’s “haute couture” wife – standing near me.

I wished her.

She smiled back.

“My wife is in the trial room…” I said.

“Oh? I must meet her,” she said.

I looked at chic “haute couture” lady – and I said: “Ma’am – I want to ask you a favour…”

“Sure…” she said.

I pointed to the colourful nighties hanging nearby on a rack – and I said to her:

“Ma’am – if you don’t mind – can you please help me select a “nightie” for my wife – she likes “half nighties” – short nighties – like these “nighties” over here on this rack…”

My ex-shipmate’s chic “haute couture” wife burst out laughing – and she said to me:

These are not “Nighties” – these are “Kurties”  or “Tops – they are certainly not “Nighties” – Ha Ha – you are still as clueless as ever – aren’t you…?”

I smiled at her.

She started laughing.

I joined her in her laughter.

I knew that she had forgiven me for my “faux pas on that Navy Ball Evening – many years ago.


Copyright © Vikram Karve
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© vikram karve., all rights reserved.


  1. This yarn is a spoof, satire, pure fiction, just for fun and humor, no offence is meant to anyone, so take it with a pinch of salt and have a laugh.
  2. All Stories in this Blog are a work of fiction. Events, Places, Settings and Incidents narrated in the stories are a figment of my imagination. The characters do not exist and are purely imaginary. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Copyright Notice:

No part of this Blog may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical including photocopying or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the Blog Author Vikram Karve who holds the copyright.

Copyright © Vikram Karve (all rights reserved)


Updated Re-Post of my Story titled FAUX PAS First Posted by me Vikram Karve in my Academic and Creative Writing Journal Blog in April 2014 at 4/26/2014 08:09:00 PM at url: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2014/04/faux-pas-hilarious-memories-of-my.html and in Nov 2014 at url: http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2014/11/my-shipmates-chic-wife-hilarious.html and http://karvediat.blogspot.in/2015/06/humor-in-uniform-chic-haute-couture.html

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