Well, they say that clothes maketh the man. So if we’re using the logically sound methodology of believing sayings, then the trousers were responsible for the squareness of the bottom.
And then, science would probably indicate that sponges seem to grow outward freely in open spaces (out into the ocean) whilst conforming to the shape of items that they get stuck to. Assuming that our hero simply started off nude and the grew into the trousers that drifted by and latched on to him, then we’re certainly leaning in that direction.
But then, that’s putting a lot of coincidence in control, and given that Spongebob’s family is called ‘Squarepants’ one wonders (naturally) if there is a genetic tendency towards square posteriors, creating a succession of hereditary sartorial choices that eventually led to a convenient nickname being adopted more formally.
That’s where I sit on the issue. I reckon square bottoms lead to square trousers.
I mean seriously, tight trousers (tightness being the may way of creating some kind of shape out of trouserness) tend to produce more curves than corners. I’m pretty sure this is a structural feature inherent to the fabrication of trews. Unless you start adding some kind of frame within the rear end of the trousers, you’d end up with roundedness. So the idea that Spongebob’s ass could’ve grown like that seems absurd.
Absurd I say.
Unlike the notion of a non-sessile, sentient sponge man that wears trousers and gets into zany scrapes at the bottom of the sea.
My ass is cute, whatever trousers (or not) I wear. In fact, it’s cutest outside of trousers (or alternatives). I don’t suddenly conform to the shape of whatever I wear (though I’ll admit that some tighter outfits do give a small helping and rounding hand).
We are who we are and we wear what we wear more as a way to outwardly express that, than to shape it.
Though there is a two way street to that form of identity. You can dress as a certain idea and it provides an opportunity to express that. It can reinforce behaviours and emphasise them. Dressing up, even in your ‘regular clothes’ is a form of role play. Everything is drag, performative gender and identity. You get up, you choose an outfit, and you play that part.
I guess what I’m trying to say here, is that whatever’s on the outside, your ass stays the same.
So Spongebob can wear whatever pants he likes. If his identity is bound up in the squareness of his trousers, then that’s up to him. I for one am glad he’s comfortable enough with the shape of his posterior to emphasise it with his choice of clothes and even his name.
That he can be a successful media force despite his oblong buttocks is a testament his bravery and willingness to struggle onwards in a round assed world.
Spongebob, you are an example to us all.
And your pants.
Illustration by Adam.