As a lifeguard in my teens, I wore black Speedos to work. We were in and out of the water all day, and the skimpy suits allowed for a drier crotch than boxer-type suits, plus they were hydrodynamically-sensible. If you were swimming a mile or so every day, a baggy suit was, literally, a drag.
One year, somebody complained that the suits were, um, too revealing, so we had our girlfriends make us some god-awful knee-length baggies of orange terrycloth with black hounds-tooth patterns. Those didn't last long–we made our point and were allowed to go back to the racing suits, which every other lifeguard in the world wore.
There comes a time when one should maybe stop wearing such things, of course. A guy five-eight tall and pushing two-fifty? Maybe not.
I still prefer mine for actual swimming, and since I–ahem–have the body to get away with them, I still wear 'em. (Though I confess I usually wrap a towel around my hips or wear over-shorts for ambling around the pool these days, when I'm in the water, the tiny suits are better for swimming.)
Came across this in the news today. Roy Lester, an ex-lifeguard in Long Island, is suing because he got fired, ostensibly for not wearing the briefs for his re-qualification tests. (Turns out he is also a lawyer.)
He wanted to wear bicycle shorts, which you can see from the picture, are basically long Speedos.
This wouldn't be much of an item, until you see that Lester is sixty-one and a triathlete, who wins lifeguard competitions in his age group. And that age discrimination might have reared its ugly head.
My first response is, Wow, still a lifeguard at sixty-one and a triathlete to boot? As he pointed out, he could have passed the test in dungarees. Hell, let the guy wear what he wants ...