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Your pants maker is lying to you.

So, we all know that clothing sizes, granting that there never has been anything really standardized, have been gradually inflating, so that todays size 6 is more like yesterday's size 10.

Fine. But that's women's clothes, and to an extent, men's tops. But aren't pants supposed to be sold by waist measurement in inches?

I've recently lost a lot of weight and even more waistline, thanks to my new "don't make a complete pig of yourself all the time and ride your bicycle at least 7 hours a week, plus other activities" diet (note to publishers: let's talk book deal). So I've been buying a fair number of trousers so that I don't have to hold my pants up with one hand anymore.

Here's the score: measured waist: 34".

Size of "Uniform" brand jeans from Europe that fit me nicely now: 34

Size of Old Navy slacks that fit about as well as the Uniform jeans: 31

Size of Levi's 634 Orange Tab relax-fit taper-leg jeans I just bought, which fit maybe a tetch snugger than the others: 30

1" I can understand. But 4"? Pants are often sold in 2" increments, so that's off by two sizes.

I'm a 30" leg if you care, and the relax-fit tapered-leg is good for me because I have a cyclist's thighs, which is to say big and muscly. Just ask Eric. And also, because they were $20 at Able Auctions' Coquitlam liquidation centre.