Last November, while making breakfast, I thought about how sturdy my bras were and how long they had lasted. It is vital to never think these sorts of thoughts as it invites trouble because the fates are all “Clearly you have it too good if you’re thinking about the durability of undergarments”.
Not surprisingly, when I went upstairs to get dressed that day, the underwire in one of my bras snapped in half while I was putting it on, leaving me with three brassieres that fit well and one that fit poorly.
After two months of doggedly convincing myself that doing laundry more often was fun, I gave in and decided to go shopping. Walking into the store, a clerk immediately descended, informing me of all the great sales going on.
The Great Unwashed– “I don’t care for sales, I’m just looking for a pair of knocker holders.”
Formerly perky but now confused Salesclerk– “Whaaaat?”
The Great Unwashed – “A bra, I need a bra.”
Back to being perky Salesperson “Well we have all kinds of bras and most of them are on sale!”
The Great Unwashed who is not amused by this- “Mostly I’d like one that fits. It doesn’t need to be on sale.”
Salesperson who may be part pit-bull based on the intensity of her determination to promote sales “What make of bra did you buy from us?” Gesturing to a wall “All of these styles are on sale!”
The Great Unwashed – “It was one you made six years ago.”
Salesperson looks deterred for a moment “Oh. We won’t have that.”
Queue me trying on about eight different bras, all of which are covered in bows, lace and nonsense.
~Approximately twenty minutes later~
The chipper tone of the Salesgirl’s voice cuts through the curtain “How’s it going in there?”
The Great Unwashed “Poorly”
The Salesgirl is momentarily dejected “Oh”
The young woman had found me a bra that fit. The problem was it was a cup size larger than what I had been wearing which was strange because I weighed the same. Clearly another cruel trick of the fates who caught me thinking “Isn’t it nice that none of my body parts have randomly changed size.”
However this unexplained jump converted my rack from something that needed to be supported into an untamed beast. Or at least that’s what I can discern from the difference in the bras’ structures. The larger size had a thicker band which was held together with no less than three hooks lest my “Multitude of sins”, as my grandmother once put it, get any ideas of escaping and undo not one but two of the hook and eyes from sheer force of will.
The band itself was reinforced in more places than the historic bridge by our house. The straps were the width of my thumb and composed of the same material used in trampolines. It was as though my boobs were being strapped in for a rollercoaster that the rest of my body wasn’t going on.
I bought the bra. Finding other alternatives would have required visiting more than one store which would have violated my “Shopping is akin to being bludgeoned to death by shrill mongooses armed with only pinecones or whatever passes as a pinecone in Eurasia and Africa” rule. This sounds like a ridiculous code to live by but it serves as a reminder of how awful shopping is and that it must be avoided at all costs. Even if this means wearing something almost as large and restrictive as my mother’s wet suit.
** This is not my mother. It’s a snapshot of Richie Cunningham who is a professional triathlete. I elected not to put up a photo of my mother in her wetsuit because people look almost identical in wetsuits and caps, varying only in size and height. It’s very probable if I saw this man in a race heading towards his bike, I would shout out “Mom!” and start cheering for him. The only tip off that Richie Cunningham is not my mother would be the lack of “Gah! GAH!” sounds that my mother makes while trying to grab hold of the zipper pull to take off her wetsuit.