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12:15 pm: My Savage Breasts
It's official, y'all: my boobs require their own zip code.

In college, I had a boyfriend who was a boob man. Actually, that seems like much too mild a statement, sort of like calling a lifelong three-packs-a-day smoker a dabbler in the nicotine arts. He just...he really loved big boobs. So when I'd buy a new bra, he'd come over and gloat. "Wow, four hooks! You're HUGE!" he'd say enthusiastically, and I'd want to hurt him.

Thank god I didn't marry him. Thank you, thank you, thank you, god. Because if he'd been here today, he'd be writhing on the floor right now, while I stood over him and said, "Wow! How convenient! Your balls just detach!"

See, I'm in one of my annual "OMG why are all the clothes gone?" buying fits - basically, I would never shop for clothes ever under any circumstances if it was not for the fact that the old ones wear themselves out without my permission - and bras are a critical element of this annual festival of pain.

So I was looking at bra fitting advice - because typically my bras don't actually, um, fit all that well - and I saw this piece of information:

"If your cup seam doesn't lie flat against your breastbone, you need to go up in cup size."

And I was like, "Who the FUCK has a cup seam that lies flat against her breastbone?" I very nearly posted here, asking you to go check yourselves out in the mirror wearing your best fitting bras, but fortunately saner heads prevailed. But I did some, uh, not very covert local observation, and I discovered: other women really don't have magically projecting cups. Their cups snug right up to their bodies and nestle down for the winter.

So, with much reluctance, I got a tape measure and actually measured myself.

This is something where - okay. If I could've chosen to pay $150 to have a stranger in another town measure herself, and that would've worked, I would totally have done that. It is worth $150 to me not to have to take a tape measure to my own body. But, tragically, that technology hasn't been perfected yet. I had no choice but to whip out the ol' tape.

And, like, wow. I never have measured myself for a bra before, but I would say the instructions I was given were slightly inaccurate. I would write them thusly:
  1. Measure around your chest just below your breasts.

  2. Measure around the fullest part of your breasts.

  3. Subtract the first measurement from the second.

  4. Memorize or write down the resultant number.

  5. Bop cheerfully over to the computer and look at the sizing chart.

  6. Cry.
Because according to the sizing chart, my boobs - well, as I said: they needed their own zip code. See, I've been going up in band size, because I assumed my bras didn't fit because I'm fat. But according to the sizing chart, my old band size is actually too high, and my bra problem is that my boobs are fat. Very, very fat.

But I know better than to believe what I read on the internet, so I went down one from the recommended cup size (and that was, yes, still larger than the bras I've been buying) and bought two bras in that, figuring I could publicly mock the sizing chart when they proved to be too big.

They came today. They fit better than any bra I've ever owned. It's pretty clear that if I went up a cup size, they'd fit perfectly.

And that is...that sucks. Because I was already out of the pretty bra range, where you can have things like bows and prints and frolicky cotton. When you switch the little size box to my old size, the color box goes down to just four: white, black, navy, and beige.

But now. But NOW. The size I apparently actually am - when you switch to that, you get just black and white. And the only bras that come in my size at all are what you might call Extreme Ordnance bras - like, these things are not so much sewn as they are constructed. By bridge engineers. Out of high-performance steel. Their general design message is, "Whoa, girl. What have you got in there, watermelons?"

One of the bras I got today has SIX hooks. SIX. And it's a cup size too small! The actual proper size is probably going to have GIRDERS.

I can just picture my college boyfriend's unbridled glee at that piece of news.

I kind of wish he was here, actually. Then at least someone would be delighted at the news. Plus, I would be able to be mad at him, and that would make me feel better.

But he's not. So I'm just posting a little note to say: if you want to send something to me, I'll be at the old address. But if you want to send something to either of my boobs, well, I'm going to have to call the post office. Because there's just not room in this zip code for all three of us.


[User Picture]
Date:June 14th, 2006 07:44 pm (UTC)
What's interesting is that if you go in the opposite direction, down to "breasts? what breasts?" size, you lose the functional bras. In fact, many department stores only carry what they call "bralettes" in my size, which a) dude, I will never wear anything that has "-lette" attached to it, and b) are made out of itchy lace. They clearly believe that the only people as flat as me are thirteen year-olds, so they put all sorts of teenie frippery on them. And then there is, of course, padding, because no flat chest is complete without foam rubber. Nrrrngh.

Um... and then the possibly helpful part of my comment: an old roommate of mine was DD, and she shopped at Bare Necessities for her regular bras (I checked, they go up to I) and at Title Nine for her sports bras. She said Bare Necessities had some pretty stuff that she couldn't find elsewhere.
[User Picture]
Date:June 14th, 2006 08:11 pm (UTC)
They clearly believe that the only people as flat as me are thirteen year-olds, so they put all sorts of teenie frippery on them. And then there is, of course, padding, because no flat chest is complete without foam rubber. Nrrrngh.

Wow. Now I totally feel the hate toward makers of small bras, too.

*fist of solidarity*

Let us not be divided by cup size! Let us be united by our hatred of bra manufacturers everywhere!

(Also, let me point out Fig Leaves and Bare Necessities, which both have bras that go up to AA, at any rate, and Title Nine, which appears to have sport bras in an amazing variety of sizes. Dignified ones, too. None of your "random beads and boyband singers - that'll appeal to the teenagers" bras there.)
[User Picture]
Date:June 14th, 2006 08:11 pm (UTC)
Calvin Klein is making a padding-free, comfortable, plain stretchy bra for those who are less-endowed, shall we say.

[User Picture]
Date:June 15th, 2006 12:45 am (UTC)
Preach it, sistah.
Signed - 34A (on a fat day).
[User Picture]
Date:June 16th, 2006 07:27 am (UTC)
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