of cans and melons

21 May

Hey, guys, take a break.  The ladies and I, we’re going to chat for a little bit.  We have important Lady Things to discuss, and if you really want to listen in, that’s okay, but it’s not something I’m gonna encourage.  Here, go play a game or something.  We’ll see you in a few minutes.

Are they gone?

Is my audience exclusively female now?

So, okay, boobs.

I have some, and I’m pretty glad about it.  They’re not too shabby, in the grand scheme of boobs, and they’ve served me well.  Granted, I don’t really know how to use them properly.  I know plenty of girls who can use their boobs to get free stuff.  Booze, or clothes, or a conversation, but I’ve yet to crack this mystery.  Really, having some decent sweater kittens is like having some kind of complex power tool.  It slices!  It dices!  It feeds your mammalian young!  Unfortunately, they don’t come with any kind of manual and so most of us deal with their limited functionality.

I’m going to take a step back for a second and use a phrase I couldn’t work in to the previous paragraph.  I’m not even going to give it context, because honestly I don’t care that much.  I just want to say ‘Swiss Army Boobs’, so there you go.

Swiss Army Boobs.

Are the dudes still gone?

Despite not using these melons for any complicated purposes, they still need to be well-maintained.  I was going to say ‘well-oiled’, going on with the whole power tool metaphor, but that just got a little weird and visual and my Mom reads this blog, and I don’t want her shooting poor Taylor any dirty looks.  Point being, you’ve got to take care of your gazongas, and the best way to do that is to invest in some quality bras.

I’ll be the first to say that I take terrible care of my bras.  It’s a tragedy.  My bras are the underpaid immigrant workers of my closet, forced to do double duty with limited breaks, for way longer than is humanely permissable.  I have maybe two bras that fit me right now, and I alternate between them with an unwavering ruthlessness.  When I open the drawer, whatever bra is in there stares up at me, shrinking into the corner, howling, “No, no!  Don’t make me go back!  I’m tired!  I’m worn out!  I can’t do this anymore, please, noooo!”  Cruelly, I ignore its pleas and I put it to work.  I’m like that.

It’s getting to the point, though, where something needs to be done.  Slowly, structural integrity is weakening.  There are cracks in the hull.  Soon, there will be a full on breach, and all pressure will be lost.  Boobs will go spilling out into the atmosphere, and ‘all hands on deck’ will take on a very literal meaning.  Something has to be done.

The logical thing to do would be to buy a new bra.  Let the old ones retire with what dignity they have left, but we live in uncertain times and the logical thing is not always the easiest thing.  A good bra costs like sixty bucks, you guys.  Let me repeat that.  Sixty bucks.  Sixty.  That isn’t anything to sniff at.  Dedicated readers will remember that my sense of frugality prevents me from buying anything over the twenty dollar mark, and even then I berate myself for days afterwards.  “COME ON,” Frugality screams at me, “DID YOU REALLY NEED THAT SHAMPOO?  DID YOU?  THE CAVEPEOPLE DID JUST FINE WITHOUT SHAMPOO, BUT NOOOO.  YOU HAVE TO BE FANCY AND CLEAN.  LET’S SEE HOW CLEAN YOU FEEL WHEN YOU’RE HOMELESS BECAUSE YOU CAN’T PAY THE RENT.”

So paying a lot for a bra is an issue for me.

I’m considering going to Fred Meyer or Target or something to try to find cheap undergarments, but I haven’t been fitted for a bra in years.  I know in Victoria’s Secret you can take anything you want into that back room, but can you try on bras in a department store?  It feels wrong, somehow, to hand the attendant something and be like, “Hey, I just put my boobs in here, but I don’t want it now.  You take it.”  Do you just guess what size you are and return it if you were incorrect?

These are burning questions, and I’ve been putting off answering them for a long time.  I need to do some figuring out.  The bras I have are little better than doilies on a string at this point, and it’s getting a little inconvenient.  You can practically SEE the ‘WUBBULA WUBBULA WUBBULA’ sound effect written around my person as I walk.  There’s persistent jiggling.

To end this, a tidbit.  During my lunch break, Taylor and I ate pineapple out of a can and watched The Good Wife online.  During a commercial, I took a bite of pineapple and said:

“I’m writing a blog post about boobs.”

Taylor didn’t answer immediately.  He chewed this knowledge over in his mind.

“That may be inadvisable,” he said.


“Well, uh, depending on how you do it.”

We ate silently for a moment while the show came back on.

“Am I in it?” Taylor asked.

“Kind of.  There’s a part where I make a crack about my mom being mad at you.”

“Ah,” Taylor said.

Why he doesn’t want to be discussed in a 900 word post about boobs is completely beyond me.


Posted by on May 21, 2010 in Uncategorized


22 responses to “of cans and melons

  1. lowercasesandcapitals

    May 21, 2010 at 7:10 am

    Being the owner of a rather impressively large and cumbersome pair, myself…I read this and giggled and went to post it on facebook. Of course, facebook asks for a captcha now.

    Industrial. Sizing.

    You can’t make these things up.

  2. TS

    May 21, 2010 at 8:30 am

    A little helpful advice for bra fittings…Maidenform will determine your size for free and I usually pay about $15 (US) each at the outlet stores. It’s the only place I buy bras 🙂 Hope this helps haha

  3. Brittney

    May 21, 2010 at 8:55 am

    I just bought like 4 bras at target, FYI. I love them. And I’ve never spent $60 on a bra. $20 yes. $60??? Girl WHERE YOU GOIN’ ? you can get fitted at Macy’s too, y’know!

    • Jessica

      May 21, 2010 at 9:10 am

      Victoria’s Secret! I was always kind of taught that that was The Only Place To Get Bras.

      • Brittney

        May 26, 2010 at 1:47 pm

        I have never. EVER bought a brah at Vicki’s. I mean, maybe when i get married I will, but not until then. Guh.

  4. Kelly

    May 21, 2010 at 9:33 am

    I am pretty cheap – I mean on my blog you’ll see that my wardrobe is made up of like, Target and Payless – but I never really scrimp on bras. I don’t know how large your chest is, but mine is relatively hefty (and heavy) and I figure you usually get what you pay for with bras. They are intricate works of suspension and engineering, after all. Most of my bras are in the $75-$100 range. I know a ton of people think I’m insane, and I’m not saying that you have to get a drawer full of $100 bras, but just that I think you should cut the price tag some slack because it’s usually worth it in my opinion. Most clothes just hang there and cover your ass but bras have an actual job to do.

    (Also I don’t want it to seem like I’m pimping myself out, but I write for and we have a sales page that we keep updated with coupon codes and junk. To help ease the pain of paying for bras. In case you’re interested.)

    Also, you can absolutely try on bras at department stores. Most of them have a dressing room right in the lingerie department for this purpose. And most have bra fitters too (truthfully I don’t trust department store bra fitters as far as I can throw them BUT my point is that they fully expect you to try on bras before you buy.)

  5. Vanessa

    May 21, 2010 at 9:49 am

    You can try bras on at a department store. I mean, that’s really no weirder than putting your boobs in a slightly prettier bra at VS. I mean, same boobs. And depending where you go they’ll have someone who can fit you. If not, just go to VS or another lingerie place and ask.

    I, like Kelly, am of hefty boob and I buy mine at Kohl’s. They have some good brands I really like. HOWEVER, I probably SHOULD buy bras that are more than 30 bucks, as much as it pains me, because the quality would probably last longer. I got one bra recently that broke (underwire poked out, that bastard) in like a week and I was really upset. I’m a terrible seamstress so I just sew the hole shut every once in awhile… until it rips again. Gah.

  6. lisa

    May 21, 2010 at 10:30 am

    My bras are around the $30 mark, but I usually have 5-6 at a time so that no single bra takes the brunt of holding my boobs up throughout the week. If you live near premium outlets, I think there’s usually a Calvin Klein underwear store where you can get bras for around $30 (retail $50-60).

  7. Liz

    May 21, 2010 at 1:23 pm

    I’m a DD, so my selection gets limited pretty quick…it’s hard to find stuff that fits me at Target or many department stores. I’m also a little particular… I despise underwires with the hate of a thousand suns. So, I wind up paying a fair bit for my boob supports. HOWEVER, I’ve found some good sites. Champion Sportswear actually has some great, very comfortable bras that are frequently on sale for $20 +/- and available up to some fairly respectable melon sizes. JC Penney’s running a really good sale right now (30-50% off) and carries some great brands. You just have to shop around a little.

    Best of luck, and fantastic article! Giving it a bosom-bounce along to my friends. 🙂

  8. Liz

    May 21, 2010 at 1:28 pm

    Also, JC Penney’s got a bra size calculator if you’re feeling brave enough to measure yourself. It’s a better idea to hit up Victoria’s Secret or a specialty lingerie store (check your local yellow pages site…) and have them measure you properly, though.

  9. Kelly

    May 21, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    Liz – I wonder if you’re in the right size? You say you’re a DD and you hate underwires. I know a lot of bra sizers (especially at places like VS or dept stores) will just put you in the biggest bra they have to make a sale. For example, I’m an H cup but if I go to JC Penny or VS and ask them to size me, they try to put me in a DD (and try to make up for all the extra boob by going up on the band size). And if you’re not in the right size, an underwire won’t feel comfortable.

    (I’m not trying to be preachy, I just have a bra-sizing soap box I am permanently standing on – because I have been sized wrong in the past and I heard angels singing when I *finally* got into the right size.)

  10. rubybastille

    May 21, 2010 at 7:49 pm

    Some department stores will fit you for free – I know Macys and Nordstrom do. Nordstrom bras (surprise) are pretty dang pricey, though.

    But really, a $60 bra is so incredibly worth the investment. You wear it EVERY OTHER DAY for probably two or three years. Math time! That’s 32 cents per day. Thirty-two cents of feeling totally fantastic in your fresh, snug, secure, sexy, perky bra.

    I tried to go the cheaper route and got a Maidenform bra for around $30 at an outlet store last year. It still fits okay, but the straps have too much elastic in them, so it’s not going to last me too much longer. I’ve had my Victoria’s Secret bra for over 2 years and it still fits great.

    Also, dude, you’re working your less-than-great job and your boyfriend will have a stipend soon. Treat yourself to a bra.

  11. Krista

    May 22, 2010 at 11:35 am

    I went to Vicky’s and had a horrible fitting, they told me I was a C cup. I then went to Nordtroms and had The Best Bra Fitting of My Life. See, I was wearing a 38D nursing bra from Target (yes, yes, my boobs are functioning in the lactation department right now) but it just wasn’t working. Well, come to find out I’m a 34F. It was hard to wrap my brain around it. But it was very nice to find a nursing bra that a)fit correctly, b)was actually sexy, all lacy and stuff, and c)a nursing bra.

    So I bought three. At $70 a piece. Thank goodness for tax returns, because I am as frugal as you. I often think of caveman deprivation.

  12. Krista

    May 22, 2010 at 12:43 pm


  13. Melissa

    May 22, 2010 at 3:26 pm

    I circumvent this entire problem by not wearing a bra.
    No, I’m kidding. Actually I just make my own for a perfect fit.

    No, I’m kidding. I buy mine at walmart, they’re Hanes, and I’m pretty sure they’re made of craft foam. The indestructable kind that takes 700 years to break down in a landfill. But don’t worry, I’ve purchased several dozen of them at a time from all the walmarts in the county because that’s just how good they fit. I sleep in them. I sometimes forget to take them off before I shower. True story.
    And the best part? They’re $6.99

  14. Jen

    May 22, 2010 at 6:19 pm

    I used to go the VS route, but I found that they’re not actually that good at fitting you and their bras wear out REALLY fast. I, too, buy $60 bras. But I go to the Nordstroms lingerie department (and yes, you can try on bras in department stores and Fred Meyer and Target and the like 🙂 ). The ones I like are On Gossamer. Full coverage, great support. They’re pretty darn awesome. The nice thing about the department stores is the wide selection of bras available. I’ve tried the $15 bras from Target and its ilk. I’m not impressed. You CAN spend $60 on bras, but make sure you take care of them. DO NOT MACHINE WASH. I don’t care if you have the mesh lingerie bag. It will mess up your bras. As gross as it sounds, bras last longer the less you wash them. Invest in at least 4 or 5 so you can rotate and give each one a couple of days off from its duty. If it starts smelling, a gentle hand wash in your sink and then hung up (NOT BY THE STRAPS!!!) to air dry will give you the longest life. 🙂

  15. Tess Malone

    May 23, 2010 at 2:03 pm

    Ok so after my whole boob epiphany of this summer I feel the need to pass this joy on. We’re going bra shopping for your birthday. Part of my present will be paying for part of a decent bra and being the awful customer who looks at the sales lady with a smile and says “she told me she’d never been fitted and I just had to drag her in here” to explain why you might not buy. If we don’t find one cheap enough at Nordstrom we’ll go to JC Penney and find reasonable ones. Wear a camisole or tight fitting shirt.

  16. MK

    May 23, 2010 at 2:16 pm

    Yeah, a real bra fitting is worth it. As are the decent bras. I finally got to the point where I had to admit I needed to spend money on a real bra. I wore a 34B or A for years, but was fitted with a 32 C or D — OMG was that comfortable! I spent $80 on The Most Comfortable Bra EVER two years ago, and while it’s wearing out a bit now, it’s lasted longer (and stronger) than the cheaper ones I’ve bought in between.

    Check out Lady Grace — stores or online — for some good deals, and at least in my experience, good fittings.

  17. Suniverse

    May 23, 2010 at 3:18 pm

    Do not skimp on the bra. Seriously. You will be the happiest ever.

    I actually used to work in an upscale department store in the lingerie department while in grad school, and it’s fine to get fitted & not buy. Or go to a specialty lingerie store [NOT Victoria’s Secret] & get fitted & let them know you are on a budget. They are v. v. cool about it.

    It’s amazing how happy you’ll be in your new [pricey] bra – and this is from someone who has a hard time buying ANYTHING for herself without constant recriminations.

  18. ame

    May 24, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    to the rescue!!! I work at JC Penney in the lingerie department and we’re all specially trained to bra fit. For free. If you’re shy, it’s really, really easy to do yourself – grab a tape measure and measure yourself around ABOVE the girls, under your arms – that’s your approximate band size. THEN, measure around yourself over the fullest part of your chest. The difference between those measurements is your cup size – one inch or less=A, 2 inches =B, 3 inches = C, 4 inches =D.

    But, all bras are not created equal so grab at least two sizes when you try any bra on. You can get reasonable ones from maidenform or warners for around $30 (or less when they’re on sale)

  19. outdoorexplorer

    May 24, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    I just have to say I was confused by another Krista up there making a comment. Otherwise, there’s lots of great advice in here, and great post as always.

  20. sarah

    May 26, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    i have bras from VS and they’re pretty ok, but i think i may have been miss-fitted. after reading all this stuff i will probably try to find a specialty lingerie store to get fitted at.


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