If every pot has a lid…

…does every boob have a cup?

Frankly, I think the bra industry is out to shamelessly rob women, and I’m convinced brassieres were burned in the 1960s merely because they’re frustrating.

I don’t have much to gripe about in my life, but I can say with confidence that my bras have been aggravating me for years. I’ve tried them all: Victoria’s Secret (no secret there, their stuff is a sham!), Frederick’s, bras that Macy’s sells, ones that JCP sells, and every store in between. Bras that I’ve bought online (with my luck, I figured it would be the one that I never tried on that would work the best — but nooo), and bras that I’ve worn as a gift. ‘Nuff said on that last one.

I’ve determined that bras are about as useful as leashes are for cats.

Before you regale me with any tales about how you knew someone whose cousin’s half-sister’s hoarding friend successfully walked her cat on a daily basis, I will say that I am aware of the benefits of bras. And while I’m not threatening to go without (not that it would be that big of a deal), I will say that tonight’s experience at Nordstorm was amusing.

I went in for double-sided tape because I have a dress that likes to get a little wild in front. After searching for and finally procuring said tape, I somehow became ensnared in the trap of the salesgirl. I ended up being measured (for, like, the seventeenth time in my life) to see what size bra I wore, and she proceeded to bring me two “fit bras” to confirm her sizing suspicious. Initially I scoffed at them both. There was no way either was my size.

Miraculously, one was perfect. I suddenly had high hopes.

I explained what I was looking for, what my current bra issues were, and — might I say — it’s amazing how quickly the shame of undressing for a complete stranger leaves you when being the owner of a well-fitting bra is potentially looming on the horizon.

She brought me a batch of funky Betsey Johnson bras and I tried to look past the adorable miniature bows and sassy straps, instead embracing them for their reportedly amazing fit.

While the first seemed to be the Holy Grail of Bratopia, I soon realized it was not. It wasn’t in the same sinking boat as all the other bras I’ve owned, but when the salesgirl came back to check on me, I gladly let her tug, poke, prod and behold the enigma that is my girls in a brassiere.

“Huh,” she said. “I don’t think I like what’s going on here.”


She tugged the back down, adjusted the straps and — if I was standing perfectly rigid — sure, the thing looked pretty awesome.

“I’m fairly confident I won’t be walking around like this all day, so let the back ride up or do whatever it’s gonna do,” I said.

Sure enough, a few awkward dressing room movements later, and the true picture was painted. She was even less impressed than before. I was stumped.

Do I need implants? Was the lady two weekends ago at FedEx Office right with her advice — and should I perhaps look to enlarge them, er, naturally? If their size is the issue, why can’t scientists find a way to take the fat from my butt, inject it into The Girls and have it all stay put?

The two of us were in the dressing room chatting away about my dilemma, and it wasn’t lost on me how thankful I was that I found myself doing this on a Monday night — because there was NOBODY else in the store. Whew.

Still in the same bra, I noticed I now had this weird Venus Flytrap thing going on with the cups. I could look down and see that the front of each was pulling away a bit, and it looked like I suddenly had two backup pockets in case the ones in my jeans were ever out of room — or like I was providing a safe haven for two pygmy marmosets. 

I decided to try on a few other styles she brought in.

One by one, they all bit the dust.

“Are you sure you measured me correctly?” I asked. She raised her eyebrows at me (my bad — how dare I second-guess a chick with a measuring tape) and cheerfully squealed something about me just needing to spend more time trying others on.

Nah. I’m all set.

I explained to her that if I wasn’t going on my twentieth year of having this issue, I might actually be peeved. But instead, I expected it, and I was OK with the situation.

All that aside, I was happy with the overall experience at Nordies, and will probably wander back that way — ideally on a Monday so The Girls can get another red carpet treatment without an audience.

Tonight I am thankful for what is just about the closest I’ve ever come to having a completely successful bra shopping experience. I appreciate the salegirl’s help, her undying determination to get me back into a [properly-fitting] saddle again (because that’s what most of mine are about as comfy as), and for the just generally awesome help that I had earlier. It didn’t result in purchased bras, but it resulted in something just as good: renewed faith that maybe — just maybe —  my pots will find their lid after all.

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