I don’t like anything scary. Horror movies, Stephen King novels and those fright houses that pop up at Halloween — just count me out.
My lifelong quest to avoid anything that would cause me to be in a state of terror made me woefully unprepared for what happened a couple of days ago at Macy’s. I’m telling you, the things I saw are still haunting me. Really, I’m getting heart palpitations as I write this. Excuse me while I go to my happy place for a moment (I’m thinking about cakes and assorted fruit cobblers, just in case you were curious) to gain some composure.
All right, I’m better now, and because it’s a proven fact that talking about a tragedy is good for starting the recovery process, I will now bare my soul. Last Tuesday, the unspeakable happened. I ran out of bras.
Well, not so much ran out; it was more like a bra surrender. There I was with only one bra left in my arsenal and as I was getting dressed to go on television, my bra broke. The last hook standing gave out.
If you’re a bra wearer or lingerie aficionado you may be thinking, “Last hook? What do you mean last hook? Most bras have three hooks.” Well, my bra was down to one working hook and apparently the stress was too great and it waved a white flag and said, “I’m so outta here.”
This left me without a bra to wear on television, which is a problem. There are two things you can count on never happening. One is me ever wearing a bikini at Schlitterbahn and two is me embracing a free-range lifestyle in regard to ladies undergarments.
I did what any sensible female would have done and wore a sports bra under my silk blouse. Not the best of looks, but it got the job done.
What all this meant, of course, is that I had to go bra shopping. I’d rather go on another 20-hour eighth-grade choir field trip to Branson on a circa-1969 school bus with iffy shocks and two puking 13-year-olds than spend one second trying on bras. In fact, I hate bra shopping so much I hadn’t bought one in 10 years! Yes indeed: I hadn’t tried on bras since George W. was president and “Lost” was confusing all of us on TV.
I gave myself a pep talk and dragged myself out of my car and did what was basically a perp walk to the bra department at Macy’s. Thank you to the underwire Gods, the saleswoman working that area was over the age of 40 and understood the legacy of the sagging bosom.
Nothing is worse to the aging female psyche than having a pert twentysomething make bra suggestions. This is why I have avoided going into Victoria’s Secret for the past two decades, because the only “angel” bra that would work on me is going to have to come with real divine intervention.
When I confessed to the saleslady my predicament, to her credit, she only flinched and did a dramatic eyebrow raise, but other than that she remained dedicated in her quest to assist me. I quickly shared that I didn’t need a pretty bra or a lacy bra. What I required was the workhorse of bras, so if there’s an undergarment named Clydesdale or draft horse, bring it on.
I entered the dressing room with almost two dozen bras. I had the minimizers, the shapers, the lifters, the separators, the push up and something called “back fat no more.”
The horror show began when I began to try on the bras.
Forget the push up bra — what I really needed was a box of tissues and Xanax. Oh the humanity!
And just what the heck is going on with “full support” bras? Do the manufacturers of said garments need to be reminded what full support means? If so, please heed this description. A full support bra should employ a cantilever engineering method to hoist objects to a higher altitude. Full support does not mean a slight, almost indescribable, lift.
And as for “back fat no more,” I say, “liar, liar, brassiere on fire.” The bra, in an effort to smooth out the back fat, smooshed all the extra flab to my underarms, thus gifting me with some serious armpit cleavage. I feel 100 percent certain in saying, “ain’t nobody going to want to see that.”
Finally, after a couple of silent screams in the dressing room and a cleansing ugly cry, I left with three bras. After I paid, I thanked the saleslady for her gracious help and told her I would see her again — in 2026.