julie: on bras

My entry will be on “the brassiere.” 

If you forgot to pack underwear, and you are a man (or woman, not my business) who wears men’s underwear, you can pretty much go to any store, Walgreen’s, Von’s, hell, even Kum & Go, and buy two 3-pcks of either briefs or boxers for under  $20.  Okay, maybe you don’t love Fruit of the Loom or Hanes, but they will be just fine until you get home, right?  And if you like those brands, hey, who can’t use a few new pairs. 

If you are a woman in the same spot, well, you probably can find something similar.  Probably either a variety of loose strange leopard skin type designs in that cheap kind of stiff not really lace but not really cardboard kind of material, or a pack of cotton something of which they will most often  likely be out of any size near to what you need but that’s fine, right?  At least it’s something.  If they aren’t completely horrible, you can stick them in the back of the drawer for when you haven’t done laundry.

BUT, if you are a woman (or man, not my business) who wears brassieres,  or is even willing or likes to wear a bra, good luck in any of those stores.  You may find some cute little “sports bra,” but if you ever have had to buy one of those in one of those stores, you know how well that works.  Nope, you will have to go to a department store, or a store that specializes in “bras” or something similar.  And if you can’t get to one of those and have to get whatever you can, you will no doubt throw it out or use it as a washrag when you get home. 

Really.  This is just so annoying to me.  And if you can get to a store where you can buy an actual brassiere, it won’t be cheap or even reasonably priced unless you can catch a sale.  There are all the various things for men and women, briefs, bikini, boxers, french this or that, thong, all kinds of everything.  The more fancy, the more the price.  If you want silk, you pay for it.  And then there are undershirts for men.  These are great shirts and you can get them for the same low price as the plain white briefs.  Nothing like a Fruit of the Loom or Hanes undershirt.

This is where it all gets different.  And part of the problem is that after the period when brassieres became bras and wearing one was a point of discussion and definition, bras where suddenly no longer simply a necessity, they were a huge new shiny business.  And it suddenly was much more expensive and much more complicated trying to buy a brassiere.   I dread it now.  If a store is out of the few styles made by the few brands I trust, it’s a nightmare.  

It’s sort of like “the bicycle” in a sense, I know there must be better analogies or examples, but that one comes to mind so let’s go with that.   For a while, after other forms of transportation became popular,  most people who used their “bike” to do what the bicycle was really built and designed to do, be transportation,  were either just unable to pay for other transportation and using the bike to save money,  or were considered “strange and geeky.” 

But then it was rediscovered.  That’s how we came to now have all the varieties, mountain bikes, speed bikes, racing bikes, city bikes, exercise bikes (although those are more often referred to as “exercise bicycles,” not sure why).  As with many things, in order to bring it back and make this old think new and modern, it had to be updated and upgraded and shiny and have gadgets and all kinds of things and colors and fancy names.  And really, all you need is the basic bicycle, it works just fine.

Same with the brassiere.  Okay, yeah, there are ones for this and ones for that and that’s fine, but it just shouldn’t be so hard or so expensive to just find a regular brassiere.  Really.

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