Going Braless: A Query

It’s been a long time since we’ve talked about my underwear on this blog, so it seems like it must be about time. Actually, this post is only sort of about my underwear, it’s mostly about my boobs. But probably not in the exciting way you’re picturing. (No, there will not be pictures.)

I think I’ve mentioned before (and if I haven’t, most of you know anyway) that I didn’t have boobs to speak of until I hit my late 20s. I went through most of my life as a perky little B-cup. (Before you ask, no, I was not one of that majority of women wearing the wrong bra size. I was not a busty F-cup deluded into thinking she was a B-cup.) Now, if you knew me then, you might not have realized how small my boobs were because I’ve long had an affection for padded bras—part of my attempt to make myself look like I had a waistline. Then suddenly, and perhaps not coincidentally, around the time I started aerial work I went from a 34B to a 36E/36DD in about six months without gaining any significant amount of weight elsewhere. I am the story that gives all other members of the IBTC (that’s Itty Bitty Titty Committee for the uninitiated) hope.

The point here is that I’m still not quite used to these things on my chest. So I have an honest question for my fellow busty girls—isn’t it really uncomfortable to go without a bra?

Okay, obviously running or other vigorous physical activity is uncomfortable without support, that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about just sitting around.

I’ve noticed several of my female friends when they are free of male company and want to get comfortable take off their bras. I used to be one of those girls. Now I can’t stand that! I’ve started seeking out pajamas with some semblance of a shelf bra just to avoid it. When I take off my bra my now not-so-perky boobs hang down onto my ribcage. And there’s this weird skin-on-skin contact thing that happens—I wouldn’t call it chaffing exactly, but it’s uncomfortable. I would rather wear a bra, even if it’s cutting into my shoulders and poking me in the ribs.

Am I the only one who has this problem? Is it because I carry a lot of my weight around my middle? Or is it just because I’m not used to these things?

Guide me oh experienced busty ladies. What am I missing here?

Feminine Mystery


I’ve always said I’m grateful to have had a brother (even though growing up there were plenty of times I wasn’t grateful to have my brother) because I think I understand the opposite sex much better than girls who grow up without them. There’s something about spending that much time in a nonsexual relationship with a member of the opposite sex that is very educational and helps you avoid certain misunderstandings if you start dating the opposite sex when you grow up. Now my brother and I are six years apart and even though we have a good relationship we weren’t super close, so I’m sure there are plenty of things I still don’t understand about guys, but I still find myself from time to time explaining male behavior to friends who’ve done more dating than I have, just because they don’t get men.

Tonight I was reminded of just exactly how much women can remain a mystery to men without sisters. I’m often amused to discover that my male friends actually believed certain movie stereotypes about women; for example, they’re often disappointed to learn that at slumber parties we don’t sit around in our underwear braiding each others’ hair (apologies to our male readers if I just shattered any fantasies). But I had never encountered the particular delusion my friend K suffered from until tonight.

K is at a special disadvantage in that he has no sisters, he works in a male dominated profession, and he’s gay. He’s spent seriously limited time around women. Tonight a bunch of us were drinking some apocalypse cocktails (don’t ask) and one of our mutual friends left, leaving behind a skirt she had just been given. We realized it after she left and there was a lot of joking about what to do with it. Someone offered it to me, as the lone remaining female, but I quickly demurred on the grounds that the lime green color would make me look like I was suffering from a liver disease. Then K picked it up and pretended like he was going to put it on. He looked inside and said, “Wait, where are the pants?”

We all looked back at him blankly, not knowing what he meant and he said, “It’s just a tube of fabric.” We pointed out that’s what all skirts are and he looked totally confused. He motioned to me (I was wearing a skirt and tights) and said, “Yours has pants attached to it.” I shook my head and stated that I was simply wearing tights underneath my skirt. “But you have short type things under the skirt,” he insisted. I shook my head. “So if I looked under your skirt I would see your underwear?” “Sort of.” I tried not to look too offended when he shivered at the prospect.

Turns out that he believed all skirts were skorts or that they were made like dance skirts with trunks attached. Poor boy had just never had occasion to put one on take one off, or look underneath one. I guess us ladies retain more mystery than we think.

Under Where?

What kind of undergarments are preferred by those on our beloved Battlestar?

Adama: Silk boxers in solid colors.  Black and burgandy

Roslin: Balance between sensible and feminine.  Conservative cuts but in satiny material with touches of lace.

Billy: Cotton briefs, new and clean.  A few pairs of Calvin Kleins.

Gaius: Patterned silk boxers

Six: Thongs with matching bras.

Doctor: Cotton briefs that probably have many holes

Dee: Target special cottons

Apollo: Boxer briefs (which we’ve seen)

Starbuck: Mostly Target specials but she has a secret stash of red satin lingerie

Tyrol: Tighty whities.  You know it.

Callie: Cotton bikini briefs with cute floral prints.

Helo: Cotton boxers

Sharon: Buys from the Vickie’s semi-annual sale.  She has some push-up bras.  Baby got back but ain’t got a rack.

Gaeta: Joe boxers with smiley faces.  Glow in the dark dragon boxers

Tigh: Mix of well worn cotton boxers and tighty whities

Ellen: La Perla, expensive skanky stuff but it’s more worn than she’d care to admit.

Tori:  Shops at Nordstrom’s (during sales, she’s on a government salary) but likes lace and lift.

Anders:  Totally has sport team boxers

Leoben:  Boxer briefs.  He heard Starbuck likes them.

Zarek:  I see him in tighty whities too.  And it’s not a pleasant picture…

Mentioning Unmentionables

Yeah, yeah, yeah.  I’m talking about my underwear again.  And your underwear.  Assuming you’re a woman.  Or wear woman’s underwear.  No judgment here.  This is a serious matter I’m only starting to become conscious of and I think the rest of the world is largely not conscious of at all.

We’ve all seen the segments on television shows telling us about how like 75% of women in this country wear the wrong sized bra.  And I think that’s true and needs to be remedied.

But nobody’s talking about our panties (I’m like an eight year old, by the way, and can’t say that word without fighting a giggle.  Perhaps this is why we don’t talk about them?)  I’ve worn the same make and model of underwear for years.  Every Christmas, after Christmas my mother orders me and my sister unmentionables from the Vicki’s Semi-Annual sale.  I tend to wear my trousers on the tight side, so the priority is getting panties that don’t leave a line.  I wear dark colors mostly, so I can get away with just about any color underneath.  So I get the seamless bikinis in whatever color’s on clearance.  And they work just fine.

But then my roomie Bridget started going on about how the boy cut underwear are the greatest thing since sliced bread and they’re so great at creating a seamless look.  So I tried them.

Big mistake.

See, I’m built like a rectangle.  Or as a director once said, “a twelve year old boy with a big ass.”  I have no hips, no waist and a big round bubble butt.  And boy shorts are designed with the assumption of some pull out at the hips that doesn’t happen on me.  So they bunch in the front and ride up my ass and it’s all a mess.  But on Bridget, who is skinny but has a waist line and hip bones and lacks my giant ass, they evidently work.

Since then I’ve made other attempts to branch out.  I’ve tried hip huggers (bigger mistake than the boy cuts) and some other kind that I don’t remember the name of that were also a disaster.  I’ve had at least one pair of panties I strongly suspect was designed with the assumption my hoo-ha was hairless (a rant for another time).

My point is all of this, besides enabling voyeurism, is that no one talks about the fact that women need to find the right style of underwear to fit with their body type.  And no one bothers telling us that.  They market underwear to us based on what’s cute and sexy and totally neglect the fact that it’s supposed to be functional.

When I get my own show on TLC, there will totally be an episode on this.