Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Algebra 101 for men: (Cup Size >AA) Breast X2 + Cleavage = Power

Cleavage power: A scientific inquiry
A writer takes her endowments to the streets and finds not just leering but also liberation
July 25 2009
EXPERIMENT: "God was very generous with you," a Parisian friend once told me. Sadly, he wasn't referring to my IQ or ability to find a parking space. No, he was talking about my breasts, big and especially disproportionate to my five-foot frame. Since the day I fully bloomed, I've struggled to accept them, often resorting to guerrilla minimizing tactics: doubling up sports bras; duct-taping; and strapping on heavy chest armour

When I started developing breasts, I never embraced them or felt excited by them like many other women do. I didn't find anything amusing about men blatantly staring at my chest and mumbling crudely, and the feeling of vulnerability crushed me.

But for science, I was willing to rethink the matter. I decided to find out how much power breasts really have. Am I neglecting an asset I could use to get everything I want in life? Let the tests begin.

HYPOTHESIS: (Cup Size > AA) Breast x 2 + Cleavage = Power


A properly fitted bra
A sports bra/minimizer
A V-neck top or dress
A loose T-shirt
Twenty males (preferably strangers)
An expensive bar
A flat-chested girlfriend

PREPARATION: I desperately needed to update my lingerie collection, which consisted of hideously un-sexy minimizers and old bras from ninth grade (a sign of wishful thinking that one day I'd wake up to a magically deflated chest). So I headed up to Townshop, a quaint lingerie store on Manhattan's Upper West Side specializing in the "art of fitting." The last time I checked my size I was a 36DD, but according to my bra fitter, Chauntelle, I was a 30F. If you've never been professionally bra-fitted before, let me warn you: It may be an art, but it feels like an intense military operation, involving awkward physical positions and rough handling of intimate body parts.

But all the manoeuvring was worth it. For the first time, my breasts weren't squished into pancake shapes, looking instead like balls of plump, peach-colored cushion. Out on the street, however, I felt more like a platter of steaming doughnuts at a Weight Watchers meeting. Seriously, dudes, didn't your mamas teach you not to stare?

METHOD: Now that I was properly outfitted, it was time to put my chest to the test. For my first experiment, I would ask unsuspecting male subjects to sign a fictitious and utterly ridiculous petition. The variable would be the amount of cleavage exposed during the signature collection.

Thanks to my friends and their drunken brainstorming, I found myself in busy Union Square promoting "The Banana Project," a made-up campaign to ban all human consumption of bananas simply because I "strongly believed" they belonged in the mouths of monkeys. For round one, I layered myself in a minimizer and sports bra and then put on a loose workout T-shirt. Having thoroughly disguised my bust, I was ready to campaign.

Please note: If you've never petitioned for anything before, it takes a lot of guts. People don't want to listen to you, and if you're petitioning for something as ridiculous as "The Banana Project," they will laugh in your face. I was able to get only two signatures from my first 10 subjects. One signed because "I don't even like bananas, so whatever," and the other because he seemed to have some sympathy for neurotic New Yorkers. Trying again, with the cleavage in full effect, I received seven signatures in 10 attempts. It's not like my boobs were spilling out of my shirt during round two, but they were definitely there, and I made sure to use them to their full advantage. The moment I heard a subject decline (gently, I might add), I would "accidentally" drop my pen ("oops!") and bend over just long enough to give him a peep of my delectable breasts. Upon straightening up, I'd inch closer and, with a subtle chest-thrust, continue, "Are you sure you don't want to sign for this cause?"

My targets, most of them smiling at this point, seemed helpless.

A good scientist knows one experiment is never enough, so I took the twins to the Flatiron Lounge, a pricey bar off Manhattan's Fifth Ave. I couldn't remember the last time I'd gone to a bar flaunting my cleavage, and I wanted to know if it would change the way men treated me. "Power" would be measured by how many free drinks I could get without asking, simply letting my chest do the work. For a control, I brought a friend of mine whose boobs, next to mine, looked like corn kernels.

Walking into the crowded bar, I was struck by my usual stage fright over mingling with strangers, especially of the opposite sex. Panicked, I pulled my friend back outside. "What am I supposed to do here? Just stand on display? I'm mortified," I moaned. She shrugged and lit a cigarette. I wanted to run away. "Excuse me – can I buy a cigarette off of you?" A voice snapped me out of my nervous thoughts. My cigarette-puffing friend looked at me quizzically, and I told the cute red-headed guy that I – obviously – didn't have a cigarette. "That's okay," the guy said. At this point my friend tossed her cigarette, rolled her eyes and ducked back into the bar. "If you don't mind me saying," the guy continued without shifting his gaze, "you are one sexy girl."

"Thanks," I said, finding myself genuinely flattered by his directness. Feeling more confident I continued, "I was going to go back inside actually, I could use a drink."

"Let's go, my treat," he said.

One drink led to another and my liver is paying the price, but at least I don't have a dent in my pocket for a change. Calculating the drinks bought for me throughout the entire night, I estimate a total bill of $60. I don't think I've spent that much at a bar since my 21st birthday.

As to my A-cup friend?

"I got pretty drunk," she said. "But that was my own fault. Only one guy bought me a drink and it turns out he was gay."

OBSERVATION/RESULTS: Whether a man claims to prefer big butts or manicured feet, one thing is undeniably true – a woman's breasts will always remain an asset. For me, it was an empowering epiphany, and removed any lingering thoughts I had of getting breast-reduction surgery. I'm still bothered by the way staring men make me feel vulnerable, but now I feel more understanding than angry and disgusted. Embracing my breasts (not literally) and putting them out there (more literally) was a cathartic experience, ending a long phase of broken self-esteem and opening my eyes to genuine self-appreciation. And, honestly, I believe it was not just my cleavage but this newly burnished self-image that so well-served my banana cause and desire to get drunk for free.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Send her to the MMF. She needs to run in the next election... she could be our next leader. (or help us get rid of the present one...)


6:46 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home