Yesterday I was walking on Orchard Street in the Lower East Side and came upon the Orchard Corset Shop. I wandered in and this Hasidic Jew (yarmulke, ringlets, et al.) barked at me, “34 B!!”. I thought at first he was barking at someone else. However, his wife, I guess, approached and quietly asked in her yiddish accent, what I was looking for. I mumbled something or other sheepishly, and, failing to evade her focus, added that I thought I was a 36A. She grabbed me and spun me around, wiped her hand across my back, and informed me a little too loudly, “NO! 34B!!” and asked me what color bra I wanted. I told her, my voice ascending in pitch and lowering in volume with every word, that I merely wanted to look around, to which she replied that there was nothing to see but boxes. This was true. The store is about the size of a king-size bed and crammed with raggedy-looking boxes stacked to the ceiling. Cornered, I surrendered a request for something without underwires and in a nude color, and the Yiddish lady picked out a box from the very middle of the wall display (how did she distinguish it, I wondered, from the hundreds of others, all equally decrepit?). The box was stuffed with wrinkled, beige bras, glamour and romance all forgotten. She ushered me to the dressing “room” which was basically a chair with a scarf wrapped around it, then pulled off my shirt, and ordered me to remove my bra. Not daring to protest, though I did feel a little bit shy by this point, I obeyed. She then expertly fastened this surprisingly comfortable and decent-looking brassiere on me, and, before I could yelp that this was perfect and I didn’t need any more assistance, she proceeded with her ungentle worker hands to man-handle my girls around, rearranging them so that they fit into the brassiere more correctly. This mortified what little sense of modesty I had left. Meanwhile I heard the husband hollering at some other poor lady, “NO! You not 38D, what, you crazy? You 40C! 40C!!! I tell YOU what size you are, lady!!!” after which he peeked into the scarf to make sure I was being treated acceptably and complimented me on how nicely this bra fit. With bowed head and blushing wretchedly, I offered my credit card to the husband, who must have been standing on a box behind the counter, as he seemed to be a good foot taller than I, scrutinizing my ID from on high,–or perhaps the whole experience just had a truncating effect upon my psyche. I then scurried over to Little Italy to bury my face in a plate of spaghetti.
I just decided to post this because I know you, mon lecteur, have always found my boobies fascinating and I wanted to let you know what kind of adventures they’d been having.
- ART (122)
- EVENTS (30)
- PERSONAL ESSAYS (60)
- publishing (21)
- Publishing rants (11)
- REVIEWS (77)
- San Francisco (89)
Arts writing doesn’t pay much.
- @ovillalon I did! 3 weeks ago
- Mayor London Breed: Change SF's Anti-Music Park Ordinances Now! - Sign the Petition! chng.it/wVThCfHh via @Change 3 months ago
- RT @Anne__Sexton: The soul was not cured, it was as full as a clothes closet of dresses that did not fit. 3 months ago
- RT @Anne__Sexton: Somebody sees me, and I see myself through them. Then it’s all gone, the whole world falls apart. 3 months ago
- @LeeHepner Name the landlords...the names of these cultural deathbringers should be known. 5 months ago
- 52,878 hits