Of Levis & Bras

Wal-Mart is about to be graced with my presence. I have a grocery list the size of my ex-husband’s ego and I blew out another pair of headphones at the gym today. That makes three in two months. Apparently they don’t like when sweat gets in my ears.

I’m taking the size 10 Levis out for a spin today. They fit, I get them zipped and everything, but the style of cut these days is just below the waist and my ever-present tummy flab peaks out over the edge when I sit down.

I can never find pants that fit me well. I’ve got long chicken legs, wide hips and a short torso – a fashion nightmare. I’ve been one most of my life. I remember Mom taking me shopping at J.C. Penney’s in downtown Pipestone, Minnesota, back in the mid-70s to try on hip-huggers. Even before I had hips and boobs those kinds of pants didn’t fit right. I ended up in the boys department trying on Wranglers. All my friends in fifth and sixth grade wore bell bottoms and Levis while I was stuck wearing straight-waisted cowboy jeans and boys painters pants. I was so not cool. That is, until I got my first bra.

I didn’t need a bra in sixth grade, but Kristine Shelly decided I did. Kristine was one of the crudest, meanest girls in our class. She drank beer with her parents, rode horses bareback, teased poor girls relentlessly, looked a little like a boy and yet I considered her my friend because the alternative was to be her enemy and I had no backbone for that at age 12. She’d walk behind the girls in our grade and rub her hand down our backs to see if we had a bra on or not. If we didn’t she gladly announced it to the entire lunchroom. When I told my mom I needed a bra before Kristine embarrassed me in front of everyone, she thankfully didn’t argue with me, and she took my measurements and ordered me a 28AAAA training bra. Mom is good people.

When I showed up at school the day after it arrived, I felt Kristine’s hand on my back in the lunch line. She smiled and announced to the lunchroom that Lynn finally had boobs.

‘Um, no,’ I thought, ‘Lynn didn’t have boobs, she had a bra.’ But if the rest of the world thought I had boobs, that was fine with me.

I’d bet money that Kristine gave up on bras (and probably boys, too) a long time ago. I finally actually needed a bra sometime in seventh grade, but I still fight the battle of the jeans. Today, though, I’m saying to heck with it. I feel pretty cool in my size 10 Levis. I don’t care if a little belly flab hangs over the edge. I’ve paid my dues. No more boys Wranglers for me.

Wal-Mart, here I come.

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