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When “Good” Body Shapers go “Bad”

pretty girl with crawfish

“I can’t breathe, but I do have a place to put my crawfish…” Red Flower, Red Hair; Red Lips; Red Crawfish
Carrington, 2011 Texas Renaissance Festival, Todd Mission, Texas Copyright by WyoJones. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

I have to say, it’s not easy being a muffin-top grandma in a “figure improving technology” world. Every year, my pants get more comfortable (there is a strong trend toward knit pants in my closet) and gravity ups its grip on pretty much everything. I’d been thinking of blogging about the slide toward comfort over sassy and then, this morning my Zulily email had an offer in it for “figure improving technology.”

What the what?

I’ll have to admit, I’ve been tempted by things that can promise to turn my muffin top back into something that is a shape without resorting to sweat equity or painful surgery that eventually gives into gravity again.

I’m loathe to admit it, but even in my younger days I was tempted by girdles (that’s what we called them back then) before I even needed one and isn’t that just sad? That I spent my years with a decent figure thinking I didn’t have enough of one? Because now that I could use actual shaping, I’m kind of burned out on them, despite this very tempting copy:

“…Sophisticated Liquid Asset…” [insert what the what here again]

“…Make your rounders rounder…”

And the kicker: “…without any discomfort…”

I’m circling that “without any discomfort” with a lot of suspicion. That might be so, but I’ve drunk that Kool-aid in the past too many times and learned there are some immutable truths involving gravity, mass, volume, genetics, and inertia. It’s probably a formula or something.

I don’t post a lot of excerpts on my blog, and haven’t here on Monday, but I’m going to make an exception this time because:

A) This is one time I’ll admit that I used an [almost] real experience in a book, and;

B) Why reinvent the wheel, or in this case, rewrite the scene that is already written?

(A disclaimer. Many parts of this scene are true. I’ll leave you to guess which ones. )

And now on to the scene from The Spy Who Kissed Me.

Stan, our heroine, is out on a date with her dog’s veterinarian, Mike, when she gets, let’s call it a double hit, to her ego.

“I have this theory that there was only so much available bosom to be divided among the women of the world. Since I didn’t get my share, I’ve often wondered who did. The floor show answered that question.

Akasma, the climbing flower of Casablanca got mine, plus that of a few dozen other girls. These were not mere boobs attached to her chest. She had breasts. Gazooms. Hooters. Jugs—and every other nickname that man has given the female bosom. Akasma had the Tetons of Tetons, twin peaks of magnificence, that bobbed and undulated as she performed the ancient dance of her forebears with a sinuous grace and even more amazing flexibility.

She could have beat herself to death with her own flesh, but the only casualty this night was my ego. What were a pair of great legs compared to white hills cut by plunging valley a guy could dive down in to his ankles? Mike didn’t just stare with a round “O” of amazement at the center of his black beard. He drooled.

Him and every other man in the room.

It had seemed cool, almost cold when we arrived. Not anymore. By the time Akasma was halfway through her show, you could have fried bread in the air around me.

If that weren’t bad enough, my “flexible and comfortable” body shaper decided it was time to contract to its original ten by three inch, pre-donning configuration. My lungs felt like they were being squeezed up out my nose. Everything else felt like it was getting squeezed out the bottom. I needed air. If I passed out right now, no one would notice.

“Got to powder my nose, Mike,” I croaked. With my elegant three-inch heels, it wasn’t easy to get my feet under me. Through the red haze forming in front of my eyes, my thighs were turning into pencils and my knees into mini-blimps as my shaper continued its drive toward my spine. I figured I’d reach critical mass in about five. At which point, my head and my feet would pop off. The fact that I’d be left with a body a model would envy was small comfort.

“You couldn’t fake that, could you?” Mike asked in awe, oblivious to my inelegant rise from the pillows. Why should he look at me when he had one of the great wonders of the world undulating in his face?

“I’ve never been able to,” I squeezed out before tottering in the direction of the Ladies. My tongue hung out, no room in my mouth anymore. I barely made it in the door, started clawing at inflexible elastic before the door swung shut. With the distant wail of Akasma’s music filtering in, I shimmied out of the shaper and threw it across the room, then leaned on the sink and drew in great, gulping breaths of bathroom scented air and was grateful for it.”

So, there are so many questions I could ask. Which parts are true? Have you ever taken off a “body shaper” in a public restroom? How many times have you believed a body shaper would be comfortable? For how long was it actually comfortable? IS there truly a comfortable one out there? And if you found one—do you really need it? Because I’m thinking comfort, or lack thereof, is directly proportional to the size of the mass being, um, shifted. Let’s face it, that stuff has got to go somewhere. Those things aren’t black holes (more’s the pity).

You know I love comments so much that I pick a favorite to receive my monthly AnaBanana gift basket ($25 value).  Recipient is announced the first blog post of the new month.

Perilously yours,


P.S. So no shock to find The Spy Who Kissed Me cover here. lol

the spy who kissed me cover art

Mama wanted her to find a guy, but not like this!

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