Boobs are smashing, eh? But sometimes those mischievous fatty scamps have a mind of their own. We asked our writers to share their tales of when good boobs go rogue.
Once, I was the kinda gal who would wear a polo neck on a topless beach. That swiftly changed when, as a new mum grappling with breastfeeding, I decided that not giving two hoots about who copped an eyeful made life a lot easier. That said, I’d not planned on being quite so relaxed with our postman.
I’d only just finished feeding my daughter when he knocked on the door to deliver a parcel. It was only afterwards that I realised I’d gone to the door with my jumper scooched up round my neck, a vest top pulled down and my bare boobs poking through the gap. Awks. Even with my newfound confidence, I made sure the twins were always popped back in my bra after that.
I spend a great deal of money keeping my chebs in check. Round our way, there’s a tremendous bra seller where pearls of breast-related wisdom – “what you need is depth, Sarah” – take on the resonance of a proverb. A slender friend of mine went for fitting and was told “the small breast is as hard to fit as the large” – an aphorism, which I find, has universal application.
Still, as a large breasted woman I often feel I’m wrestling a couple of inquisitive piglets and even the most substantial bra has given up the unequal struggle between elastic and burgeoning flesh. On one occasion – an induction session for my undergraduate drama class – I led an enthusiastic physical warm up. I lunged and pivoted, hummed and stretched.
For the finale, I exhaled with extreme force. Tested to its limit, my bra strap snapped like a giant catapult. The ricochet was so devastating that once the dust had settled, I was relieved to see no one had been injured.
I’d like to say, I struggled on womanfully and completed the session, but offers of safety pins were simply inadequate and I had to go home. I left the class the theme of ‘surprise!’, around which they could devise an improvisation. It was the least I could do.
I have always been somewhat under-endowed in the nork department. I used to make jokes about it onstage, until one night a slightly drunk man came up to me after my set, and said: “I couldn’t help but notice you seem insecure about your breasts. If you’re that worried about how small they are, why don’t you wear a Wonderbra?” “Thanks,” I said, “I am.”
When I had my son, I finally had the magnificent rack I’d always longed for. Well, on one side at least. NO ONE TOLD ME that while your boobs get bigger when you’re breastfeeding, they may not consult each other on the size they’re aiming for. To visualise the size difference, it may help to know that I referred to them as The UberBoob and The TiddlyWink.
It was the perfect swimsuit. It had shorts-style legs that put an end to both wedgies and bikini line fuss, a comfy racer back and was made from reassuringly thick, dark fabric that wouldn’t turn transparent as I flailed my way up and down the medium lane with more gritted-teeth determination than grace.
At least, it had been the perfect swimsuit, when I bought it a year previously. Now, like its wearer, it was starting to sag a little.
“As the ride got underway I started to feel distinctly uncomfortable in the baps region as I realised the rollercoaster was in fact going upside down.”
Of course, the inevitable happened: I reached the end of a particularly splashy length and looked down to realise that my breast stroke had turned horribly literal. One of my floatation devices had made a bid for freedom.
Too shortsighted to be able to make out whether my fellow swimmers’ expressions were of horror or indifference, I hastily stuffed the escapee back inside, hoiked the straps up with a knot at the neck and ploughed on as though nothing had happened.
Sometime during my early teens I remember being very aware of my rack – the only thing stopping people assuming I was my parents’ son. On a holiday with the family and my older sister’s boyfriend, we were all getting on great and having a lovely time. The pool was ace and we’ve always been a family that enjoyed splashing about and making up silly games.
I decided to scare everyone by swimming under the water and popping up in front of them. My first target was my sister’s boyfriend. It possibly would have been fine if I hadn’t been wearing one of those no-support string bikini tops. Obviously I popped up in front of him with a big grin on my face and nothing covering my tits.
Mortified, my scare game went no further, which made it look all the more suspicious.
My final year at university was a happy one. My housemate Julie and I spent a lot of time daring each other to streak around the house when visitors came and we’d sit on our front step lifting our tops and idiotically showing our norks to the empty woods opposite.
We lived at the bottom of a steep hill that led up to halls and we’d routinely invite passing students to our (LEGENDARY) parties. One day very near the end of term we accosted a chap who smirked and said, “Alright there ladies. Didn’t recognise you with your clothes on.”
Turned out the woods were everything but empty and instead housed a factory full of men who’d had as happy a year as we had.
Travelling across the USA by bicycle in 2015, I decided to take a day off in Dollywood – Dolly Parton’s Tennessee theme park, perhaps an apt place to experience strain on the old boulder-holders.
I was so excited to have a day off my bike that, after bounding in and getting a few snaps, I made a beeline for the Thunderhead rollercoaster – a high thrill attraction. I didn’t think much of sitting with the group of teenagers since I was on my own, though I was aware they seemed a little embarrassed by the presence of a real-life grown up.
“Tested to its limit, my bra strap snapped like a giant catapult. The ricochet was so devastating that once the dust had settled, I was relieved to see no one had been injured.”
As the ride got underway I started to feel distinctly uncomfortable in the baps region as I realised the rollercoaster was in fact going upside down. I’d elected to wear a vest top and strapless bra to make the most of the Tennessee sunshine, and the puppies were very much as out of control as Dolly’s wild Timber Canyon, possibly even lawless.
At the end of the ride I was too scared to look at the photos and hurried away with my head hanging down. After that, the Wild Eagle seemed a risk too far, and I spent the rest of the day eating funnel cakes.
Despite my dear ma being stacked, my lady orbs are compact, but no less loved or likely to go rogue. When I hit 30, I saved like billy-o, took a sabbatical and trotted off to South America to look after big cats in the Bolivian jungle.
On a detour through Argentina, it seemed the thing to do to go to a massive tango class: 150 or so people, drinking and dancing with strangers and having a lovely time #alovelytime.
As I concentrated on my fancy footwork, I became aware of a tickly sensation around my nipple, but chose to ignore it and dance on. A few minutes later, the tickle was too much to bear. I glanced down to see my left boob had escaped from the confines of my dress and was doing a jig of its own.
I was not the only person who had noticed; in fact, my partner was pretty much the only person in the place who hadn’t spotted LeftBoob McTitOut. There was nothing to do but laugh, nonchalantly tuck that rascal back in place and keep dancing.
I don’t really have the kind of boobs that burst out of things; they mostly stay put, which is really good of them because I fall over about five times before lunch. This anecdote is therefore a real one-off.
I had to be Lady Gaga at a comedians’ Stars in Their Eyes-style night. I’d bought a £3.99 pink wig and teamed it with sunglasses, hotpants and a really cool bralet that was a cup-size too small but just right for Gaga.
Halfway through my energetic rendition of Born This Way, one of the straps just fully gave up the ghost. It snapped with a ping that if slowed down could be heard to say, “Are you fucking kidding me?” I grabbed the unstrapped cup, lowered my mic, stared at the floor and murmured, “But… I was born this way.”
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