Diary of a Swimsuit Shopper

I am not a human being trying to have a spiritual experience; I am a spiritual being having a (sometimes difficult) human experience.

I am not yet, in my opinion, in any shape to don a swimsuit, however neither was this hilarious woman! I received this email from a friend and had a welcome roar of laughter.

(Author unknown) 
When I was a child in the 1950s, the bathing suit for the mature figure was-boned, trussed and reinforced, not so much sewn as engineered.  They were built to hold back and uplift, and they did a good job. Today’s stretch fabrics are designed for the prepubescent girl with a figure carved from a potato chip.

Debbie Reynolds, corset style bathing suit

The mature woman has a choice, she can either go up front to the maternity department and try on a floral suit with a skirt, coming away looking like a hippopotamus that escaped from Disney‘s Fantasia, or she can wander around every run-of-the-mill department store trying to make a sensible choice from what amounts to a designer range of fluorescent rubber bands.

What choice did I have? 
I wandered around, made my sensible choice and entered the chamber of horrors known as  the fitting room.  The first thing I noticed was the extraordinary tensile strength of the stretch material.  The Lycra used in bathing costumes was developed, I believe, by NASA to launch small rockets from a slingshot, which gives the added bonus that if you manage to actually lever yourself into one, you would be protected from shark attacks.  Any shark taking a swipe at your passing midriff would immediately suffer whiplash.

I fought my way into the bathing suit, but as I twanged the shoulder strap in place I gasped in horror, my boobs had disappeared! 
Eventually, I found one boob cowering under my left armpit.  It took a while to find the other. At last I located it flattened beside my seventh rib.

The horrors of trying on bathing suits

The problem is that modern bathing suits have no bra cups.  The mature woman is now meant to wear her boobs spread across her chest like a speed bump.  I realigned my speed bump and lurched  toward the mirror to take a full view assessment.

The bathing suit fit all right, but unfortunately it only fitted those bits of me willing to stay inside it.  The rest of me oozed out rebelliously from top, bottom and sides.  I looked like a lump of Playdoh wearing undersized cling wrap.

As I tried to work out where all those extra bits had come from, the prepubescent sales girl popped her head through the curtain, “Oh, there you are,” she said, admiring the bathing suit.

I replied that I wasn’t so sure and asked what else she had to show me. I tried on a cream crinkled one that made me look like a lump of masking tape, and a floral two-piece that gave the appearance of an over-sized napkin in a serving ring.
Trying on bathing suits

Miss, could you bring me a 20-year-olds body with that suit?

I struggled into a pair of leopard-skin bathers with ragged frills and came out looking like Tarzan‘s Jane, pregnant with triplets and having a rough day.

I tried on a black number with  a midriff fringe and looked like a jellyfish in  mourning.
I tried on a bright pink pair with such a high cut leg I thought I would have to wax my eyebrows to wear them.

Finally, I found a suit that fit, it was a two-piece affair with a shorts-style bottom and a loose blouse-type top.  It was cheap, comfortable, and bulge-friendly, so I bought it.  My ridiculous search had a successful outcome, I figured.

When I got it home, I found a label that read, “Material might become transparent in water.”

So, if you happen to be on the beach or near any other body of water this year and I’m there too, I’ll be the one in cut-off jeans and a T-shirt!

You’d better be laughing or rolling on the floor by this time. Life isn’t about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain, with or without a stylish bathing suit!

What will you be seen wearing at the beach this summer? Do you have any clothing disaster stories to share?

Stop over at the Life List Club today. Sonia Medieros is posting. Go give her some comment luv, if you please.


20 thoughts on “Diary of a Swimsuit Shopper

  1. ROFL!!! Can you imagine? How is it a bathing suit if it MIGHT turn see through in the water??? Insanity!! And yes, I hear ya…swimsuit shopping these days is like detective work!!!

    • It is! It seems as though all the swimsuit designers think the population of women are all the size of their models! Not everyone can wear a thong bikini!

  2. Marcia, This was too funny. Florescent rubber bands had me laughing! Being a guy, I get away with much more on the beach, or maybe just see my own flaws as less conspicuous.

    Get out on the beach and enjoy the surf, the sun, and the joy of walking in the sand. Whichever suit you choose will work just fine.

  3. That’s hilarious! Swimsuit shopping is awful, no matter what your body type. Even I don’t like it. I’m always trying to find something that won’t make my uber pale skin look florescent. And like your friend, if you have a chest, not all suits are going to work well. But most the bra cup suits looks like a Victoria’s Secret outfit. I want what most women want and is impossible to find: good support on top, without the discomfort of an underwire. I can find it in a sports bras (Wacoal U-Sport) and regular bras, but I don’t know about swimsuits.

    On a bright note, I loved that you used a cartoon image of Cathy. I remember that cartoon special when she goes to win back her boyfriend and has to swimsuit shop and the clerk is so not helpful. Great cartoon about working women!

  4. Pffft! I live at the beach so I go to the beach in a, yes, bathing suit. Even though I’m a slightly bigger gal, I don’t care anymore. If someone doesn’t want to see my voluptuous body in a cute little (okay, big), bathing suit, they are more than welcome to admire the sand, the surf, the younger cute little things romping on the beach. I’m there for fun and that’s what I’m going to have, stupid swimsuits be damned!

  5. I actually went to Virginia Beach several years ago in a two piece bathing suit that I felt a little self conscious in. I decided to wear a cover up and only took it off when it was time to go in the water.
    I splashed in the waves, played in the sand and eventually made my way back to my towel. Two handsome young men had set their blanket next to me and I noticed them checking me out as I walked. I seductively sat down and began reading a book. The two men got up from their blanket and gave me another glance before they headed to the water.I am, of course, extremely flattered by now and waited until they walked away to finally reach for my towel it was then that I noticed the hair on my legs (which I hadn’t bother to address because I thought no one would notice) were completely black and sticking straight out from my leg!
    Remember that thing we used to play with that had a bald guys head and you could move the magnetic type hair and give him different looks? Well that is EXACTLY what the hair on my legs looked like. I have never seen anything like it! I must have walked right into some funky algae when I went in the ocean.I looked like a girl from the waist up and a big hairy Italian man from the waist down. I say who cares about the bathing suit? Watch your legs girls.

  6. In addition to this, when you do find a bathing suit that fits fairly decently and ISN’T see-through-when-wet, you forget to read the washing instructions, toss it into the washer and dryer, then pull out a mangled, fuzz-spotted piece of crap. Yes, every time I go to a beach or pool — which thankfully isn’t very often — I have to buy a new bathing suit. Where is that 20 year old body that looks great in everything?!

  7. I quit going to beaches and public pools some years ago when dozens of children and their mothers ran shrieking in horror from the scene. Glad I’m not the only one with a swimming-attire problem.

    BTW, I love love love your quote: I am not a human being trying to have a spiritual experience; I am a spiritual being having a (sometimes difficult) human experience. I may have to appropriate it sometime.

  8. You made me laugh outloud! I think most of us would rather wrestle a python than have to try on bathing suits. A savy store owner would provide us with mirrors that elongate our body and lighting that would give us a nice healthy glow. They’d make a fortune!

    • I know! It’s the scariest experience and when you leave the dressing room empty-handed, you need to get hammered to deal with being confronted with the reality of your figure flaws!

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