What's up, my bra?

Here comes the No 1 gruesome invention of the century: the bra you wear 1cm under your skin, called Cup&Up. Dr Eyal Gur, head of microsurgery at the Sourasky medical centre in Tel Aviv, has thought up this ghastly procedure, and claims that droves of women are clamouring to have it done for a few thousand dollars.

They must be raving mad because this is what it entails: two sling-shaped silicone cups are inserted through slits beneath each breast. Then, to hold them up, threads are stitched on and attached to your upper ribs with titanium screws.
Ouch. What’s more—and this is meant to be a bonus—you can have it done under local anaesthetic. You can be aware of the process, and be home in time for tea.

I tell everyone about this grisly plan; their jaws drop open and they all ask the same question. “Why?” Why indeed. What is wrong with droopy bosoms? If you really, truly love them, then you should surely love them throughout their gentle decline, but throughout history there seems to have been an ongoing quest to have them hauled up around your neck, overflowing in some way or other and divided by a Grand Canyon cleavage.

Howard Hughes—in desperate straits in 1943 with his film project The Outlaw about to collapse before filming had even begun and an unknown starlet, Jane Russell, as main protagonist—knew that he needed the Grand Canyon effect to save his bacon. He called in aeronautical engineers to design an appropriate brassiere, and bingo—La Russell became an overnight star and the film a winner. With just your common, external brassiere.

We don’t need Dr Gur. He is going too far. His plan doesn’t even seem to be just for huge, or particularly pendulous bosoms. It’s for anyone who desires an “enhanced cleavage”, and does not wish to wear a bra—except when doing sports.

Can it be worth it, just so that persons can stare in a glazed way at your chest? Notice that a man invented Cup&Up. Perhaps men should keep out of the world of breasts and brassieres. It is a female world and we should be in charge of it. My friend Clayden entered it recently. He was obliged to help a friend by collecting her giant bra from a specialist shop. Down he went into the warm basement to join the queue—the only chap among dozens of women with tremendously large bosoms, some confidently popping in and out of their cubicles wearing the brassieres.

“There was an atmosphere of worship of the breast—a sort of pride, no embarrassment,” says Clayden. He felt rather intimidated, in a heavenly sort of way, but tried his best not to show it or stare. “It was a strange situation,” he said, “unique rather than thrilling. I was seeing another world. Like being a plumber in the harem.”

This world is no place for Dr Gur. But women determined to go ahead with his grisly “Minimally Invasive Mastopexy” (the first one is planned for later this year in Belgium) may like to know that the implants have been tried inside a pig’s chest wall. “Pigs’ skin most closely resembles human skin, and the Cup&Up held in place nicely,” says Adi Cohen, the head of the company promoting the procedure. Not really kosher for Tel Aviv. Not really kosher for anywhere.—

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