I Was a Teenage Bra-Fitter

I was updating my profile today and realized that I have a wealth* of stories to tell.

Yeah fine, most of them are not fit for human consumption due to their lack of interesting details and/or valid point, but have no fear, I will share them anyway.
 I know you have important things to do like pay bills, feed your children and watch kittens on YouTube but I appreciate those of you who are still reading.

For example...

In 1998 I got a part-time job at JCPenney. I got this job because I was in college, my graduation money had all but run out, and I was hungry. You can only live on Ramen Noodles for so long before you actually TURN INTO Ramen Noodles.

Anyway, you know how some people have a God given talent to sing, or paint or do long division in their head? Well, I didn't get any of those cool talents. As it turns out, I am awesome at RETAIL.
Yep. You heard me. I am a retail savant. Me and retail, we just clicked. Which is disappointing because I really wanted to find that winning the Lottery was my forte but NO SUCH LUCK.

Now, any of you who are human work in retail are probably scratching your heads and saying, "Gee, Katie.  Retail is pretty easy stuff. They hire college kids for that kind of job. A potty trained orangutan would be good at it!"

To that I say: I agree. It does not take a lot of talent, a college degree, or business sense to work in the women's department of a clothing store.  And yes, an orangutan COULD probably do it, but they would have trouble using the sticker guns and the ink tag removers so NER.


What I DO have that an orangutan doesn't is an uncanny ability to take an irate customer and turn them into a not irate customer** just by talking to them. I also have the talent to help a customer find exactly what they need even if they don't KNOW what they need.

Because I possessed these rare abilities, I was hired then promoted quickly.

How was I shown appreciation for my efforts and skills in the women's department?

I was eventually promoted to:



 I'll give you a moment to take that in.
Every.Girls.Dream. = NOT.

Becoming a Professional Bra Fitter (PBF) or a "Titter Fitter" as we called ourselves in the break room -was not an easy task.
One had to pass BRA FITTING UNIVERSITY (BFU)*** which consisted of watching six 10 minute videos of staged (and quite poorly acted) BRA FITTINGS.

BFU graduation was only achieved by correctly measuring someone else in the class under the watchful eye of whatever manager happened to be on duty at the time  and culminated with being handed a framed certificate that contained your name, picture, and the words BRA FITTING PROFESSIONAL. Unfortunately, these were not ours to keep. Eventually they would be posted in the women's fitting room, so that if a customer found herself in a bra fitting quandary, she had only to track us down in the store based on our pictures.

After I graduated from BFU, I was an equal mixture of proud of myself and embarrassed for myself.

Weeks later, after pounding the pavement like a breast obsessed super hero in an exhausting effort to help the 70% of women wearing the wrong bra size, I told a friend (a guy) about my newest job responsibilities.

His reaction was,
 "ARE YOU KIDDING?...How can I apply for that job??!! I could measure women's boobs day and night. I bet I wouldn't even have to use a measuring tape. I bet I could just eyeball 'em or do some hand cuppage**** to figure sizes!"

In his horny college boy mind, he imagined tall, blond, perky college girls coming to me and asking for help finding their correct size which quickly led to hot girl on girl action in the fitting room.

What he failed to realize is- that if college girls know one thing, It's how to find a bra in the correct size. Not only that, college girls know exactly the right kind of bra to best enhance their assets. College girls excel at this.

Do you know what kind of person needs help with bra sizing?

The kind that:
  • Burned her bra in the 60's and hadn't worn one since. (read:30 years of gravity saggage)
  • Doesn't really need help finding the correct size, just likes to show people her boobs and incidentally DOESN'T like to SHOWER and/or SHAVE her armpits
  • Just needs someone to talk to/is lonely and knows they will have a captive audience during bra fitting
  • Wants to STUMP the bra fitter with breasts so gigantic/oddly shaped/differently sized/ that a  correct size for them hasn't been invented yet.

After I explained this to my friend, he was no longer interested. Quite frankly neither was I.

Being a PBF was a difficult, thankless, sometimes dirty job. I like to think that somewhere out there,  a woman is pulling on her (correctly sized) bra this morning and thinking fondly of the perfect stranger who was just trying to make money to eat found her a  perfectly fitting bra, size 48FFF, all those years ago.

Which, on second though seems creepy.

*approximately 8 stories
** a dangerous and highly difficult situation
***can't remember the real name of the program but it was something equally silly
****a gross phrase to this day


  1. I have a friend who does mammograms/x-rays for a living. She's always trying to get me to come in for a mammo. It just feels kind of creepy because I've known her for a really long time and am pretty good friends with her. If I ever do get one, it wouldn't be with her.

    I've often wondered what her job must be like. I'm sure after awhile, a naked boob is no big deal but the first few must've been awkward.

    I've always wanted a professional bra fitting. I don't like to show off the girls though unless I'm getting a little somethin'-somethin' if you know what I'm sayin'... Someone told me that they can measure over your clothes though. So maybe one day...

  2. well I'm still up for it - you can't put me off my dream job that easy

  3. Well if that doesn't sound like a dream job I don't know what does. :) Fabulous story, even if a little creepy.

  4. Hilarious as always Katie. To think of what I missed by working in an office instead of retail!

  5. To my li'l ol' Australian mind, BFU sounds positively CREEPY!! But I guess you'd stand out from the crowd with 'PBF at BFU' on your resume - ANY bloke reading it would be sure to remember!!

  6. That is so funny! I never realized the titter-fitter critters were the fitters of saggy titters. That gives me the jitters.

  7. Sprinkles- I do NOT blame you. If you did go to your friend, it would be weird when you're just hanging out. Just going out for coffee wouldnt be the same ever again.

    Glen-Go for your dream buddy!

    Oddyoddyo13- It was weird. That is FOR sure. However one lady gave me a 20$ tip which we were not supposed to take but I did. So there are bonuses...not many but...

    Karen- I COULD teach you, then you can offer this service to strangers. You'd be like the bra fairy. Helpful/creepy. :)

    Red Nomad Oz- OMG. I just realized what BFU could ALSO stand for. No wonder I got so many weird looks when I shortened it to that.
    Also, I have never used my bra fitting abilities to get a job (i should though) but I have used it as a party trick (at a super lame party)

    Kelly- I'm just happy you didn't rhyme sh*tters into that comment ;)

  8. This is grossly hysterical with emphasis on the GROSS part.

  9. Marla- agreed. What's really disturbing is when I'd run into someone that I measured in the grocery store, and they would ask If I remembered them. I'd say no and they would try to jog my memory by saying, "you KNOW. I used to wear a 32A but you helped me realize that I should be wearing a 40DD?!?"

    As if I kept all that info in my head...

  10. Great story. Looking forward to more amazing adventures. :) Following.

  11. funny post! I loved working retail. I also had the ability to talk an irate customer down to a happy one.
    You would excel at my current job.


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