The Princess and the Pain

Once upon a time there was a princess. Sort of a princess. She was a little old to be a princess, frankly, and had been married twice so probably had no business even pretending to be a princess but it’s my damn story and I’m going to be a princess!


Once upon a time there was a princess and she was being taken out to a grand meal by her (bald, goateed) prince to celebrate a war and famine free trip together around the sun (that little skirmish about feline incarceration notwithstanding). And to celebrate, the princess wanted to wear her new, breezy, floral halter-style blouse.

The princess, it should be mentioned, wears a 38C (sometimes D) in the lingerie department. She is not the most svelte princess in the kingdom.

But for the most part the princess is satisfied with her hour-glassyness.

However, in order to wear the new, breezy, floral halter-style blouse and not look like a reject from the Naval Buoy Test Program, certain fortifications, shall we say, were essential.

The princess owned a strapless bustier from a time when she was a far more svelte princess, and this was the only item in her lacy-unementionables arsenal that had any hope of doing the job.

Let’s assume, in a spatial-planning sort of way, that you were considering taking a shape roughly the size of the innocent-looking bustier up there and overlaying it over something roughly the shape of a giant, pasty-colored egg. You’d have a diagram that looked something like this.

The princess feels compelled to point out that she’s not really egg-shaped, but concedes that the visual works well for the telling of this tale.

You would look at this diagram, and the part of your brain that passed high-school geometry says, “Oh no, this isn’t good. This can’t possibly work. Put that innocent-looking bustier away this very instant. That cannot possibly be good for that pasty-colored egg.”

But sometimes the princess, despite having an advanced degree, running  fairly large rehabilitation departments, and starting her own business, is not very bright. You will wonder in fact, by the end of this story, how the hell she accomplished all those things and you will perhaps consider reporting the university that issued the degree to various accreditation agencies.

Because the princess, determined to wear the new, breezy, floral, halter-style blouse, forced herself into the innocent looking bustier, resulting in something that looked vaguely like this:

And once that feat of physics and biology-defying maneuvering had been accomplished, the princess donned the new, breezy, floral halter-style blouse, did her hair, brought in the team from Industrial Light and Magic to do her make-up, and headed out the door with the prince to a night of cocktails and fine dining.

Before even leaving the driveway, the princess noticed a twinge under her rib cage. She ignored it. As the evening wore on, the twinge became a little more persistent, something more like this:

It turns out that the gall bladder would prefer to live a quiet life, happily aiding the digestions system, going about its business, reading the occasional Maeve Binchy novel and NOT getting crushed by a whalebone stay embedded in a corset-style bustier that an idiotic princess decides to squish herself into for the sake of wearing a fetching frock. And then, if while it is getting crushed, it gets forced to deal with a prime rib dinner with garlic bread and potato (oh, and fried calamari that was just to die for), then it will get really, really pissed off.

And the gall bladder, it turns out, is capable of voicing its unhappiness in profound ways. Ways that will get you sent to the emergency room by your primary care physician.

Which is why the princess and the prince spent the day after their anniversary in an exam room at their local emergency department, where the princess got her arse injected by painkillers (which she was very, very grateful for).

And this is why next year the prince and princess are considering a rousing night of Parcheesi to celebrate.

The End.


  1. At last you did not pass out from lack pf oxygen. Although if you do, I’m sure you know to keep smelling salts in your purse. Just in case.

    1. Heavens..I hadn’t even considered that possibility.

      And do they even make smelling salts anymore? They’re so Victorian Era…

  2. LOL!!! I nearly woke the sleeping teens at 7:17 a.m., as I slurped my tea!! Thank you ever so much for the humor. I loved the visual aides, which triggered memories of my own stuffing and also modifying a bustier type prom gown to fit a daughter. Hey, at least we altered the dress instead of stuffing!

    UHM, has the doctor told you what was OK to eat yet??? bats eyelashes nicely here…

    Happy Anniversary!

    1. Ok, you are NOT allowed to choke on any beverages while reading my blog. My blog is clearly a non-choking zone.

      Perhaps I need a button.

      And yes, was allowed to eat…BLAND food. BLAND BLAND BLAND. Dry toast and ramen noodles bland.

      I miss the prime rib!


  3. Ooooh, I had my gallbladder removed (not because of whalebone attire) and the pain that let me know it needed to be removed was the worst. I thought I was having a heart attack. My gallstones were caused by pregnancy. I have one kid. That’s all it took. There are people with 10 kids and no gallstones but me, just took one.

    By the way, my husband always says that my advanced degree is very specific so I’m brilliant at that one thing but not so much in things outside my field…like common sense. He’s right sometimes.

    So, hope you at least looked hot all dressed up since you had to go through that.

    1. Ouch! You poor thing! I had a major freak out when they started talking about surgery. (At least, as much of one as I could have after the meds they gave me that made me a little loopy…)

      It amazes me all the things I can handle and juggle and then still do something dorky like this.

      And no advanced degrees in common sense.

      But there should be.

  4. A worthy princess will do anything to please her prince. There was no other choice.
    Imagine how miserable ladies used to be, dressed like that all the time. I’d swoom too, just to get out of the party and undo the GD stays.

    1. A slave to fashion. That’s me.

      And it’s me who absolutely refuses to be practical about what I can and can’t wear with this damn cantilivering.

  5. OMG…you have me in stitches girlfriend. I too had my GB removed, but not from stays either…1 gall stone, the size of a peach pit.

    1. OWWWWW!!!!

      I didn’t even have a stone, just inflammation and I thought I was going to tear the carpet from the floor with my bare hands.

      You poor thing! Owie!!

  6. do you really blame the pain on the corset? i LOVED your graphics!! how do you do that? this was too funny – loved it!! did you check out our new meme today??? you’ll be an ace!

    1. I’m pretty sure the corset was the catalyst (ooh, nifty alliteration there.)

      And the silly graphics are all done in Paint. (Well, techinically Paintbrush since I’m on a Mac.)

      Although Himself did the little lightning bolts because I was worried they’d look like dead trees.

      And am still pondering….gullet…hmmmm….

  7. Sooo it was the bustier that caused the pain – what a pain. I’m so glad I don’t wear bustiers and now that I’ve read your story I never will wear one. I hope you are feeling better and have kissed the bustier goodbye.

    1. If I can spare just one gall bladder, then it will have been worth it.

      (That really sounds far more magnanimous than I was able to be when I was demanding painkillers, but we’ll go with it now that I’m feeling better.)

    1. Our innards are smarter than we are in any manner of ways, it seems.

      And yer gonna give me a swelled head there, darlin’. So keep it up! ;)

  8. Beauty really is painful! My torture device (corset thingy) tends to just push the fat up and it spills over between the top of the corset and my bra (mine fits under the bra) so that I have really lumpy back fat. Not sure which is worse – belly fat or back fat. Sigh. I’m an unhappy princess. Hope your gallbladder forgave you!

    1. It is one of those things where I feel like a crochety old person…”If they can put a man on the moon why can’t they design a bra that holds me up without making me look like the Michelin Man!”

      And then I yell at kids to get off my lawn.

  9. You are quite the artist! You should do a kids book, for grown ups. Stories like this written by other adults/parents, but you do the illustrations.

    I have personally never worn a bustier or anything like it. I prefer to breathe lung-fulls of air.

    1. You are a very wise and sage woman. (About the lifelong avoidance of all things bustier-ish.)

      And I’m not sure where the market is for eggs-squished into Torquemada-inspired lingerie. That’s quite the niche. ;)

  10. Dude-duh. That egg diagram– the squeezed one, that is. . . SO me these days. So so so me.

    Was that your first gall bladder attack? Dang, girl. I’ve heard those hurt. I’m sorry. :)

  11. Dude!!! HAAAAAAAAAAAAHAAHAA I am dying over here! F’ing DYING!!!! HAAHAHAHAAA

    What the hell did you do to your gallbladder!??! OMG that diagram was priceless!! AWESOMENESS!!!

    1. Ok, my life’s goal may be to get you to laugh like that again. :)

      And I did idiotic things to my gall bladder. Things that rational, sensible people wouldn’t do. But deranged women trying to fit into lingerie they wore 15 years ago apparently would.

  12. Did the bustier end up in the garbage can at the restaurant?
    Did you really have to go to the hospital? Yikes! There should be a warning label on those things! (the bustier, not the contents of the bustier ;) )

    1. Had I abandoned the bustier at the restaurant, I would potentially have been arrested, so I toughed it out (plus, I hadn’t quite connected the dots yet.)

      And I dunno…maybe the contents of the bustier should come with a warning, too!

    1. Now see, these are important questions that no one has thought to ask me yet.

      So there will be no sleeping tonight. Nope.

  13. Lordy woman, Cass was right… you are well worth the hop over to read about the plight you and I share, hee hee!

    The illustrations are truly hilarious… thank you for making me feel a wee bit better about the silly things we do to try to impress our hubs :)

    1. I’m glad you hopped! I’m glad the post was worth hopping for!

      I’m HUGELY glad SOMEONE is feeling better about themselves for all this, cause that person sure as heck wasn’t me right about then.

      Thank you for coming, sweet reader!

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