Monday, June 23, 2008

Because rock stars love boobies

There weren't many benches at the NAMM show. There were more babies than I expected. And there were 100 times as many tattoos as I expected.

At one point, Christopher needed to eat. He was tired and hungry, but Guy and Lovely were still looking around. No problem, I said. I would just go find a bench, sit down, nurse him, and let him nap in my lap for awhile.

Only there were no free benches.

I thought for sure that if I walked up with a crying baby, parked my stroller next to a bench and stood there for a minute, that someone would get up and offer me a seat.

Not a chance.

My victims were two old dudes who were enjoying their pre-lunch Bloody Mary's. They looked up at me as if my child was disturbing their hangovers with his crying. I turned my back a little more to them so I could aim the wailing more in their direction.

Five minutes this went on. I stood there shushing, bouncing, and rocking my baby, waiting for anyone, particularly the men closest to me, to get up and give me a seat.

It never happened.

So I sat on the ground against the wall, popped out my boobie and started to nurse him.


Those men jumped up with their drinks faster than if I had poked them with a branding iron. One of them diverted his eyes and asked if I would like to have his seat.

Um, no. I had just gotten settled down on the ground and the baby was finally content and nursing. Had you asked five minutes ago? I would have said yes.

I'm exaggerating a little bit. I didn't exactly pop my boobie out. I have become very discreet at nursing in public. The only reason those men even noticed was because the crying had stopped. It wasn't like I was flashing a big ole milk dripping titty all over the place.

Because Lord knows, showing breasts at NAMM is a terribly distasteful idea.

Oh wait a minute, no it's not.

There were DOZENS of women who were walking around showing more boobage than I was while nursing. Boobs are the number one marketing tool of music merchandise. You know, because they have something to do with guitars?

The only thing, by the way, that boobs have to do with guitars is if you buy an Ovation. The back is rounded, and it rolls up over big boobs leaving you playing it like a levitating steel string guitar. I'm not sure how that would help their marketing though.

But please. PLEASE. Would someone please explain to me why it is alright to show boobs hanging out left and right and up and down when it is to sell guitars, but it is not okay to flash the tiniest bit of breast when feeding your child?

I was going to post pictures as examples and link to some of the companies who use breasts and guitars as phallic symbols as marketing. Then I reconsidered giving them the traffic.

It did feel pretty empowering though, watching all the guys walk by and get all flustered when they realized I was breastfeeding my child. I laughed out loud when one young guy actually asked the hootchie he was walking with if I was allowed to do that in there. Seeing as how I could tell you what kind of wax she had last gotten due to the length, or lack thereof, of her skirt, I don't think she was exactly the person to be asking your questions of appropriateness.

My breasts have always drawn unwanted attention from men. This time? At least the last laugh was on them. I finally don't care who looks at them or for how long. Besides, they are just breasts. What I really don't want you looking at is my belly or the bags under my eyes. So stare away if you like. I'll even tell you what size they are.

They serve a purpose now. A beautiful and miraculous purpose.

And it isn't selling guitars.