In New York, all kinds of everything pass as everyday occurrences.
Men wear cats on their heads, and a naked cowboy plays the guitar on Times Square. That and it’s a place where fashion choices can be unquestionably described as ‘daring’.
So when one local woman on the verge of a milestone birthday wanted to come up with an inventive way to mark the occasion – she reckoned wandering around Manhattan in nothing but a too-small bikini (“is it supposed to ride up constantly?”) would do the trick.
And it did.
Donning bedazzled H&M swimwear, the newly-turned 30-year-old took to the streets… and proceeded to shake-off her insecurities.
“For my 30th birthday I’m giving myself the gift of giving no f***s and going out in NYC in a bikini,” Loryn Brantz said in an article posted to Buzzfeed.
The writer said she’s struggled at times with her weight and with bulimia – so she also saw the experiment as a small personal victory.
Before venturing out, she opted to write ‘30’ on her stomach. Although, as she explained: “It turns out writing on your belly can be very disorienting and I wrote it wrong. In the spirit of ‘giving no f***s,’ I decided to leave it as is.”
Loryn also admitted: “I was extremely nervous on the trip out of my building but once we got moving I started to feel pretty awesome until I received some mean looks.
“I was instantly transported to the feeling of being insecure in high school dance uniforms, which really caught me off guard since I hadn’t felt that way in a long time. I tried to do like Taylor and ‘shake it off.’”
On a trip to the farmers market, she light-heartedly compared herself to fresh produce: “So maybe the peaches had rounder butts than me, but what they had in butts they lacked in conversation skills.”
Ms Brantz said after a while she “felt like a warrior princess”. She added: “If someone had told me 10 years ago that I would someday sit publicly in a bikini, I would have fainted.
“It was strange and also a little sad that something so simple as sitting in a bikini felt empowering.”
And as her experiment draws to a close, she is reflective – and optimistic. “Here’s to walking around topless for my 40th!” she joked.
Afterwards, most commentators were encouraging: “This was beautiful to read. Congratulations :)” said one reader via Twitter.
Another said on the Buzzfeed page: Thank you for sharing your experiences with us! Looking at a beautiful woman like you I'd never have guessed that you ever struggled with your weight.”
A third stated simply: “You go, Loryn!! I think you kicked ass.”