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Butt, there has to be more to it than that

"OH LORDY, I'm so excited I think I'm going to wet myself," said Maggie as she did a little crossed-legged two-step into the coffee shop.

We come here most weeks,” I replied. “It's not exactly the Dorchester tea rooms.”

“Hell no, that's not what I'm talking about! Here, take a deep breath and have a look at this,” she said, uncrossing her legs and shoving a photocopy of an advertisement under my nose. I don't know why she bothers. The headlines were enough to send me into a catatonic trance: FLAT DROOPY BUTT? it questioned. (Haven't we all?) It went on, “You've got a beautiful face, a tiny waist and perfect perky breasts!” (Eh . . . no.) “But how do you look from behind?” (Depends on how wide the mirror is.) “So, how can you tighten that tush and create a head-turning, killer rear-end we all dream about?” (Keep dreaming?)

To emphasise the point a killer tush was shown in the advert. This backside was so picture perfect it couldn't possibly be true. As rounded and tanned as an oak bedknob, this ideal specimen of every woman's (and man's) dream was encased in a dazzling white lacy thong. I was trying to ignore the diabolical look of envy in Maggie's eyes.

The name of the product is Butt Lift In A Box. You would be forgiven for thinking that within this box of tricks there might be a pulley system with a hoist to lift said buttocks off the floor.

“You are such a cynic,” said Maggie. How could I not be when the contents of the box are listed as: 1 Plumping catalyst (which sounds very like a bicycle pump to me). 2 Lifting and firming emulsion (you may be able to buy this in the paint section in Woodies). 3 Specialised lifting and toning programme (ie never mind the first two — you are going to have to exercise for six hours a day for the rest of your life to even get one buttock into that thong).

“What do you think?” asked Maggie, grinning from ear to ear. “You know what I think,” I replied. “Why do you bother to even ask?” Then I said, “How much does it cost?” She mumbled something. “What was that?” “ABOUT €100!” she roared at me. “Can you afford it?” “No.”

She looked so miserable that I said: “It doesn't matter what your bum looks like, I'll still be your friend.” That cheered her up. Not.