April 5 2006 12:00 AM

A:  At the moment a guy mentions a woman’s looks, fingers start wagging that it’s what’s inside that counts. And yes, it is — including whatever’s factory-sealed into those Hefty bags making up Mount Whitney and Friend.Men’s eyes always go to a woman’s breasts. No guy’s going to avert his gaze from a set of Bs, or even a set of bee stings. They’re breasts. That’s all that matters. But, enter a pair like your girlfriend’s, lobbying hard for attention, and suddenly, it’s not just the guys’ eyeballs wandering; their minds start wandering, too: Is she a sex worker? Heir to porn star Wendy Whoppers? Does her version of dressing in “career separates” involve gluing on a pair of tassels? Or, on a less sexy note, how much wearable low self-worth can one woman pack into a baby tee?A lot of guys hate bought boobs, but maybe you could’ve lived with your girlfriend’s if she’d opted for the medium instead of the Supersized. Being with a girl with freakishly huge fake breasts is a bit like being a celebrity — the negative bit, that is. Just as Cindy Crawford can’t pick her nose in public without it making the international press, you can’t get a cup of coffee without the guy behind the counter asking your girlfriend’s nipples if he can take their drink order.Unless her sweater hippos spring a leak, they aren’t going to get any smaller — and neither will your feeling that they’re ugly, tacky, and embarrassing. Where you went wrong was in being so eager to make it work with her that you ignored your feelings, pretending that you might someday have the hots for what grosses you out. You may like her, and mostly enjoy being with her, but there’s a part of her you just can’t accept — the part that paid thousands of dollars for a look that screams “Hooters is hiring!”

The right time to end this was the moment you saw the pontoons bursting out of her tiny top and felt the impulse, not to dive in, but to cover them with a tarp. Well, better way too late than even later. You don’t have to reveal what you really think of Dr. Frankenstein’s work. Just tell her you’re a low-key guy, and you’re always going to feel out of sorts with the crowds she draws with her chest. In the long run, she’ll be happier with somebody whose aesthetic ideal runs more to the circus-sized — as will you, once you find a woman whose idea of beauty isn’t looking like the gas station attendant stuck an air hose down her bra and went to lunch.

(c)2006, Amy Alkon, all rights reserved.