I use the Selle An-Atomica instead of Brooks. I have three of them. They're a bit wider than a B17, and they have a slot down the center that relieves pressure on sensitive bits, but also allows the saddle to move with your legs as you pedal. No painful break-in period, at least there wasn't for me. They also come standard in a "watershed" leather that does not need protection from wet weather. They also retrofit Brooks saddles with the Selle An-Atomica slot. Good luck!
You can raise your handlebars with a taller neck. I did that for street riding in the city and it's much more comfortable.
I have a B-17. If you want, you can sit on it and see how you like it. They make a shorter one for women. I live in East Lakeview.
Oh sheesh, I just realized how old this thread is, almost three years old.