Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Let's Talk About Sex
The Condom Aisle, Embarrassment for Miles

They were painting my apartment and I was staying at a friend's.  She had one rule:  "DO NOT GO THROUGH MY DRAWERS!"  Okay, easy enough... I'm not a snoop... I mean, unless I like you, then you should not leave me alone in your apartment.  But that's a given, right?  ;)

So one day, I am working on my computer and I need to write directions down.  I open the bedside table instinctually.   That's where I (LAME PERSON OF THE UNIVERSE) keep my pens.  Instead, there are  drawer full of condoms.  And not just one brand... like LOTS OF BRANDS.  Like, does this girl work for a condom company????

And a note resting on them:  "Get your own."  Get your own.  What?  Do I need my own?  Is this something I am supposed to be "outfitted with?"   Get your own.  Pots, pans, toothbrush, body scrub, CONDOMS!!!!

Curse me for being naive.  Curse me for only, mostly, okay, all the time, sleeping with guys I really, really liked so there was some kind of discussion of sex and protection and even the one time, I was with someone and we decided before the date where I really thought it would happen, like ten dates and not eight, we had the most fun, red in our cheeks, racing through the aisles of Rite Aide to get what we needed.

And we giggled like kids, like kids who knew and liked each other and the night felt earned and it didn't have to mean love but it was fun for it to be unexpected and not PLANNED on.  Not saying, "No, it's cool, my Brinks truck of condoms already made it's delivery - down a chute and into my bedside table."

NOT THAT I'M JUDGING.  I am not.  

I went on a date the other night.  A first date.   It was awesome.  It was awesome in that, after having 2 weeks of NY men tell me I'm attractive or beautiful or cute, I showed up with no make-up and little care to how my hair looked.  (His idea for a last minute date).  But still on my mind is:  am I supposed to be prepared if SOMETHING (le sex) is going to happen?  What does that say about me?

I told a guy friend about the condom drawer, he nodded knowingly and said, "Ah, New York girls."  Oh, so this was normal.  For New York girls.  I'm a New York girl.  Should I be THAT girl?

I have never bought condoms in my life.  Weirdly, proud of that fact.  It's not something (le sex) that I thought I had to be prepared for - it never has just "sprung" out at me.  It's not like having an earthquake kit... there's time, right?  But there I was.  

In the Rite Aid "condom" aisle.  They were buy 1, get one 1/2 off.  The bargain shopper in me was whispering in my ear:  "You can't get a deal like this!  Buy... stock up!  It's mix and match!  It's ribbed for your pleasure!"

And I just stood there.  Lubricant?  I don't think I need that.  Fire & Ice... that seems like it would hurt, right?  Are they for older people?  Like "Icy Hot?"  Ribbed.  Really?  Now I could see the pharmacists staring at me.  This is so embarrassing.  

I don't even know if I have my Rite Aid card with me.  

What if they are like, going to make me pay full price but I don't want to pay full price because I DON'T EVEN WANT THESE THINGS IN MY DRAWER anyway.  And then I leave and they all talk about me.  "Too cheap to pay full price for her condoms."  "Sure ran out of here with that Kit Kat real fast."

And then I'm hit by a car and on my gravestone it reads, "Too cheap to pay for full price condoms."  And my mother is crying and wearing that Jackie O. style grieving lace over her Jackie O. pill box hat but it's not because she's sad that I am dead it's because she's ASHAMED to have a daughter that buys her own condoms.  Why else would she hide her face, right?

I leave Rite Aid.  THIS IS NOT ME.  I mean, I want to be new and different and I want to be a NEW YORK girl but I am not QUITE ready to be that New York girl.  I have a date this Wednesday and Thursday.  That is already so "new me" that I don't need to be any other kind of "new" right now.

Any ladies been there?  In the aisle?  Packs in hand?  LOL, I want to hear :)




dreamgypsie said...

First I TOTALLY get your spiral worry thing. I do that too! Have you ever seen the Ellen skit about the cheese? I die every time.
Second I don't think you have to be THAT girl. Maybe one day when the men folk are banging down your door you should stock up, but I don't think that being in New York and being a New York Girl means you need to keep a condom drawer :)
It doesn't make you any less of a New York Girl.

Bridget said...

Buying condoms can be embarrassing. However, it is far less embarrassing than the trauma of explaining an STD to your doctor and your next partners. Full price, discount, or free, I have a supply too and I don't live in New York.

Classy Fab Sarah said...

I can't believe you've never purchased condoms. I bought my first box at 16 and I swear to JESUS that they weren't even for me. They were for my friend. To give a lil blowie. And she was afraid to get an STD. Not kidding.

OMG, I am so mortified that we were so lame. And awesome and cool and safe... but also lame.

adventure grrl said...

LOL you guys, I know! It must be the Catholic guilt! Or maybe my guy friends have traumatized me about what they think about a girl who has condoms at the ready ;) Time for someone (ME) to grow up!

Michelle/MouseDemon said...

To save embarrassment, you can buy condoms over the internet. (I assume you can in the US too?)

I buy/have bought condoms. In the supermarket with the shopping! When it's a young lad on the checkout, I just give the look of "yeah, I am old, married and get it more than you do!"

Seriously, even if you just have one packet stashed somewhere, it is better to have them, than to not. Cos we have all been there without, and it's very frustrating! (Scharmpitting don't get you nowhere!)

Sharon said...

"It's not something (le sex) that I thought I had to be prepared for."

Honey, that's how you end up pregnant or infected --- or both. Having a spare condom or two does not make you into a Bad Girl. Just a Smart Girl.

Nikki said...

Haha!! I was always the girl with the long-term boyfriend until I moved to LA and we broke up & I moved out & suddenly I was single and I was trying to be an "LA girl" and trying to compete with other "LA girls" and it's just not me. You can be single - and be SAFE (it doesn't hurt to be prepared) - without turning into someone you're not. Enjoy it, grow, take it one step at a time, but don't be embarrassed - own your single-ness, your sexiness, and your new life. So exciting!!

Quix said...

I've just always wanted to be prepared. I lost my virginity and didn't have any condoms on me and ended up just getting coerced to go for it, and realized HOW DUMB that was, I just always carried around a condom after that just in case.

I've only slept with 4 people, and been happily married and monogamous for about 10 years, so I'm hardly a whore or anything. Having one on ya is just a good thing. Say you're with someone you love and trust and you're out and...uh... behind that bush looks like the right place.

JennyM said...

Hilarious... love thinking about you pacing in the condom aisle. Too funny!!! Love your writing.

Erin said...

Never bought em, never needed to, even just in case. But I'm kind of tempted to now, just for the sake of it. I'm going through this "wow, I'm an adult now" stage. Actually, it would be really funny to roll up to the check-out with a bottle of booze and a pack of condoms just to see the reaction. Like, "people in wheelchairs get drunk AND laid?"

Also, I had to laugh at the earthquake kit thing cos earlier in the year we had a 7.1 earthquake followed by 3000 aftershocks and counting, and guess what... no earthquake kit, not even a readily accessible torch. Oops. Sometimes there is no time. ;)

Anonymous said...

I was one of those young women who slept around a lot from age 18-21, sans condoms, in Los Angeles, in the 80's for christ's sakes. I was embarrassed to buy them, too. STUPID. Get over the embarrassment for your own safety. I got lucky. I cried with relief when they gave me the results of my first test... Negative.

For the last 20 years, I had considered my behavior a problem. I was a "slut" and I gave it away for free. On one occasion I even gave it to a man who's name I didn't get before we were finished and thanks to Facebook, I keep running across men I had forgotten about almost as soon as I had met them.

I have always carried that around with me with a sense of shame and you know what? I shouldn't. Why should a man be able to live this way and be congratulated while a woman is deemed a slut?

Kudos to these NY (and elsewhere) women who take control of their sexuality shamelessly. I wish I could have had that mentality about it then. I certainly do now.

Janie said...

Love your blog and this entry made me laugh. Consider yourself lucky to be thinking of these things :) Glad to hear you are back in the dating game... and pssst - order them online!

Allan said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

I'll admit - I'm lost on your lack of purchase!

I've always been taught to be prepared with condoms. I've kept them in dorm rooms, apartments, purses.. because the idea of some guy pulling out an ancient condom that's been squished in his wallet for 5 years is NOT appealing.

I want to know the condom is fresh, not expired, and not something that's going to aggravate my va-jay-jay. No weird hot/cold goop, and spermicide ALL THE WAY.

If something's going in my body, I want to have my choice. Picked the guy, picked the condom - now that's some worry-free sexin'! :)

Amanda said...

I have condoms, lube, and tons of sex toys in my beside drawers. Nor do I particularly care if you open up and see them. I'm somewhat notorious for happily buying sex toys for friends as gifts if I hear they haven't discovered the fun.

This should definitely go in the Adventure Bowl.

adventure grrl said...


Sara said...

As a single girl in her thirties, I always keep them on me 'just in case'. But I live on the border of Canada and US, and I still drive to Michigan to buy them because I know I won't run into I know.

Seriously - I have to go through customs over the International Border to buy condoms. That's embarrassing.

Mo Diva said...

Last Valentines Day as I was nursing a recent break up, my doorbell rang and it was the Fed Ex guy with a giant brown box. As a food blogger, random food packages make their way magically to my apartment. But this box was magically filled to the brim with condoms. 500 condoms to be exact. so there i was, still red in the nose crying over my last break up with fate drops a super size package of condoms on my door step. I have been having house parties and giving away condoms in brown paper bags as "goodie" bags... i still have about 200 left. I will be more than happy to give you some so that you can be "that" girl but not have to brave the judging looks on peoples faces when you buy condoms... like that one time i bought a box of magnums for a "friend" and the male cashier smirked. :-( Dead serious about the condoms tho... lol.