Saturday, July 21, 2012

Sherri Baby, Don't Wait to Shed Your Clothes

The other night I was in a pharmacy trying to buy condoms. I walked to the "Family Planning" section and I realized they were in a locked case. Really? I immediately though of donating loads of money to CVS Pharmacy as a stolen condom fund just so the kids who were stealing them could actually get some damn condoms. There is no better way to make sure kids won't use condom than making them ask permission before buying them. Sheesh CVS, have a little compassion. I was truly disturbed at the thought of teenagers and, actually, adults like me, being shamed out of buying condoms because they had to go to the counter and ask. Fortunately, I am not embarrassed by it, so I went to the counter slightly perturbed and said, "I need something from the family planning section." 

"Sherri, please come to aisle 10." The counter person shouted over the loud speaker, and I went to aisle 10 and waited....and waited....and damn it, went in search of Sherri.

I started walking toward the front of the store, scanning each aisle for a CVS employee. I had almost made it to the front register when I saw her, Sherri. Neck bent forward, eyes squinted, a cup of microwavable noodles in her hand. She was reading the nutrition information. "Uh, Sherri? Excuse me," I said, making myself overly familiar, which I tend to do when I'm completely annoyed. She looked up at me, her maroon hair perfectly styled in that no muss-no fuss style, eyes opened expectantly, laugh lines obviously well earned. "I need to buy some condoms."  Sherri giggled, which is cute on a forty something woman. She then replied in a JJ from Goodtimes imitation and said, "Well, aaaallllright." She pulled her keys out of her purple and black checked button down shirt and began walking back to aisle 10. 

Once we reached the family planning case Sherri put her key in the lock, turned it and then paused. She sighed and in this sultry southern twang said, "I remember those days...." . I laughed and said, "Yep, it's pretty nice. First kisses, and the rest." 

Noodles = No Sex
"Pretty soon," she looked wistful, "I'm gonna be in that space again." I leaned forward and picked my pack of prophylactics, smiling at this shared confidence. I stood up and Sherri and I headed to the front of the store together to ring those puppies up. While we walked I was waiting for a deep confession of dissolving marriage, kids who needed her, aging parent she had to nurse 24 hours a day, some explanation of why she was not currently unlocking the condom cabinet for herself, but what this beautiful Southern woman said was, "Yep, as soon as I stop eating those damn noodles......"

WHAT?  Yep, she said noodles, and then she patted her round tummy. I was horrified. Unlike a relationship that can end, children that grow older and don't need you around so much anymore, a sick parent that will eventually pass, self-loathing can only change if you want to change it, and Sherri thought the noodles were the problem which is so the wrong place to start.

I laughed and said, "Oh girl, nobody cares about that." But what I wanted to do was grab her by her shoulders and shake her. Take her down aisle 6 where the mirrors were and say, "Can you see yourself? You are hot! You are so damn cute I want to take you home and make you muffins. I want to introduce you to this guy I know who loves curvy ladies. There are men that would eat you up like BBQ and slaw, baby. Don't let society tell you not to get naked! Don't let anyone tell you to wait until you're perfect to enjoy your body." But I didn't because I was running late and because people don't take kindly to strangers grabbing them by the shoulders and telling them they're sexy, (or so I've heard). 

Sherri giggled again as she rung up my condoms. "Have fun tonight," she laughed, and I laughed to. Wishing I had one line of life changing wisdom I could say that would change her beliefs about her self and her body. What my lame reply was, was, "I will. You should have some fun sometime too! It's great." and then I walked out the door with my jiggly ass, round ole' tummy, 5 o'clock shadow on my morning shaved legs, and, yes, a pack of condoms.


  1. I love this! Spread it so everyone knows just to appreciate and love themselves. Guys like a little curviness ;)

    P.S.- I am now in love with the Avett Brothers thanks to that post you wrote about song lists and you included the ballad between love and hate. I have been listening to them on spotify nonstop!

  2. Yay! So glad you liked this post. Body image stuff can be such an ass kicker! And I am always happy to turn anyone on to the Avett Brothers. They are so amazing. I hope your life is sweet, Single Mama.