Saturday, September 12, 2009

Running the Gauntlet

You know when you run out of something vital to the happiness and well-being of your sanity and that of your family? You know, stuff like "feminine products," Midol and vodka. So, you run up to the store (or drive, your choice) and head towards the front door when you stop short because you have spotted THEM. The solicitors who park themselves right at the door so they can accost customers both coming and going. And of course they're usually standing right next to or in front of the big honkin' sign that says something along the lines of "Acme Stores Does Not Condone, Support or Approve of Solicitation of its Customers by Political, Charitable and/or Religious Organizations." You gotta have a thick hide to blatantly accost people in front of the sign asking you not to do it.

Every time I go to the store, I have to run the gauntlet and it really irritates the crap outta me (so what's new, Mrs. Raging Case of PMS?). There's the guy who always has some sort of petition he's thrusting into your face while he blows smoke from the cigarettes he chain smokes. Oh yeah, dude, way to get people to stop and listen to you. And SPEAKING of cigarette smoke, don't even get me started on employees who take their smoke breaks 6 inches past the front door so all the customers have to run the gauntlet of clouds of carcinogenic smoke. Lovely.

Then there's the people who set up their little TV tray table with a painted coffee can and hand-printed signs and photos that you can't *quite* make out as to what they are photos of. As far as I know, it's photos of them with a crack pipe and they're soliciting money to further their habit. Especially when these people look like they've been awake for a week and are scratching and clawing at their faces.

Or the guy in the custom motorized wheelchair and he's all blinged out (I'm cringing that I used the word "bling" but it fits) and wearing sneakers that cost triple digits and he's parked at the door asking people for money. Um, no.

One day, I was running (yes, running) into Target to get some feminine products only to have this PERSON block my path because he wanted to talk to me about some political conspiracy crap. Target is real good about kicking these people off their property but this guy felt the rules didn't apply to HIM. Now I'm a non-confrontational sort of person but this guy won't let me pass and I'm already postal and I say I'm not interested get outta my way and he starts spouting off and we're doing the dance where I'm trying to move past him and he continues to block and I finally say, loudly, "Dude I am here to buy some Goddamn Tampax and if you don't move your ass right now I WILL drop you with one punch! Now let me get my Goddamn Tampax!" Perhaps it was the way my hair was standing on end or the wild "bitch is on the rag" look in my eye but he slithered away pretty darn quick.

I paid for my Tampax and as I was walking out the door, Mr. Blocker was being hustled off by Long Beach's Finest. He was protesting about Freedom of Speech and Civil Rights yadda yadda blah blah blah until he saw me walk out and damned if he didn't shut his piehole and meekly walk away.

Yeah, that's right Scooter, NEVER come between a menstruating woman and her Tampax. You WILL lose.


2 hours after I wrote the above, I go out to my mailbox and there was a package with my name on it. And get this, it was a box of free samples of Feminine Products from the Nice Folks at Kimberly-Clark! I go, "No way!" and the box of tampons and napkins go "Way!"

How funny is THAT? BTW, I still haven't had a Facebook Friend request from George Parros but I'm still hoping.

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