'No, those are NOT my Magnum condoms' (or, why I will never use U-Scan again)

Anyone who knows me knows that I am not the girl to get easily embarrassed.
Fall off a table while dancing? Check. (and I was sober!)
Puke on a fire hydrant while hungover? Check. (no, I'm not proud)
Accidentally tell a [ex]co-worker about the sex dream they played a large role in? Double check. (alcohol was possibly involved)
Fart in mixed company? Many, many, many checks.
Sing inappropriate songs of the 90s in front of coworkers? Too many times to count. (and sadly, no, alcohol was not ALWAYS involved)

So yes, been there. Done that. Laughed about it afterwards. Sometimes for years, because some of those stories just won't die....

But until tonight, I have never know true mortification.

It starts out simply, and innocently, enough. I stopped at Meijer on the way home to pick up some fruit, a few Lean Cuisines, diet soda, some hair smoothing crap.

Looking at the two lanes that were actually open, and twelve people deep each, I decided to just skip to the U-Scan. This isn't unusual, as unless I am doing one of my semi-annual large shopping trips, I usually opt for the 'quicker' route.

Today though...oh no. Not today.

I waited patiently in line, and when the man in front of me had grabbed his bags and left, I moseyed on up to the scanner, and proceeded to scan my eleven or so items, bagging them as I went. I was impressed with myself because at this point, my trip had only taken me 15 minutes, and $30, and this is very unusual for me. Anywhere.

After I signed the little card reader that would make John Hancock's signature look like it was scrawled by a monkey with no thumb, I loaded my few bags into my tiny cart (yes, I know, I had four bags, but anytime I don't use one, I inevitably rip at least two bags, and end up losing a jar of pickles or a gallon of milk to the parking lot) and headed for the door.

Nothing spectacular, right?

As soon as I pushed my cart through the exit, the alarm goes off. Naturally, I stopped right in the middle of the door, confused as to what this loud noise was, and why a man in a red shirt was waving at me to come back.

Figuring the only interesting thing they would find would be that I had already scarfed down a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup in the time I waited in line (read: 2 seconds), I turned around, and when man in red shirt asked if I minded waiting for the manager, I assured him that was fine. And when said manager (let's call him Steve - that's a bad name for me, and this was NOT a fun experience) came up to the front, and asked if I minded him looking through my grocery bags, I agreed once again. I handed him my receipt and stood back, assuming it was my MP3 player or cell phone that set off the alarm, as they are wont to do.

So imagine my complete and utter surprise when Steve pulls out a box of Trojan Magnum-XL condoms, and asks if I was planning on paying for them.....

I'm pretty sure my jaw is still recovering from hitting itself on the floor.

Confused, but still trying not to laugh, I told Steve that I hadn't been down that aisle - to be honest, I don't even know which aisle that is. In my nervousness, I am sure I gave that poor man waaaay too much information about my lack of the sex. In turn, I maybe just gave all you readers too much information as well, but that's neither here nor there.

At this point, Steve has turned as red as red shirt guy's red shirt. I'm pretty sure I had totally slipped into nervous laughter and stuttering, as I tried to explain that I definitely did not 'accidentally' throw those in my bag.

Red shirt guy is standing to the side, continuing to help the inept people trying to scan their groceries, and comes up with the brilliant (seriously, he was smarter than Steve - someone needs a raise and promotion) idea of looking at the receipt log, to see if maybe a customer before me had paid for them, bagged them, and accidentally left them.

Turns out, it was the guy before me.

Many many years back, I dated a boy (we were young, back then) who was well over 6 feet tall, and probably 120 pounds soaking wet.

The guy in front of me? Could have been his double. If you subtracted about a foot, leaving him a few inches shorter than myself. Add in a soul patch and a creepy thin mustache, take off about 10 pounds. Douse in Polo Sport (delicious smell, but really guys? Moderation? Is key.)

Manager Steve now feels bad for essentially accusing me of shoplifting enormous condoms. They've been paid for. Creepy little man has probably left the parking lot at this point. So what is the natural course of action?

Obviously, offer the tomato-faced girl who has just bemoaned her lack of a man-friend a free pack of Magnum-XLs. That'll make her feel SO much better. And definitely less humiliated.

I politely declined, but it seemed like Steve was insisting. For one crazy moment, I figured I could just hand them off to a friend that might find them useful.

Then I realized -- I can easily live the rest of my life without knowing which of my friends (or their lovahs) require extra-large condoms. I'm pretty sure it would always be creeping up in the back of my mind - 'Hi Jane, this is my friend John Doe. He needs MAGNUM-XLs! Lucky you!! Woot woot!'

No thanks. That's just information I should never encounter.

Luckily, or perhaps unluckily, before I could once again refuse, Creepy Little Guy from before ran in, sweating, and blew right past Steve and I, checked the empty scanner/bagging area that we had previously shared, and then turned to Red Shirt: 'Um, I think...I mean, I know...I left a bag...I bought some things...and forgot them. And I really need...my things. Did someone find them?'

Red Shirt pointed him in our direction, and Steve quietly said to me 'Sorry for the hassle...have a nice night' as he swiftly grabbed the box out of my bag, ran it over the sensor deactivator, put it in an empty bag, and handed it over to CLG.

At this point, I was already hightailing it out of the store so I wouldn't start laughing so hysterically that I peed myself, but had to step aside as CLG ran past me yet again, then proceeded to stop, turn, and say 'Hate to run outta these!' followed by a wink.

I got in my car and laughed for a good ten minutes before I felt sane enough to drive home.

So, summary?

Groceries - $30
Time shopping/in line - 16 minutes
Time spent with a rogue box of condoms - 20 minutes
Leaving your dignity somewhere between the 1 penny pony rides, and bags of charcoal - Priceless


Middle Aged Woman said...

You just made my day!

gathering dust said...

haha, glad i could....even at my own expense :-)

Lindsay said...

HOLY CRAP! That's hysterical!!! In retrospect, I wonder if you should have gotten the magnum guy's phone number (?)...

TennLady said...

That's even worse than buying them at Walgreens and having them do a price check.

Bet you coulda lived without this information!

gathering dust said...

linds - i live to entertain. but why do these things always happen to me? and no. no to the phone number. just, no. ew.

tenn - god. i could have lived without that. thanks.

Rachel said...

oh dear. I couldn't stop doing that weird snort-laugh things. XL condoms.....yeah, I officially sound like a 10 year old.
Funny stuff.

gathering dust said...

that's pretty much the reaction of everyone who has heard this story at this point....which is a group that is growing day by day.

snort-laughing is good times. i do that a lot :-)

Jenny, the Bloggess said...

Featured on Good Mom/Bad Mom on the Houston Chronicle online: http://tinyurl.com/6hwlhy

Juli said...

That is SO something that would happen to me, only with me, it would have happened while shopping with my two year old and four year old or my mother-in-law. LMAO!!!

Found you on Good Mom/Bad Mom :) Thanks for th chuckle! ;)

Rhea said...

You need to google "I pee in the wind" and find Tent Camper's blog. (I think it's iptw.blogspot.com) He has a post today about a game he plays in the grocery store, dropping personal items like condoms and lube in unsuspecting shoppers' baskets...it's hilarious. I thought of that the minute I read this story.

Great writing!

Always Home and Uncool said...

Sorry. Those were mine.

Sadly, I bought them for a friend.

Good post!

Middle Aged Woman said...

You can thank your aunt for submitting you to GM/BM. I really thought this post deserved some serious traffic. Also, quit being funnier than me.

New Age Bitch said...

So we can't rely on shoe size anymore as an indicator? Damn.

Kylie w Warszawie said...

So SO SO SO SO funny! Loved it!

gathering dust said...

jenny - thanks! i feel magical and powerful and awesome. more so than usual.

juli - the only thing that surprises me about when it happened to me is that i wasn't on a first date or something.

rhea - thanks for the tip, i will check out!

always home - really...there's no words. and coming from me, that's saying something

maw - thanks auntie! i'll try to be a little unfunnier, just for you :-)

nab - i learned that one a long long time ago. sadly.

Manager Mom said...

I must be too old to be embarassed. Because I'm actually CURIOUS which one of my friends or friends husbands need XL condoms. It might make them a lot more interesting. In my own mind, anyway.

Anonymous said...

This was great! I found you on GM BM, glad that I did. I thought I was the only one that had strangers provide them with comedy gold.

gathering dust said...

manager - maybe make them more interesting, yes - but i would still be disturbed. all the time.
now, if one of my single guy friends said he could use them...well, that's another story ;-)

a0 - strangers are the best source of comedic moments...even when it ends up being at my expense! glad you enjoyed!

Dazed and Confused said...

absolutely hilarious. Especially the wink at the end... oh man.I read this at work and was trying desperately not to burst into really loud laughter.

Thanks for sharing this -- too funny!

gathering dust said...

dazed - bursting into laughter at work isn't always a bad thing. thank god, as i do it multiple times daily :-)

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