I’m at Home Depot, where a really nice man helps me navigate my through an aisle of screws. I’m trying to find the right ones to hang a bookshelf on a hollow wall. Since I don’t own the tools to properly install the screws he thinks will work best, he also has to help me course my way though brackets that can provide extra support. Finally, after having been at the store for twenty minutes to pick out two items, I make my decision… only to return five seconds later because I’ve changed my mind. I want the medium silver brackets, not the small gold ones. To which he replied, “You’re a woman, you’re allowed”. I smile as I walk away, but that gets me thinking.
Now I’m at Target… in the feminine products aisle… still thinking. Thinking about how complicated it is to be woman. Thinking about how expensive that complication is. An entire aisle of pads. Why? Always, Kotex, Carefree, Stayfree, on and on and on. But those are just the brands. I already have that figured out. Then there are the sizes (regular, long, super-long, or over night); followed by the thickness (regular, thin, or ultra-thin). Will it be fragrance-free or scented this month? And if scented, which one, powder, fresh, floral?…
Now I’m thinking that all these scents are summery and springy. How come they don’t make any fall or winter fragrances? I suddenly imagine myself… walking around smelling like pine and everyone knowing why… bad idea. A better idea would be multi-packs; then I wouldn’t have to spend $4-6 on each pack. How come no one’s invented that yet?… Because then I wouldn’t be spending $4-6 on each pack!
Ok. Focus. It’s been ten minutes now! Back to the options that are actually on the shelves. This brand costs more because they come in cool neon colors. Hmmm, do I really want electric blue wrappers sticking out of my purse pocket? This brand promises that their wrappers are noiseless. Of course. I want people to imagine why I’m taking so long in the stall. This one is supposed to contour better to a woman’s body. That one is made specifically for a plus-sized woman’s body. And this entire line is made for different types of frilly underwear.
Sigh. I wonder if this is what it’s like for men at Home Depot… I consider it… but something tells me its way more complicated for a woman. At least they have Harold to help them. Who am I going to ask? “Customer needs assistance in aisle 10… Yes, can you be my Target Harold and explain to me which of these products is best for my needs?” N-no.
The good news is, I don’t have a headache yet. However, figuring out which count (16, 18, 24, 28, 32, 46, or 60) will save me the most money while accounting for all of my other options is sure to cause one.