Tuesday, July 12, 2011

In Case of Emergency

As she slipped on the capri jeans, Pam felt an unexpected bulge in her front left pocket. "Wow--money!" she exclaimed to the empty room. With any luck it would be a $20, but she'd take a $5 or even two crumpled ones. It was always exciting to find money she had forgotten she had. But when she dug into the pocket, the money didn't feel like money. It had something that felt like pseudo-paper around it, and whatever was inside kept squirming from side to side. "What the heck is this?" she asked the clock radio. Was it a candy wrapper gone bad? An old receipt with a wad of abandoned gum? When she pulled out the gold foil Magnum condom, the dresser mirror reflected Pam's relief, then remembrance, and then disappointment. Pam had found her emergency condom on the floor of her car while cleaning it out before taking her mom to Target. She stuffed it in her pocket because she didn't want her mom to spot the shiny wrapper while they were sitting in traffic on Peninsula Boulevard and then get interrogated about what really happens at those writing conferences in Vermont. Pam didn't know why she brought the condom in the first place. It wasn't like there were any strapping young men at these writer retreats--at least not men who were straight, unattached, had real jobs and all of their teeth. It was her damn friend, Cliff, who had wished for her to find someone, and who told her to keep her eyes, mind, and heart open because his good friend found his wife at one of these things. And if Pam were going to entertain the possibility she might find love in Vermont, then she might as well bring along some protection just in case. She sighed as she held up the crumpled condom. Her "just-in-case" moment hadn't happened in the eight days she had been in Vermont, and she doubted it would happen in the two days she had left. But according to the expiration date on the wrapper, she had until November 2015.

Tangible Prompt: Condom