This is a cautionary tale about a woman, a period, and a big box.
Men will never truly understand the whole “period” thing… I’m sorry men… but you just won’t.
Women are basically cycling through an exciting array of hormones every 28 days, of every month, of every year, for most of our life time.
We are up and down and up and down (no pun intended) and you men never know when you are going to get your “calm little kitten” or your “crazed steroid driven psycho” that screams at you for doing just about anything, while fisting chocolate covered zingers into her mouth at an alarming rate.
It isn’t pretty.
We try to maintain.
I’m telling you gentleman… we do…
But it is impossible as this organic chemical concoction called “womanhood” surges through our body, driving us to mate… then hate you before our 28 day deadline for that month is over.
Any husband knows the horror of heading to the Albertson’s at ten o’clock at night and asking, “Umm, can you tell me where the BIG BOX of Tampax medium to heavy unscented pearl pack is? Oh… and can you direct me to the aisle where I can also purchase the BIG BOX of Nestle Ice Cream sandwiches and the FAMILY SIZE frozen chocolate chip cookie dough? Thank you so very much.”
Come home empty handed and you will be sorry.
I’m telling ya… I had a complete period break down just last month when I told Stephen that I was going to get a taco at Taco Bell.
“Well, I’ll drive with you,” he said.
But I didn’t want him to.
I was trying to sneak away.
I knew what I was going to do: go to the Taco Bell and binge. Pumped up on my monthly hormones and jonzing for sugar, salt and fat, I knew a taco wasn’t going to hold me over… but I didn’t want to admit it… when I’d been trying really hard to uphold the image of “breezy sexual vixen” to this man.
“Ummmm, well I was going to run a couple of errands,” I said, hoping to deter him from tagging along.
“That’s okay,” he said. “I’ll just ride with you.”
And I thought, Why do men always WANT to be with us when we don’t want them around? And then it’s just the opposite when we do?
“Fine,” I snapped at Stephen, as he climbed into the mini van, totally oblivious to my situation, and stared out the window waiting for me to drive.
I floored it.
“Whoa,” he said, and he sounded just like Spicoli in Fast Times at Ridgemont High. “Taking it a little fast today aren’t you?”
I felt my face go red and I fantasized about reaching over, opening the door, kicking him out to the curb, just so I could watch him roll around on the street in pain while I screeched donuts around him in my 96 Isuzu shouting, “A WOMAN GREW YOU IN HER WOMB YOU SMUG SON OF A BITCH! NOW YOU WILL FEEL OUR PAIN!”
But I controlled my period rage and rushed towards my salvation.
When we pulled into the drive-thru and I heard the familiarly soothing song of, “Welcome to Taco Bell” I thought I might be okay.
“Yes, could I have the BIG BOX MEAL please?”
Stephen turned and looked at me.
“I thought you were just getting a taco?”
Now, I’m sure Stephen asked this question in all innocence, but my eyes narrowed, my demeanor became sinister as I turned to him and asked, “What did you just say?”
And in that moment… Stephen suddenly realized the gravity of his situation…
Just in that moment… the man that had once been married to someone for over ten years… realized that he had willingly entered a car with a women who was cocked and fully loaded.
“Mmmmm, that sounds good,” he said, pretend joy plastered to his face as he rubbed his hands together, trying to appease me until he could run from the scene. “But I think I’ll just have a drink today.”
I kept my eyes fixed oh him… waiting for the smallest sign… the smallest gesture… of what could be perceived as “mock” but he kept his gaze steady until the sound of the speaker…”Anything else?” …distracted me from my prey.
“What are you getting then?” I asked him: my tone… complete annoyance.
“Ummmmm,” Stephen said as he leaned over and tried to get a better look at the drink menu.
I felt my fingers twitching on the steering wheel…
“Ummmmm,” he stalled again. “Uhhhh, I think I’ll have…”
“Jesus, Stephen!” I shouted. “What the fuck do you want to drink?”
Stephen’s eyes grew large, there was a bit of a shocked smile that crept over the surprised little “O” of his mouth.
“Ummm, a Strawberry Lemonade,” he said to the speaker.
I felt the proximity of his body next to mine and hissed, “Now back away,” as I rolled around to the drive-up window.
Stephen sat back in his seat and folded his hands on his lap, he waited quietly until the register girl handed our drinks out the window and then… the BIG BOX MEAL.
The girth of it was embarassing.
There it was: The BIG BOX.
I handed it to Stephen and drove away from the window.
Stephen didn’t say a word and in fact, it remained quiet in the car… until I realized that Stephen was silently reading the description on the side of the box.
“What does it say?” I asked.
“Nothing,” Stephen said.
He knew better than to engage in the car but I had him cornered.
“No what does it say?” I demanded as I stared him down and watched as he cautiously held the box up higher and read out loud in a slow steady voice, as if he were a student in one of my high school classes, worried that he would receive extreme punishment for any verbal error.
“It says…” he started… “The Taco Bell Big Box Meal. This value meal on steroids comes loaded with our latest masterpiece, the Volcano Taco, as well as the Burrito Supreme, the Crunchwrap Supreme, Cinnamon Churro Twists, and a Large Drink. All for only $4.99. Don’t even ask about our calorie count on this one. Let’s just say, minus the drink you’re talking 4 digits. 1300 calories in this bad boy. Not for the faint of heart. Watching your waistline? No worries, carrying this sucker will be enough of a workout. A meal made for a man!”
We pulled up to his house as he finished the last sentence.
“Give me that!” I shouted as I snatched the BIG BOX from his hands and watched as one of my churros went flying up into the air and landed somewhere in the back seat.
Stephen calmly opened the door and climbed out of the car before he turned back around, reached over the passenger seat, and picked up the now dirty churro from the car floor.
“You sure you don’t want this one?” he asked, the safety provide by the middle of the street making him suddenly brave.
I didn’t even respond.
I hit the gas and watched as the door slammed, leaving Stephen, dirty churro still in hand, gawking from the middle of the street, as I railed the corner and headed for home.
“Meal made for men my ASS!” I shouted from the open car window.
I pulled up to my house, went inside, and ate my BIG BOX MEAL in the privacy of my home.
Happy in my hormonal dysfunction.
Period shame be damned.