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Selling Condoms


bradgphilbrick@gmail.com
As a pharmacist, I’ve watched the profession change in many ways over the last four decades. One major change is the marketing of condoms. Unlike today’s attractively packaged displays in the middle of the store, condoms were once kept behind the pharmacy counter and sold by the pharmacist.

Selling condoms was often amusing, but adults seldom provided the entertainment; for them, it was a simple purchase. Teenage boys, however, provided comic relief. Most of these young men were shy, apprehensive, and embarrassed. Truly, I felt a bit sorry for them. I always made a point to commend them for their courage, foresight, and taking the responsibility to protect themselves and their partners.

There were, however, the brash and arrogant ones. They came in with a swagger, as if to impress me. In their cockiness and condescension, I recognized pseudo-confidence. Their quips would begin by asking, “What is your biggest size?” followed by “Does the French Tickler tickle me, her, or you because you charge too much for them?”

Getting down to business, I ask, “What kind do you want? There are several choices you know.” The swagger falters when, overwhelmed by choices, he reveals his inexperience. The pseudo-confidence returns with his response of “I don’t need ribbed to make her feel good. I can do that myself.” Lubed are too expensive; and besides, he doesn’t need help there either. So, the young stud who is a great performer, and who needs no extra help, decides to get the least expensive ones.

Finally, it’s my turn. I ask, “Do you want to buy just a box of three, or do you plan to spend the night?”

I always sold a dozen.