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Friday, July 15, 2011

Laundry list Friday: the 5 things in a woman's "survival" kit

Good morning!

So my first week at the new job is in the books.  I got a promotion, a raise, a new office, a whole bucket of interesting office politics, the front seat to what might be a great office war next week, and the knowledge that once the woman I'm replacing leaves, I'll be the only one in the building with the skills to perform certain tasks, all of which are tied to everyone's income.

SCORE FOR ME!

However, that's not why I'm here today.  Today I want to talk about five things that every woman has.  Maybe she's not even aware of it...the men around her a most definitely not, so this might be instructional for them.  So men, read on!

5 things every woman has, let's call it the "Survival" kit.

5)  Candy/painkillers

Every woman...young, old, rich, poor, does not matter.  Race, religion, orientation, it does not matter.  Every female in the world has ready access to candy, generally chocolate, and painkillers of some kind.

I keep a ready stash of no less than two kinds of Tylenol/Advil sort of knock offs, and I generally have a bottle of Midol...because you never, ever know when someone is going to need that specialized pill. 

As for candy, when my brother presented his new born daughter to me, I held her and said, "I am your aunt Sarah.  I will always have candy in my purse."  And I do.  I, like many women, carry it not so much for my benefit, but for those around me.  You never know when a chocolate craving, bad breath, or a long church sermon are going to strike, so it's good to have something on hand.

The secret, of course, is to NOT get the candy mixed up with the painkillers.  That's why purses have separate pockets.

4)  The ability to carry everyone's crap because we have a purse.

When we were first dating, my husband was perfectly capable of carrying his own crap.  When we got engaged, he started asking me to put his sunglasses in my purse.  When the kids were little, I had the diaper bag.  Once a woman has carried a diaper bag, there's no going back to a tiny purse.  There just isn't.  We were at a really fancy party once...once...and I bought a purse just large enough for my phone, some cash, and my "emergency pad" (see #3)  and hubby hands me his wallet and asks me to carry it.  I don't know why men are unable to handle carrying a wallet.  Seriously, you talk about having everything you need in that wallet...you mock us for dragging a suitcase everywhere.  And yet, ladies, show of hands...how often has your man asked you to carry his wallet in your purse?

Yes, we are all Marry Poppins.
Yes, I'll be right along...just as soon as Mr. Banks collects his wallet, sunglasses, calendar, laptop, cellphone, and lunch from my bag.

Gents, do you know why we will always drag a purse?  It's not for our stuff...IT'S FOR YOUR STUFF!

3)  "Emergency Pads"

While this is self explanatory, to the women, I have to give a basic biology lesson to the men:  Women only really need feminine stuff 5-6 days a month.  However, we typically carry a small stash with us for two reasons

a) the female cycle is a delicate thing and the slightest stress can throw it out of whack, and either speed up the cycle or slow it, making predicting the arrival of the blessed punctuation somewhat an inexact science.

b) of the 6 billion people in the world more than half are women, and more than half of those are women of the punctuation years.  And of those, I've been in the bathroom stall next to at least 5% over the years who have begged me, a complete stranger, for a pad.  The only question I ever have is "Over or under the stall wall dear?  Where shall I toss it?"

When Peaches was 10, thanks to our friends on the TV who ALWAYS must advertise during children's programming, I made sure Peaches had her own emergency stash.  On the first day of 5th grade, one of her friends needed that stash.  While Peaches wouldn't need it for a couple months, she was quite pleased to be able to help.

2)  That thing we can't part with...no matter how...gross.

I have the same comb I've used since I was in 7th grade.  It's big.  It's yellow.  I used to carry it in my back pocket.  I've lost it four times, once it actually was thrown away, picked out of the trash, and put in a lost and found at an office building where I was the cleaner.  It's more than 30 years old, and it's the only comb I will use.

My mother does laundry in the same denim shorts she's worn since high school.

My grandmother wouldn't part with a favorite bra, even when it meant holding it together with safety pins.

We all have that one thing, be it something small, like a comb, or something larger, like a favorite coat or a coffee mug, that no matter how old or out of date it is, we keep it, and we use it all the time.

While this is not necessarily just a female thing to keep that one thing, I think it's very female to keep it in our daily lives year after year.  We draw strength from the stability of that one small thing.

1)  Period pants.

I realize I reference the monthly cycle a lot.  But honestly, this is about women, and the one thing that is so genuinely, completely female is the punctuation.

And to that end, every single woman on this planet has a pair of period pants.  How do I know?  Because all of us have had that "leakage moment" and all of us had had to tie a jacket around our waist at one point or another and we swore, and we hid in the locker room and tried to shut out the taunts and jeers from the evil trolls who pointed and laughed, that we would NEVER EVER wear white pants again.

Now, some of us still have white...or light pants...in their arsenal of clothing.  But every single one of us has that pair of pants that is almost always black, is soft, very comfy, perhaps loose even.  Lots of pockets to discreetly stash emergency pads so that a quick trip to the ladies room isn't even more obvious because we have to drag along a back pack or a purse.

Is she or isn't she?  Maybe, be very nice to her...just in case.  She might give you candy...or a Midol.
Sort of makes you think:  Maybe it's not so much a fashion thing that all women seem to wear these days is black pants.

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