This weekend, I began a plumbing project that I had been neglecting for well over a year. It was nothing of a serious or health nature, it was merely a matter of ascetics…hence the year-long neglect. Plumbing is my least favorite of the do-it-yourself art forms, but I decided on a very hot, not-even-summer, global warming day, that getting a little wet wouldn’t be the worst thing that could happen. So, I kicked off my cute strappy sandals for a pair of more appropriate work shoes (code word for ugly) and went to work.
Now, I’m a tinker thinker. I have to ponder a project before I get started. This particular project involves moving a few pipes to accommodate the new landscaping. I take a look in the garage and I have everything except a new length of pipe, a few couplers, and a new valve. Damn, I have to go to the hardware store. Now, I don’t know about your hardware store, but my Ace is the place where a woman is perceived as the weakest of the herd and is promptly pounced upon by the nearest red-vested predator…the ugly shoes are no deterrent.
I try to stealthily enter from the garden center, grab what I need, run for the check-out, and make a hasty exit to safety. Just as I thought I had made it, my shin was impaled by a small shopper-in-training cart adorned with the large red racing flag pushed by a suburban Lilliputian. My shrieks of pain gave away my position of cover, and I was promptly pounced upon. “What can I do for you, little lady?” Shit.
I tried to squirm out of the clutches, but I was caught. I explained what I was to purchase for my project, and I falsely assumed that he would let me go once my wealth of plumbing prose dazzled him. No such luck. He “helped” me collect my pipe and my valve, but the impasse came with the couplers. I picked from the bin the required pieces, but was promptly informed that is not the way I should go. Now, remember, I have this all thought out. I know exactly what I want. I just need to get it, and get out. The very aiding, but not so abetting, sales associate began to lecture me on the correct male and female coupling. I tried to interject on several occasions, but he just kept on talking. Finally, I stuck my hand up in defiance and said, “Sir, I am a lesbian, I don’t care much about male and female coupling.” A wink and a smile.
And the prey is allowed to escape in the confusion. I make a hasty retreat through the garden center check-out and around the building to my car. I laugh to myself. Wonder what he will say to me next time I come in…looking for a screw.