Thursday, 24 January 2008

Internet Substitution

Whilst reading Vi's entry, I was reminded of this story.

When the kids were smaller, one of the things I hated most was trying to hack round the supermarket with the pair of them in tow. Far too stressful. As fast as I got one dressed to go out, the other would be removing clothing. Neither wanted to get into the double trolley and then neither would want to get out again. Once inside, my daughter could be kept quiet with food bribery but my son would only be pacified by Lego, which started to prove expensive.

My daughter would also actively disprove the theory that children are not affected by external influences on the television. I was informed that I shouldn't tell her off for getting banana on her clothes because if I used Ariel, it would come out. She also insisted that we buy Kingsmill 'because it was better bread'. She would have been about three at the time!

So I made use of the online delivery services. In those days, these were still quite new with various teething problems but the more reliable service was provided by Sainsburys with their mid-week special. If you spent over £50, you got free delivery on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday.

If I wanted lots of very specific organic meat, I would order from the creme de la creme - as in Waitrose. One day, I told a friend that I was about to place an order and she asked me for a favour. Could I get her some organic tampons made by this one particular company and which were only stocked by Waitrose. 'Sure,' I replied. 'No problem.'

When the delivery man arrived, he stood there with his clipboard listing the things that they hadn't been able to deliver and these tampons were among them. As you can imagine, his little face was all pink and I was trying not to smirk as he told me that they couldn't provide the organic tampons.

However, he was delighted to inform me that they had a substitute instead. I was immediately crestfallen at the prospect of a packet of Tampax but, no.

He handed me the bag with almost a flourish.

It contained...

... wait for it...

Two packets of something called Mr Majelka's Magic Bendy Drinking Straws.

You know, the type that have the little hinge in about an inch down that bends to make sucking without spilling easier. I think there's a possibility that you could bend them into shapes for parties as well but I couldn't read the blurb on the box properly since my eyes had filled with tears because it was just too funny... the idea of trying to insert one of those instead of an absorbent tampon.

Taking one box out and looking at him quizzically I allowed him to examine it for himself, I can still see his face now - all red with discomfort and me, standing on my doorstep, shrieking with hysterical laughter. I was practically on my back with my legs in the air, I was that tickled.

I was so tempted to tell him I'd keep one box and report back on how effective they were.

Poor, poor man, by the time I'd stopped laughing, handed them back as being an unsuitable substitute and signed the forms, he was almost puce with embarrassment.

I was still chuckling as he drove away.

23 comments:

Sulpicia said...

You think that's funny? When I was a young lady all we had was Mr Majelka's Magic Bendy Drinking Straws. They finally came out with the absorbant kind, but by then my time had passed.

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nitebyrd said...

OMG! That is so funny. I needed a laugh this morning and you provided a great one. Thanks!

Wild Catz said...

You have to wonder which one of the store assistants packed them as a substitute in the first place... In my local supermarket most of the packers are teenagers - maybe the sex education classes need a re-think! God knows what you may have got if you'd asked for KY or something!

Akrazael said...

Sometimes going green requires some adjustments, but that would have been a bit much!

Ms Hansen said...

Lol... that's the best "worst substitute" item I've heard about!! Do you still "click, click - knock, knock"?

The bit about the Lego made me smile too - I had shares in Lego at one stage - before I decided that leaving my son at home was a less expensive option, although I don't think my husband thanked me for turning him into a baby-sitter!!

Walker said...

LMAO!!!!!!!!!!

That is a funny story.
We don;t have that service here but I did see the same type in New Zealand when I was there and they to made substitutes of item they didn't have.

You should have told him that the date had expired on the side of the box to.

BenefitScroungingScum said...

That's too funny! Definitely more interesting than any of the substitutions Sainsbury's send me, heehee, BG x

Jim said...

What . . . wrong size?

Loving Annie said...

bendy drinking straws as a substitue for tampons ? No wonder you were laughing !

Gorilla Bananas said...

How do you know it was a substitute? It sounds like a consolation gift to me. Obviously they should have given you chocolates instead.

Gypsy said...

Oh bless his little heart....I am just imagining his discomfort.


Isn't it funny how many men refuse to go and buy women's feminine hygiene products because they are too embarrassed. Luckily my husband isn't one of them. He doesn't even turn a hair.

Vi said...

That was so funny! But I still cant get over 'organic tampons' Is there a special tree they grow from? Every woman should have one of those in her backyard!

Natalia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
toby said...

Poor bloke obviously hasn't had his skin thickened by a girl-friend sending him out to buy a sanitary product from a crowded chemist which didn't have the exact item that the girl-friend had written down, leading to a loud protracted discussion about possible alternatives.

The horror!!!

Anonymous said...

To quote Jimmy Carr (and I never thought I'd type those words):

"I'm a new man, I don't have a problem buying tampons. But apparently, they're not a proper present ..."

Effortlessly Average said...

Puce? Isn't that what you'd have if the straws actually worked that way?

bittersweet me said...

my son knows exactly the point at which to scream to guarantee a chocolate brioche snatched from the shelf ...

i loved the tampon story, so funny.

Larkin said...

Excellent, amusing girl. you have to wonder about the person who decided upon the replacement, and left it with the hapless delivery man...

Dazza said...

How bizzare... I was always amazed by supermarket delivery substitutions. Can't think of any off hand, but I think that one wins. My favourite thing was when random free stuff would turn up in my delivery.

How are you?

Dxxx

Brainiac Chick said...

Oh My! Hehe. :)

Ro said...

I'm sure I should be able to come up with some witty response to that story but ... but ... but ...

Words fail me!

I can only assume that the packers on minimum wages like to take the chance of a laugh when they find one :)

Jackie Adshead said...

What an astounding story - and I'm still trying to work out if it was supposed to be a serious replacement or just a piece of surreal piss taking......