How to Buy A Condom
(a guide for geeks)

First, a Little Introduction
Ok... the first question I expect from you is "Why are you doing this?" Simply put, it's funny... or more precisely, I think I can make it funny. So don't take anything here seriously, just sit back and enjoy it.

Also, I decided to do this instead of my Economics reading, programming homework, english reading, systems analysis and design homework.... who? me procrastinate?

Ok - just one serious note: Condoms Are Good. They prevent unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases (STD's), and other Bad Things (assuming that you use them of course). Be safe and all that.

Now everyone knows that the proper word for condoms are prophylactics, but we call them condoms... know why? Because "prophylactic" sounds pretty wimpy. CON-DOM sounds a lot better, like a truck tire.... CON-DOM (paraphrased from someone's stand-up comedy act).

Who this is aimed at
This is aimed at any pimply faced teenager that has ever had the chance of actually having sex (with a real person that is) slip away because they could not face actually buying those pesky little condoms. The kind of person who turns red with embarrassment at the mere mention of the word. Also, anyone who has wondered exactly how the best way to buy that embarrassing little package is (course, you're not going to get it here, as I'm just talking out of my ass anyway :)

Buying Condoms

  1. Know where you are going to get them. I think the best place to go is a Pharma-save, London Drugs, or any drug store-like place. If you have friends that work there... maybe consider traveling to another store, or perhaps another town. If the drug store is in a mall, make sure there is parking close by, and if possible, pick one with an outside entrance (IE: you don't have to walk through the mall to get to it).
  2. Dress appropriatly. The name of the game here is not making an impression. You want to be indistinct and unnoticable, but not noticeable in your un-noticeability. Don't go in with a trench coat and fake mustache, but on the flip side you don't want to go in speedos! Dress appropriately for the weather too, you'll seelater on a jacket may be necessary. The jacket can be a simple leather or bomber - nothing too big or small. Maybe consider putting off any sex until winter.
  3. Pick up something else. This is very important. This is not to try to hide your purchase of pecker wrappers from the check-out person, but from other customers. Nothing too big, nothing too small. Try a box of Q-Tips or a magazine (not a porno though!). Kleenex aren't a good idea either.
  4. Know the target's location in the store. Once you enter the store, walk casually around until you find where the condoms are. These days that section is generally called "Family Planning" When you pass it, don't attract attention to the fact you are passing it! Many people think that you should make some sort of gesture to indicate that you are repulsed by what you see. Not so! These actions just draw more attention to you!

    Keep your head forward, and quickly scan the display. You have to pick out the package you want quickly, and that means now. The last thing you want is to be seen sitting there like a dork staring at the condom display. Since you are obviously embarrassed by looking at it, you will have your hands in your pockets. And how do you think it looks to see someone staring at a condom display with his hands down his pants?

    But What if I can't find them?
    This can be a dilemma. In small stores, important items (to us anyway) can be hidden away, or maybe even not sold at all. In big stores, you can only go through a certain amount of floor space before your courage runs out. More often than not, though, they are in such a location in the store that simply makes them hard to find.

    Now the big decision is "do I ask?" Do you have the balls (intended irony) to go up to the counter and ask: "Excuse me, where are the condoms?" I mean, you know that everyone in the store is going to hear, and then stare at you until you leave. And what about the person you ask? Can you ask some old lady that looks like your granny? Basically you are saying to them:

    "I am going to have sex with someone. Please tell me where the latex devices that keep my sperm in check are."

    The ones among us who don't care would simply walk up to the little old lady, lean on the counter, look her right in the eye and say "I'm gonna get me some tonight - where's the condoms at?" (yea, right!)

    I guess the only way to do it is just walk up to the pharmacy counter (they are normally hidden away a little, and there are generally more old people hanging around there. Wait until the pharmacist comes over, and ask. Don't scream from across the room, wait until they come to you.

  5. Make the pick-up. You know where the condom rack is, but don't want to make it obvious that you are heading there. Just "head down that isle." Stop at the display, pick up a package, and continue on. Don't spend too much (if any) time comparing prices or brands... that just gives people more of a chance to laugh at you.

    Once you have the package in your hot and sweaty little hands, put it unobtrusively behind the other item you have picked up earlier. Don't hide it per-se, but just happen to walk with the condoms behind the other item.

  6. Go to the check-out. Just in case you were feeling lucky, there's sure to be a huge line up at the check-out counter. Stand tall, head up, but don't look at anyone in the eye. Try your best to control your sweating palms (another reason for the jacket). The best position is probably with your hands clasped in front of you. Standing like this you present the appearance of a presentable person, and the condom package is hidden between your body and your other package.
  7. Pay. Make sure you have enough money beforehand. The last thing you want to do is to have to say to the check-out person, "could you hold these for me while I go to the bank machine?"

    Now although you may think that the check-out person will cause trouble, generally they don't. Unless you make it. Don't quibble about the price, or try to use a maxed out credit card. Just hand him/her your packages, and when they tell you how much you owe, give them the money or card. No trying to be helpful and giving extra change, and don't sit there pulling change out of your pockets. Just hand a bill over that is big enough to cover the price, and take your change (forgetting your change will cause them to call you back, and everyone will laugh at the guy who bought the condoms who forgot his change).

  8. Take the package. 99.9% of the time when you get your purchases from the check-out person it will be bagged. If for some reason it isn't, don't complain, remember, subtlety is what we're going for.

    Walk away at a normal pace.

    If you got the condoms in a bag, make sure the label is not pressing against the thin plastic. There is nothing like walking through the mall with "Trojan" tattooed to your plastic bag. The bag can be hidden in your jacket too.

    If there was no bag, zip up the bottom of your jacket, and then place the purchases in there carefully. Having a box of condoms fall out in front of that pretty girl from school that you meet outside the mall who recognizes you is Not Good.

  9. Escape. Like you were being chased by an angry group of fathers who were not only bikers, but had also caught you in their daughters bedroom (which could be what you are hoping for, seeing as you are buying condoms). When you are out of the building, jog at a good clip to your car. Don't look back.

What you do after this is your own business :-)


This was originally written by me a while back, posted here for (purely) your amusement. These days I walk into the store and say "Hey, I'm getting me some tonight, where'd ya hide the rubbers?" (honest, really, I do). This node has no purpose other than to get a giggle or three.

1) Walk into a store. Look for isle or display where condoms are. If you can't find them, quietly ask an employee when you can find them.

2) Take the time to look at the display--without blushing. What's the big deal, anyways? Make sure you get what you WANT. Don't grab a latex condom in your hurry to avoid being 'caught' if you know you are allergic to latex. It's not worth it. Don't get a product that's not the right one for you! Get the right size, texture, lubed/unlubed, spermacide or not, etc.

3) Walk to checkout. Pay. Leave.

Seriously, if buying a condom is more emotional involvement than you can handle, should you really be having sex? If you're too shy to buy a bit of rubber are you really brave enough to face another real live human being naked?

There is the one-step version for the painfully shy, however:

1) Go to a run-down hole in the wall gas station. Pray there's a condom machine in the bathroom. But will you really be any less embarassed, in the long run, when your partner notices it's glow-in-the-dark green and cantalope scented?


giving bad (and potentially harmful) advice is hardly what i'd call giggles. Whatever.

If you feel really embarrassed to buy condoms, there are many online shops where you can buy them in confidence. These shops will package the condoms discreetly in a brown box so the postman won't know, and post them to your door. Therefore if you’re of the lazy type you don’t even need to leave your house, so you can save your energy for the bedroom (or where ever). The credit card bill statement shouldn’t say what the item was that you bought, so if you’re planning on using your parent’s card you should be fine.

However, make sure you know when your purchases of condoms are delivered so that you will be there to collect it when it arrives in the post. Otherwise if you have parents like me, they will open them for you and they will find out which is probably more embarrassing than just popping down to the local shop and buying them there in the first place.

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