Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Trader Joe's And The Tampon Travesty

Maybe I spend too much time worried about feminine hygiene.

Maybe you don't spend enough.

Either way, I will try to remember that there are men that read my blog, and I will do my best to be sensitive to those without delicate ladybits.  Just as I hope you will continue to avoid extensive discussions with me regarding the daily trials and tribs of testicles. UPDATE: I hereby give full amnesty to my cousin's hubs, who had a cancerous nut removed, and has begun blogging about the experience.  He's funny, even without a nut, and you can harass/stalk him here.

But, I must be clear: Bleach has no place in my hoohaw.  I'm not a fan of bleach in general (did you know it will eat a hole in stainless steel???)  But bleach and extra sensitive internal parts?  Nope.  Not happenin'.  At. All.

Yes, tampons are bleached.  So they are whiter, minty-fresh, some shit like that.

But, there are alternatives:  NatraCare makes them, they run about $.33 a piece.  Seventh Gen also does some work with the unbleached, to the tune of $.45 a piece.  You take an average cycle of 5 days, 8 tampons a day, then factor in the one that gets rifled around your purse ultimately covered in melty gum, or unwrapped and exposed to some of the biggest debris fields known to man, plus the one that falls out of the applicator, and you could be talking an additional  $20 per month.

I'm sure you can shop around.  But, it's not really the type of item that can be purchased online, waiting 7-10 days for eternal absorption to arrive.  When you need tampons, you CANNOT WAIT.

That's why I was thrilled to find that Trader Joe's was carrying organic unbleached tampons.  They were always nestled amongst the lavender soap and Tom's toothpaste, a happy little stack of $2.79 boxes.  Quite the deal, for a bleach-free undercarriage.

But lately, I have not seen them.  Which is the thing about TJ's, right?  You could get totally dependent on a product---for instance, breaded calamari, or chocolate dipped fudge in a cute gifty box-----and then it is RIPPED from your life, with no thought, no warning.  Not unlike a cruel tampon alien abduction.

And, I was home, sick, when the NEED arrived.

I ask A LOT of my man.  But I truly try to not ask him to purchase things that will A) cause him extreme grief, and #2, make him use words like "freshness", "absorbency" or "with wings".  Except for that one time I texted him that I needed a douche in honey and vinegar, with the hopes that he would ask for help. I then had to clarify that is was the "sweet and sour" flavor.  That's when he realized I was fucking with him. But I digress.

But the other day, I needed his help.  So I sent him to the regular store, for the regular yellow and blue box.  The word, "applicator" came into play.  It was unavoidable.  I promise I did not giggle.  Or relish.  Or say a single, "muah ah ah".

Too much.

And all went well.

The next time we were at TJ's, I scanned, looking for my unbleached friends.  Nada. Nothing.

So I did what a good consumer should:  I went to the website.

**An aside---TJ's has their own private label-----AND, all the items under this label are GMO FREE!  See?  Educational shit going on. You're welcome.

I found their form for questions or concerns.  I filled it out, thusly:
What's up?  TJ's was an amazing source for unbleached (and organic, I think?) tampons.  I have not seen them in some time.  And, *gasp* I almost sent my husband there for them.  I can only imagine his horror upon finding the shelf empty, then having to actually speak the word, "TAMPON" in a public place.  Have you no shame?

Where they at?

They responded quickly, but with a very dry (comparatively) stock answer:
 Dear Mrs. Walker,

Thanks for contacting us. We have discontinued the Organic Essentials Tampons in our stores due to slow sales. Because our stores have such limited space, if an item does not meet a minimum sales volume, we will discontinue it in order to bring in something we think will sell better. I will pass your comments on to our buyers for consideration. From time to time, if there is enough outcry to bring back a discontinued item and we are able to do so, we will give it another run.



Am I the only passionate menstruater (Blogger says "menstruater" isn't a about "Menstruator"?) out there?  I KNOW this isn't the case, judging by the numerous Moon Cup message boards, and even groups that want to demystify menstruation.  Seriously?  "Taking back" menstruation is not about feminism.  Or if it is, I'm doing feminism wrong.  Which is apparently going to be okay for me.  Because eeew.

I don't sit in a meadow, reading poetry by Emily Bronte, in philosophical wonderment while awaiting my period.  Period.   I don't even revel in the womanly wonder of the ability to produce a child (albeit with some help).  And I have never ever felt compelled to wax poetic about cramping, flow, or other facets of the uterine expulsion.  I do, however, enjoy the joke about not fucking with something that can bleed for seven days and REMAIN ALIVE.

Accepting a period as shit you have to go through to enjoy the finer benefits of a vagina, and glorifying the praises of reusable washable menstrual pads are NOT two sides of the same coin. NOT EVEN CLOSE.

Honestly, all I want is pretty much a happy little device that prevents me from looking like a zombie is attacking me from the inside out.  And if that device also does not leach chemicals into me, all the better.  Oh, and price point? Let's get that to a manageable level.

Trader Joe's---please bring back the tampons.  I will stock up.  I will use yours, exclusively.   Hell, I will even do a free bloggy review for you, and my FIFTY-ONE  readers!!!  Most of them have vaginas, too, so there's that.

See?  Public Service.  Or, Pubic Service.


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