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Blurbs from a Bleeder: Flirting in the tampon aisle

There are several places one wouldn’t normally want to get hit on: funeral, family reunion, gynecologist’s office. But when it comes to the places people report being most frequently macked on, a recent survey shows that the gym and grocery store are at the top of the list.

For those whose only interaction with others at the gym thus far has been a brusque, “Hey, you didn’t wipe down that machine,” you should know that the gym can be like sex between two people, minus the penetration.

To explain: In addition to admiring a potential mate’s physique, the gym gives you the rarity of seeing what a person looks like in orgasm-mode before you ask them out for coffee (or if you’re really ballsy, Denny’s). A vigorous workout can be like sex without the nurse outfits and reacharounds, putting your body in a flushed and sweaty state. During workouts people pant, moan, and grunt their way to tighter assets, giving others a glimpse of their potential bedroom persona.

That guy that cut in front of someone else to grab the heavy dumbbells, only to stare at himself admiringly in the mirror between each bicep curl? Not gonna be a giver in the sack. And the girl on mile 12 of her treadmill spree, pushing herself like a Wheaties-endorsed triathlete? She’ll rock your world all night long.

And then there’s the grocery store. Like the gym, it provides a quick glimpse into the world of your potential date. You need only to peruse the contents of that hottie’s cart to learn whether you want to climb onboard that ride. A guy once came up to me pushing a cart stuffed with beer, condoms, and a singular eggplant. He seemed surprised that I wasn’t receptive to his opening line (“Sup.”). But despite my rejection of his advances, the items in his grocery cart assured me that he was still going to make the most out of the evening.

Perhaps the reason the grocery store is a popular pickup locale has to do with the bounty of conversation starters an Albertsons provides. “You like fuji apples, too? No way!” “Can you help me reach this Spam on the top shelf?” “Monistat, huh? Well, we all have a little extra drainage sometimes, I guess.”

My friend shared the strangest place he’d ever been hit on, and though unusual, I didn’t find it eyebrow-raising. “A guy hit on me at a cineplex, during the movie,” he said. When I asked why he was telling me this with such shock, he added, “It was during a rape scene.” I tried to imagine watching The Accused, shaking my head at the brutality being inflicted on Jodi Foster, and then feeling a tap on my shoulder. “I’d be more gentle,” came a whisper from behind. So I’m siding with my buddy on this one. Creepy.

Courtney Bee's articles on sex and relationships have appeared in Hustler, Playgirl, and numerous adult books. On ellorascave.com she's the bestselling author of Athima, an erotic novella, and a contributor to the new X-rated anthology Flavors of Ecstasy III. She's also a top-ranked sex columnist on examiner.com, where she betrays her prim Catholic upbringing on a daily basis.