March into the archives : The Great Condom Controversy

The following piece was written as a satirical article for an English class in 1991. It was published in the Year 12 Lake Tugggeranong College graduating class booklet that year.

Condoms have become an interesting part of teenage life and, from their humble beginnings, they have now taken on a widespread marketing and novelty appeal. However, the accessibility of condoms retains a humorous angle and one wonders if your typical French teenager a couple of centuries ago had the same blushes buying a sheep's intestines as a teenybopper now faces buying a protective prophylactic at the local chemist.

The embarrassment factor would appear to deter many from safe sex practices and who knows how many people avoiding a red face ended up with a case of the fungal jock strap itch or worse. Imagine going to your local mini-mart to buy your condoms with the convenience of local retailer and at a bargain price. You collect the product and bury it in your basket under a pack of crunchy carcinogenic cheese-flavoured crackers and head over to the check-out, hoping to beat the early morning pensioner rush.

The checkout operator brushes the last item across the laser scanner and your red face feels ready to subside when she hits the bell and, with her arm (still holding the prophylactic product) to the air, cries: "PRICE CHECK ON SUPER SLIPPERY STUDDED SENSUAL ENJOYMENT FOR A BUDGET PRICE, FRANK!!!"
She may as well as said "THIS KID HERE THINKS HE IS GOING TO GET LUCKY TONIGHT, FRANK!!!" to the pickled pensioner parade behind you and probably those in the delicatessen next door as well.

Maybe the shame would be eased by a sucessful marketing stategy of these products. We have already seen the introduction of coloured, edible and glow-in-the-dark condoms and are ready for celebrity endorsement advertisements on television where a bronzed he-man could assure the viewer: "When I wear a studded super stud, the studs are on the inside."

I query the one-size-fits-all approach to condoms and so do Americans, who recently released the new MAGNUM size to flatter those men who drive V8 cars. Perhaps sizes could be listed as Big, Huge and Liar with a marketing slogan not unlike Levi's jeans introduced. "Do you fit The Legend?"

Condoms have caused debate recently with the sensible suggestion of introducing a vending machine in our college toilets. The moral minority, who present as a conscience for society with members including Fred Nile and Jiminy Cricket, have argued that giving teenagers such easy access to polychromatic prophylactic protection with encourage sexual activity and a polydipsia for penetrational promiscuity.

The suggestion is that the placement of a dispensing machine would encourage innocent celibate Christian god-fearing children in the same manner as waving a red flag in front of a bull (or maybe placing an Asian boy in front of Jeffery Dahmer).

What moral guardians don't seem to realise is that these raunchy rubber roll-ons protect the user (or receiver) from god's wrath upon sleazy sex screw-arounds and venereal diseases.

I hope to see the day when condomology is an art form similar to balloon-bending or glass-blowing and wish for a time when condoms aren't required to reduce the spread of AIDS. Hopefully they will be accepted and not the brunt of English satirical pieces.