It’s October and, of course, that means rain. It also means it’s time to pull out my stylish H&M automatic umbrella. For $16, it’s pretty nice. Not only does it shrink down to a convenient, pocketable size, it’s black, and I don’t have to tell you, anything black is cool. A button on the handle pops the umbrella open in less than a second. Push the button again and the umbrella retracts. Well, it retracts most of the way. You still need to push the damn thing back into the handle, which can take some effort. Nevertheless, it’s a nice umbrella and it does a good job. I have just one minor complaint: the stupid umbrella condom.
Yes, like most compact umbrellas, my H&M model comes with a nylon sleeve to store it in. The only problem with this is, it’s a pain in the ass to wrap up the umbrella tight enough to get it back into the stupid sleeve, and it’s next to impossible to do this without looking like I’m giving a sex-ed demonstration to a bunch of giggling 5th graders.
What exactly is this stupid sheathe supposed to be protecting my umbrella from anyway? Water? Dust? STDs? It makes no sense. The umbrella sleeve is made of the same material as the umbrella itself, which means if you’re in a hurry and grab the umbrella without looking, you might find yourself ejecting a fully-sheathed umbrella up over your head. It won’t expand to shield you from the rain. It’ll just stay up there, wound up tight, calling attention to how stupid you are.
There’s really no cool way to recover from such a mistake. You could curse the umbrella (“What the? This stupid piece of shit!”). But no one’s going to buy that. You could quickly lower the umbrella down and pretend it’s some kind of weird looking cane. Or you could grab the center of it and spin it around like you’re a master of the martial arts.
For the record, none of these ideas will work. I’ve tried them all. In fact, the last time I tried the martial-arts idea, a gang of 7-year-olds beat the living shit out of me. Fortunately, I was rescued by a troupe of Girl Scouts who just happened to be passing by. When I asked how I could repay them, they said I should purchase the rest of their Girl Scout cookies. Well, $350 later, I’m finally home and safe—with a motherfucking year’s supply of Do-Si-Dos®. The Umbrella Condom sucks.