It was a random Thursday night when I was a senior in college. I had planned to do a little studying for my 8:00 a.m. class the next day and try to go to bed early. I was holding a 3.94 overall GPA, and I had a 4.00 GPA in my major, Political Science.
I was an above-average student, and my friends always told me that it must be so boring to be me. I am always studying, always blabbering about politics, leaving newspapers all over our room. I never did anything fun. NOTHING ever happened to me.
My roommate was planning a little party. That night some friends came in from her rural hometown and brought numerous bottles of whiskey and gin. Drinking to excess was not a thing I was known for, but at this point I had let my guard down a bit and decided to let loose and have some fun.
Her friends were hysterical. My face hurt from laughing so much, and the haze of the alcohol was taking over my brain. One thing led to another, and we ended up staying up until 3:00 a.m. We drank all of the booze and fell asleep on the floor.
Being the devoted student that I was, I decided just to sleep a bit and go to my early class. I woke up at 7:45, and on a good day my class was a 10-minute dash across campus. I had no time to dress or comb my hair.
I was in a fog; I wasn't thinking about my clothes, or how I looked. I ran to my class and got there just as it was starting. I was swelling with pride thinking, I can balance college fun and drinking with my studies. Yes, I am THAT awesome!
As the class wore on, I realized that sometime during the previous night's debauchery, I had changed my clothes. To my horror, I also realized I was not wearing any underwear. I was wearing a miniskirt, a T-shirt, and flip flops. My shirt was dirty.
I was a hot mess. Not a regular hot mess, but a sweaty, smelly no-bra-wearing blob.
It was also at that moment I realized I was still on my period. Thus began the conversation in my head about whether or not I had changed my tampon. I could NOT remember if the tampon was still in there, or if I took it out when I was drunk. I had no clue when I might have done it, and I was worried something was showing.
I sat in my chair fidgeting throughout most of the class. Where was it? Was it still in there? Am I bleeding all over everything? I tried squirming around in my chair to feel if the string was hanging down, but I could not tell. I had run to class…did I drip blood along the way? Were there bloodstains on the back of my skirt?? I was freaking out.
It was May, and pollen was floating everywhere. I was a bit allergic. I had been holding back sneezes, trying to be as quiet and unobtrusive as possible.
The professor dismissed the class and asked me and two other students to stop by his desk on the way out. The three of us had been working on a project, and he wanted to give us some feedback. This project was 40 percent of our final grade.
As he was talking, he was going on about our analysis of President Nixon. The Professor said we hit the mark with our work. It was at that very second I realized I was going to sneeze. I could not hold it ...I had to let it fly.
From then on, it seems like everything happened in slow motion. The tampon question was answered. I sneezed so hard the tampon flew out of me at warp speed. It didn’t just plop out…it flew!
And that red and white ball of blood and cotton landed right on my professor's shiny brown loafer. String and all.
I had just shot a bloody, smelly bomb at one of the most revered men on campus. My two friends were shocked. They had been talking, but now all was silent. No one laughed, and it took a few seconds for them to realize what had just blasted out from under my skirt.
The silence lasted for an eternity. I could hear the clock ticking on the wall. I could hear myself breathing. I could feel myself turning red from head to toe.
Finally, the Professor broke the silence and said, "Are you gonna get that"?
I quickly sprang into action, grabbing tissues from his desk and scooping up the bloody missile. The missile I had shot at him. The unfriendliest of fire.
I went straight to the Bursar's office and dropped the class. The story got around campus, and some guys from the jock frat started calling me “Flinger.”
When I went to a couple of college reunions, the story became hot again. I was not known for graduating with high honors and getting a nice Washington DC internship in a US Senator’s office after graduation. I was known for sneezing and shooting a bloody tampon out of my girlie parts.
While I did wear pants and pads to the reunions, from that day on, I did not wear a tampon ever again.