The Black Gloves Did Me In

The worst invention are black latex disposable Gloves. Maybe not the worst invention, but the worst choice to have to wear in the 90° sun on pavement. I was volunteering to pass out boxes of food at the Iglesia Presbiteriana Emanuel church with other members from my church. The job I signed up for was to direct traffic out of the parking lot, but my job got switched to directing traffic on the Intake side. I had to hand out some flyers to each car and thus needed to wear gloves.

But let me back up. The job started with my parking four blocks away because when I arrived at the church on Roxboro road the line of cars waiting to get boxes of food already was two hundred cars long 45 minutes in advance. I found a place on a side street and donned my mask and straw hat and walked to the church. Since I was early I packed some food boxes in the cool basement of the church.

Each box had a bag of apple, a bag of pears, six onions, four sweet potatoes, four yellow squash, some cucumbers, a cantaloupe, a box of black berries and a grocery bag of other food that included rice, beans, crackers and things I could not see since they were pre-bagged. The food had mostly come from the Food Bank, but the rice and beans had come from members of my church who had Re-bagged them into family sized servings.

Packing boxes with black gloves on was not an issue since the basement of the church is air conditioned. Once it was time to go direct traffic and hand out flyers I put on an orange safety vest over my white shirt and pants. The first hour was easy. I was paired with Alex Dunk who is a superior teenager. Sometime after the first hour mark I noticed my hands were roasting inside my black gloves. I had purposely worn lose fitting, all white to reflect the 2:00 in the afternoon heat.

The people coming through the drive up line were so thankful and nice. I wonder how long some of them had been sitting in their cars waiting for the distribution to start?

As the line of cars passed the two hundred and twenty mark I started to feel like I was going to be sick. My hands had heated up so much. I told Alex I was leaving the line and he handled the last of the cars. I had to go sit in the shade and I took off the black gloves and a quarter cup of water spilled out of each glove.

My pastor Alex brought me a cold bottle of water and I sipped it and talked to him while I recovered. As the last car looking for food came through the line I had recovered enough to walk the four blocks back to my car. I took off my mask and sanitized my hands. I think that if I had white gloves on I could have made my whole shift. Next time I volunteer to do this job I will bring my own gloves from home.

2 Comments on “The Black Gloves Did Me In”

  1. Laura Kagan says:

    My daughter and I are helping with food distribution also. We are both allergic to latex so we ordered nitrile gloves from Target. They are available online in boxes or 30 or more. They are light blue so maybe not quite as warm as the black latex ones.

  2. Carol Walker says:

    Thank you for directing the traffic at Iglesias. You are a braver woman than me. Myself, Jack, Betsy Mangum,Tali Benignus and a neighbor are bagging 200 pounds of beans and rice each week. It is very gratifying. Good to be helping in some small way.

    Carol Walker🎶🌈🎶

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