the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

I Am Not a Medicine Cabinet Snoop


I was going through my usual Sunday blog reading, which has pretty much replaced my former reading of the New York Times Sunday Magazine, and one of the main reasons my IQ has been falling steadily, when I came across this interesting meme on Three Boys, One Mommy!, which happens to be the least-likely named blog for anything I could imagine myself reading six months ago. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not going to really DO this meme. I will ignore it, much like I do most memes; it just intrigued me. In this new meme, you are supposed to take a photo of the inside your medicine cabinet, because as the blogger herself writes, “Open door or not, I always snoop in medicine cabinets and I fully expect my guests to peek.”

Very interesting. I’m a very nosy guy, and I love to snoop around people’s private stuff. If I am in your home, I will take note of your furniture, your books, and your preferred brands of breakfast cereal. I love to look into the bedrooms of other people. Is it overly-neat? Is it romantic? What does this room tell me about the sexual perversities of this person or this couple? Are any of the walls painted red? When I visit your home, my mind will be all over the place, wondering about your interior life and trying to know the “real” you? I know you try to cheat, and manipulate your guest by displaying a copy of “Architectural Digest” on the coffee table, but what magazines do you have in the bathroom? That tells me what you REALLY read. Hmmm… Reader’s Digest, with a bookmark at “America’s Favorite Unfunny and G-rated Jokes!” That is the real you.

But there is one part of your secretive life that is safe from my prying — your medicine cabinet. I have NEVER looked into anyone’s medicine cabinet? Honestly. Why would I want to? Assuming that Three Boys, One Mommy is not a drug addict, and that her interest in medicine cabinets is the norm, WHY do people look into medicine cabinets? I cannot come up with a good reason. Is it a girly thing, so you can see what cosmetic brands are used? Are you searching for condoms? Do you want to make sure I use deodorant? Are you one of the Walmart Mommybloggers doing marketing research as part of your job? Are you worried that the host might be a psychopath and before you eat their roast beef dinner that they cooked, you are double-checking that they aren’t on some serious type of drug for mental illness?

As usual, I come late to the latest trend, much like I did with the iphone. When you come to my home, are you LOOKING into my medicine cabinet? What are you looking for? Are you judging me on my brand of razor blades? I’m not even sure what is in my medicine cabinet. I need to go look after I write this up. What does that say about me? I’m just telling you — next time I am in your home, I am taking a photo of the inside of your medicine cabinet with my iphone and sending it to Facebook.


  1. mommyknows

    I don’t look. I once heard about someone putting a whole pile of marble in the medicine cabinet to catch snoopers at a party. I so don’t want to be humiliated in public.

  2. Kathy

    I don’t look in medicine cabinets either. I’m more likely to look at someone’s bookshelves or CD collection. (Which is moot, since everyone has a account and already know what’s on your iPod — or your dreaded “Friday shuffle.” ) than peer into someone’s medicine cabinet.

  3. tena

    I’m the same way- very observant and nosey, but it never crosses my mind to do this. Why? I hear everyone else does it.

  4. natalie

    i have looked in medicine cabinets before but only when i am looking for something. if i happen to have headache i might look to see if you have tylenol. i might. i would never look just to look though. i will notice furniture, books, pictures, and the like, and i’m sure that somewhere in me i will come to a conclusion based on what i see. i don’t know what i do with that conclusion though. i have no idea. next time i go some place new i’ll have to assess myself.

  5. Lucy

    My medicine cabinet contains a framed funny note to snoopers. I’ve heard giggles.

  6. Angela @ Lost In Splendor

    I’m a medicine cabinet snooper. I don’t care about medications, but I do love knowing what sorts of face products and shaving products other people use. It’s just so interesting to me!

    I even find that photo so interesting. On my part it’s never a judgment thing.I’m just interested!

  7. CharmingBitch

    I think she (the Meme blogger) came up with a super original way to support her Sephora giveaway but in all seriousness, I would never look in anyone’s medicine cabinet. It’s like opening drawers, just way too personal. Also, I wouldn’t want anyone looking in mine, heh.

  8. sassy

    Isn’t looking in medicine cabinets kind of like going to the toilet while you’re on the phone? (Everyone does it, few will admit it.)

  9. joy

    so when do you want to come snoop – i’m up for it!

  10. Neil

    Oh, one more thing. I LOVE to look inside people’s fridges… that tells you more than anything.

    I guess a medicine cabinet could tell you if that person flosses.

  11. Neil

    And looking into underwear drawers would be fun, too. Not that I would do it in your house. But I would think about it at least.

  12. Annie

    Neil, I do not snoop into people’s medicine cabinets, but I want to. I once read that you can know everything about a person by what is in their cabinets, go look in yours with that in mind and I think you will finally understand.

  13. sassy

    Neil, maybe I just keep floss in my medicine cabinet to make you think I floss, knowing that you’ll look into it…

  14. Nance

    I never understood this, either. What is so interesting about it? If anyone wants to look in mine, they’re more than welcome to. Dental floss, toothpaste, contact solution, Neosporin, thermometer, contacts…laxative. There. Now the entire INTERWEBS have looked. Geeze. Sickos.

  15. headbang8


    Your medicine cabinet, proportionately, seems to contain rather a lot of, well, medicine.

    For Americans, this generally has more to do with how rich they are, than how sick they are. You must have excellent insurance.

    And c’mon, no after shave? You don’t even need to stretch to men’s fragrance…a little Old Spice or Paco Rabanne would do.

    If I can squeeze it in before the deadline, I might enter 3B1M’s contest. As two gay men, Master Right and I will ace it, for sure.

  16. Neil

    Here is my medicine cabinet right now.

    Medicine cabinet

  17. 3boys1mommy

    It’s not a trend is it? Isn’t it something Mr. Furly would do?

    Ironically, I’ve hardly ever come across medicine in a medicine cabinet. It’s not a safe place to keep them if you have children in your home. That said, I could care less about your medications. It’s the personal hygiene products that interest me. I’m not judging you on the brand of razors, or night cream you use, just curious to see what you use.

    The most curious things I have come across,

    a box of baking soda(people use that to brush their teeth!?!)

    – Organic Toothpaste? Didn’t know it existed.

    … and yes I have found condoms. Strikes me as an odd and out of the way place to store them… unless you’re having sex in the bathroom…EWW!

    Wow! That’s a lot of floss Neil, Thanks for indulging me…. I think you just became my blog crush of the day 😉

  18. AnnieH(the other Annie)

    I’m a “Don’t ask, don’t tell, don’t care” kind of gal. There are many, many things about human beings that should be kept enclosed and out of view. I extend that philosophy to their personal hygiene habits.

  19. kenju

    I have done much to be ashamed of, but I have never looked in anyone’s medicine cabinet. Never. It never occurs to me to do so.

  20. Twenty Four At Heart

    I’ve never had any interest in looking thru anyone’s medicine cabinet. HOWEVER, if I did look, I’d be wanting to know what size condoms you wear. Teeny tiny? Large? Extra, extra large?

  21. Postmodern Sass

    I’m with you, Neil. I’d heard that people do that, and I always wondered why. I couldn’t care less what kind of pain relievers people use. Besides, medicine cabinets are icky. I never go into them unless I absolutely have to, not even my own. I always snoop through people’s books and music collection, though I don’t know if you can rightly call it snooping when it’s being done out in the open.

  22. *pixie*

    Not a medicine cabinet looker and I think it’s weird that people do. Even weirder, are the one’s that look behind your shower curtain. What’s up with that?

  23. mommymae

    i never look in medicine cabinets. i guess i don’t care what people have in them. and i imagine if they do take xanax, lithium, or viagra, they’ll keep it somewhere else.

  24. Caffeinatrix

    I’m not all that interested in people’s medicine cabinets and I would only open one if I was actually in need of something like, I dunno, good, I mean dental floss. Yeah, if I needed to floss… But seriously, the times I *have* looked in someone’s medicine cabinet, it’s always been really boring anyway.

  25. Long Story Longer

    Great pic, Neil. I was wondering. Also, my bedroom is spotless. Pristine.


  26. Ash

    I always look! Thus, mine holds no secrets as to who I really am 🙂

  27. better safe than sorry

    i don’t look and you obviously keep what you use on a daily basis on display somewhere else. but i also don’t snoop around someone’s home, i would never dream of sneaking a peak into someone’s bedroom unless i was being shown around someone’s home. i never pay attention to what books on the bookshelves, i’d be more apt to ask them what they are reading or just read and is it any good, maybe something i should read and they might pass it on to me. but i do think it’s kind of a clever meme, one i haven’t seen before. i’ve done the inside of my fridge one, now that will tell you alot about someone.

  28. Danny

    I can honestly say that I’ve never looked into someone’s medicine cabinet. I just don’t want to know. Not that I’m not a snoop–I’d be far more interested in the contents of their refrigerator and I’d definitely look through photo albums.

  29. kimberlee

    my guess would be the person is just plain fucking nosy. simple.

  30. Annie

    I see your point, Neil, there is not much in your cabinet at all,very boring, not much to learn there, except that you floss, which is good.

  31. Trish/Astrogirl426

    Some random thoughts I had while reading your post and the followup comments:

    1. Women do not keep cosmetics in the medicine cabinet. Usually we have too much to fit in there, and it’s difficult to see it all in one fell swoop on those little shelves. I keep mine in a storage box on the cabinets in the bathroom. Snoop all you want, just don’t steal my Sephora lipstick.

    2. Most people I know have small kids, ergo they don’t leave their meds in the cabinet. Personally, we keep ours in a small combination-lock safe in the upper cabinet. No, I’m not kidding. But if you ask, I’ll be glad to tell you what meds I’m taking 🙂

    3. Most people I know also don’t keep their condoms in the bathroom (see #2 above for the reason why). Also, it’s just way more convenient to keep them in the dresser drawer, or the nightstand.

    4. My underwear drawer is totally where I keep the “good stuff”, ifyouknowwhatimeanandithinkyoudo.

  32. Betsey

    I am so not a medicine cabinet peeker and I don’t even have a medicine cabinet. I have cabinets all over my house with things stuck in them.

    Mostly just to trick jerks who look in medicine cabinets.

  33. Evan

    Very interesting. Bathrooms are a hotbed of weird psychological behavior since they are the place where we are most alone, most ourselves and where we imagine others are most themselves too. Medicine cabinets are sort of like the bathroom of the bathroom, the hidden space behind the mirror of self-reflection. There is a twist to the assumption that we are compelled to find the dark secrets of others. Another possibility is that we are actually afraid that there are no dark secrets, just more of the same things we see on the surface, no matter how deep we pry, a hall of mirrors.

    • Neil

      Hmmm… I’m not sure I think bathrooms are where we are most ourselves. Most of are us are pretty boring in the bathroom. That’s why we read magazines there…

  34. Annika

    I only ever look in medicine cabinets if I am looking for something – ibuprofen or toothpaste, for example. It just never even occurs to me to look otherwise.

  35. Katee

    I second Annika’s comment. I only look if I am looking for something! Asprin perhaps, or something of the like. Otherwise, it would never occur to me to look.

  36. leah

    that last sentence made me giggle.

    i’m not a medicine cabinet looker-inner either. i have the “desire” to but cannot bring myself to do it. this may have something to do with the fact that i have suspected i am on live camera 24/7 and there are hidden cameras everywhere.

    i think i can blame santa and the catholic church for that neurotic problem.

  37. Michael

    People snoop inside medicine cabinets to see what Rx drugs they’re taking.Sometimes to help themselves to your meds. I found a stat that 39% of people look inside their host’ med cabinet. Check out my website to secure the Rx drugs in the home from the teens. But also used for the privacy factor like if someone was on anti-depressants. You might not want that public knowledge.Thanks

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  39. talon controls

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