Yesterday Mary Numair, a 29-year-old employee at Purrington's Cat Cafe, who had enough of the group of anti-choice protesters amassed on Northeast Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in front of Planned Parenthood, finally came up with a way to get them to leave.
Numair created a sign from cardboard that read: "Dear P.P. Thanks for helping me with my yeast infections!"
Then she set up in the middle of the protesters and started chanting, "Yeast infection! Yeast infection!"
She added in a few high kicks for effect.
Over the phone, Numair told us Purrington's was very supportive of her actions: "My bosses let me clock off early so I could run out there and join the protest."
"The protesters kept moving their children away from my yeasty cries," she told BuzzFeed, "so I kept moving closer."
Numair told Slate she decided to protest because Planned Parenthood was where she went pre-Obamacare for birth control and prescription yeast infection medication.
"They do so much beyond abortions. I'm very much pro-choice, but if you want to take it beyond pro-choice and pro-life, there are…all these other things that are uncomfortable to talk about and [get treated if] you don't want to wait two weeks to see your primary doctor or you don't have health insurance."
Ultimately, Numair broke up the protest with her yeast infection-based cheers. Apparently, the talk of yeast infections was too much for the children present, though fetuses and abortions were not.
Numair's Twitter feed has blown up since the her protest went viral.
"Yesterday, I had 500 followers, and my best tweet had like 30 favorites," she said.
As of now, she has almost 900 followers, and her original tweet with a picture of her sign has 1,711 retweets and 3,878 favorites. She's pretty surprised at the response, saying this kind of thing is something she often does. This time is different…maybe because, as she told us: "People seem to be really excited to talk about yeast infections."
Jimmy Radosta, spokesman for Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette, told us yesterday's protest was part of 40 Days for Life, an anti-abortion protest that occurs twice a year, targeting health centers in Portland, Eugene and Salem and the center in Milwaukie-Oak Grove, which just opened in September.
"These protests are designed to intimidate the many patients who seek basic health care services from Planned Parenthood, including lifesaving cancer screenings, testing for HIV, treatment for STDs, family planning and birth control."
When we asked Numair what protests she has planned for the future, she said she hopes to build giant wooden labia for her next protest of the protesters. The idea is gaining popularity on Twitter: "A lot of people have been reaching out and saying, 'I'm a woodworker,' and 'Here's 50 bucks.'"