A geek, a laptop, and some spare time.

Posts tagged ‘Toilet’

Restroom Rebels and Vagisil Vagaries

Multitasking: You're doing it wrong.

Multitasking: You’re doing it wrong.

Have you ever noticed the unspoken covenant that we as a society have about using the restroom? Adults, normal in almost every way imaginable, will pretend not to notice when someone they’re with goes into a private room and empties their bowels. We’ve agreed to develop a  blind spot in our collective consciousness when it comes to this event.

Now there are no doubt perfectly sound reasons for this. I’m sure our mental self-image as enlightened, intelligent souls doesn’t mesh well with the base act of evacuating yesterday’s Taco Bell. And given those two incompatible mental images, we just junk the one that is less pleasing.  But for me, understanding the underlying rationale doesn’t strip away any of the wonder.

We’re all pretending that nobody poops.

Given that, I really have a tough time understanding people who talk on their cell phone while using the restroom. They’re breaking the social contract by mixing outside world stuff with the Porcelain Chamber of Secrets.  You have to ask yourself, do they really believe that the person on the other end of the line doesn’t know what’s going on? Or are they just restroom rebels  who do not care?

These folks irk me, which is why I normally consider it my sacred duty to power-flush the toilet five or six times in a row when I hear someone on the phone. (Oh sure, it’s crude and shallow, but so is most everything else to do with a restroom.) But once in awhile  what you overhear makes the entire invasion of that sacred realm worthwhile:

Honey, I swear to God, I didn’t move it. I mean, why on Earth would I take your Vagisil? Maybe your mother took it when she was cleaning.

I heard that lovely bit while I was washing my hands. It left me with a lot of questions, but it’s probably for the best that I didn’t get any of them answered. After all, there are only so many taboos one can break in a public restroom before the whole thing gets weird.

My Precious…

gollum-one-ring

Someone else who understands the
value of a really important ring.

Do you ever wonder how you’d handle an extreme situation? Will you panic? Will you stay cool, calm and collected? Will you be the hero, or just another schmuck? Will you, in fact, stick your hand into a bowl of your own urine to retrieve your wedding ring?

My wedding ring has always been a little loose. In fact, my first full day being married I lost it for twenty minutes when it flew off my hand while I was shampooing my hair. (After more than one complete panic attack, I found it lodged in the folds of my towel.) Generally speaking, this isn’t really an issue. But if I get cold, then my ring gets really loose. Then it feels like I’m trying to keep a hula-hoop on my hand.

It was a bit chilly recently, and I was in the bathroom making a quick pit stop. When I heard the clink-sploosh sound mid-stream, I knew what had happened without even looking. My ring had pulled a Houdini and escaped my finger for decidedly more damp and urine-rich environments.

Now I like to think myself a smooth and worldly character, up to any challenge. But when faced with my ring at the bottom of a soiled toilet bowl, all I could think was, “That’s not good.”

Apparently my inner-monologue is the king of the understatement.

To my ever-diminishing credit, I never once considered not retrieving the ring. (Though I may have had a fleeting thought of trying to hold the ring in place with a stick while flushing the toilet clean repeatedly.)

When you sit back and Monday morning quarterback the situation, you can come up with hundreds of solutions that don’t involve sticking your hand into that self-made quagmire of ick. But in the moment, I was convinced that if I so much as took a step away from the toilet, my ring would slide out of site and then I’d really be up a creek without a plunger.

So, like a mindless Gollum leaping after his precious, I took a deep breath and plunged wrist deep into the toilet. Mentally, I was splitting my time between reminding myself that human urine is sterile and being thankful that I hadn’t had to take a dump. And while it seemed an eternity, I had my ring back in my grasp in an agonizing 3 or 4 seconds.

What followed was a flush, followed by about 5 minutes of the most intense hand washing that a sink has ever seen. 15 gallons of hot water and half a bottle of hand soap later, my ring was back in place on my finger.

I only tell you this in case you happen upon me in a public restroom, hands balled tightly into fists and held to the sky whilst I urinate. No need to be concerned that I’m urinating angry, or that I’m experiencing some sort of seizure.

Nope, just playing it safe. Some of those public restrooms can get mighty cold.

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