Wednesday, November 09, 2011

a brown-letter day

The horror... the horror...
--Marlon Brando's Colonel Walter E. Kurtz, "Apocalypse Now"

Today, for the very first time in my several months as an employee at YB, I took a shit while at work. Long and long have I tried not to be that guy-- the guy who stinks up the bathroom for all the people who come after. To that end, I've refused to eat anything before class, because I know my bowels only too well: a few bites of food will trigger the end stages of peristalsis, even when the colon seems empty.

Folks: the colon is never empty.

Our tutoring center is essentially a large, carpeted, rectangular room, walled off with wide-open cubicles that hold four: a tutor plus three students, all seated at rounded, L-shaped tables. Toward the back of that room are a separate "private" room for students taking diagnostic tests, a storage/supply room, and the restroom. Everything is constructed of thin, painted-over drywall-- the sort of material that stuntmen dive through for fun. Even though my own cubicle is about twenty feet away from the restroom, I can clearly hear the flushing. The soft vibration of the restroom's fan is also barely audible, a friendly hum in the midst of our studiousness. Normally, I don't care when students or colleagues visit the loo; in most cases, people are merely going there to pee, and only occasionally will some of the students rush to the bathroom for More Serious Reasons.

Today, I suppose, was my turn. If you play Russian roulette long enough, the cylinder eventually stops at the chambered round, and you're fucked. That's karma, and my karma had come for me. I have no clue why things went so badly today; I had actually pooped twice before I'd left for work. No matter: the gastric hellbroth building up in my guts rapidly took on the heft and gravity of a More Serious Reason. I didn't rush to the can as some of our elementary schoolers might have, but I did make my way to the toilet with cold sweat beading on my brow and a grim sense of purpose in my heart. It was very much like a walk to the gallows. Emotions swirled in my mind as the awful moment drew near: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and finally acceptance. I knew it was too late to turn back: my ass has a mind of its own, and when it's convinced that Shitting Time is imminent, it readies itself to unload.* I locked the restroom door and faced my destiny.

Our restroom's toilet has one of those flimsy plastic seats on it, the kind that tends to groan under my weight. I settled my bulk onto the seat and began the most delicate maneuver of all: shitting without farting. Luckily, I'm a master at this, so I was able to let a good bit of crap slip quietly out before I hit my first major bubble. The idea, of course, is to minimize sound by spreading the ass cheeks wide enough to prevent flappage. This doesn't guarantee absolute silence, though: a puckered anus can still yell. (Or, more frighteningly, whistle. Yes, that's happened to me before.) But I was in control; I deposited my load with only one quiet, wayward poot to my name, and that happened while the sink's faucet was turned wide open (a tactic used by another staffer who shall remain nameless). I wiped, flushed, checked the toilet bowl for residual log-parts and itinerant hairs, vainly sprayed some air freshener around the room, then made my exit.

Within five minutes, a female student, obviously unaware of what had just transpired, crossed my line of vision on her way to the restroom. I mentally cringed as I imagined the olfactory surprise awaiting her.

Meanwhile, I have to live with the fact that I have now broken my oath never to poop while at work. As Darth Vader said, "This will be a day long remembered."

*The absolute worst is when, while driving along a freeway, you think you're finally going to be able to take that much-needed shit, but then you realize that you just missed the rest stop and the next one isn't for another 90 fucking miles. I don't know about you, but when my ass is cheated out of an opportunity to shit, it signals the colon that it's time for la Revolución! And my colon obeys: it starts writhing like a python in a bear trap. Indiana Jones would scream like a little bitch if he ever saw my large intestine in that agitated state.



hahnak said...

classic kevin kim here.

we all have our rough days. heres hoping that the rest of your week goes more smoothly!

Elisson said...

Ahhh... the Big Hominid in his True Element.

I share your pain.

Recently, as I rode the rails between the Northeast and Atlanta, I had the delightful experience of having to drop a deuce while on the train. Yes; a Choo-Choo Doo-Doo.

I do not recommend doing this. But when you're riding for 16-18 hours or so, eventually the Dire Necessity will come upon you.

Brilliant post. Thanks ever so much for sharing.

Charles said...

Recent reviews of this post:

"Beautifully written. Brought a tear to my eye."

"It was better than CATS!"

"I laughed. I cried. I farted. All at the same time."

Kevin Kim said...

Thank you. I sniff you all.