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Charlie Hatton
Brookline, MA

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Howdy, friendly reading person!
I'm on a bit of a hiatus right now, but only to work on other projects -- one incredibly exciting example being the newly-released kids' science book series Things That Make You Go Yuck!
If you're a science and/or silliness fan, give it a gander! See you soon!

Don’t They ‘Play-Test’ These Damned Things, For Chrissakes?

I just used the bathroom here at the office.

Now, I tell you this not to gross you out — I’m not gonna describe the results, or wax poetic about the appearance of what came out of me, or tell you that I sweated and cried and made jungle monkey noises during the process of expelling it.

(All of which may or may not be true. But I’m not gonna tell you that, either. You don’t wanna know, really.)

No, I bring up my little romp in the rest room simply to tell you how sucky the toilet is in this building. I mean, I went into the stall for a nice round of ‘plop plop fizz fizz‘, and it just ended up wrong. All so terribly, terribly wrong.

(Like using a commercial jingle to describe a bowel movement isn’t ‘wrong’, in and of itself, right?

Hey, look, it could be worse. I could have used a different jingle, you know. How would you like to think of one of these, next time you’re gettin’ all squinchy on a strange potty somewhere:

Made from the best stuff on earth.

When in doubt… shout it out!

Or my personal favorite:

Roaches check in… but they don’t check out.

Mmmm… tasty!)

All right, what the hell was I saying again? Oh, the stupid toilet stall. Right.

So, right off the bat, I could tell things weren’t going to go well. (Not ‘poo-flingingly‘ unwell, perhaps, but still — not well.) See, the stall in this room is really, really narrow. Once inside the door, I could barely face the toilet without scraping my shoulders on the sides of the enclosure. And trust me, there is never a time when you want to be in a bathroom stall, and thinking about anything ‘scraping’ anything. Ever. So that’s bad, right away.

The stall isn’t very deep, either, so as soon as I walked into the thing, I was in danger of banging my shins on the toilet bowl.

(And while I’d like to be able to say, ‘You never want to be in a bathroom stall, and think about ‘banging’ anything‘… um, well, let’s just say that I was taught at a very early age that Victoria’s Secret catalogs make spectacular bathroom reading material, and leave it at that. Ahem.)

Anyway, given the cramped quarters in there, I had to do this shimmy-wiggle to get past the inward-swinging door and close it behind me without stepping in the frigging toilet bowl. At least, I assume I’d have to do so — apparently, my ‘shimmy-wiggler’ is on the fritz, however, and I ended up dunking a loafer in the drink. At least the water wasn’t yellow. Much.

So, finally, I got turned around, and ‘assumed the position’ to get down to business. That’s when I discovered another problem with the stall — it’s so tiny because one side of it has been chopped off — it wasn’t originally designed that way. So the toilet is off-centered in the space. Now, you might not think this would be so disorienting… but you’d be wrong, you know. Oh, so very wrong. When you’ve got two feet of space on one side of your naked ass cheeks, and only about three inches of space on the other side of your naked ass cheeks, it’s not a good feeling. Not only did I learn that my ass is highly claustrophobic, but also that shitting in such an orientation makes me feel like I’m constantly sliiiiiiiding toward the closer wall.

Now, I knew it was just a psychosomatic thing, that the sensation wasn’t real. But when there’s even the slightest chance of pooping directly on the floor — unless that’s what you’re intending to do, you sick bastard — you take every precaution that’s available to you. So, I braced myself, and I can only imagine how ridiculous I looked doing it.

Picture this, if you can — I’m sitting there, in this… closet, pants draped around my ankles, leaning into the wall closer to me, and bracing myself along the far wall with the arm and leg on that side. All the while trying — and generally failing — to keep my ass centered over the hole in the toilet, while sliding back and forth over the seat.

(Yeah, by the way, I wouldn’t use that bathroom next, if I were you. My ass cooties are all up in its bidness now.

And while the seat is likely to be nice and toasty for a while, thanks to my heat and a lot of friction, remember the old saying:

The only thing worse than a really cold toilet seat in the comfort of your own home is a really warm toilet seat anywhere else.

Fear the heated seat, folks. Fear it!)

Anyway, there I was, doing my best to…um, ‘put all the biscuits in the basket‘? No? Still too graphic? Sorry — there are only so many ways you can describe this sort of thing. I’m trying my best here.

But there I was, playing ‘toilet target practice’ (better? A little? Okay.), when I noticed the last problem with this stall — the gap between the door and the frame was way too big. Way. No, seriously — way. I’m not kidding.

So, I like to think I’m like most of you out there, in that I like just a little sliver of daylight between the door and stall, so I can get an idea of what’s going on out there in the bathroom proper. Hey, if a brawl, or a circus, or a Playmate pillow fight happens to break out near the sinks, I wanna know about it.

(Especially if the Playboy chicks start ‘using’ the automatic hand dryers, when they’re done with the pillows. Yeah, you know what I’m talkin’ about.)

Anyway, you’re a lot closer to the door when you’re inside the stall, so it’s good to have a little gap to peer through. But if that gap is too wide, then at some point, you have to believe that people ‘out there’ can see in , and spy on you with your undies wrapped around your ankles, panting and puffing and reading the paper (or that Vicky’s Secret catalog). Nobody wants that!

And the door-gap in this stall was about as big as I’d ever seen! There was a finger’s width — maybe two! — between the stall door and the frame.

(I’d be more specific, folks, but I swore off sticking my fingers into anything in a bathroom stall a long time ago. Sure, call me a wuss if you like. But three arrests and a restraining order will do that to you. I’m just sayin’.)

Anyway, that was the last straw for me. Sure, I’d plop my ass on the lopsided toilet in that cramped little space, and flop and tumble around like a hooked fish, trying to find my equilibrium… and then I’d even (apparently) tell you about it — but I was not going to be walked in on by some bastard who could actually see what I was doing from outside the stall. That’s just wrong. So I finished up, wiped down, hiked trou, made with the zippies, and got the hell out of there, before any witnesses could observe my madness.

So, I suppose I got away more or less unscathed. Still, that bathroom stall sucks ass. And I’m not at all sure that I’m ever going back — I might just have to find a public bathroom, or a trash can, or a tree, next time I’m at the office, and I’ve got to desperately make a number two. I just don’t think that I can use a toilet that has so many things wrong with it. It’s too traumatic.

So let this be a warning to all of you — these bass-ackwards, peepshow-allowing miniature rest rooms are out there; don’t get sucked into using one yourself. Trust me, you won’t feel right afterwards… or during… or when blogging about it to the world at large. It’s creepy, really. Don’t let yourself get into the mess that I did. Remember — no good can come from an undersized, lopsided, open-gapped crapper. Those are words to live by, my friends. Words to live by.

Permalink  |  2 Comments

2 Responses to “Don’t They ‘Play-Test’ These Damned Things, For Chrissakes?”

  1. chasmyn says:

    You always make me smile. And this story is a perfect example of why my husband will never use any bathroom except ours or family’s for “that” activity. It’s just a joy for him to come home from work and expel all he’s been saving up, lemme tell ya.

  2. Lara says:

    Hey it could be worse! You could have done your business and then dropped your keys in the bowl! Lara

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