It was only a four-hour flight from Logan International to Denver International, but when I got off the plane I was in need of a bathroom. I stopped at the first men’s room I saw on my way to baggage claim, but there was an actual line out the door.
Now, if there are any ladies reading this, you may not be aware of this: there aren’t usually lines either in or for a men’s room. They’re not unheard of, I mean there are certain times, sporting events, mondo-drunken-frat parties, stuff like that, where a men’s room line may indeed appear, but they are usually small and easily manageable. Nothing like the lengthy and out-of-control lines I’ve seen outside the occasional busy Women’s Room. No one in a Men’s Room line is going to cross their legs and read an entire novel.
Bravo on your bladder control, ladies. I couldn’t do it on my best day.
This time, however, my need wasn’t quite so great, so with a mental ‘I guess I can hold it’, I headed off for baggage claim with a little extra internal pressure. Baggage claim was a breeze, my friend SB picked me up right there and we drove out into the bright Colorado day.
Now I hadn’t had anything to eat in about six hours, maybe getting closer to seven by then, so there was a little rumbling going on in my tummy. After the third time SB glanced at me in reaction to a very audible “Raarwrrrwwaaaarrrrrrriiiiiig” coming from my midsection, she said “So. Lunch?”
We stopped at a little Italian place on the way out from the airport called Mama Alvino’s. I have been there before and as we walked in I became fully aware of their bathrooms. With the speed of lightning striking a tree on a desolate mountain side the empty feeling in my stomach was replaced with a very full feeling just a little lower than that.
I excused myself, casually strolled to the men’s room... then vaulted into a stall with the speed and grace of a cheetah on the African Savannah. I spun about, took a seat, and let Nature take its course. Its explosive, violent, terrible course.
What do you want me to do, draw you a picture? Come on, we’ve all been there.
Five minutes later, ten pounds lighter, and with what felt like a beautific smile of relief on my face, I reached for the toilet paper... and saw nothing but a stubby bracket sticking out of the stall wall to my left, without even the spindle the roll of paper is supposed to rest upon, never mind the roll itself.
Oh my God!
I looked to my right, toward the solid wall that had been incorporated into what was rapidly becoming my least favorite bathroom stall in the world, and saw a pair of screw holes where a toilet paper dispenser used to hang.
I looked to my right: empty holes that had once been filled with the promise of paper.
And there I was, right in the middle, in the only stall in the small mens room and without a paddle.
A soft whimper escaped my lips.
I contemplated possible actions. I could just do the dropped-trow shuffle out to the sink and use some of the paper towels that must be there... but I had passed the sink on the way in with such speed I was only vaguely certain there even was a sink. With my luck I’d get out there and find nothing but an automatic hand-dryer, little more than a hot hurricane in a box and not much use to me now.
I could shuffle to the door and try to flag down a passer-by in the hallway, hoping to God it wasn’t a kid, which might have landed me on some sex-offender website.
I could just pull up my pants and try to muddle through the day as-is until I found someplace to take a shower and change... but yuck! I didn’t think I could get away with it, and besides... yuck!
I leaned back on my throne and looked at the ceiling, preparing to ask the cosmos the eternal question asked by men trapped by similar circumstance through the ages.
It was while I was in that position something caught the corner of my eye. I looked to my right... way to my right.
Son of a bitch.
There, mounted to the wall at a level a little higher than my shoulder and behind me, was a wide, double-roll tissue paper dispenser. A veritable technological cornucopia of toilet paper, and it had been there the whole time, just placed where it might not be readily noticed by someone moving at the speed of desperation.
I reached back, tore off a square, and mopped my tears of gratitude Then, as you can see above, I pulled my phone from my belt and proceeded to sit there taking pictures until my legs had gone numb. Why? Because the public has a right to know.
...okay, because I have a blog, and this was the first thing to happen to me once I got to Colorado this time.
Now, those of you who are paying attention might be asking yourselves “If he had a phone, why didn’t he just call for help”. I can give you three reasons:
- I was trying to get through this without embarrassing myself, and the only one I could have called for help would have been SB. She’s the one I was trying not to embarrass myself in front of.
- I didn’t think of it until I was writing this blog. Sue me.
- Because I have a blog, and this was the first thing to happen to me once I got to Colorado this time. Duh.
Those of you who are really paying attention will note that I have recorded this entire embarrassing event and made it public, which doesn’t really make sense if I’m trying to avoid embarrassment, does it? Well I have an answer for that as well:
I have a blog, and this was the first thing to happen to me once I got to Colorado this time. Duh.
Talk to you later!
Oh! Before I forget... the humorous video this week contains animals!