Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Itinerant Hippies and Scatological Games of Chance

Travel day.

I had, oh, six minutes' notice that I had to run to the Scranton area for two appointments today, which was fine, but I left without my sunglasses or the rest of my coffee or a trip to the potty and I was all out of sorts. My GPS was convinced the development didn't exist and I did a little driving around on gravel backroads in the woods, followed by the airless sun-baked stretch of hell known as Route 81 South, under construction.

When you travel a lot like I do, there are certain things you just have to deal with. One of them is public bathrooms. There is no avoiding public bathrooms when you are on the road for eight hours at a time. This is not a job for the dainty 'ew, I can only poo at home' set. One becomes discerning, one knows where the cleanest ones are. Other times, you 'make do'.

We were discussing this discernment the other night when I mentioned to Himself that I prefer a bathroom with multiple stalls so I can avoid turd burglars.

He had not previously heard this term.

"You should blog about this." he said. "I didn't know what that was, and I'll bet other people don't know either." I sensed he believes I made it up. I did not.

I'm sure that some of my gentle readers know what a turd burglar is, but for the benefit of the others: its a person who knocks on the door of a public restroom, effectively disrupting the progression of events taking place therein. They are the gate agents on the flight to your happy place. And they are not boarding your row.

Sometimes I ignore them, particularly if they knock so soon after I've locked the door that it was obvious they were right behind me and saw me go in. If you are that desperate use the men's room. Women with a small child in tow knock like they are trying to get into the tornado cellar minutes before touchdown. Nothing ups the ante of public restroom entitlement quite like a child who HAS TO GO. Just in case you, in your selfish midstream micturation, don't get the message, they usually say "NO, (insert child's name here), YOU HAVE TO WAIT. SOMEONE IS IN THERE." loudly enough to imply that if you don't get out immediately, you will be responsible for their having to drive the rest of the way home with a pee soaked four year old. Sorry, ma'am. The sooner they learn 1) that its better to say something before they reach critical volume and 2) their days of instant gratification are numbered, they'll be better people. Anyway, I'm in here.

Here's a picture I wish I'd taken this morning-- Wyalusing, PA: a man is shambling up the sidewalk with waist length filthblond braids, a gnome-y beard, a jaunty purple hat with feathers, and an outfit that looks like it might have been left behind in the mud at Woodstock. Hours later when I drive through town I see a red scooter bedecked with all sorts of flags and signs and a satchel to match the outfit and conclude that it can only belong to him. A few yards up the street I see him again, and this time I notice he is also draped with a cord that has about eight little brass horns tied to it. He waves as I drive by.

Just outside of Factoryville, PA I discover that I missed out on the social event of the summer a mere 11 days ago. A large black and yellow tow-behind highway sign, the kind that usually says things like ROAD WORK AHEAD and EXPECT DELAYS bears this message:


Several questions.

1) What is it?
2)Why is the sign still up?
3) Just, why?

Please stop by Humor Blogs and click on my happy head thingy. My husband and his sister are beating me.


Anonymous said...

Here is your answer, hon. I sh_t you not.

Jonny's Mommy said...

OK. You knew turd burglars (which I had never heard) but not Cow Pie Bingo?

Whatever....anyhow, hilarious post again.

Anonymous said...

Yeah really, I can't believe you haven't heard of cow pie bingo. One that stumped me for the longest time was seeing a sign that said "Mud bogging, 7/26" I now know what mud bogging is but for the longest time would drive by and wonder....

Alice said...

Thanks for educating me. I hadn't heard of turd burglars before. Maybe because I refuse to #2 in public unless it's a dire emergency.

And really, parents with kids should just teach them to squat in the grass.

Ann said...

Scranton? I just drove through Scranton TWICE. Once on Friday, and AGAIN on Sunday.

Check this out

I confess I NEVER heard of "turd burglers".

While on the road this weekend, I could hear the mother in the stall next to me tell her little boy, "You know, you really need to learn to go without taking all your clothes off."

No. Lie.
I actually lingered a while washing my hands just so I could eavestrop a bit more. The kid had to BEG his mom to let him stay on the toilet so he could keep going.

Then mom says, "You were holding all this?"
Say what?!!? Did you want your kid NOT to "hold it"?

A few beats pass, and then she says, "Don't touch the handle!"

Needless to say, after that particular rest stop, I was no longer sleepy in spite of having been awake since 4:30am. It also made me think how my mom must have felt taking me in to public restrooms with her nursing background. As a 4 year old, I knew a LOT about germs.

Shieldmaiden96 said...

Ann: I hear ya. I was trying to have a little private 'me' time in a restroom yesterday and a mother with a chatty niblet took the stall right next to me (despite having five empty ones to choose from.)

"Mommy, someone's poopin! Its loud!"

"You just worry about yourself."

"I just have to peepee! I'm going to peepee! Here comes the peepee! Its comin' out!"

four blissful seconds of silence later...
"Mommy, that lady's poopy is stinky!"

I fully expected a little eye mashed up against the door crack any second.