The other day my feet got wet on the way to work. I had these cheap little Payless shoes on, so, naturally, my feet started to smell. They smelled so badly that I could smell them through a stuffy nose. I ran to the closest shoe store on my lunch break (which just happened to be Payless) and bought some shoes. Now, when I say “some shoes” I mean 4 pairs of shoes, 2 pairs of slipper socks and $2 bracelet donation for Breast Cancer awareness. When I spoke to Captain Clam, I only told him how much money I saved. Oops! Of course, I was happy to have had the stinky feet debacle of 2013 while Payless was having a BOGO sale, so the $60 spent was not too shabby for all those things (except now my feet are starting to stink again on their own accord (damn plastic shoes!!)).
As I was leaving the store, I saw this awesome Diner right next door. I am almost positive that the universe would have ended if I did not have a grilled cheese immediately. About an hour or so later, the belly rumbles started. There was simply too much stuff in my belly. The inevitable was about to happen: The Work Poop.
Oh Man. We have all been there. I previously worked at places that had private bathrooms, where the bathroom was just a small room with a sink and a toilet (and one time, strangely enough, a full bathtub and shower). My new work facilities are three stalls, two poorly working sinks, and a hand blower that produces hurricane force winds. Sadly, no one actually uses the hand dryer, they use toilet paper, which sometimes (very rarely) leaves the bathroom without any TP under the sink (a catastrophe in wait, if you ask me).
The smallest stall is for women who are under 4 feet tall. It hurts to use. This stall is usually void of any TP as it the closest to the sink and completely uninhabitable by most of us. Of course, you can make yourself fit with minimal effort, but it’s a little claustrophobic and extremely dark. The door, however is always closed. And since no one uses it, it has become the best pooping stall in the ladies bathroom. The only drawback is the toilet paper issue.
I generally don’t like to poop in public, but will definitely do it and shine as I recount the tale of my bathroom adventure. According to my cousin, Girl Ryan, there is a phobia known as PIP, which is the phobia of Pooping in Public. She has written extensively on her blog HERE about the fear and overcoming it. I have read her post a million times and was shocked to learn that I had been doing some of the things that ALL women do.
For instance, I really thought I was the only lady to flush the toilet if I had to poop and someone was in the restroom with me during extreme emergency. I do that at work sometimes if I think someone will come in while the deed is being done. If someone walks in just as the deed is about to be done, I get stage fright and the deed gets pinched. If someone does come in before it happens, I seriously pussy out and leave. No guts, No glory, right?
When I started dreaming up this post and writing it in my head (where it sounded hilarious and witty), I reached out to That Girl Ryan to ask for a link and her blessing (after all she did write her poop post first). Of course she obliged because we are all interested in getting the message out there, and told me that she has a new poop post in the works. I am so excited for it and hope that this poop post inspires her to get that shit together (so many puns, so little time).
When I was a teen, I worked at the Pancake Cottage in my town (Riverhead, Long Island (the greatest shit hole on earth)). I was lucky enough to work with one of my best friends. We had nicknames that we would call each other (she still calls me Goober to this day). Well, I was really good at making Milkshakes. Whenever anyone ordered a Shake, I was the go-to girl. One (or both) of us dreamed up the perfect concoction: The Coffee Milkshake, which is self- explanatory (mind you this was the 90’s and frappaccinos had not yet taken off in our small town). I proceeded to make the most deliciously bad ass Coffee Milkshake ever. After exactly 20 minutes and 36 seconds, my dear Ferox and I looked at each other and KNEW that the milkshake was a really bad idea and we were about to pay for our milky sins.
I actually had to email her about this story to remember how we handled the Pancake Cottage Coffee Milkshake shit-storm. I needed to know if we both used the bathroom at the same time and flushed the entire time or if we had guarded the door, pretending that it was a single toilet water closet and we were simply waiting in line. Both of these false memories were wrong. According to her memory, we ran the water for each other. How simple (and what great friends we are!)!
I learned a great lesson that day: It’s OK to poop at work.
Even today, I walked into the ladies room and someone blew that shit up ( I won’t name any names, but it was a small woman who looks like she smells like apricots and chap-stick made out of sunshine). The bathroom was a fog of farts and residue. It was hard not to tear up from the burning stench, and even harder not to acknowledge this woman’s feat with a high five. It was simply ignored as if there was no awful odor seeping it’s way into the fibers of my clothing. The worst part about this type of work poo is that it’s not yours, but if timed properly, you can and will be blamed for it.
It happens more frequently than I’d like, but I do go into the restroom (to rest, of course) and someone is in there trying to get their business done. I walk in and I can feel them cringe, knowing that I know that they are trying to do the do (sometimes they are also just on their phones, which makes it hard for me to even go number 1, knowing that the party on the other line might hear my tinkle). It’s at that awkward point where people are clearing their throats or fidgeting with the TP that I just want to say” It’s okay to poop!” I really don’t care. We all poop (I’m pretty sure there’s a children’s book about it).
I have no idea why pooping is so taboo. I mean, if we didn’t poop, we’d die a horrible death. I can understand why farting is funny. It’s loud and sometimes comes out unexpectedly (and it can be so foul that you can’t help but laugh at just how disgusting you are), but pooping? It’s like, “Oh no, she’s totally excreting in this room built for excreting. How dare she!” You may often feel like if you are discovered, you will be forever shamed for the rest of your term of employment as The Pooper. Why does it have to be like that? Whaaa!!!!
Unfortunately, it is like that. Too bad there is not some noise machine in the bathroom that cancels out all noises or keeps noises restrained to the inside of the stall. Or perhaps mandatory fountains in every bathroom that run loudly enough to muffle the sound of splashes, but gentle enough to relax all the right muscles.
Air freshener is always a nice commodity for a good cover up, but it’s a dead give-away. My air freshener trick is to spray in a random corner of the bathroom – just a squirt (after you wash your hands of course), then run like a bat out of hell so the fumes don’t stick to you. I advise using the air freshener every time you go. People will be thrown off and will either think you poop every hour or think nothing of it since the bathroom will always be fresh. Suckers!
No matter what happens… Ignore and Deny! Whether or not you are indeed the Pooper or not, just act normal like nothing is wrong or different in the atmosphere. Ignore it. Don’t mention it. People will notice and might follow suit and get over the fact that bodily functions are not put on hold just because you are at work. If someone is like”Damn, Girl!” Just smile and give ’em a High Five (after hand washing, of course).
THIS is a great read for anyone interested in learning how to poop at work effectively.