Earlier this week I had a GS Chinese New Year Celebration at my house. It was wonderful. The girls never fail to make my day, particularly at fun meetings like this one. In fact, I was having such a good time, I failed to pay much attention when one of the Moms let me know disaster had struck. The disaster this particular evening involved one of the tiniest, cutest little scouts ever and the half bath toilet. I am always at odds with the half bath toilet. This guy gets the brunt of use in our house. The kids get off the bus and make a bee line to this pot. In the morning, if there is any last minute gut evacuation, it happens in the half bath toilet. And for Girl Scout meetings, 13 little ladies and their Mamas all frequent this tiny room with no view. This particular toilet is known for civil disobedience. More than 7 squares of toilet paper and you are looking at two flushes. Really, anything other than pee and 6 squares and you are in trouble. So, I figured, I was simply going to have to flush, wait a few hours, flush, wait a few hours, flush, wait a few hours, and things would go down the pipes and journey away from my half bath.
I should have realized when I walked in the bathroom that this was not an ordinary situation. First of all, the sheer volume of what tiny cute scout produced was, well, my God it was Guinness book of world record worthy. My Prima Donna toilet was completely ill equipped to deal with what had gone down.....or not gone down a few hours earlier. I reached for the plunger. Our plunger is all style and no substance. Basically it did about as much good as a soup spoon. I flushed the toilet. The bowl filled up to a precarious level but stopped, Hallelujah. So, I did what anyone would do at 9pm on a Tuesday night when the plunger fails and the fortune cookie reads "Good luck is the result of good planning." I closed the door, had a beer and decided to deal with it when I had better tools and a plan.
Fast forward to the next day. Dad is staying with me this week while John is on the road. He is getting a first hand look at the strange phenomenon of how we make it to school on time each morning even when every logical sign points to tardy. For one thing the light of doom has been on our side. "What is that field over there, is that alfalfa?" Dad asks. "I don't know, it looks like it. Sure is green." We comment on this every morning, never solving the mystery. "You know I used to throw hay bales," Dad says. "I did know that," I say. "Do you know what I got paid?" "25 cents a bale?" I guess. ".02 cents a bale. I could throw around a thousand bales. I would get $20 and I thought that was a crazy amount of money. You know what Robert and I would do after throwing hay?" "What Dad?" Dad says, "We would go roller skating." Good God I think. No wonder Dad doesn't want to pay anyone to mow his grass. He is a maniac. On the other hand, he does not like clogged toilets which is why we have talked about everything but that. Our next stop after school is for industrial provisions.
I decide I need to take Dad to Elliot's. It is not Harbor Freight (aka cheap) but it is a cool old style hardware store that has a larger toilet plunger selection than I have ever seen. It is also filled as Dad puts it, "with old geezers." We settle on a snake and an accordian looking thing that claims it will unstop toilets, sinks and whatnot. At the checkout Dad brings up the old geezers so the check out lady rounds up a spry employee. "I am not an old geezer," he says. Dad says, "Well I am." "How old are you?" asks the employee. Dad says, "I am 73." "Bah," says the non-old Geezer, "You are a young thing. I am 86." They get to talking. They cover a lot of territory. Eventually landing on where Dad lives. "Oh yeah, Tyler area is real pretty," non-geezer says to Dad. "Yeah," says Dad "but it is full of assholes." I cringe but non-geezer doesn't miss a beat. "Son, I got news for ya, there are assholes everywhere." That about says it all, if there is any more wisdom to come out of a trip to the hardware store, I can't imagine it. He did tell Dad to behave himself. More sound advice.
We head home. We talk. It is pleasant avoidance of the big job waiting for me. There are lots of things I will have Dad do around my house. This is not one of them. Dad stands in the living room giving me a tutorial on the accordion plunger. I unscrew this top part, get it into position, re-screw, then push. I walk into the bathroom. Most of the time the phrase OH. MY. GOD. is overused. Not this time. Overnight my toilet has turned into that toilet from Trainspotting. Yes, you know the one. I stand there, completely astounded that I am in my beautiful home and not looking into the worst most foul toilet in all of Scotland. Dad walks in and turns green. "I will get you some water for the bowl," he says. I just stand there, the Han Solo of toilets with a bad feeling. I pour the water in. I position the bendy plunger. I tighten the top part, I push, nothing happens. I didn't push hard enough. I do it again. This time I push hard enough but it was not positioned quite right which causes a tsunami that goes on the floor, on me, on my shoes, on my pants. Dad looks at me mortified. "This is the worst moment of my life!" I say. Dad says, "Yeah, thus far." I try to envision what could be worse than being covered in day old shit, and how to get uncovered from day old shit without spreading it everywhere. I manage. I suddenly feel quite motivated to teach the GS troop how to properly wield a plunger. I scoff at the silly idea I would ever use the accordion plunger on anything other than a toilet. It will never go near a sink. The design is great and does the job BUT, cleaning day old shit out from between the accordion folds is not for the faint of heart.
In fact, even though that bathroom is, as my Dad says, cleaner than it has been in years, I find myself walking an extra minute and a half to my bathroom. It will be a bit of time until the scars recede from the tsunami. It is with absolute confidence that I sit down to do my business when I detect something sticky and foul transferring itself from the seat onto that bit of leg directly below my left butt check. With great trepidation I reach my hand under, explore the frightening substance. It is worse than I could ever imagine. It is yak. Someone has yaked on the toilet seat and failed to clean it or let me know it even happened. Must. get. in. shower. Must. decontaminate.
I emerge from the shower furious. I stomp out in my towel. "WHO.....WHO YAKED ON THE TOILET SEAT AND DID NOT REPORT THE BIO-HAZZARD!!!!! I SAT IN IT!!!!
Timidly my oldest raises her hand. "Sorry Mom, I was hopping around after eating, it came up, I spit it out, it was dark in the bathroom but I aimed for inside the toilet." "NEVER DO THAT AGAIN!!!! IF I EVER SIT IN YAK AGAIN, I AM MOVING YOU INTO THE BACKYARD. KAPEESH?!!!"
After being attacked by two toilets in one day, I decide it was definitely a night to be ended with several shots of tequila, but, at the risk of pissing off another porcelain God, I just go with a Shiner Bock and walk all the way to John's office toilet that night.