So here’s some news, also filed under strange but true.
Someone stole the art out of the men’s room at work. Frame and all. Wtf, right?
I really loved that print. I haven’t been able to find a picture of it online, mostly because I have no idea who the artist is, but it was a good-sized watercolor of a bluebird on a branch with some rainbow splashy bits in the background. Super cute.
Anyway, the manager agreed that I could bring something I painted in to replace it. I think this is it.
Here’s Richter Scale, acrylic on 16×20 canvas board.
My head hangs down as I lean forward, white-knuckling the edge of the bathroom sink. I feel my stomach twist and turn, and I grimace, struggling to hold my breakfast down.
I lift my head and open my eyes. I look rough. My eyes are dark pits in my skull, my mouth a crooked red slash across the bottom of my face. When I blink, my eyelids are like sandpaper, the grit scraping the surface of my eyeballs.
I close my eyes and drop my head.
When I open my eyes again I stagger, the sink somehow escaping my grip, and I stand on the rocky shore of an unknown lake in the middle of the night. The stars spill across the sky, and I know why it’s called the Milky Way.
The air is so still around me, but I see the trees on the other side of the lake wave their branches in a slight breeze. The breeze ripples the surface of the water and makes its way to me, riffling the hair that lies across my forehead. It’s cool and clean and crisp, and I breathe it in greedily.
I turn to my right, and the moon hangs full in the sky.
I blink, and I’m standing in front of the mirror again, away from the sink. The urge to sit in the bathtub and slit my wrists is gone, for now, and the smell of that nighttime breeze still fills my nostrils with hope.
I miss you.
I promise a good long post on Saturday.
What would you like to read about?
Let me know.
If you’ve worked twelve hours and your feet are slick, be careful getting in the shower. You might slip and fall and maybe even pull the handle off the shower door.
Apparently falling in the bathroom is an annual thing for me now. But at least no concussion this time!
Also, I finally got my spiro about 26 hours after dropping the prescription off.
Men just don’t get it when it comes to public restrooms. Seriously. Us ladies have gotten the short end of the stick on this front.
Say you’re going to a concert. Intermission. Where are the lines? The beer, sure, but even longer queues at the ladies’ rooms.
There are just so many steps to complete for an adequate, socially acceptable pee break.
A line? Great, now I have to make small talk with these strangers with whom the only thing I have in common is a full bladder. Oh yeah, they were a great opener. No kids, didn’t have to worry about a babysitter. I know, it’s supposed to rain all week, isn’t it? I haven’t even made it in the door yet, and I’m ready to tear out my hair. And it goes on and on and on.
Oh, Lordy, I can actually see the stall doors. Why isn’t anyone using that one on the end? Oh. There’s a floater. And of course it just isn’t done to cut line to use the stall that no one will enter anyway. Don’t ask me why. I’ve seen fights break out over a restroom line cut, though. Don’t do it.
Finally, after I know where the girl in front of me lives, works, and went to school, I’m first in line. She’s coming out! No, no, that’s the stall with the faulty lock. She’s just beating the door with her knee as she hovers.
And then the heavens open up and angels sing hosannas. It’s my turn to pee!! This is where I shine. I don’t tear and layer and cover the seat only to squat without touching porcelain. I wipe the seat off and plop this butt down. I’m not risking overbalancing and cracking my skull open on the inside of a locked door, where I will lie in a puddle of filth until the paramedics arrive, nosirree! But bravo to you girls who are coordinated enough for that.
Keep in mind that this is a grownup concert scenario. I will never, and I mean never, bring a small child to the public restroom at, say, Sesame Street Live. Multiply the wait by ten and the bladder capacity by a quarter. No thanks.
So, I’ve finished up, wiggled and jiggled the lock open, now it’s time to wash my hands. This is where the herd has a positive effect—everyone washes her hands. At least with water, at most with soap and a good twenty second scrubbing. Even so, I’ve still got to get to a sink, then a soap dispenser containing soap, then to the single remaining roll of paper towels before I’m done.
Then it’s just a matter of fighting the crowd trying to get in in order to get out. Why is it that my part of the line was so much more considerate of exiters? It’s like these women are all mad at me because I’ve already used the pot. First come, first serve, gals, hate it for you.
And the men? All you need is enough elbow room to unzip. Screw running water or paper towels. Lucky bastards.