Washrooms and Decepticons
Firstly, I just want to say, I am once again performing the bloggage in total comfort. But then again, is there really any other way to perform the bloggage? I assume most people don’t blog while being spanked, or being charged for a DUI or while receiving an epidural. No, I guess most bloggage is performed while the individual is in relative comfort, after the event in question is over. Well the setting in my case, is a beach. Yup, my lovely wife is sunning herself beside me on a blankey, I am sitting here in my board shorts, laptop balanced on my knees, slathered in enough white sun goop to baste a thousand turkeys. The waves are pounding against the shore 10 feet from my little piggies (toes), the celestial orb is excreting its UV excrements, and I am rocking some old school Petra on this incredible Sunday afternoon.
The target of the bloggage today is washrooms. More specifically, the washroom under construction in our house and my traumatic history leading us to design a comfy comf washroom. Firstly, however, there is a matter of grammatical, cross cultural importance. I have been led to believe that my dear American friends refer to their washrooms as restrooms. I find this puzzling on several different levels. Primarily though, is the lack of a bed or couch in the restrooms I have visited in the south 49. Most public “restrooms” I have visited in the states, or anywhere else for that matter, are, in fact in my experience, completely devoid of anyone resting at all, come to think of it. In fact American restrooms are functionally the same as Canadian washrooms. However, perhaps I am just missing the boat here. Truthfully I have never visited a restroom at Holiday on I-35, crawled into a stall, wrapped some TP around my eyes and put my head on the toilet for 5. Maybe I am missing out. But until I get an opportunity to try that, I will continue to use American restrooms in the only way I know how, as a washroom.
So please, feel free to exchange the words “washroom” and “restroom” in whatever way you see fit during this expose.
So our ensuite washroom design was heavily influenced by a horrible, horrible, horrible experience I had back in my university days. Horrible. Anne and I have attempted to craft a “healing space” in our washroom, mostly through the use of a Jacuzzi and conservative use of a concierge service.
Anyhow, the installation of this Jacuzzi is actually a desperate attempt on my behalf to repress a horrid experience from 2003. I was but a young sprout attending Lakehead University in Thunder Bay. I was staying in a small apartment in a pastor’s house with two other roomies. The renowned David Mobach was one of those roomies. Now Dave and I were tight. In fact we were confident enough in our masculinity to take saunas together at the end of a tough day of classes. Yes, that is correct people, the small basement apartment came a complementary sauna. It was tucked away in behind our walk in shower.
The day that altered the course of my life was like any other. Dave and I ate supper on the main floor and retreated to our dungeon to watch CNN, slouched on the sofa, debating the finer points of life, like when Robin, the CNN anchor lady, was ever going to change her hairstyle. Dave offhandedly suggested a sauna. I seconded the motion and we retreated to our rooms to slip into something a little more appropriate for the sauna. Dave then headed to the shower room to activate the sauna.
Activation of the sauna did not happen.
Dave returned to me, knees knocking and pale cheeked. He collapsed on the couch opposite me and didn’t say a word. “Dave?, what’s up, man? Sauna good to go?” Dave shook his head, no. He then asked me to come with him to have a look myself.
I wish I had never done that. In fact, I think there is an ancient Greek tale about Oedipus, an outcast slave boy, who eventually becomes king, and marries the widowed queen. Problem is, through a spectacular, and not entirely impossible sequence of events, said queen was also his momma. Poor Oedipus proceeded to gouge his eyes out with a spoon upon discovering the truth. Oh, that I had the courage of Oedipus that night!
I stepped into the shower area with Dave. Now, the walk in shower was basically a concrete floor area with a small drain in the centre and door opposite to access the sauna behind the shower. But something was terribly, horribly, utterly wrong.
There was poop everywhere. Poop on the floor. Poop on the walls. Poop ON THE CEILING. Help me, Lord. The source of fecal matter was quickly identified – the floor drain had erupted like Mount freaking Vesuvius, blowing the grate clear off the drain and scattering the unholy organic matter everywhere. My initial reaction was one of self preservation. One hand rushed to my eyes to block out the site, the other reached for my mouth to stem the flow of stomach contents straining to be unleashed like a race horse. We stumbled back into the living room – shells of men we once were. The putrid stench had infected us, groping our senses with its evil fingers, laughing evilly in our heads. We curled up in the fetal position and waited for the inevitable. But death did not find us.
After working up the courage, we returned to the shower to assess the damage and begin the fecal abatement. It was obvious the sewer line to the main had backed up, finally erupting angrily in our happy place. Dave suited up in the only rubber boots he could find – little pink girls boots about 5 sizes too small and waded in to stem the flow, armed with naught but a plunger. Shellshocked, I clutched the door knob and watched in morbid fascination as he bent over the drain, ballcap on backwards and began feverishly plunging the drain. Occasionally the beast from within the drain would gurgel and threaten to unleash another poop handgrenade into our midst. We took turns, to no avail. In fact, the last memory I have that night before finally blacking out in my bed, was our landlady, Jane, wearing big black boots disappearing into the void to battle the demon. Her faithful dog, Sabu, an absolutely retarded black Labrador, stuck with her, lapping at the buckers of water mopped off the floor. How Labrador retrievers made it on Noah’s Ark, I don’t know. I spent that night lost in a nightmare – running through the city sewer system while being chased by the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in pink boots wielding plungers. I can still hear Dave’s screams….
Back to the present. As a part of my healing journey, I have endeavoured to make our washroom more of a restroom, if you catch my drift. A place of love, peace and tranquility. Hence the Jacuzzi. Hence the soft lighting. Hence the Celtic music. Hence the concierge service. Hence the toilet that is programmed to play the sound of a gentle ocean surf with seagulls in the background when you flush it. My therapist, Neil Armstrong, says we are making major strides.
Anyways, this is ridiculous. I have only posted one picture so far and it is of what may or may not be a hard drive in the Jacuzzi. The house is moving along at a blitz; Steve is taking no hostages, relentlessly pursuing the completion of our home. Friends, here are some highlights from the past week……..
Ok men, now would be the time to shut this blog down and go lift a heavy object or eat some meat. Ladies, read onwards for cute pictures of small children who came to visit our house. Last weekend was Marcia and Keith’s wedding in Sioux and my wife was in charge of the two little flowergirls – to get them dressed and ready for the big day. On the way home from the reception they joined us for a visit of the house. Yes, yes, yes, cute pictures abounded.
Well friends, it has been an hour and a half on this beach, typing the bloggage. It is alot more chilly now and a stiff breeze is coming off the lake.
In fact my lovely bride just looked at me and said “Joe, there is no more sun anywhere” to which I replied “Ah, but there is love everywhere”. Score!
Also, I believe that means it is time to pack the Xterra and head home from coffee and a movie. Happiness! Until next time friends, we bid you adieu and a great week!
P.S. A special shout out to my dear Byler family – I miss you guys so much. Every thought of each one of you brings a smile to my face. I miss my drama dosage. I miss the smell of 10,000 hair products blending into one sweet aroma every morning. I miss the singing clocks, microwaves, toaster ovens and egg beaters which have given me a new appreciation for “when the saints come marching in”. Miss you guys.
P.P.S. Please keep your eye out for a couple of Decepticons at a carwash during the next few days washing up after a good soil thievery. Don’t approach the machines yourself; rather, loose your little dog upon them and hope he marks them as territory.