Having recently seen the movie “Bridesmaids”, which is one of the funniest movies I’ve ever seen, and the fact that The Husband frequently reminds me of this incident...and the fact that I obviously have no pride...I decided to share my tale of utter and complete humiliation solely for the amusement of others.
One day several years ago, before we were married, The Husband and I decided to go for a little outing. It was in the middle of winter, cold and rainy, and we decided to go to a nearby town about forty-five minutes from our house because we wanted to shop for a new tv and decided we’d just grab dinner first.
The Husband is an old guy...I may have mentioned this before. He’s the kind of guy who thinks leaving a single dollar bill on the table is a decent tip. He’s really not deliberately trying to be cheap, it just doesn’t occur to him that since everything else costs more, that maybe, just maybe the tippage should be increased too. I remind him of this on a regular basis. I have no control over what he does when I’m not with him and offer my sincere apologies to any waitress or waiter whom he has offended with his less than generous tippage. He can’t help it...he’s old...he’s also deaf, but that’s another story.
Being an old guy who likes his food, The Husband thinks buffets are wonderful. Buffets lose money on The Husband, but make money on me...usually, except when I’m with the Old Chix & we eat for hours before being forced by management to leave. I’m exaggerating...but only slightly.
So off we go to the unnamed all-you-can-eat restaurant. I won’t go in to detail describing the patrons of this particular chow line. If you can visualize a Far Side cartoon you probably get the gist of the view. Sadly, we fit in perfectly.
I don’t really remember exactly what I ate on this particular day...probably some kind of fried food and probably some kind of mashed potatoes and gravy...which I love...maybe a little salad with Ranch dressing, and probably some soft serve ice cream at the end of the gluttonfest. Could be wrong, but it sounds about like what I’d do. Okay, so maybe they don’t lose money on me.
After we left, we went to a nearby Circuit City to look at TV’s. We wandered around for a little while looking at prices and generally annoying sales persons who could tell we weren’t “buyers”, but just a couple of "lookieloos ". (I’m sure there’s probably a better way to spell that but it’s not important enough for me to check).
It was probably about thirty minutes after leaving the gluttonfest that I started feeling little “twinges” in my stomach...which I tried to ignore...which would prove to be the beginning of my undoing. See, this was still in the “beginning” stages of our romance where I was trying to be perfectly wonderful and all things fabulous to the man of my dreams. Looking back I realize my efforts were totally futile...that I was never any of those things...but that’s not the point...I was still trying.
The more we wandered around the store, the more frequently I felt the “twinges” which were rapidly turning into “cramps”...the kind of cramps that precede an inevitable episode of explosive diarrhea. I was beginning to realize, with horror, what was about to take place.
Now, the dilemma...do I try to make it home or hang around the store and risk the humiliation of pooping in a public restroom??? Anyone who knows me, knows my phobia about pooping in public. It’s a court of last resort. I’ll be a sneak a pooper until the day I die. I’ve accepted this and for the most part, learned to live with it.
After weighing my options, I decide to make a break for the only place I can poop in peace...home. I tell The Husband-to-be that I’m feeling a little sick and suggest that maybe we should go home. (Yes we were living together without benefit of clergy as one of the Old Chix likes to say.) Since The Husband-to-be was also on good behavior in those days, he was quick to go along with whatever I wanted. Thus began the longest drive of my life.
When we left the store it was after dark, and really, really stormy. Wind was blowing, rain pouring down so hard the windshield wipers couldn’t keep up. Looking back I’m sure it was the worst storm we’ve had...ever...at least that’s how I remember it now. I may be embellishing the severity of the storm but the rest is totally real.
Once we’re in the car I feel a false sense of security, sort of like the bars that hold you in on a roller coaster...they’re really not going to help you in case of a derailment...you’re still gonna get smashed to smithereens. On a little side note, why is it that nobody ever uses the singular smithereen? It’s always plural. I wonder if it’s really a word...again not important enough to check...sorry, I get sidetracked.
So, when we initially get in the car and I sit down, I feel a little better, like maybe I’ve exaggerated my need for a hasty departure. Keep in mind that there is only a long, long, long stretch of highway between where we were and home.
Once we’re on the highway, and there’s no end in sight, the stomach starts “twinging” again...more severely...and the more we drove, the closer the intervals between cramping came. My poor stomach felt like it was swelling an inch a second...I could feel the gas gurgling around and knew what was coming. I tried doing Lamaze breathing techniques...whoo whoo hee hee..quietly so The Husband to be wouldn’t catch on and think I was less than fabulous. Fortunately he was deaf even then so I don’t think he heard the juicy gurgling noises that, to me, seemed to drown out all noise from the storm outside.
I didn’t dare even try to sneak a fart to relieve some of the pressure in my poor stomach...I knew it would have stunk up the car...badly. All the windows were closed and the heater was on...not prime time for a sneak-a-fart scenario. Things like this never happen when you can have the windows down and blame the smell on a dead animal carcass that you just passed. I actually knew someone who used that line once. I can honestly say I’ve never done it...yet. I’ve never intentionally farted in front of my husband either...yet...
The Husband then, as now, is a confirmed booberdoober when it comes to driving. He’s the one you hate to get behind because he always drives under the speed limit. Back when I was trying to impress him I never mentioned how infuriating this was to me...nowadays...let’s just say I’m a little more inclined to voice my opinion on his driving skills. That night, however, I was just trying to keep from pooping so I really didn’t want to talk. Try to relax, breathe, stay calm...it’ll pass...every second I was a little closer to home.
When we’re right outside our town on a long straight stretch of highway, I think I can’t make it anymore.
Me: “I think you need to pull over.”
The Husband-to-be: “Why?”
Me: “I think I’m going to be sick”...neglecting to mention that it’s not the throw up kind of sick...more the shit your brains out kind of sick.
The Husband-to-be starts to pull over and immediately the cramp eases...
Me: “No, wait...I think it’s okay” thinking why did I say anything...why didn’t I just wait to see if it would go away...now he’ll think I’m un-fabulous...which I am, but he doesn’t need to know that at this stage of our relationship...
Sometimes I'm fairly certain God plays tricks on us...this was one of those times.
About two more miles passed...
Me: “I think you need to pull over.”
The Husband-to-be doesn’t even say a word, he just starts to pull over. Again, the cramp starts to fade...
Me: “I think it’s okay...keep going” ...why didn’t I just wait??? Didn’t that last time it passed teach me anything?
Finally we’re off the freeway and on the back road to our humble abode. It’s a curvy road, the wind is blowing, rain is pouring down and finally I can wait no more. The pain in my stomach has me doubled over. It’s either pull over or sit in the car and shit myself...
Me: “Pull over...right there” pointing to a turn out in front of an old cemetery.
The Husband-to-be pulls in to the turn out, barely gets stopped, and I jump out into the dark cold rainy night, yank my pants down to my ankles praying I’ll get them down in time to keep from getting poop on them...grab hold of the car door handle to try to balance myself and keep from falling...squat...and shit my brains out in the cemetery parking lot. There was a brief second where all I felt was relief...I got my pants down in time...and didn’t shit myself.... That feeling passed way too quickly though and the utter humiliation of my situation was right back staring me in the face. If that wasn’t bad enough, since I don’t normally travel with toilet paper in my pockets, I was forced to tap on the window and ask The Husband-to-be to hand me some Kleenex out the window. Any trace of imagined fabulosity has vanished and I didn’t even have a shred of dignity left.
Now I’m forced to pull my pants up and get back into the car with the man of my dreams, who now knows for a certainty that I’m way less than fabulous...in fact, I’ve probably come perilously close to disgusting in his mind...I’m sure of this. To his credit, he doesn’t say a word. Doesn’t mention the fact that I’m soaking wet, my hair is plastered to my head, mascara is running down my face, and I’m dripping water all over the place (I hope it was only water). We drive the rest of the way home in silence...we were only about five, count ‘em, five minutes from home...and I just couldn’t wait five lousy minutes longer. I’m sure he was dying of laughter inside...if the situation had been reversed, I would have been hysterical. But, bless his heart, he didn’t even acknowledge the fact that I had just squatted and pooped in a gravel turn out in front of a cemetery in the dead of night.
Looking back, I guess in the end I made the right choice...I mean I think it was better that I actually got out of the car before I shit myself, don’t you? And guess what??? He married me anyway...of course he probably figured...how much worse could it get?
P.S. If I’m ever driving in a car with you and we happen to drive past a cemetery...please don’t ask me if I need to stop...The Husband has asked me that question every time we drive by there since “that day”. I have to laugh...it’s the stoopidist thing.