This isn’t about my kid or what we did yesterday. It’s a story from when I was younger. . .but I’m hoping you’ll read it anyway. I promise it’s gross-funny.
In December of 1992, I reached the magical age of 15.5 years, this was the age kids in my area could get a part-time job. Despite my field hockey practices, ballet and piano lessons, a bevy of other extra-curricular activities, and a respectable academic load, my Mother and Stepfather decided it was a magnificent idea that I also have a part-time job.
As you can imagine this displeased me greatly. I was already stressed out enough and the idea of adding something else to the mix was terrifying. Despite my protests, my parents “helped” me secure a work permit, and shoved me out of their circa 1989 Ford Aerostar minivan in front of the Wendy’s Hamburger joint on a routine basis.
I can’t say I enjoyed working there. It wasn’t awful though. And when I got older, I discovered one of the managers was perfectly happy to buy me beer so long as I basically did his work while he drank beer out of a Jr. Frosty cup. Win-win. Thanks Mom, this gig was a super great idea!
I worked there all through high school. And when my ahem Parents decided that I should attend the (pretty reputable) private liberal arts college in the same town I grew up in, I didn’t have any need to seek out other employment. I already had a job. By this time, I had secured multiple raises and was also getting bonused in copious amounts of really bad beer, it wasn’t like I could just walk away from all that for some minimum wage campus gig.
My first semester Freshman year, I scheduled ALL my classes for Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. (Why I did this I can’t recall but it seemed like a good idea at the time). On Wednesdays and Fridays I had a Chem-Bio lab that began at 1PM and lasted until at least 5. . .or whenever you stopped exploding shit you shouldn’t have exploded. . .
My morning classes ended sometime about 10:30 or 11. . .which gave me a narrow window to race to Wendy’s, work the lunch shift and secure myself some adult beverages for the weekend if necessary.
This particular Wendy’s is located on a State Highway in an area that a good number of folks “pass through.” The area is crawling with tourists in the summer so we saw no shortage of new customers. This was particularly true on Fridays when truck drivers and tourists would be moving through at a steady pace.
One Friday during the lunch rush, I was working the front register. Back in my day, a designated employee would take the orders, handle the cash, and get the beverages, while other employees assembled the order. Physically between the employee at the front register and the employees making sandwiches and fries, was a manager, who was responsible for pacing everyone and making sure all orders were properly “coordinated.”
On this Friday, the Manger was Tina. (For the record, Tina never bought me beer). Tina was a tiny quiet woman with the most glorious mullet I’ve ever seen – short and feathered in the front, down to her waist in the back. She smoked these super long skinny cigarettes during breaks and liked everything neat and clean. We got along very well. She was a kind person, but pretty much “all business.”
We were doing our thing, banging out order after order, when we noticed a very short, very thin, man who was maybe 55 or so come in the door and head straight towards the men’s room.
The restrooms in this Wendy’s were single person. . .there were not multiple toilets or sinks. They were located down a hallway directly behind where Tina and I were standing at the front register.
Of course, heading to the restroom first isn’t uncommon, especially for truck drivers, travelers, or tourists so I thought nothing of it. . .
Until about 45 seconds later when I was overcome by a stench worse than death. Whatever that man had done in the restroom was so terrible it had managed to overpower the ubiquitous smell of grease and burnt chicken nuggets. I cannot even begin to describe how offensive this stench was.
A few minutes later I noticed the guy walk out the front door.
But he didn’t take the stench with him!
I looked at Tina.
Someone had to go in there.
At the time, I firmly believed winners were willing to do what losers weren’t. And I very humbly considered myself a winner. After all, I was slinging burgers full-time and carrying a full academic load. I had been recently offered a management position and though I had to decline due to my academics (and good sense), I knew I should suck it up and offer to go into the men’s room.
Tina, being the Manager, had no choice, she HAD to go in there. And being a decent human being, she probably understood she shouldn’t allow me to do it, even if I offered.
As um luck would have it, there seemed to be a lull at the front register so I offered to go WITH Tina. You know, for moral support. . .and to catch her in case she passed out.
We walked through the hall and stood shoulder to shoulder in front of the door. She was wearing a pair of disposable plastic food-handling gloves. The smell emanating from beyond the closed-door was enough to make you see stars.
Tentatively, she placed one gloved hand on the handle and turned it. . .
What we witnessed was like something out of CSI. . .except with poop, not blood spatter.
Every surface in these restrooms were white. . .white tile walls and floors, white fixtures.
Now they were splattered EVERYWHERE with the contents of Skinny’s cannon colon. How did this man still have his colon intact? How did he get it so far up the wall? It was up the wall higher than I could reach without standing on tippy toes. I stood in awe of the velocity his colon was capable of.
The shit spatter evidence was damning for certain.
But that wasn’t ALL the evidence Skinny Cannon Colon left behind. Oh no. He left us something extra special. There on the floor, BESIDE the trash can were his UNDERWEAR!!! His UNDERWEAR!!! (which were nearly unrecognizable as underwear as they were so caked and covered with the offending substance).
Tina and I stared at one another speechless. We didn’t have custodial or janitorial services. We had to clean this up. It. Was. Disgusting. The sheer volume alone was astounding but to make matters worse, the stuff had a viscosity, the likes of which I have never seen since.
The following Friday, Tina and I were back at our positions at the front counter when we noticed Skinny Cannon Colon swagger back in the front door. He made a beeline for the men’s room again. And like clockwork, 45 seconds later, we were assaulted with a familiar stench.
This time? He came running out of the bathroom sprinting for the front door hollering and laughing, “I did it again! I did it again!”
Skinny Cannon Colon had indeed perfectly recreated his crap crime scene from the week before, right down to the underwear he left beside the trash can.
I never asked to work the Friday lunch shit err shift again. No amount of free beer could convince me. . .