As with the first part of this particular subject, I’ll start with an apology and I’ll throw in a warning as well.
I apologize if I offend your delicate sensibilities. And I’ll warn you now. The first part of this tale was tame compared to what you’re about to experience. This story is about the evil, duplicitous nature of turds.
So if you choose to read on, you do so at your own peril. If you’d prefer to read something fun and well-written and has nothing to do with poo, read this instead. It’s very good. And no poo.
Here we go.
When last we met, I’d finished my tale with the purchase of a powerful, wonderful toilet plunger, made from the finest space-age plastics and supporting an ingenious accordion design. And I was looking forward to the next time the Boy’s insidious Bowels of Hell unleashed something that, yet again, was no match for our poor, overfed toilets.
It didn’t take long for him to grant my wish.
A few days go by, then I went into the washroom and what did I find? A toilet with an inordinate of water and toilet paper (among other things) in it.
Uncharacteristically, I shout, “Excellent!” and go to the closet where my deterrent to the Boy’s Weapon of Mass Destruction is stored. As I wrap my hand around its smooth, dark blue handle (so lightweight! so ergonomic!), I can’t help but marvel yet again at the intelligence that went into the creation of the tool I’ve lately found myself referring to as “The Hammer” (based in part on Thor’s mighty Mjolnir, as well on how incredibly effective the thing is at pounding away at the foul Boy Plugs).
This particular unit had never been used as yet, this will be the maiden voyage, the taking of its virginity, the loss of its innocence, so I pause briefly to observe a moment of silence before entering into a historic moment.
Finally, with a steadying breath, I put the mouth of the plunger to the level of the water and slowly, carefully, navigate around the obstacles until I touch the bottom of the bowl. Then I slowly push down on the unit to clear the air from the business end of the plunger, squeezing down the accordion shape until it went no further. It made a merry bubbly noise as the air squelched out. Then I slowly released the pressure, allowing it to return to it’s former shape, now filled with water. I marveled at how much water it took on.
Then I marveled at the brilliance of a device that uses the problem (plugged up water) as the solution (the forcing of water). Genius!
Sadly, it was over almost before it started. Two quick thrusts and the Hammer had dispatched with the blockage. The toilet gurgled happily. I burbled delightedly. I gave a test flush and the toilet responded perfectly.
I shook the excess water from the plunger and stored it back in the closet and went out to sing its praises to the Wife. Strangely, she didn’t seem to share my enthusiasm, but no matter, nothing could break the high I felt at the sure pride and knowledge of money well-spent. At last, I knew the feeling that was pride of ownership.
This happens a couple more times, and every time, the Hammer comes through. I have nothing but praise for it and talk it up to anyone willing to listen.
One morning, maybe a month later, the Wife comes into the bedroom and says, “Do you smell something funny in the bathroom?” Of course, I laugh. Smell something in the bathroom? I’m not falling for that old chestnut!
But no, she’s serious. So I head in and, cautiously at first, I sniff at the air. There’s a slight…something. Not a good something and I can’t place exactly where it’s emanating from. It’s a whisper, but it’s definitely there.
So I continue to bob my head around the room, first nearer the tub area. Nope. The toilet then? Nope. Something nasty in the sink drains? Nope. Then I head over toward the closet.
Yup. Now it’s more than a whisper.
Something foul is hiding in the closet.
I slide the door open and the smell becomes louder. I lean down toward the Hammer and the smell is shouting at me. I pick it up and sniff tentatively at the business end. Oh sweet mother of Jesus!
“Found it!” I said to my wife.
“What is it?”
“The Hammer,” I said. “I guess you need to rinse it out once in a while. Makes sense.” As the Wife entered the room, I’m already at the tub and I’ve pulled the shower head from its grip and turned the water on full hot. I want to make it clear at this point I still carry no ill will toward the Hammer. New design, new maintenance rules.
I hold the Hammer at a slight angle, so I can spray water into its mouth and it will simply wash out.
Apparently cleaning a plunger is a spectator sport in our house, because in short order, in tromp the Girl and the Boy. I continue to rinse out the Hammer, explaining to the Boy that this is all his fault. If he’d just cut back on the cheese a tad and beef up the roughage, he’d–
And then a turd falls out of the hammer and into the tub.
At this point, I want to ensure that you don’t feel I’m slowing down the next few seconds for sheer prurience. Consider it more as an analytical gaze at the chain of events. And don’t worry, there’s no concern that this will result in the Schrodinger Cat Phenomenon or the Copenhagen Interpretation where the observer skews the observational results. I promise. So you can rest easy as you read on.
So, a turd falls into my tub. First of all, there’s a unique obscenity to a turd in a tub. The whiteness of the tub offset by the offensive darkness inherent in the turd. And the sound it makes as it rolls out of its accordion-cave home and rides the water down the short distance to the white enamel.
It wasn’t pretty. And because of the turd impacting the tub, four things happened almost simultaneously:
- The Girl turned and puked a little into the sink.
- The Boy ran from the room.
- The Wife slapped her hands to her cheeks and yelled, “OH MY GAWD! PickitUP!pickitUP!pickitUP!PICKITUP!”
- And I stood, shower head spraying water in one hand, Hammer leaking dejectedly in the other, frozen in place.
Then I gathered what wits I had left about me, let the shower head hang, set the Hammer down in the tub, turned to the Wife and said, “Pick it up with what, exactly?”
“Toiletpaper!” she wailed. I paused briefly to admire how anything coming out of her mouth, no matter how many syllables it possessed, was now a single word.
Then I considered picking up a wet piece of crap–and a rather sizable one at that–with some toilet paper. It would quickly soak up the water and shred like all toilet paper does. I’ll be left basically holding the turd in my bare hands. And a turd in the hand is not worth two in the tush, let me tell you.
Instead, I defaulted to dog-walking mode, and ran for a plastic bag. Rushing back upstairs, I put my hand in the bag, got my fingers around the bottom of it, then picked it up.
There’s a thing called muscle memory and it’s tied very closely to expectations of what you’ve previously experienced. God knows I’ve picked up more than my fair share of dog crap in my life. And because of that, I have an expectation of the approximate feel of a turd voided from a 40-ish pound animal.
Yeah, the Boy’s not a 40-ish pound animal. As I wrapped my fingers around it, the girth of it first threw me off. As I lifted it, the weight hammered it home. An air raid siren went off in my head, telling me: THIS IS NOT A DOG TURD. GET RID OF IT IMMEDIATELY! THIS IS NOT A DRILL!
So, instead of folding the bag around it and taking it down to the garbage as I planned, instead, picture a middle-aged man bending over, grabbing something, then going, “Ew ew ew ew ew ew EW EW EW EW!”
The next two actions are forever engraved in my memory in perfect slow motion.
The first is me throwing the damn turd back into the toilet. Hell, it’s where it belongs, right?
The second happens as the turd spirals on its slow trajectory from hand to bowl. It’s the Wife, reaching one hand out in caution, face full of alarm, mouth slowly yelling “NNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!”
Then, time resumes normalcy and the turd hits the water with a splash. I immediately flush it.
And it plugs the goddamn toilet.
And all that’s going through my mind is, you’re kidding, right?
How many people can say they’ve had the same turd plug a toilet twice?
Where’s a good turd burgler when you need one?
I’ve realized I’ve run out of room, so this two-parter is going to be a three-parter. I still haven’t explained the fact that the Boy’s sphincter “can expand enough to permit the easy and unimpeded ingress and egress of a very large cat.” Stay tuned for The Boy…and the toilet: The end (for real this time).