The Bathroom Chronicles

In the bathroom this morning, doing business as usual, except, for some reason, today is different. I still have almost-diarrhea (AD), which, as the name implies, isn't quite diarrhea but still isn't quite kosher. I like to call it Harey Diarrhea (HD), because it's as if halfway through the race diarrhea just decided to stop and take a nap. I've had AD, or HD, take your pick, let's just start calling it ADHD, every day at site thus far. Not fun. Sometimes my progress is tormentingly slow, and I keep on asking my intestines what I did to piss them off so royally - get them all hot and bothered so to speak. I wish we were hot and heavy, or, even better, going steady, me and my intestines, my intestines and me, but no such luck.

I talk to my intestines, try to reason with them, I say, Vindictiveness is not healthy for the soul. Whatever beef you've got, just drop it. Let it go. And they do, only it's the size of an M&M, and not even a peanut M&M either, just a regular M&M. And as it's going down I swear I can almost hear a thin wailing voice saying, Avenge meeeeeee! And I'm thinking, Avenge you? There's enough vengeance in your corner. Where's my vengeance? Why don't I get to take revenge? How about sharing some of the vengeance? And by now I've gone from thinking to actually talking out loud as I'm standing over the squatter buck naked in my birthday suit - standing because it's more comfortable that way and I don't like putting my feet on the footrests - shouting and laughing to myself about the unequal distribution of vengeance and how the vengeance gap is only getting bigger.

But as I said, today was different. I was still feeling bloated and had ADHD, but for some reason I was in a really, really good mood. I thought of how an Eskimo caravan would naturally be called an Eskivan, and in my current state this seemed like the height of genius. I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say what I experienced at that moment was no less than a revelation - the possibility of a new mode of being . . . one involving the union of Eskimos and caravans, and what could be better? Also I had this song in my head, the one from Bruno Mars that goes, Girl you're amazing...just the way you are, because my co-teacher's daughter was listening to that the other day while I was G-chatting with my friend from back home and I told him he was amazing just the way he was which led to a good jokefest.

So there I am, doing my standing squat, grooving to Bruno Mars, recalling a delighful convo I had with a friend, which makes me think of other convos I've had with other friends back home, and now I'm thinking how Bally's always used to play that song when I was working out last summer, and how great it was to work out and be back home with my family and friends, and pretty soon I'm missing everybody but in a really sweet fulfilling way that makes me appreciate what I have. Emotions are swarming around me like drunk electrons, their collective kinetic energy enough to split me wide while inside my soul a question is burning which I can't articulate until I realize the question is, What kind of name is Bruno Mars? I mean, just on a basic human level, what the hell kind of name is that? There's no way that's his real name. But on the other hand, wouldn't it be amazing if that was just the way he was?

Okay, so possibly the only thing worse than enduring ADHD is witnessing the crime of passion being committed against me by my intestines while it's happening in excruciatingly real time, and then suffering the additional insult of viewing the remains. Which I have to admit, gives me a perverse kind of pleasure - behold, the unholy splendor of my creation, my daily Frankenstein monster! - I can't help but feel the pride of the craftsman, and if on this fine day the mood strikes me to sing a hymn of praise to Hephaestos, the crippled master craftsman himself, who will hold it against me?

The bathroom is my kingdom and in it I reign supreme. From my Olympian perspective the squat toilet looks amusingly dwarflike, and as I shower benedictions upon the land I survey my vast fortress, the Fortress of Plenitude, and see that it is good.

And now, two things I feel compelled to share which I hope will benefit mankind for generations and generations to come:

I have perfected the butt wiggle. The butt wiggle, as every Thai and their stray dog knows, refers to the act of shaking your behind to remove any excess drippage after you've taken a dump on a squatter and given your patoot a good twice-over by hand. You know you've perfected the butt wiggle when you use the fewest number of motions to achieve the desired result - that is, as Chekov said, the definition of grace.

Number two doesn't really have anything to do with anything, but if the reader is inclined to categorization, it might be classified as one of those deligtfully whimsical observations that can only be described as Transplendent. When the day is done, and I'm in my kingdom showering, and it gets to the part where I soap my feet, I invariably start dancing. I never plan on dancing, and I don't particularly want to be dancing since I'm usually tired, but alas! my kingdom is a tiled kingdom, and so it gets slippery with all that soap on my feet. Next thing you know, I'm cavorting around the Fortress of Plenitude in spite of myself, almost breaking my neck in the process, which is why I dubbed this nightly ritual the Dance of Death. Now, I've been thinking a lot about this, this being the type of thing I think a lot about. And what I'm thinking is, these impromptu dance sessions are probably doing their bit in The Fight to Preserve Dev's Sanity. So let's pretend I have a machine whose function is to gather all your wayward thoughts and translate them into something semi-coherent. That something would sound like, If you find yourself inadvertently dancing in the shower, don't be alarmed, because it might be a good thing. Just try not to break your neck, and you should be fine.

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“Sunset at the Railroad” by PCV Nicholas Baylor Hall. Namibia, 2011.