Monday, December 20, 2010

Encounters of the strange kind

Why do public restrooms look like nuclear holocaust victims?  It’s amazing how many women aren’t properly potty trained.  Unfortunately I’m never home and I pee often.  There is nothing like a public toilet to remind you that human nature is filthy when no one is watching.  
Once I had a really unsettling experience in a public bathroom late at night.  I thought I was alone and I had just unzipped my jeans when the stall next to me whispered, “Are you mentally ill?” and dissolved back into complete silence. I knew that I wasn’t but my neighbor clearly was.  No one was around, and for a second I thought that I was going to die right there on the pee stained floor, next to someone’s used tampon, murdered by a lunatic.
I’ve always been terrified by encounters with the mentally ill.  Nothing is more disturbing or hopeless than a lost mind.  My fear began with Betty, a woman who wandered the neighborhood in a potato sack shaped dress and smiled at everyone in the kind of disconnected way that made you think she just returned to earth after being abducted by Martians.  Her greasy hair and the sad looking flowers all over her sad looking dress haunted me for years.  To this day when someone on the subway gets up and starts to preach about seeing Jesus at breakfast I want to pee my pants.  On rare occasions you can’t help but laugh if the situation is too ridiculous to feel sad.  Once I stood next to a man who was coaching the other men on the true nature of father’s day.  He was wearing a blonde wig and encouraging the male passengers to do the same, suggesting that for the holiday they borrow their wives undergarments and have themselves a real nice party.  “Don’t be ashamed,” he comforted them, “you dress yourself up real nice in them silky drawers, stand up and say, world here I am!” I would’ve loved to be on that guest list.

8 comments:

Midwestern Mama Holly said...

I know what you mean about the public restrooms. I get paranoid about touching things in there and the fact there are no toilet seats, so when I flush ( with my foot always) I damned near break my neck trying to get and holding my breath to get out of reach of the spraying cooties!

Midwestern Mama Holly said...

BTW - Are you on Twitter??? If you are hit me up @MidwesternMamaH !!

Miley said...

I think I just added 4 things to my list of "Why NYC is probably not the city for me"

Reckmonster said...

You should be wayyyyy more afraid of public toilets than of the mentally ill. Besides, public toilets make you want to vomit, while mentally ill people can be quite entertaining. I think I'm actually more afraid of the average "New Yorker" than I am of a mentally ill person!

Brahm (alfred lives here) said...

One of the advantages of being a guy, sometimes one of the few, is peeing standing up in public restrooms. Which are consistently gross. Ick.

Miss Nikki said...

@ Brahm: one of the advantages of being an old lady is peeing standing up in public toilets and not giving a rat's ass for those who will follow, like ME! Ugh! Why is it that old women ALWAYS spray all over the place like a she-moose in heat???

And I happen to love unexpected encounters with the mentally disabled, always expect the unexpected and a great story to blog about!!! Welcome to the wonderful world of blogging Bailey!

ThePeachy1 said...

I love NYC. I always said when I was in HS I was going to move there, then after a couple years to France of course. well here I sit quite a few decades later. I never made it to France. I chose the Mommy route. So when my daughter was Graduating from High School and told me she wanted to go to NYC to see it. I jumped on that like a $2.00 sale at a Jewlery Store. Her view of NYC and what to do was completely different than my goals at her age. UN, Guggenheim, Soho. We walked it every inch of it, the good the bad and the ugly for 5 days. Other than the lack of a clean restroom. It was amazing. 1 attack with a cane of a homeless crazy woman on me, and 1 pimp sizing up my daughter too close for comfort at Penn Station at 3am. My fault for location and time issues.
Welcome to the blog world !

Anna Campbell said...

I am a hoverer (sp??) I can't make myself sit down for all the Charmin with Extra Aloe in the world. Once after a very intense leg workout, I actually got stuck in the hover position for about 3 minutes. Good times.