Porta-Poop Revisited

This past weekend, a good friend and I went to the Genoa Candy Dance. I had assumed that people would be dancing and throwing candy around. I mean, isn’t that what it sounds like it would be?? To my dismay, the Candy Dance was just a bunch of over-priced vendors and food trucks (apparently there is a dinner and dance event in the evening). The food truck part was, however, much appreciated. What I did really like about this event was that it was held in Nevada’s oldest town/settlement. For a history lover, it is a real damn shame that I had never been to Genoa before. I fully plan on visiting again sans tons of people pushing to get to a stall selling crocheted rabbits.

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Piece of Sh*t Car a la Adam Sandler 

Friends, my car is dying an ugly, ugly death. We had been given a year, but the diagnosis is now, much worse. The sickness running through the fluids and electrical system has recently sped up, and I am now making funeral arrangements. I’m devastated, but not surprised. When you have no emergency break,  and chunks of seat break off, daily, you know your car’s days are numbered.

Everyday, driving to and from work is pushing it. I also have to drive sans air conditioning, and like an 80-year-old with nowhere to go. It’s awful.

It’s not even like I’m that close to my car. It has no quirky name, and no emotional connection to me, whatsoever. I mean, when your car needs major repairs just to pass smog each year, it isn’t exactly considered a prized possession.

No, I’m dreading making car payments. At the ripe-old-age of 32, I’ve never been tied down by car payments. My piece of poo on wheels only cost me $5,000 and it’s been paid off since 2006. I am dreading having to make a substantial payment on a car every month. I’m a teacher, not a billionaire.

With that, because I’ll be a slave to the bank or car dealership for 48 months or longer, I want to be able to have a damn nice ride. I’m not even picky, either. ‘Damn nice’ in my world means having a “clicker” and power windows. But, while I’m not exactly “picky” due only to being poor, I’m super particular, at the same time. It’s a Jetta, or the highway.

Since I’ll likely be driving the most expensive thing I’ll ever possess soon, I know I’ll also be an anxious mess. I like to keep my nice things nice, and we know how people are assholes. I’ll be paranoid about it getting dinged, scratched, or hit. The anxiety is already creeping in. UGH. I think I have an ulcer. 

When you are super OCD, decisions like this are not fun, like most people would treat them. No, all I’m thinking about is how long I’ll have to give up morning Starbucks runs or buying beef because I’ll be paying on a car. I’m dreading the car hunt, because shopping around for something you really can’t afford really kinda sucks. Also, my car has already been keyed by some asshole, and I haven’t even seen it yet.

Wish me luck on my search. Pray I hit the lotto. Something. Anything.

My friend and I would blast this song as we “dragged main”, in my first piece of shit car, an ’86 Mazda 626 with maroon interior and purple tinted windows. We thought we were so hilarious.


Air Travel is Fun

Here I sit, at the Philadelphia airport, not a fucking happy camper. I would like someone to explain to me why the trip home is always so fucking merry…

*I’m warning any virgin ears now, I’ll probably be using ‘fuck’ a lot in this post. 

My trip over was seamless, a breeze. There was barely any turbulence, I didn’t have to sit next to a smelly man with long fingernails, and it was just easy. Get on, get off, get on, get off-all on time. 

I’m hoping my complaining now will create a situation whereby I was just overreacting and it actually won’t be as bad as I’m making it out to be in my head *knocks on cheap vinyl, sticky with soda and greasy fingertips, because there’s no wood in an airport*

It’s just that, I know how traveling by air usually goes. We all do. Unless you have been living off the grid, in a mole hill, you know. 

Right now, my flight is delayed by an hour and 10 minutes. I have already been here for 2 hours and 15 minutes, because the drive into Philly is always full of standstill traffic. You never know if the drive will take an hour or 3, so best to be anal-retentive-early. So, here I sit.

Since I’ve already hit up the last-minute-oops-I-forgot-you-souvenir-shops. Since I’ve already had an overpriced lunch. Since I’ve already had a coffee, and a beer, and made 3 trips to the bathroom, I have time to recall and share my trip back from London. 

It was every traveler’s worst nightmare with a why-do-I-even-travel-cherry on top. 

The flights over to London, on my first-ever international flight went extremely well. It was full of excitement, anticipation, and wonder. The plane had screens in the back of every seat with music, movies, and a map showing our plane’s location. I took a picture of whatever was below us about halfway to London, and I got a picture of Greenland. It was cool as shit. We arrived at Heathrow stinky and tired, but elated to be starting our adventure. 

The flight home? A whole different animal. 

It started out fine. We breezed through check-in and security at Heathrow and boarded our plane on time. I was seated next to a nice, older English couple. My friend? The friend who had an entire row to himself until the last second, yet was an ass and wouldn’t let me sit next to him, got to sit next to a child who puked the whole way to Toronto. I still laugh at that quick, and concise delivery of karma. 

When we got to Toronto, I had to poop so bad. I decided I’d just come right out and be crass and say it. I figured our layover of an hour would be enough to use the restroom, but instead we almost didn’t make our flight because customs was a fucking nightmare. I was uttering horrible things under my breath. I wanted to scream the mean things, but asshole friend suggested that I shouldn’t threaten death upon custom agents. 

When we finally got on our plane, after last call, I got sandwiched between a man who smelled of feet and another man who had long, yellow fingernails, who hummed the.whole.fucking.plane.ride. I’m surprised I didn’t need my barf bag. It was horrible. 

About 30 minutes outside of Denver, we were told there was a massive thunderstorm over Denver, so we were being rerouted to a landing strip in BFE Colorado. It was literally just a landing strip, seriously in need of weeding. The entire 2 hours we sat there, I went from fearing I would have to poo in an airplane with no AC and worrying we were going to miss our connecting flight from Denver. It was an OCD sufferer’s nightmare.

Finally, we got to take off. When we landed in Denver, we found out we didn’t miss our flight, as all flights were pushed back. It was a freaking miracle. I found the nearest bathroom and thought another miracle would happen. Nope. 

I spent the entire last flight miserable. 

We finally arrived home at 2 AM. All I wanted was my bag and sleep, but, of course, my bag didn’t arrive with our plane. Of-fucking-course. 

I was still 4 hours from my home, so I got to wear my mom’s granny panties, until I got my bag back, and I didn’t even care. 

That was the worst travel experience up to this point. 

I’m currently sitting in the plane from my last connection in Chicago. We’ve been flying for maybe 15 minutes. I’m still sweating, breathing hard, coughing, and my nose is running down my greasy face. Why, you ask? My flight was boarding while I was still on the first plane. I ran, a la Home Alone from Gate 19 to Gate 5. I am sure I was a sight, in my gut flapping-asthmatic-face-wheezing glory. When I got to the gate, the door was closed and everyone was already boarded. I have never been late like that in my life. But I fucking made it. Hooray.

I have one more stop, but I don’t have to get off the plane. I can finally relax and order 8 alcoholic beverages. 

Its events like these that make me wonder why I even try to travel by air. I guess it’s because you can’t just get in the car and drive to Europe, or take 3 weeks off so you can drive cross-country. 

Le sigh. 

  

Travel Movements

Am I the only one who stresses about the bathroom situation at airports and in *gasp* airplanes

Is it just me who plans, or tries to plan “movements” so as to avoid the flying germ coffin in the sky? 

I positively detest using the airplane bathroom. I don’t think detest is a strong enough word. Loath? Does that emphasize my hate and horror enough? I think I’ll go with ‘detest’, it sounds more full of disgust. 

What I despise about the bathroom is that it’s more like an entryway coat closet, in a home for small people, than a restroom. 

It’s absolutely not a restroom, anyway. There is no resting once in its claustrophobic grip. Just to get your pants down, you practically have to molest all four walls, with every part of your body.

I’m the kind of person who prefers to have no part of my body touch any part of a bathroom. It’s a challenge. It’s an art form. I hover, I flush with my foot, I will kick the door down to get out. Anything to touch nothing. 

Why are the bathrooms so fucking small? I mean, really? I could easily give up the snack station for a larger bathroom. Who needs shitty peanuts and the worst watered-down soda when you could use a bathroom that you don’t have to have sex with to use? I’m for a larger bathroom, hands down. 

Right along with my fear of public bathrooms, be it a horrifying porta poop or a nasty shit box in the sky, I fear pooping in public. Period. I want to get in and out as fast as humanly possible. Diddle doddling around waiting for the deed to be done, is far, far too dangerous in a bathroom where someone else, a stranger, is also doing the deed right next to me. No thanks. 

I can’t relax enough to poop when someone could possibly hear the dreaded ‘splash’. Nope. No way. I’m already feeling the anxiety coming on. 

Call me a freak. Call me high maintenance. Call me what you will, but I can’t poop comfortably unless I have my In Touch, my Costco toilet paper, my room spray, and my personally cleaned toilet. 

You can say vacations are a bitch in regards to the bathroom situation. 

A Blogger Award?

Golly gee! I do believe I have been awarded a blogger award by one of my new favorite bloggers, Carrots In My Carryon. This chick is hilarious. I mean, who couldn’t simply adore a blogger with such a clever name? I am “blogger-smitten”.

I have learned quite a bit about this whole blogging thing over the past couple of months.

First, I had no idea how to even add tags to my blogs, and now I am adding links to blogs in my posts. This is an impressive feat for someone who once thought their laptop was broken because the volume button wouldn’t turn the stupid thing on. So, go me!

Second, I had no idea there were “blogging awards” and that I would ever in a million years be nominated to participate in one. I feel quite important right now. I am trying to keep a lid on my glee so as to not annoy simply everyone who comes into contact with me now.

Third, the WordPress blog world is full of insanely talented, amazing writers and people. I simply hoped to connect to those in my life, and yet, here I am connecting with people all over the globe. I am feeling all the feels right now.

As I am learning, there are rules to participating in the blogging award business. These are the rules, copied and pasted from Carrot’s blog:

THE RULES:

  • DISPLAY THE AWARD CERTIFICATE ON YOUR WEBSITE
  • ANNOUNCE YOUR WIN WITH A POST AND LINK TO WHOEVER PRESENTED YOUR AWARD
  • PRESENT 15 AWARDS TO DESERVING BLOGGERS
  • DROP THEM A COMMENT TO TIP THEM OFF AFTER YOU’VE LINKED THEM IN THE POST
  • POST 7 INTERESTING THINGS ABOUT YOURSELF.

I think the award certificate is this:

dragonsloyaltyaward

I am not quite sure why it is picture of a dragon, and I am immensely relieved that I do not have to write a fantasy story about a dragon. Or, that my facts have to be dragon-themed. Other than my breath in the morning, I am not very dragon-y. I like watching the Mother of Dragons with her babies on GOT, but that is the extent of my dragon-ness.

I am supposed to nominate 15 people. Let’s see if I can round up 15 fellow bloggers.

Drum roll please…I nominate:

1. babysteps22 because she is adorably hilarious. She is my blogger friend hailing from India. I am learning so much reading her posts. She is super funny, a great writer, and simply lovable.

2. AuntyCath because she is funny as hell and super supportive. She lives way over in Australia, and that is just rad as shit.

3. albuslepus because she commented on my latest post and it made me happy that someone new relates to what I have to say. Also, because I want to learn more about this person!

4. RobynChristi because she is my British doppleganger, in that we share the same humor. She is adorable and just funny as hell. Twinsies!

5. sfarnell because his comments on my posts are funny and I know very little about him! I know how men like these kinds of things *evil laugh*.

6. ACoupleTalks because their blog is very very funny and thought-provoking. Also, their angle is interesting: a husband and wife co-writes this amusing and insightful blog. Check it out.

Whew, I am getting tired. Do I really have to nominate 15 bloggers? Do you know how much work goes into tagging people? 6 is almost 15, right? I think 6 is good.

OK, here we go. I know ya’ll have been chomping at the bit to read these super random facts about me. It has taken most of my mental energy today to come up with 7, somewhat interesting facts about yours truly. Everyone better enjoy this, and consider these facts the most interesting factoids learned in quite awhile! Ready? Here we go!

1. I didn’t know I had a sister until 7 years ago. Straight out of Maury, we have the story of how Katie met Tracy. Actually, our story is precious to me, and I will be writing about it soon. Stay tuned.

2. I am directionally-challenged. It took me the entire 4 years of high school to be able to find my locker on the first attempt. When I started college, I relied on my friend to get me to class. Every.Single.Day we would exit class and I would start heading in the wrong direction. Every day.

3. I am forever worried about all of the old people of the world. Did they take their pills? Did they cross the road safely? Have people been holding doors for them? If I see an elderly person crossing the street, I slow my car, and wait until I know they got across safely. Don’t mess with my elders! I will eff you up.

4. I am super OCD. No, not “counting or checking compulsive”, (although I have been known to check to make sure I unplugged my flat iron or coffeemaker more times than is sane), but in a, “Is-my-nail-art-the-exact-same-on-every-nail-tell-me-for-the-54,847,643-time-why-you-are-not-mad-at-me-anymore-and-OMG-that-person-across-the-room-sneezed-and-now-I-am-going-to-die way. Yeah.

5. I have intense wanderlust, but I also have a fear of the danger present in all new experiences. When I was in England, we rented a car to be able to have more flexibility with our destinations. After a harrowing trip on the motorway, through tiny village streets, and finally into the parking lot of the Quality Inn, literally the first hotel I saw outside of Birmingham, I never wanted to drive in England ever again. I was sure I would die in England, and my family would find out because someone would happen upon some obscure story about the End of American’s Jolly Holiday. That damn car was parked for two days until we had to get to Wales, to get the ferry to Ireland. I had to get back on the horse, and I got over my fear of dying in a tiny Peugeot. By the end of my trip, I was an expert “wrong side of road driver”. Getting over the scary shit in life has always been a challenge for me.

6. I have an insane attention to detail. It is why I remember faces, not names, and why I remember scary details about you, details you didn’t think you told me. I also have a keen sense of reading body language. I can tell when someone is anxious, worried, or uncomfortable. I react to people’s body language more than the words that come out of their mouth.

7. I am a 3rd grade teacher, and I adore every stressful, time-consuming, and inspiring moment of every day. However, my dream job is to be paid to travel and stay at weird hostels and hotels, and to just experience the hilarity that travel can be. You know where I am going with this, right? Yup. Then, obviously, I will write genius reviews of my experiences. I am sure there are millions of people who would love this gig. Dreamers can dream.

Well, I can’t wait to learn more about the fabulous bloggers I have nominated. Ya’ll better do it!!

TP

As I mentioned in a previous post, I used to run the blog bigcitybetty. I didn’t only write about living in a small town, I would also make observations about the absurdity of life. One of my favorite posts was about toilet paper. Anyone surprised? I have been mentally preparing a blog post about all of the ridiculous things that happened to me when I lived in Elko, so until then, I thought I would share this post I wrote in December 2011. Enjoy.

I just had a very confusing trip to the bathroom while at my parent’s house. I did my business, read a little ditty about high blood pressure in Woman’s Day and then went for the white stuff…That’s where the confusion started. There were two rolls on the holder. The holder was large enough to fit, perfectly, two rolls of TP. Two rolls. They were brand-spanking-new and so fat, soft and inviting. I sat there a minute completely lost. Which roll should have the distinct pleasure of meeting my ass? I decided the right one was easier to access and the right side just seemed…well, right. I took a few squares, did my thing and then realized the two rolls looked off balance. I decided to take my new handful of TP from the left to balance it out. After close inspection, it seemed I took a little too much off the left side and would have to take more from the right to compensate. This went on for another 5 minutes. My arse was clean, but the rolls still needed to look even. I couldn’t leave one more unused than the other, that just wasn’t right. Two whole rolls of toilet paper and 30 minutes later, I was finally satisfied.

In closing, I have to ask, “Why in the fuck does one need TWO rolls of toilet paper? Is it merely to confuse your bathroom guests or is it to torment people with OCD? Either way, one roll will suffice. Now, I need to buy my dad some new toilet paper and my butt is really chafed from all the unneeded wiping. Sometimes I feel like I am the only one in the world with any sense. Good grief.

Super Wimp

One of my new favorite bloggers I am following inspired my new blog post today. RobynChristi posted about being a scaredy-cat. I can relate ALL TOO WELL. Anyone who knows me, knows I am the person who checks the door 45 times before leaving. Usually that’s not enough, because I’m certain I was finally robbed and the door will be wide open, so I go back to check once more (do I want to admit that this is usually after I’ve gotten in the car, buckled up, found my chosen Pandora station, and started the car?) 

I count the walk back to my motel, by the airport in Oakland, from the Bart station, on NYE 2014 as the most terrifying thing that ever happened to me. I was certain the entire time that I would be shanked. I also have never walked so fast in my entire life. In wedges. My leg muscles were cramped up for days. 

The house I lived in in Elko was situated on a lonely dirt road, far from the main road. Getting out of my car at night was terrifying. It was pitch black and there were so many glowing eyes everywhere (they were jackrabbits, but still…) I would run so fast, once my feet hit the dirt, I basically flew to the door. My heart would be pounding out of my chest the whole terrifying journey. Once I was safely inside, I was sure I evaded certain death. This was EVERYDAY. 

If I could lock myself into my bedroom at night with several different locks, I would. Two different chain locks would make me feel best, but I always figure that’s overkill. Summer proves a challenge for me, as it is too hot, so the door has.to.stay.open. OPEN. 

Summer is not a good time for my nerves. 

Am I the only weirdo who is certain that robbers, boogeyman, and psychopaths can sense when someone leaves their bedroom door open and that’s how they choose their victims? Leaving my door open at night is like a huge, welcoming invite to come eat me alive. I just can’t deal. 

Some nights, I try to shut and lock the door when I know my boyfriend is fast asleep. It usually doesn’t work, because sleeping in a pool of his own sweat usually wakes him up, and then he gets mad that I did it again. He thinks I’m a psycho. He’s suggested therapy more times than I want to admit. 

So, I think if there were a Guinness record for “Most Terrified Person”, I would get it hands-down. I’m not sure if I should be mildly proud or immensely embarrassed. Either way, I’m already counting the days until it starts getting cool enough at night so I can barricade myself in the bedroom and get a decent night’s sleep. 

Porta Poop

Can I just take a moment to express how much I hate porta-potties? My hate and disgust is so strong that I will directly avoid events where I know only shit boxes will be provided. Portable toilets are hot, putrid, foul places that I never, ever want to find myself in. Ever. Today, I had to use a poop house and it was horrible. It was so horrible. I want to describe my shitty (literally) ordeal for your reading pleasure, but first, I would like to share where I believe my fear of porta-potties came from. 

When I was 15, I began dating a guy who was a total Creatine-head. He drove a ridiculous, embarrassingly huge truck, with stack pipes so big you had to know they represented what he so sorely lacked in his pants. He was a hot head and a fool. I was even more of a fool for dating him, but that’s another story or twelve. Anyways, I would accompany him and his family on camping trips out at Pyramid Lake during the summer. Anyone who knows Windless Bay beach, also knows that Windless Bay really means Wind So Strong It Blows Your Tent Into the Lake, Along With Your Sleeping Bag, and Favorite Down Feather Pillow. The wind at Pyramid Lake is like a big “Fuck You” to your ignorantly innocent belief your camping trip will be pleasant. 

So, let’s recap, it’s fucking windy at Pyramid Lake. This particular beach also has two porta-potties for the entire beach. Two. How generous. It’s basically a germaphobe’s living nightmare. In case anyone wanted to know, wind and porta-potties aren’t the best of friends, especially so, when the porta-potty isn’t even anchored to the ground, in any way, shape, or form. I’m sure we have all inferred at this point that I had an unfortunate experience in a portable toilet at Pyramid Lake. Yes, I had to use a porta-poop in a wind storm and the experience has affected my mental stability since. I have Porta-Potty PTSD.

I don’t really want to get into how horrible the realization that you may, quite possibly, be in a porta-potty when it tips over, because I don’t have enough Xanex and bleach to erase the memory. Simply, I wouldn’t wish, even on Kanye West, the worry that the likelihood of being covered in other peoples’ poop is frighteningly high in such a situation. It was terrifying, let’s just leave it at that. However, the absolute best part was that my boyfriend, my walnut-for-a-brain boyfriend was outside the porta-potty, as my life was flashing before my eyes, and I was hastily asking God for forgiveness for all of my minor transgressions, shaking it. He was shaking the porta-potty. He was helping the wind along. He was shaking it like a big, dumb buffoon, laughing like a fool. I simultaneously wanted God to forgive me my sins and to kill another human being. When the horrific ride in the porta-poop finally came to an end, I mercilessly beat him over the head with a flip flop. I should have dumped him then and there, but I was D.U.M.B. at 15. 

So, I am really not fond of porta-potties, but who is? I mean, I doubt there is a single person on this planet who seeks out these portable nightmares, because they get a kick out of the experience. 

Today, at the Renaissance Faire (yes, I went to a Ren Faire, shut up), I mistakenly thought I could take my purse in the porta-potty. For anyone’s future reference, there is not a single square millimeter that is safe for you to touch, so why subject your precious purse to possible exposure to God-knows-what? So, I had to exit, apply half a bottle of hand sanitizer, and find my boyfriend to watch my purse. Upon my second attempt, I mistakenly looked in the hole! WHY IS THERE ALWAYS DIARRHEA? Does some asshole go around and diarrhea in every porta-potty he sees, or are the runs more of problem than I previously thought? 

So, now comes the decision to brave sitting my naked, innocent ass on the vile seat or risk hovering and subsequently being splashed by the diarrhea. This decision stresses me out to the point I start to sweat profusely, and now I’ve been in a nasty, hotbox for far too long and I haven’t even done my business. I decide on hovering, because contact is just too terrifying. As I attempt to dodge the pee on the ground, while trying to not touch the front of the toilet seat with my pants, I notice my hair is almost in the urinal. It’s dangling IN THE URINAL. 

I can’t even.

I almost just exit, mid-pee, with my pants around my knees. Scarring children for life, or the obvious embarrassment of exposing my hairy ass, seemed better at the moment than the sensory overload of nasty in that hell hole. As a serious germaphobe, these disgusting situations make me almost insane. It took me an hour to stop sweating and convulsing, and I’m still positive I’ve contracted syphilis.

Next time I find myself out in the woods, or at a concert, I’m holding it. I’m effing holding it.