Committing To Awkward: My Theater Bathroom Encounter

Not often, but sometimes, I’ll share embarrassing shit that I’ve done on this blog.

Today is going to be one of those days.

So recently, I went to go see Underwater with my Dungeons & Dragons buddies. We’ve gotten into the habit of seeing movies together, and it’s quite the enjoyable experience. As a matter of fact, they’re the ones who I went to go see Cats with. (For more on that, be sure to check out my rant on the film.)

Part of our joy in watching movies is from raucously yelling at the screen. We like expressing our disdain, enjoyment, or disbelief out loud. Rest assured, we do this when no one else is in the theater.

That was partially why I wanted a late showing for Underwater. The later we went, I assumed, the less likely other people would be at the theater with us.

Side note: Underwater is actually an okay movie. It’s got the usual horror movie tropes, but if you’re looking for an underwater horror experience, that’s exactly what you get. It’s decent. Plus, there’s a delightful surprise for any classic horror fans at the end.

So when we all entered our particular theater, I was thrilled that the six of us were there alone. We could be loud to our hearts’ content. When we went to see Cats, there had been two people who were at our showing as well. We still snorted with laughter and all, but I felt guilty about it afterward.

Now, anybody who knows me knows that I like to pee right before a movie starts. It’s all a part of my theater experience. There’s nothing I hate more than getting the urge to take a leak right at the good part. So in order to prevent that from happening, I often jog over to the bathroom right before the film actually starts. I like to think I’m completely emptying my bladder so that it can then be adequately refilled during the course of the movie with my water/soda/etc.

Thus, after we took our seats, I promptly stood back up and popped off to the john.

The layout of our local movie theater is fairly straighforward. There’s a main concession area, then two hallways that lead to different theaters. One of these hallways is shorter and only branches off into two theaters. The other is longer, and it has more theaters connected to it.

Here, I’ve made a stupid diagram of it.

The red splotches are doors. I didn’t draw out the theaters.

The showing of Underwater that my friends and I were going to see was in one of the two theaters leading into the shorter hallway. So it was a short walk to the bathroom nearby.

Just as I entered the bathroom, I saw a man leaving the concession area and heading toward the hallway. He looked to be in his forties, had a bag of popcorn in his hands, and was presumably going to watch a movie that night.

I stopped in the middle of the bathroom after entering, looking back over my shoulder out the door. The door to this bathroom is notoriously slow, so it was inching closed like molasses, allowing me a good long look at this man.

‘Dammit,’ I thought to myself. ‘What if he’s heading to see Underwater? We won’t have the theater to ourselves.’

So great was my desire to have the theater to myself and my friends, I decided to ascertain right then and there whether or not this man would be watching it with us. The bathroom door was still ponderously closing, so I stepped right next to the door jamb, staring at the man’s now-retreating figure. If he made a right into the longer hallway, I would know he was seeing something else. If he continued straight, we were doomed to polite silence.

As fate or fucking chance would have it, the man seemed to sense eyes on him, so he turned around and looked right at me.

At that moment, I had a choice.

I could either hurriedly duck away from view and pretend that I hadn’t been eyeballing his movements this whole time.

Or I could commit to what I was doing.

Side note: In stressful situations, a moment of nonplussed inaction is my usual recourse.

So I fucking committed to this stare, and the last thing I saw as the bathroom door finally closed shut was the quizzical stare of this 40-something man as he looked into the girls bathroom and saw a freak with glasses and a beanie unabashedly gazing at him with a deer-in-headlights face.

And that was probably the most embarrassing thing I’ve done this year.

So far.

I still have eleven more months to go.

Froley’s Miraculous Poop Story

My sister swears up and down that this is a true story.

I was asleep, so I can say nothing as to its veracity.

It was early morning, and Alya and I were sleeping in the same room, different beds. I had placed Froley’s bedtime cage next to my bed so he could sleep next to me. (We enjoy each other’s company that much.)

Anyway, the faintest of light was coming through the windows. I woke up briefly to take Froley out of his cage for a bit. This is a little ritual we do every time Froley sleeps in my bedroom. It’s like a second nap.

So I opened his cage door, got him on my finger, then deposited him on the roof of his bedtime cage. Then I went back to sleep.

Sometimes, Froley will stay on the roof and sleep like the fluffy flufferton he is. Other times, he’ll amble over to my bed, hop onto my pillow, then climb on my head/neck/shoulder. When he naps there, I can hear his content beak grinding right next to my ear.

So…

apparently, on this particular morning, Froley elected to sleep on my shoulder. Alya woke up and saw this, thinking it was the cutest thing ever. She tried taking a picture with her cell, but before she could, Froley stepped off of my shoulder and back onto the cage.

Disappointed, she put her cell phone away and cursed her bad luck.

However, to her utter astonishment, Froley did a little poop once he was on his bedtime cage, his messiness landing squarely on the poop-sheets below. Once done with his business, he waddled back onto my shoulder.

Alya thinks Froley is a secret genius now, thanks to his good judgment, consideration, and miraculous poop skills.

Life Update #4: Living with Hardcore Henry

I’m not overly fond of spiders.

In fact, they freak me the fuck out.

I wouldn’t say I shriek and run away like a stereotypical arachnophobe, but I do flinch and maybe panic a bit…which is not all that different, I suppose.

There is one type of spider I’m not all that scared of, and that is the daddy long-legs. They have thin, spindly legs and the smallest of bodies. Their webs are wispy and frail, occasionally looking like hair more than webbing.

They’ve been a part of my life for a long time, for as long as I can remember. They heavily populated the garage and were sometimes seen indoors. My dad once picked one up and showed it to me and my sister. He said they were helpful in keeping other, more dangerous spiders away. So even though my mom might shriek and demand the death of every daddy long-legs she can find, they always had a hall pass in my book. As long as they kept the ever-threatening presence of those “other, more dangerous spiders” away, I was totally cool with them.

About a year ago, I noticed there was a daddy long-legs taking up residence in a corner near where my bookshelves are. While it initially jump-scared me by popping out when I was reaching for a book, I decided to leave it alone. I dubbed it Hardcore Henry and just took extra care when selecting books from that shelf.

Henry and I began a steady relationship from that day forward. I said, “Good morning, Henry,” every time I passed by that spot, and he’d sit in his web, chilling. I even introduced him to my boyfriend, who should by now be accustomed to my penchant for naming things.

However, I made the mistake of introducing Henry to my mother.

I mentioned that I had a daddy long-legs I was keeping around, and she freaked out. I didn’t tell her Henry’s exact location, but she knew he was around my bookshelf.

One day, she found Henry when I wasn’t in the house. She yelled aloud as soon as she saw him, and my boyfriend, who happened to be nearby, told her, “That’s Henry. Amanda is keeping him.”

The next day, when I passed by the bookshelf, Henry wasn’t there.

I’ll admit, I was saddened at the thought that my bookshelf companion was gone to the big web in the sky, but I didn’t hold it against my mom. I, too, am afraid of spiders and will not hesitate to squish them if they even think of getting too close.

But Henry was different.

He was a cool spider.

A couple of weeks ago, I was walking by that bookshelf again, when I noticed some webbing was there. I took a closer look, and what should I find but another daddy long-legs.

I am calling him Hardcore Henry II.

And this time, I’ll just keep his presence between him, me, and the rest of you guys reading this.

The Spider This Morning

It started like any other morning.

(Isn’t that always the way things start?)

My phone was booping out some generic alarm, so I opened my eyes slowly. I could feel the slight crustiness in the corners. (It’s fun to scratch that stuff away.) I reached for my phone in the darkness of my bedroom. I squinted from the bright light of its screen and jabbed the alarm off. The room was cold, so it was a real struggle to simply pull the thick comforter off of myself. I did it anyways and slouched to the bedroom door. My favorite pair of slippers were right there. They were light blue and as soft as the softest bath towel. They also made the most delightful slapping noise whenever I walked on tile.

(I’m fond of shoe noises.)

I went to take off my retainer and brush my teeth. Then I shuffled down the long hallway to the kitchen. Some lights were already on there, but the rest of the house was dark.

As I entered the living room and then turned the corner to the kitchen, I was greeted by my sister, who was busily making coffee for the two of us. I said a sleepy but good-natured hello in return, and then proceeded to wash some of last night’s dishes.

(My sister and her husband are notoriously bad at doing the dishes in a timely fashion, so whenever I stay with them, dish-washing falls to me. I don’t mind because they do most of the cooking in return. I’m not much of a cook.)

Alya has a teacher schedule, and as any fellow teacher will know, you have to wake up early if you’re going to prepare for your day at school properly. Alya always woke up at 5:30 a.m. so that she would have time to lesson plan and walk her dog, Ushi, before school. I had set my alarm to 6 so that I could keep her company. It was pretty hellacious on my sleep schedule since I never compensated by going to sleep early, but hanging out with Alya even a single second more made it all worth it.

After doing the dishes, I knelt down to greet Ushi.

Ushi is an absolute darling of a dog. She’s a large, St. Bernard-Great Pyrenees hybrid whose only objective in life is to get love.

I was thoroughly occupied in helping Ushi achieve that goal when all of a sudden, I heard Alya shout, “Oh my god! Is that real?!”

I looked up at Alya from where I was crouched on the kitchen floor with Ushi. Alya was standing close to the living room while still in the kitchen, and she was staring at the ceiling in disbelief.

I followed her gaze and felt my fists clutch at Ushi’s thick white fur in dismay.

On the ceiling, a spindly, hairy spider held perfectly still.

Alya and I glanced at each other. We both thought the same thing: Fuck. 

(Yes, Alya and I are that close that we know what each other is thinking.)

Alya started to panic. “Oh, what are we going to do? Is it alive? I can’t see it moving. Maybe it’s dead. Where’s the broom?” She said all this in a rush, then went off to find the broom.

I stayed sitting on the floor frozen for a moment, but then I scuttled away on my behind in a hurry, heart thumping unpleasantly. I grabbed Ushi by her neck fur and dragged her with me. She slid along the floor uncomplainingly, unaware of the terror that was unfolding before her.

(I am massively terrified of spiders.)

However, once Alya came back with the broom, Ushi finally realized something was up. She began looking all over the kitchen for whatever was going to get swatted. She even trotted up to the backyard sliding glass door to see if something outside was causing the broom to appear.

She failed to see the nightmare that was still perched on the ceiling.

Alya brought the broom up as if to sweep the spider towards me. “Amanda, get out of the way!”

“Whoa! Not here!” I was standing by the sliding glass door as well. I pointed to a more open space of the kitchen, in the complete opposite direction from me. “Do it there.”

Alya tilted the broom a bit so that its bristles would sweep the spider away from us.

“Are you ready?” A tinge of excitement colored my sister’s tone. I both hated and loved it. That tone meant that she was having fun. I was legitimately concerned. It did bring a certain amount of lightheartedness to the whole situation though.

Before I could properly steel myself, Alya swept the broom in an arcing motion. It hit the spider perfectly, and it plopped onto an empty space of tile floor. It didn’t move.

Reassured of its lifelessness, Alya and I walked up to its body.

And that’s when the fucking thing decided to move.

(Spiders are dicks sometimes.)

Alya and I shrieked bloody murder. The most I could do was scurry backwards and press up against the sliding glass door. Alya started whacking at the spider with the broom like an erratic game of Whack-a-Mole. It’s like the broom was a hoe, and she was furiously pounding the earth.

Unfortunately, the broom’s bristles did not carry enough pressure to properly smush the beastly spider. I think I saw its body bounce a bit, but it was still very much alive throughout all of Alya’s broom attacks.

Ushi just stared with her tail wagging as her owner brought the broom up and down on the floor.

Alya eventually stopped to check her work. The spider was not moving as much as before, but its legs were twitching. “I need a chancla,” Alya declared.

She had a pair of flip-flops by the sliding glass door. I reached for one slowly, making none of my movements too forceful.

(Everyone knows that spiders can only see you if you move.)

I tossed Alya the sandal, and she caught it with one hand. The other hand still held the broom at the ready.

Ushi’s attention was riveted by the sandal, as if she thought she was supposed to catch it. She completely ignored the eight-legged monster on the floor.

With one expert motion born from years of swatting flies and mosquitoes, Alya brought the chancla down. We both let out one final shriek as it made its impact on the spider and the kitchen floor with a sharp slap.

When Alya pulled back the chancla, the unmoving body of the spider was all that remained.

It had tried that trick on us once before, so we approached it more cautiously the second time around. Upon further inspection, it was clear that the spider was crushed, defeated.

Alya and I sighed with relief and started laughing at our own silliness. Using a napkin, she picked up the spider and tossed it in the trash.

(I am so freaked out by spiders, I will not touch them even when they’re dead.)

We continued on with our morning, a little exhilarated by the thrill of adventure from the spider-killing.

After all that excitement, Ushi lay down right where the spider had met its doom and took a nap.

Being a Floor Person

A perfectly acceptable chair could be available, but you can usually find me on the floor right next to it.

I’m a Floor Person.

There are many of my kind around the world, I’m sure.

Chairs are confining to us. Floors, most especially carpeted ones, are our thrones.

All of my close friends are aware that I’m a Floor Person. (And now, so does whoever reads this post.) Mia, one of my closest friends, often invites me over to her house for a relaxing morning of coffee and old Star Trek episodes. Whenever I go over, my preferred spot is the rug right in front of the television screen. I’ll squat there with my mug of steaming coffee (as sweet as sin and as white as most of our gosh-darned politicians) in my hands. The one time I chose to stretch out on her couch, Mia stared at me as if she thought I was dying.

Even now as I type, I’m sitting on the floor. My desktop computer rests on a low-lying coffee table that stands no higher than my knee.

I don’t know, maybe I never grew out of hanging out on the floor when I was a kid. Maybe that’s why I’m a Floor Person.

All I know is that it is my preferred area of relaxation.

The downsides of being a Floor Person, as any Floor Person will tell you, are the ashy knees and elbows you acquire over time. Years of being on my knees (that’s what she said) and my elbows have made lotion a necessity.

I could give two fiddlesticks if someone looks down on me for being a Floor Person. (Which is convenient, because I don’t own any fiddlesticks.)

But of course, I’m not an impolite bastard. If I’m your guest and I don’t know you too well, I’m not going to just sprawl all over your newly-bought rug.

I’ll ask if it’s okay first.

There are total upsides to joining the Floor People. Adjusting your posture is infinitely easier when you aren’t constrained by the confines of a chair. You never really need a desk since the floor is both your desk and your chair. Plus, buying furniture in the future will be less expensive if you forego purchasing chairs.

All you have to do is invest in a nice, comfy rug.

Here’s to you, my Floor People!

 

Three Embarrassing Things I’ve Done While Taking a Shower/Bath

Before I continue, let me say that I’m writing about harmless antics. Nothing obscene. If you’re looking for that kind of stuff, best you go elsewhere.

Anywaysies, I thought I’d be a little more open to complete strangers, so I’ve decided to share some absolutely embarrassing things about me so that people can know I truly am a below average someone.

Here goes:

1. When my sister and I were really little, we would often take baths together. Rather than focus on getting ourselves clean (which is what we were supposed to be doing), Alya and I would have a grand old time playing with bath toys, making waves in the “deep waters,” and seriously messing with the shampoo.

We would take nearly empty or half-full shampoo bottles and fill them up partways with water. Then we would shake them like crazy.

In this manner, we created rudimentary foam shooters. The rich, bubbly mixture of shampoo and water would roil within the bottles, so that when we gave them a squeeze, foam would shoot out.

We thought it was fun to see how high we could get the foam to reach. We would aim the bottles at the ceiling, and try to get the foam to reach it. The end result of our baths would be dripping foam-icicles on our ceiling that we weren’t tall enough to reach to clean. We would have to toss a damp washcloth at the ceiling in order to hide the evidence of our tampering with the shampoo bottles.

2. I’m a tad embarrassed to admit this (though that’s what this post is about), but I’ve actually spent several minutes of my shower-time staring at a soap bar, trying to move it with, as yet, undiscovered telekinetic powers.

(Yes, I know it’s unlikely I could do this. No, I did not let this stop me from at least trying.)

I tried to clear all doubt from my mind, but a niggling worm of skepticism always resided in the small recesses of my brain.

Part of me believes it is this doubt that prevented me from lifting the soap with my mind.

3. Finally, I have, on multiple occasions, filled my cheeks with water and shaken my head rapidly from side to side, pretending to be Boss Nass. In case you don’t know who Boss Nass is, he’s the chief of the Gungans in Star Wars Episode One: The Phantom Menace.

Here is the link to the noise I’m trying to imitate.

I wasn’t lying when I said this was embarrassing.