September 27, 2007

Putting The "P" in "Phone"

So, while I was down at the Monkeytown office yesterday morning, I walked into the bathroom...

(Oh, come on. Didn't you see this coming? Can I go a week without a bathroom story? Not these days. Where was I?)

...and standing before me, there was a six and a half foot tall, shirtless African-American man laughing hysterically. I don't know what within me forced me to continue forward. In retrospect, I should have turned right the hell around and found another restroom. My fight-or-flight bathroom instincts, despite plenty of opportunities to practice, aren't very well honed. But I had to pee. I soldiered on.

After re-entering the atmosphere of Crazy Bathroom Planet, I assessed the situation. It actually became less clear. Like I said, large African-American dude, laughing hysterically, with, I now saw, a dress shirt slung over one of the bathroom stall walls, the sleeves totally wet. He was clutching something wrapped in a paper towel. The heart of his last victim?

"Man," he said with great effort between bellowing laughs, "I dropped my phone. Like, in there, you know what I mean?" And there it was. The situation.

The odd thing - okay, the most odd thing - was the way this guy kept laughing. He could barely string a sentence together. I think it was more out of embarrassment. Here he was, shirtless and wet, having dropped his cell phone in the toilet under who knows what kind of conditions - frankly, even the least terrible conditions under which that phone could have entered that state would be bad - and he got busted. By me. It was odd, but I found myself laughing hysterically with this half-dressed stranger.

"Know what really sucks?" he asked. "This is my work phone." And we both busted a gut.

Then, miraculously, as if angels from on-high parted their wings and reflected the sunbeams emanating from the most merciful of cell-phone deities, the phone began to ring. I told him I thought that was a pretty damn good sign then I finished my business (yes, I had to pee and I didn't let this situation stop me), zipped up and went on my merry way. As the door closed behind me, I heard the sound of a ringing phone and the hysterical laughter of a half-dressed black man.

Posted by Chris at September 27, 2007 7:20 AM


Posted by: Michelle at September 27, 2007 7:53 AM

That is funny. At least, he wasn't crazy. He had a good reason for being shirtless.

Posted by: Maria at September 27, 2007 7:54 AM

Ha! Love the title. :)

Posted by: laura at September 27, 2007 8:05 AM

Truly hilarious.
When I dropped my phone in the toilet, I cried.
Then again, it pretty much broke forever.

So, different situation.

Posted by: Cassandra at September 27, 2007 8:19 AM

Your work bathroom is like a portal to bizzaro land! It could totally be a sitcom!

Posted by: Lisa at September 27, 2007 8:25 AM

I am thinking that maybe you could start charging people form the internet to use the bathrooms at your office. Like a circus side show. I'd buck up.

Posted by: William at September 27, 2007 8:27 AM

By far my favorite of the Rude Cactus Toilet Chronicles.

Posted by: donna at September 27, 2007 9:00 AM

That's hilarious. At least this time there was an explanation for the weirdness.

Posted by: Fraulein N at September 27, 2007 9:01 AM

Have you considered wearing diapers? Nine out of ten NASA Astronauts recommend them.

Posted by: Candy at September 27, 2007 9:09 AM

I think you could effectively use the last sentence of the last paragraph to end just about any story you could ever tell with a bit of a flourish.

Posted by: You can call me, 'Sir' at September 27, 2007 9:24 AM

Oddly enough, I had a similar experience a few months ago. A co-worker here dropped her phone into the toilet...after she had used it. Ewww. She had to fish it out and was just rinsing it in the sink when I walked in. Unfortunately for her, it didn't recover, and she lost several phone numbers.

Posted by: Alissa at September 27, 2007 9:35 AM

He probably had one of those weeks like you so often describe. No wonder he laughed and you right along with him. Somewhere deep down you may have identified with the guy.

If I wrote a book about my life no one would believe it. Sometimes the only thing we can do is laugh hysterically.

That being said, you do have a knack for attracting the bizarre.

Posted by: ann adams at September 27, 2007 9:57 AM

I'm sure this has been suggested before, but I hope you're collecting these stories for a Tales from the Toilet Room book.

Posted by: Shelly at September 27, 2007 10:55 AM

His shirt sleeves were wet? He couldn't take off his shirt - or at least roll up his sleeves - before he plunged his arms into the toilet to retrieve his phone?

Posted by: kalisah at September 27, 2007 11:03 AM

this is so funny because my co-workers and i were just talking about crazy bathroom stories during our coffee breaks. i can't wait to tell them this one!

Posted by: ali at September 27, 2007 11:40 AM

I would have flushed the phone. What goes into the bowl does NOT come out.

Posted by: GreenCanary at September 27, 2007 11:45 AM

OMG! Someday I want to go to the bathroom with you. I mean, all these great things happening, and I am missing them!

Posted by: Maribeth at September 27, 2007 12:10 PM

That's an awesome story!
(As for the hysterical laughter, sometimes you just can't believe that one more lousy thing happened to you. One time, when I was at a very low point in my life, I was walking along in Boston and a passing dog ripped the ass out of my jeans. I howled for blocks. I couldn't believe that when you are already feeling horrible that a dog could still bite you in the ass for no reason. And somehow it helped me put things in perspective. I still have those damned jeans, too--as a reminder.)

Posted by: Sphincter at September 27, 2007 12:19 PM

Great title! How appropriate...

Only you, I swear. Geez.

Posted by: sue at September 27, 2007 12:44 PM

The thought of a cellphone stuck in a public bathroom and the gurgling ringtone it must have been emitting through the pipes just made my day.

Posted by: aimee/greeblemonkey at September 27, 2007 1:17 PM

That's totally hilarious!

Posted by: Dawn at September 27, 2007 1:59 PM

I think you need to start peeing at home. Just sayin'.

That killed me though, I think I may purposely drop my cell phone in the toilet just so people quit calling me.

Posted by: SleepyNita at September 27, 2007 4:53 PM

If I ever drop my phone in the toilet, it's staying there.

Posted by: Tink at September 27, 2007 5:25 PM

Better a work phone than the personal one.

Posted by: wordgirl at September 27, 2007 5:50 PM

Hey, don't do that meme just yet! It got a whole lot shorter about ten minutes ago. ;)

Posted by: krystyn at September 27, 2007 7:21 PM

Hahaha! You meet the weirdest people in the weirdest places!

Posted by: Nadine at September 28, 2007 5:57 AM

You simply MUST write the book that begs to be written. These bathroom adventures are priceless.

Posted by: coolchick at September 28, 2007 6:36 AM

Only YOU, my friend, only you.

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