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Shit Chat.

I’m cleaning the fryers in the back kitchen when an alarm inside goes off. I know I can’t hold it off for any longer. I try and let it go slowly, softly, easily — and then immediate terror sweeps over me.

Do. Not. Push.

This? This is not gas. This is poo. Grabbing the roll of paper towels, I head to the bathroom stall.

After I place paper towels over the toilet seat and sit down, I’m maybe two squirts in when I hear someone come in the restroom door. I sniff and clear my throat so he knows I’m there. He never knocks, just goes straight to the urinal, so that’s good. I only hope he hurries. Slow release cannot happen right now, and stealth is equally impossible, so I feel obligated to await his departure before resuming.

He must be talking on his cell phone, though, because he’s having what seems to be a conversation — a one-sided conversation, judging by the vibe of it. He seems to regard the person he’s talking to as rude, though, as if they aren’t answering him.

“Hey,” he says, louder. “Hey, dude in the stall!”

No. No way. This is not happening.

“Uh, yeah?”

“Where are you from?”

A shit chat? Is this really happening right now? I consider not answering. I do, I tell him where I’m from, but it comes out like a reluctant question.

Then he asks another question.

“Which way you headed?”

Horror movies have made us wary of hitchhikers, but Hollywood did not prepare me for this. I have literally been caught with my pants down.

Please don’t stick your thumb out from under the door.

“Dude,” I tell him, “I work here.”

“Yeah, I need a ride….”

I should throw poo at him like an angry simian.

“Well, there’s the bus system up town…”

“Yeah, I know that,” he said dismissively. He is no longer asking me for a ride. He has moved on to more pressing matters than transportation, evidently, though he still feels the need to drag me, The Dude In The Stall, into it. “Dude, did you see the sink?”

“Not yet, no.” I’m in the stall. Shitting. The sink comes after I wipe my ass.

“Looks like someone was bleeding into it. Its fucking disgusting. I’m going,” he suddenly feels the need to assure me, “but you should see it. Its gross, man.”

After he left, I flushed and went to wash my hands. A bloody loogie lay splattered in the sink, reeking of booze even from a considerable distance. It was indeed disgusting.

Almost as disgusting as talking to a stranger behind a stall door as he’s pushing a turd eel out his bunghole.


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