What does the world cost? Oh well, then we'll just take a small coke.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Waiting on the women

We were getting ready for a long hiking trip, the kind of excursion that makes heels blister and ages knees rapidly. The "we" in that sentence refers to an amalgamation of friends who held roughly the same age but occupied positions all across the gender spectrum. I was one of the guys in the group. The planned hike was sixteen and a half miles through some of the most gorgeous terrain in California - which is saying something - to the top of a national icon and back again. Only a handful of us were cognizant of the strenuous nature of the expedition, but even the ignorant like me knew the most important task to tackle before starting out: visit the trail head's head.

We approached the semi-sanitary lavatories with all gaiety. Afterall, we hadn't hiked but a click and our spirits ran high from the calorie loading of the day before. At least, my spirits ran high. Some of the members of our group felt mischievous. But I'm getting ahead.

Our tempers were dampened only a little by the long line that formed in front of the cement water closets. The queue was reminiscent of the formation by the men's room during the seventh inning stretch; a dead caterpillar that had no thoughts of revival.

I don't think any of us guys even noticed the line (although I did see an attractive brunette who smiled at me and said something very nice that I didn't understand in a foreign language when I asked the time) as we marched to the male lavatory and did our business. We expected the girls to do likewise in the facility marked for their own use.

When I emerged from the trail head's head, relieved and ready to start hiking, I discovered the girls had a completely different strategy in mind. Rather than wait out the lady line, they asked us to post a guard and shut down the men's room for them. Being impatient as well as gullible, we obliged.

Although I'll deny it vehemently if you ever bring this up at a party, I am a total klutz socially. Those of you who know me are entirely too aware of this fact, but it needs to be raised again for reference sake. I have the social skilz of a demented three year old, as evidence by the fact that I just used the word "skilz." But I am comfortable in my uniquely awkward persona and total inability to charm. I am satisfied with my delinquent personality and sub-par conversation abilities. I'm okay with being pushed around by those who are more assertive and better able to get their way than me. I am fine with being the door mat for all my friends. Really, I am.

For the record, I didn't write the paragraph above. I think it was Chip, our latest contributor, but if you have better information, please let me know.

For whatever unimaginable reason, I was chosen to guard the door. As soon as I assumed the bouncer position, a heavy-set male with a ruddy complexion and an Owen Wilson nose approached the door. Something about him told me he had to use the bathroom.

"Can I help you?" I learned the line from the service industry.

"Uh, yeah, is this the men's room?" Ruddy Nose looked tired; he wasn't in the mood to add another crook to his schnoz. I wasn't in the mood to give him one. For the moment we were amicable. But I had to answer this question.

"Some young ladies needed to use the restroom and didn't want to wait through the line which you can see to your left is longer than a Desperate Student post. If you'll just wait patiently--" My sentence was interrupted by a peal of laughter from the estrogen-swamped men's room. I grimaced and Ruddy Nose gave me an amused look.

But it got worse. I cleared my throat, adjusted my collar and spread my legs out to improve circulation. I felt a bead of sweat start to form at my hairline and reached to wipe it away without thinking much about it. Ruddy Nose noticed and evidenced his perception with a tight grin. He really had to go.

Another girl from our group arrived late and looked around for her friends. It didn't take her long to do the math and run into the men's room to join the others. I tried to stop her, to explain that there was now a guy in line who had a long established right to first restroom entrance and that there was another facility where she had the right of way. She would have none of it; her friends had invaded the testosterone sanctuary and she wanted to be in on the fun too.

I looked at Ruddy Nose, intending to shrug sheepishly, but noticed that a couple more guys had lined up behind the first male arrival. Each looking very ready for the trail head's head. Very ready. My shrug turned into a stare that extended straight forward above a gulping swallow. Now was not a time for making light of the situation; no joke would alleviate the tension.

If only the girls felt that way. Another peal of laughter accompanied a louder remark: "You are doing your makeup?" Whoa. I inhaled deeply, ignoring the pine scented air and tried not to think about the travesty I was dragging the other male hikers through. Or rather what the primping girls were dragging them through.

More laughter and jokes followed from the young ladies as the minutes ticked by. Three, four, five minutes passed as more men joined the parade in front of the blocked door like an extended tiger's tail. The line had grown to a couple dozen people by the time the girls emerged, looking nice, but too happy.

None of the guys said anything or even made eye contact with the exiting females. They were zebras leaving the giraffe's cage. The girls tried to claim that their shenanigans were planned and that they intended to put upon us. They said that and other things designed to assuage the tension and drain the embarrassed red from my cheeks. I didn't know whether or not to believe them. I still don't. Regardless, it'll be a while before I close down another men's restroom.


Mrs. L said...

Lesson: When women want to break the gender rules and take the place of men - don't help them...

Anonymous said...

The girl that cut in front of the guys just sounds like Laralyn. I know it.

you can call me batman said...

lol! good post. Can't imagine any girl that would actually WANT to use a men's restroom in the woods, though (gross!).

When's the next Desperate Student coming?

Christopher Yerziklewski said...

Batman, that's cause you don't know the girls that were involved... Great post by the way.