••• Thursday, August 19, 2004

A Waste is a Terrible Thing to Mind
Girl's night at the cottage was a grand time, and everyone agreed it will become an annual summer event.

Amid the late night giggle snorting and booty Krumpin', and unbeknownst to my tipsilating friends, I harbored a secret fear. A preoccupation. A thing. In fact, amid all the merriment and Butter Shots, I actually had a lot of shit on my mind.

Insert scary segue music.....to fadeaway.

....How This Scary Shit Got Started
The first week of our vacation, in late June, an electrician stopped by the cottage with orders to install wiring for some sort of alarm.

Initially I hadn't given his presence much thought. But after watching him go between a hole in the yard and a crawl space in the cottage, my curiosity was piqued.

So I asked my husband what the electrician was doing.

And the rest went something like this:

He's putting in an alarm.

For what?

Waste system.

The what?

The waste system.

I don't know what you mean.

Waste. Sewage.

Like stuff that goes down the sink?

Mmmm..Like that, and the other stuff.

Other Stuff?

You really don't know what I'm talking about, do you?

I'm scared.

Okay. See the hole where that guy is working?


That's where it goes to get chopped up.

Where what goes to get chopped up?


No really. What gets chopped up?

I'm wasn't kidding. Poop.

I know you weren't kidding. You're lying.

See those tanks over there?

What tanks?

Those white caps sticking out of the ground....?

You mean those aren't helium silos for the Fourth of July celebration?

No. Those are tanks filled with shit. Our shit. After you flush the toilet, it comes here to get chopped up, then it shoots over there, into a tank.

So what's the alarm for?

It tells us when all three tanks are full.

Is that important?

If you don't want the chopped up version of our family humanity spewed throughout this lovely, lakeside community, it is very important.

So the alarm goes off, then what?

Then we call the waste management company to come and take it away.

What happens if you don't hear the alarm?

You don't want to know.

I'm going to faint.

You're fine.

Because those are huge tanks and only need to be emptied, like, every three or four years, right?

Uh. No. An average family of four will fill one tank per week. Three tanks, three weeks.

They're probably talking about average rich families. Fiber rich families. Families rife with courtesy flushers. Average families with mutant genes which cause them to be highly susceptible to intestinal infortitudes.

They're talking about families like us.

Hold me...
Needless to say, the next couple days were pretty tense, for me. After staying up one night, listening for unapproved running of water or other illicit bathroom activity, I decided that someone needed to take control.

The next day, I passed out a daily allotment of flush tokens to each cottage resident. Along with three flush tokens, each person received a free pep talk on the importance of potty planning.

When I realized that the tokens had fallen into the garbage, just as my words had fallen on clogged ears, I initiated plan B. The Flush Buddy system. Per the Flush Buddy system, no one may flush until his/her Flush Buddy approves the bowl contents as flushworthy. After the ass-essment, said buddy initials a chart posted on the bathroom door.

First they laughed at me. Then they flushed with wild abandon.

With my attempted external management strategies going straight in the crapper, I decided to impact from the inside out. Diet.

While no one noticed when I removed all semblance of fiber from the domicile, there were a few questions about the flour/salt doughballs I served for dinner one night.
Mom, isn't this Christmas ornament dough?
Of course not. They're called "Gravy Balls." Very healthy. All natural and fat free. Eat up, before they set.
When my husband recommended burgers for dinner another night, I immediately envisioned a family-wide e-coli epidemic and related flushes. Aggravating this fear was the concern that with everyone lining up at the Loo, who would be available to keep an ear out for the alarm? We ate well-done that night.

Eventually, I realized that the diarreah on the brain had runneth over. I had turned into a neurotic poophead. I needed to start a movement to let it go.

That same evening, I served up a special meal, of my own creation. A casserole. A pees offering, if you will. As we sat to sup, I apologized to all for my recent, most stinky attitude. The new dish was a hit and my guests were gracious.

That night, for the first time in several, I slept like a babe. And just before nodding off, I smiled at the success of my new culinary creation. Now, what did I name it again? Oh yeah...Momma's Imodium D-light...ZZZZZzzzzz.

Back to Girls Night, and Shit Or Sticking to a Theme, Like Pooh on a Shoe
Needless to say, I was more than a little nervous about the girl's night being ruined by a geyser of doo. This fear prevailed, despite my being armed with the knowledge that we had two empty tanks to play with.

After getting loopy, I finally confessed my filthy fears to my buddies. While they were at first sympathetic, by the end of the evening my dirty little secret had become a source of friendly fodder for the proverbial fan. i.e. They gave me crap, with love.

To keep our minds out of my collective cesspool, the next day we distracted ourselves with a bit of shopping. I eventually wound up in a yarn shop and wound up with a bit of this:

And I'm here to tell ya, I've been feeling Calmer ever since.

For the record, I do have a project in mind for this puddle of puff. But more on that tomorrow, 'cause now I gotta go. I'm suddenly feeling a little flush.

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