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Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Dropping A Deuce

I think the year was 1990. 1991 at the latest. I was a highly skilled sports writer for a very bad college newspaper at the University of Cincinnati. I had tremendous talent and was destined to be Sports Illustrated's next great writer. I got all the great sportswriting gigs that you'd assume a 20-year-old undersexed college smartass would get.

The world was my rooster.

So there I was in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, late spring, hot as hell. I drove in a university-issued Chevy Lumina with my photographer, Matt. Let me explain the dynamic. The writer here is the talent, the photog is the grunt. White collar and blue collar. Air-conditioned trailer with an endless supply of fresh fruit and bottled water vs. a sweaty-browed sucker with dirty fingernails.

Quite obviously, an exaggeration. If anything, Matt was the hard worker who cared; I was just there for the free trip to Hattiesburg. I bet you've heard that one a million times.

Anyway, we were there to cover the Metro Conference (remember that?) Baseball Tournament, at which the University of Cincinnati was a poor seed because it was a weak team. Surprisingly, the Bearcats weren't eliminated quickly, so Matt and I were there for longer than expected. Long enough for me to start experiencing major stomach discomfort from all the stadium-provided hot dogs and pretzels, delivered no doubt by a truck whose signage told passersby "Hauled In Fresh Monthly" or some such crap.

Anyway, on the third or fourth evening of the trip, I really had to drop a deuce, and I'm not talking curveballs. Matt, the more organized college student of this pair, was in charge of pretty much everything. He did all the driving, took care of the hotel and restaurant bills and receipts and figured out a way for us to finagle our late-night beer purchases without a dime ever coming out of our pocket (thanks for the generous per diem, Jim Devlin!).

On this night, I asked Matt for the keys to the car, because I'd just seen what the men's room looked like. My plan was to drive to Georgia or West Virginia or wherever Deliverance was filmed so I could take care of business in the woods there. ANYTHING would have been safer than the men's room at what I think was called Pete Taylor Park.

After 20 questions from my date, er, photographer, I got the keys and hustled down some service road after turning out of the stadium. It was dark, I was lost and figured to be nowhere near a gas station, let alone a clean one. But off in the distance there appeared to be a sign for a Clark station. Not all five of the letters were lit, but I was desperate and C*ARK was good enough for me. Plus, my legs were about as straight as Peter North after dropping a Viagra before a scene with Jenna Jameson, trying to hold between my cheeks what felt like King Kong's big brother.

I sped up to the C*ARK station, turned left into the lot there and saw hanging in the window a neon sign with an arrow, pointing me to the RES*RO*MS. In one fluid motion, I slammed the car into park, pulled the lever to open the door and pushed it wide open with my unmuscular left shoulder.

You ever heard the expression "the bottom dropped out" ? Well, I think that's exactly what happened. I lost about five pounds the moment my left Nike hit the pavement. Every digested hot dog, soft pretzel, peanut (yes, peanut), nacho and cherry licorice string from the previous 12 hours spilled out of me the way a fine custard swirls perfectly into the eagerly awaiting cone below at your local Baskin-Robbins location. I believe they serve 32 flavors there, but in Hattiesburg that night, I served myself only a heaping dose of humiliation.

I then wobbled to the men's room, where, bent over and sweating like hell, I placed my hands below the boxer shorts and tried to push the deposit from out of the underwear and into the toilet. It was a lot like conditioning your hair because I had to repeat the steps numerous times. These acts, however, yield distinctly different aromas. I was about halfway into this scooping procedure when a knock on the door preceded a man asking if anyone was in there. Fortunately, the slide-lock kept me safe from a very awkward conversation.

I cleaned up the mess as best I could, got in the Lumina and hustled back to the hotel. I left the boxers in a garbage can outside our room, jumped in the shower and was starting to feel refreshed when Matt barged in, apparently the recipient of a ride back from one of the baseball parents. Fortunately, I knew he was cool enough not to freak out right then and there, but the notes and gag gifts adorning my desk on arrival back to Cincinnati were indeed a result of his habit to gossip.

Got An Embarrassing Story Like This One?


At 10:46 AM EST, Blogger Rich Decker said...

That shit is so funny, I almost shat myself reading it.

At 3:20 PM EST, Blogger Big Primpin' said...

Little Miss Muffet shat on a tuffet.

At 8:03 AM EST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

you're a tool.


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