Toilets

September 16, 2011

Once again …..I went down to my fave neighborhood rest…. ..Angeli Cafe…

EXCELLENT FOOD thanks to Evan Kleiman..the Chef..(whom I have never met)………..that I TOTALLY love

when I go alone…for some reason I get an inspiration for a blog…and that is what happened to me tonight …

I was reading an article in the New Yorker by Alice Munro…one of my favorite writers…who is 15 years older than I am…(whew…!!!)…she is just TOTALLY Brilliant….

her article is entitled “Dear Life”….but what made my mind churn was this…

“I lived when I was young at the end of a long road…” she goes on…”the school toilets …had been the worse thing.  It was not as if we didn’t resort to an outhouse at home, but it was clean and even had a linoleum floor.  At that school, for reasons of contempt or whatever, nobody seemed to bother to aim for the hole.”

well this set my mind to the outhouses I have been in, to the memorable toilets….

at our Summer House on Burgundy Point…in the early days ..we did not have electricity….just bottled gas that powered the water heater and one lamp that was over the stove…. the rest of the house was kerosene lamps…which looking back were quite wonderful….and we did have an inside toilet…but occasionally we could NOT get the one spark plug  gasoline powered  water pump to work..(which was started by one kick starting it..which Mother hated….unless she had her riding boots on)…….so had to use the outhouse…

the outhouse – was  set a bit of a distance from the house – behind the garage (which held no car..only the HUGE kerosene drum marked “Texaco” for the lamps…at the back of the garage where ALL the spiders lurked ….and then also

kindling wood for the fireplace and an old Great Northern Railroad Machine from their Dining Cars …and  …I don’t know quite how to describe it…it was used on the Railroad (my grand was the Treasurer/Secretary of the Gt Northern….and was hired by JJ Hill…back after the turn of the century before this one….)

so many questions I would have liked to ask him ..that have EXPANDED ..like a sponge…as Every Year passes…once someone you love leaves…you ARE so conscious of  WHAT you SHOULD have asked them…..as otherwise it is gone like so many Pooh sticks throw off the Bridge onto the Brule River……….

anyway …this cooking machine from the Gt Northern Railroad …..had several  griddles…but it also had a place above the griddles where water was heated by the coals..for tea and coffee….with those spouts that you push down on to release the wonderfully Hot Water…….

but the outhouse was a two-holer…and I DO remember sitting there with my Father…more than any of my siblings….

discussing Life…and after you did whatever…you HAD to pour a scoop of Lye down the hole…for some reason..I guess the smell …..

but it TOTALLY SCARED me as…when I used it alone…I was SURE the Boogie Man’s hand would come up and drag me down into all that shit…..and diarrhea…and bloody tampons…. and IF  you HAD to go at night…with nothing but a flashlight..and mosquitoes chomping on your ass……I WAS SURE the Boogie Man was waiting for me…..I could hear him breathing under that 2 holer board….. I WOULD NOT LOOK DOWN……. man did I RUN…after I briefly did my business..

Dad also built an outhouse at our weekend place in Blue Ridge Summit,  Pennsylvania….which was adjacent to our tool shed in the woods…WHY he built it I have no idea…I guess because of Burgundy Point…but  man I would rather have crapped out in the field  …..than use THAT outhouse (which I think I only used once with him to make him happy)…….as there were tons of snakes and whatnots in the woods of BRS…the worst snake was the Copperhead which was deadly….the Black Snakes we were taught were “good snakes” but they were scary as they grew to many many feet long……like 12 feet..or maybe it was 20..or 30……………

Mom…was given a Black Snake by a friend the wonderful Flo Gibson…who always scared me ..as she had such a deep voice….was a STRONG woman….which today I TOTALLY admire…but back then all we had were simpering  white women..like from the current movie “The Help”…. (we had no Black women in our lives AT ALL…well except my best friend back then ..Alice..our laundress)….

…..Flo WAS wonderfully different…Honest …Scarily opinionated …and totally honestly OUTSPOKEN…something that NO  white woman did back in that period

….she is one of the TOP  people who started off reading for the blind then reading books for tapes…now for CD’s…

and then there was the outhouse that our Norwegian nanny (Lisa) and her husband (Per) had at their house in Arendal Norway…that we visited …years back…in the 60’s

they did not have an inside toilet….but did have indoor water….which I think was only cold…..

I will NEVER forget Per taking out the bucket of crap…from the outhouse ..down to his dock and dumping it into the crystal clear waters of the bay…… it horrified me back then …much less today it would be illegal….

Men’s  urinals …well I am piss  shy.. HATE NOT having a partition between them ….as I know a lot of men are……as when I enter and HAVE to stand next to them…I can hear their piss stopping…..and the same thing happens to me…no matter HOW bad I have to go……but if there is a partition and you cannot see each other (sorry Gay Guys) …it is  so easy to go….

and toilets..well the worst was at the old Four Star Bar and Restaurant (more bar)…the 70’s….in West Hollywood…which is now Mickey’s …it was a gay bar..and there was only one toilet ..

if you had to piss ..you went into a room where there was this long trough where everyone pissed  (if they could) together…

but   the toilet was behind this tacky lattice gate….sorta in the open at the back of the restaurant/bar..where ANYONE could look in and see you…and smell what went on there…well needless to say..I NEVER took a dump there…..I guess it was set up for voyeurs…which well – I cannot imagine a “voyeur” enjoying it …but in West Hollywood…we are ALL for Everyone…as long as you don’t scare the horses or frighten the children….but this was way before West Hollywood became a city……….

but NOW that I think of it ..the worst toilet was in a brothel in Athens..

Peter Bernhardt, John Calhoun and I – as a gift from our parent   after graduating from St Albans..went to Europe the summer of 1964…..with a book…. “Europe On 5 Dollars A Day”…which we tossed into the bin..as all you met at these place were other Americans reading the same book….

we picked up a VW bug at the auto plant in Germany that Peter’s father had bought….and travelled all through Europe and down to Greece…where we were hit by a truck as we traveled down from the  North toward Athens…..I will never forget the experience as the truck drivers that hit us practically over the cliff…rushed out…the windshield of our car had been shattered and my face was cut by glass…and one of the truck drivers …broke open one of his  cigarettes and rubbed it all over my open wounds….I DID NOT KNOW that this was an antiseptic…until much later…

we ended up driving into Athens with no windshield and this gorgesous woman approached us at a stoplight and said “Room…do you want a room” in her broken English..well John said YES…so she got in and directed us to what was a brothel (which we did NOT realize)…. at which she worked….we had 3 beds in one room…with a clogged sink…and down the hall was the toilet…which smelled worse than any outhouse I had EVER been in…..with newspaper nailed to the side for toilet paper…and man the FLIES!!!……………….and EVERY Morning…our friend would knock on our door…and then enter and barebreastedly say “Buon Giorno!!!” ..thinking it was English….

and then there was the toilet in this Parisian bar  in the Marais (gay district)…where after a group of us had finally gotten to our hotel..we met…I had been constipated UNTIL I had my first brew..and my first cigarette (yes I smoked back then but only when I drank….)…

well IT HIT me…so I ran to the Men’s room which was basically a closet…with a sink…a hole in the FLOOR…and two foot prints in front of it…NO TOILET…..I was flabbergasted….so I turned around and dropped my pants and bent down …well the explosion (from 3 days of constipation)  was heard outside in the bar…and well it was just the worst experience EVER…..well almost…but I clogged up the hole….and sprayed ..well I won’t go on…they needed a janitor to come in after me…and I am glad my French was not that good as …I would have hated to hear what he really was muttering…..

and the toilet that I laughed the most at…

I had been seeing these good friends who live  out of state…he had been my boss and we had a brief fling…and then I went down and met his wife…she is Drop Dead Gorgeous…we had a three way…in their 4 poster brass bed…with her saying “Guys..just wanna let you know… I sleep in the middle…..AND  if ANYONE gets Fucked..it is ME!!! …”

we went to this FABULOUS dance place every Saturday..(well I use to go down twice a month)…..and this is like in the 90’s…where the three of us would dance our asses off…and of course  where you found the best dance floor.. was in the  Gay District ….

well she had to pee…and the line for the ladies was as usual 3 miles long..so she said “Boys…follow me into the gents and guard my door”

well there was so much piss all over the toilet seats that she had to squat…

she reminded me of a dark hair Madonna…as she came out laughing …so sexy in her black leather mini skirt ..

made me REALLY wish I had been born straight….(sigh!!!))

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