Blog entry

it shits in the box...

song of the day: hanging upside down / david byrne
word of the day: mutative / a grammatical case indicating a change of place or state

what seemed like unending work on my house has begun to subside a bit, and not a moment too soon. it's been inconvenient. especially for my sub-personality, the Princess. she's had some rough spots. if you're squeemish like she is, you might want to stop reading this blog now. but i won't respect you. you won't respect me either, once you've read this blog, so either way...

when you're renovating an historic home each room presents its own unique challenges. our house was built in 1885, but before you imagine some victorian treasure, i have to tell you it's covered in plastic sheeting and was built by same booze addled coal miner who never met a right angle he liked. it's sort of Fun House meets Vertigo. when we were redoing the porch, of course our kid could not go out there, because it was a lead paint removal process. when we did the den, more lead paint and our ceiling had collapses so we were roofless. building the studio i had to literally remove a mountain of junk. every room displaced you a bit while you disassemble, gut it, then build it back up.

but the bathroom is special. we only have ONE bathroom.

one of the great privilages of living in the first world is plumbing. being able to bathe, brush your teeth, do laundry, and pee or poop whenever you want- in PRIVATE- is an unbelievable liberty, and perhaps in part a source of some vanity (or vice versa?) in the post-industrial World views. unfortunately, i rediscovered my profound gratitude for this amenity in the last few months as we went through weeks and weeks of ripping out bathtubs, plumbing, and yes- toilets. i went through three toilets this winter already, thanks to defective manufacturing. like oxygen, indoor plumbing is easy to take fore-granted until one is suddenly deprived of it. oxygen, food, water, and plumbing, each of these abides invisibly in our life until interrupted- and then rockets right to the very top of the priority pyramid where it remains until things are set right. and there is just no way to gut your bathroom and not be without a toilet for a while. a few weeks ago when our floor was completely ripped up and the plumbers were at work we were better prepared, although we were put out, it was expected, it was understood we'd be making trips to the gas station and the local cafe when nature called. after 10pm, when everything in our little town closes, up, we were forced to conduct our business in the back yard- the good news is we have a fence around the entire perimeter of our back yard. the bad news is it's chain-link. so, at midnight or one a.m. or whenever, they we were doing our best imitation of woodland creatures, on display for a half doozen houses in the neighborhood. there is a particular kind of contemplation that takes place in those moments, a uniqe type of reflection that one would never discover if not for the disruption of life, squating beneath an enormous Oak under a full moon, the chilly Rocky Mountain fresh air lightly swooshing betwixt my legs, a pair of Grey Owls over head giving an approving "Hoo- Hoo!" to the crest of my exposed bottom- all of it momentarily transported me to a romantic sense of appreciation for what it must have been like for indigineous peoples to live in close contact with the elements, so intimately aligned with the rhythyms of nature, so un-self conscious in the idyllic harmony of their communes.

just then my neighbor opened her the door to her back yard and stepped out on her lawn, no more than 30 feet from where i was defecating, and in a heart beat i went from Native American Medicine Man to Vicorian Princess. "FUCKING EXCUSE ME!! HELLO?? i'm going to the BATHROOM over here... GEEZ". the inward narraration went foul. however irrational my head knew it was, emotionally i was idignant, furious with this inconsiderate bitch waltzing right in, unannounced on my vulnerable situation. my face warmed with a wave of embarassment-blood, hoping ever so much to go undetected i became as outwardly silent as possible while my eyes beamed lazer radiaton into the skull of my intruder, telepathically redirecting her to GET... BACK... IN... YOUR... HOUSE NOW! to my surprise, it worked. it must have been too cold for her, because it was certainly too cold for my balls. they had retreated into some unknown cavity of my pelvis. just where the hell do a man's balls go when it gets cold? one minute they're there, the next they slip a secret key into the wall of your 1st chakra and vanish. you can't feel them, can't detect them- it's as though they simply jump into another dimension, one unencumbered by the fluxing demands of shifting temperatures and biological imperatives. wherever my balls went, my penis felt the loss and shriveled up like the frightened orphan it was. these distracting challenges noted, i tried my best to wrap up the job and go back inside. but everyone knows that certain body functions are beset with counter-intuitive responses, the inevitable result of crossing meat, blood, and bones with all the peculiarities of reflexive CONSCIOUSNESS. for instance the more urgent it is to evacuate quickly, the more impossible it is to do so. especially in a public context. it's funny what makes us bashful. i've shoved glow sticks up my ass, wrapped my naked limbs around a pine tree and fucked it, and shaved my genitals- all on camera, and all without a hint of shame or embarassment. i've engaged in some very blue behaviour - sexual and otherwise- with all sort and sundry of acquaintance and stranger, and never a hint of inhibition. but the thought that my neighbor might see me pooping in my backyard in the middle of the night- positively unthinkable. i could shit on someone's chest no problem if there were a camera filming it in the name of perverse entertainment - what real artist couldn't?- but if someone were to observe me undergoing the same act as an innocent function of daily life, well the thought is petrifying. luckily, this scenario resolved itself without such an undoing, and no one but the 200,000 people who read this blog will ever be the wiser.

after a while our bathrooom had plumbing again, we could use the toilet again, then the shower, the washer / dryer. once it all came back on line, it didn't take long before i became conditioned again. my old sense of entitlement came right back, like it was my birthright to go to the bathroom in private. but then the other day, a worker had to come over and spray the inside of our bathroom with a base coat of wall texture, so that we could finally paint our bathroom and wrap up the detailing. his work in there didn't take long, only about six hours, but that was six hours i could not use our bathroom again. i'm going to cut to the chase. suddenly -very suddenly- i had to go to the bathroom, and it was, as a German pre-school teacher might say, "Numer Zwei". this was the variety of onset that does not allow for getting in a car, or walking to a convenience store, and certainly not for knocking on your neighbors door. i would never, ever do that. at this point in the story, i'm going to leave my body and employ 3rd person. now i'm just looking at "It", what It did, what happened to It. that's not me down there. i'm just replaying what happened to It, It is a biological machine. It has to evacuate waste, but It can't use Its own toilet because the construction worker has covered up that toilet and is spraying texture base on all the walls what are Its options? not many. perhaps only one. one resolution to Its conundrum, and no one's going to swoop down and solve this colonic riddle for It. it's up to It, and only It. It goes out to the garage. It is desperate. It feels ashamed, embarassed- feelings that usually carry a vague sexual charge. but not this time. this sensation is arousal's antonym. It has to hurry. It is experiencing a great pressure. It grabs a mid-sized cardboard box. it grabs toilet paper. It squats in a sad, shadowy nook which will hereafter be known as The Corner of Vile Secrets. Eyes askance, lips curled inward, making sounds that prove It is still more animal than angel, It shits in the box.

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