John and Tina had been dating for five months and he had yet to go to the bathroom in the same building as her, let alone in her apartment. When they were out to eat, he wouldn’t even go to the restaurant bathroom. Bodily functions hadn’t been put on the table yet and John liked it that way. Every movement would shift and pass peacefully and his bladder was as strong as Paul Bunyan.
One fateful night, John screwed up. His ritual before heading out for the evening was fixed and meticulous. John was a creature of habit and he always honored the three S’s with the reverence of the Pope on Good Friday. Shit, shower, and shave, in that order. But work ran late and his movement had shifted to the bowels of his mind. John immediately jumped in the shower, and then shaved his face, taking time to make sure his slightly bushy sideburns were precisely even and trimmed. He checked his phone and had a few minutes more than normal, but couldn’t figure out why. Being raised that “early is on time, and on time is late,” he grabbed his corduroy jacket and headed out the door.
Tina had wanted to cook for John for a while and John, being the nice guy that he is, agreed. The evening was going great. The pork stir-fry that Tina crafted was delicious and the Riesling matched nicely. But there was something in the food that set John’s internal system off. Cartoon sized sweat poured from forehead. The gut-wrenching cramps caused him to squeeze his leg. He shifted his weight over and over. None of the usual tricks worked. It was there. It was time.
John politely excused himself to what he called, “the little boy’s room,” clenching all the way. His walk qualified him a top spot in the Ministry of Silly Walks, hands straight at his sides, completely upright and stepping carefully.
He turned the fan on and let loose. John now knew what it was to give birth…to twins. When he had finished, he flushed and turned the hot water on to wash his hands. Tina had mentioned on their first date how her ex-roommate used to leave fog mirror messages for her all the time, seeing as the mirror fogged up easier than the Moors of England. John washed his hands and looked up to see: “Thank you for washing your hands.” It was accompanied by a smiley face and a giggle from the other side of the door.