Monday, April 14, 2014

5 Stages of Using a Port-a-Potty

Saturday, Tommy and I betray our university and drove up to Auburn, Alabama to go all-out redneck with our friends at the Alpha Psi Rodeo. We had a BLAST!

There was incredibly beautiful weather here in Alabama, sunny with a high of 78 and no humidity, a rare combination. We played games, watched bulls buck cowboys, hung out with some old friends and met a bunch of fun new people, and got to see Alan Jackson perform! His music is the soundtrack of my childhood and I had forgotten just how many great songs he has. Exhibit A:

There was one tiny hitch in the day, though. It's the problem with most outdoor events. Can you guess? Yes, I am talking about outdoor lavatories.

Is there anyone who actually enjoys using these plastic outhouses? I really doubt it but, hey, if they exist there will probably be a show for them on MTV soon. As for the rest of us, Port-a-Johns become a necessary evil, like paying for gas or eating salad. You have to do it but, Lord, how you don't want to.

I've put together this list of the 5 Stages of Using a Port-a-Potty so that you know that you'll know that you aren't facing this alone.

1. Denial
It's pretty early in the day and you've only started to feel a little tingle deep in your lower abdomen. "I don't really have to go." you think, "I'll just hold it and the feeling will go away."

2. Anger
At this point you have come to the realization that what you're feeling is definitely your body's desire to release fluids and you're mad about it. "Why did I drink so fast?! I know better than that! Why do I have this thimble-sized bladder? WHY, GOD? WHY??"

3. Bargaining 
The normal reaction to feelings of helplessness and vulnerability is often a need to regain control. 
  • I'll slow down and maybe I can put it off for a little while.
  • The line is so long... I'll just wait until it dies down.
But, try as you may, none of this will help. Plus, we both know that you're going to laugh at the girl when she walks into the truck's side mirror for the third time.

4. Depression
This is the longest stage and occurs from the moment you start walking towards the bank of Porta Loos and will continue throughout the first use. Issues in this stage range from "It smells like a used diaper filled with Indian food!" to "Don't people aim????" and "There's no toilet paper... Twerk dry?" and in the worst case scenarios, "IT'S OVERFLOWING!!!!"

No matter how clean these toilet huts may be, they're still pretty gross. Especially when competing with 20,000 other people for a seat.

5. Acceptance 
Well, you've broken the barrier and there's no stopping you now. Feeling a little defiled, you've now come to terms with the fact that this is part of the experience when attending a 15-hour outdoor event. You realize that when it comes down to it, the smelly trips to the Port-a-Potty are worth all the fun you'll have and memories you're making. You also realize that the chances of getting your hands on some actual toilet paper are slim so you make sure that all future trips include a pocket full of napkins.

So don't worry if you're main concern is what you're going to do when it all hits the fan, you're in good company. Just try to put aside your apprehension and enjoy the day.

A little Alan Jackson to sing you out:

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Hooray for Love!

Our sweet friends, Brooks and Mary Ann, are engaged! Hip-hip-hooray! hip-hip-hooray! 

Mary Ann and I met though a mutual friend when our combined awkwardness overflowed into a handshake/hug/high five. She's such a sweetheart, you guys! A year and a half ago we were sitting in biology class looking at pictures of Facebook of some cute boy she'd taken to a date party. 

Last June, Tommy would come home from class and tell me about some "frat guy who is always late to class. Probably because he's hungover."

In July, Mary Ann was spending her summer in Wyoming. Tom and I went to try the newly opened Steel City Pops and when I got to the front of the line I had another overflow of awkward. 

 "I've seen you on Facebook! You're Brooks!"  
the creepy stalker inside me blurted out.

After a very surprised/frightened look and a bit of conversation, we discovered that Brooks was the "hungover frat guy" (who is actually neither of those things) and the we are Mary Ann's friends who got married super young. That's usually something that weirds college-aged people out but Brooks' enthusiasm about young marriage was refreshing and told us that he was a different kind of dude. 

Mary Ann and Brooks are fun, sweet, God-fearing people and we are overflowing with joy over their engagement! To know the two of them as a couple is to know that you are in the presence of true love. They deserve all the happiness in the world and I just know that God is going to bless the crap out of their engagement and marriage! Congratulations, guys! Love you both!

Monday, March 17, 2014

For a little inspiration

Today has been a day. It has been a day that's beat me down and made me question everything I'm currently building my future on. It's been a day when I have to remind myself that it won't be like this for long. That some days are just hard and that doesn't mean it's time to give up, even if that's what it feels like. It's been a day of multiple extra-strength Excedrin because my normal natural remedies have failed to ease my throbbing headache. Today has been bad. As I take a break from the mountain of textbooks, lesson plans, and student data piled in front of me to write this entry, I am discouraged. I feel like Hillary Swank in the first 20 minutes of Freedom Writers. What am I doing? What am I doing? Can I do this? What if I can't?

But I can. I know I can. It's just a bad day, not a bad life. And it's all worth it. I just need to be reminded. 

It's going to be worth it. Today is over, tomorrow will be better.

NOTICE: Taylor Mali has some language but I felt the overall message was more important.