“I Aim My Water Poorly,” by Mike Fowler

Aug 10th, 2016 | By | Category: Fake Nonfiction, Prose

Excuse me, but do you mind if I use your bathroom, as long as I’m here? Okay, whoa, I can see you’re a bit put out, but I really, really have to go. And yes, I know that the last time you let me go here, my aim wasn’t all that great. I left a stain or two on your toilet seat, also on the bathroom walls, the floor mat, probably on the mirror over the sink, the medicine cabinet and the light switch. My aim is pretty bad, I admit.

Let me tell you, at home my mother reminds me all the time of how poorly I’ve aimed my water since boyhood. She will announce, in front of family and friends, that it always seemed to her that I went into her bathroom, unzipped and simply exploded. There was no other explanation for the drips and actual puddles of my fluid all over the place, even in the doorway and out into the hall. Sometimes, as Mom likes to tell anyone who will listen, I managed to make the mess without unzipping. She did my laundry, still does in fact, so she speaks with authority. I can’t contradict her without her laughing in my face.

And I foul up my own bathroom too, in case you don’t know. My live-in girlfriend doesn’t even want me going at home. She says I’m like a fireman who can’t control his hose, spraying it in all directions in hopes of hitting a fire he can’t see even though the blaze is right in front of him. After a few days a sticky residue like honey builds up on the bathroom floor and extends up the walls almost to the ceiling, and stays there until my girl cleans it up. She especially hates having her shoes or bare feet stick to the floor, and so is constantly mopping up after me, and complaining about it.

One time she had two girlfriends over and we had this very discussion, and both said their boyfriends were almost as bad as me. One lady, placing her hands daintily in her lap, said her boyfriend could hit the little hole, but he couldn’t hit the big hole, meaning her toilet bowl, and what kind of accuracy was that? This lady had had a bit to drink, and we enjoyed her openness. And the second lady’s boyfriend made me look even better. Her guy, she maintained, got out of bed every night and sleep-walked down the corridor outside their bedroom, finally taking himself in hand and watering down the patch of wall beneath the thermostat. Then he returned to bed as if nothing had happened, still asleep. She had noticed the odd mess before she learned how it got there, the discolored wallpaper and a highway rest stop aroma, and had followed him at one in the morning to see what was up. When she realized what he did and that he was sound asleep when he did it, she accepted it as part of their nightly routine. Wasn’t that wise of her?

That’s no excuse for me, of course. I’m not sleepwalking. And I could have stopped at my job or the branch library I pass before I got here. But your facilities top everybody’s, and you can bet I’ve told my friends. Your toilet paper and soap are so pleasant, I don’t even miss the electric hand-blower those places have. I promise I’ll be careful this time, too, and aim that fella true and wring him dry without spreading any moisture where it doesn’t belong. So help me, I’ll try my best. The last thing I want to do is offend you. I just have to go really bad, or I’d try to make it home, or somewhere closer to home than here. But I don’t think I can hold it. It’s at the tip.

You can’t see me going in there? Really? I know you’re upset, and I don’t blame you. Listen, if I’d known where you keep your cleaning products, I would have tidied up after myself the last time, scrubbed every tile. Oh, in the cabinet under the sink? Who knew? And all those times before this I would have tidied up, if I had realized. And there have only been, what, at most a dozen times? Gosh, look at me, I’m starting to dance around like a kid about to wet himself.

I know you’re sick and tired of me imposing on you like this. But without your help right this second, my bladder is going to be stretched beyond its limit and snap like a rubber band. I’m sure there’s something wrong with me. Maybe what I need is a catheter or adult diaper. I’ll have to ask my doctor. I know, I know, I should have gotten this treated by now, and I’m sorry I haven’t. I’m going to ask my doctor to cure it right away, believe me. I’ve got an appointment on Thursday. Meanwhile I ask for your indulgence. Please help me.

Man, this is painful. So is it okay if I use your bathroom one last time? I mean I really have to go.

Defenestration-Michael FowlerMike Fowler has been in Defenestration so many times he practically owns stock in the magazine. And by stock, of course, we mean delicious waffles. He’s all about self-promotion these days, so go buy his book.

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