September 17, 2006


I have had an exercise in equanimity this week, one quality which I cultivate as part of Buddhist practice. More than anything it leaves me even now with the irrepressible urge to giggle.

On Wednesday, our professor arranged for an evening field trip to Reimers Kaufman, a brick and block contractor. Masons were on hand demonstrating how to lay brick and block walls and to give us the opportunity to try our luck with a trowel. It was very interesting. Two slices of pizza and two cans of pop later, I politely asked out host if they had a restroom I could use. He pointed in the direction of their office building but sheepishly informed me there was only one bathroom available as it was after hours and the other was beyond the second door of the vestibule which was locked. He would keep and eye out and make sure no one else headed in that direction. Unworried, I headed that way myself.

His sheepish expression was soon explained by the fact that the one available restroom was clearly labeled “Men’s” Still undaunted, I shrugged and pushed open the door. It was clean and contained one sink, one urinal, and one stall. I had just sat myself down in the stall, when the door opened. Even with a very limited view, it was unmistakably a male who entered - a rather large burly male who no doubt had no idea anyone was in there and let alone female. I surmised he was not one of classmates since none of them have as of yet attained that scale. I was more concerned with not embarrassing the poor guy to death than being embarrassed myself.

Never would I have believed it would take any man that long to pee, but of course, it did. I quietly waited for him to finish, wash his hands, and leave, before slowly doing the same myself. I don’t think anyone noticed when I exited the building a few moments later, all but bursting with the need to tell someone, anyone, of the funniest thing which had happened to me in years. All I did was grin a little foolishly and manage to suppress all my giggles and my nagging urge to share my secret.

Who knew equanimity could be found in the men’s restroom?

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