Friday, March 11, 2011

Funny Faux Pas Follies #2 - Boy do I Have a "Tail" to Tell!

Welcome to week two of Funny Faux Pas Follies!

Are you ready to have a good time?

Do you need a laugh or two?

Then let's get this party started, and we'll see what we can do!  ; )

There are many joys and blessings one receives in raising and training children.

But I would have to exclude potty training from that proclamation—especially, after the trials of training my daughter, Asheley.

So as not to scare those of you who, as of yet, have not experienced this peril of parenting, I will add a little caveat:  each child is different, therefore the experiences one encounters will be unique to each child.

The particular adventure I'm about to share involves Asheley at age two.

Where my son, Joshua, virtually potty trained himself—as a fourteen-month-old—a greater degree of effort, patience, and time was needed for Asheley.

It seemed we would either spend inordinate amounts of time in the bathroom—to no avail—or there would be no time to spare between the words, "Go potty, Mommy" and the actual event.

Needless to say, during those many long and arduous months of training, "going potty" was the absolute last act to be performed, before stepping one foot out the door to go anywhere with Ashe.

And while shopping was still to be done during those months, it was done with a certain amount of trepidation.

On this particular day, I had dropped Joshua off at school and decided I would run a few errands before picking him back up, at midday.

Though I had just taken Asheley to the potty prior to leaving home—a mere fifteen minutes before—I took her inside the school for yet another attempt.

Plenty of time was allotted for the task each time but produced zero results either time.

I left the school and drove just ten minutes away to do my shopping. 

As I got out of the car, I once again asked Asheley if she needed to "go potty," and she once more insisted she did not.

I hurried into the store, grabbed a shopping cart, and began to quickly do my shopping—knowing that my time was very limited.

No more than five minutes passed, when a precious pixie voice blurted out, in utter desperation, "Potty, Mommy!"

I knew from experience, I could not take the chance that this was another false alarm, so I instantly began searching for the restroom.

I must have looked like a crazed woman, as I frantically pushed the cart around the perimeter of the store in search of a bathroom.

Seeing my panicked state, a young salesclerk asked if she could assist me.

"Yes, please!"  I wailed.  "Where is the restroom?"

"Oh, I'm sorry, Ma'am.  We don't have a public restroom," she stated as a matter of fact.

"But you do have one, correct?"  I asked.  "You see, my little one is potty training, and she has to go...RIGHT NOW!"

"I'm afraid the restroom is for employees only, Ma'am.  But the store five doors down will let you use theirs," she offered apologetically.

By this point, Asheley was beginning to squirm and crying more emphatically, "Potty, Mommy, potty!"

So, I grabbed her out of the cart—leaving it in the middle of the floor—and ran out of the store and five doors down.

Thankfully, there was a clerk by the entrance of this store, so I quickly inquired, "Bathroom?"—offering no further explanation.

She pointed to the back corner of the store.


I raced to the back, all the while trying to convince Asheley that she could "hold it."

I finally reached my destination but was totally unprepared for what I found.

Not only was this bathroom incredibly small, but it was being used for storage, as well, so there was barely even room to get to the toilet—let alone use it!

And the worse part of it was...

 this place looked as though it had never ever been cleaned—NEVER...EVER!!!

And because of the way boxes were stacked all around the toilet, there was no way for me to safely hold Asheley over it.

So are you getting the picture here:  desperate two-year-old, frantic mom, grotesquely filthy toilet!!!
The only clean thing I could spy in the entire room was a freshly placed roll of toilet tissue.

I stood Asheley on the floor and told her to hold on to my legs and not to touch anything—while I prepared the toilet seat.

All the while, her pleading cries of "Potty, Mommy, potty!!!" were becoming more distraught.

And what was I doing?

I was creating a slipcover out of toilet paper!

I kid you not; this restroom—and specifically the toilet—was so disgusting, I could not bear the thought of my child sitting on the seat, until I was convinced that I had created a sufficient germ barrier.

To this day, I do not know how she managed to "hold it" for so long, but she did—thank goodness.

And with all the running and the panicking and the stress, I then found I needed to "go," as well.

So just picture me trying to keep my two-year-old safely occupied in this seriously cramped and disgustingly dirty place, while attempting to "go potty" myself.

Under normal circumstances, I would have politely removed the mound of tissue from the toilet seat, but in this instance, I intended to leave a poignant message instead.

With our business taken care of, I hurried back to the original store and resumed my shopping—realizing my time to do so had now been greatly reduced.

As I entered the store, I was greeted by, what appeared to be, an unusually large smile from the young salesclerk.

And as I briskly walked down the first aisle—playing "beat the clock," knowing I would soon have to leave to pick Joshua up—I noticed some rather odd glances coming from others I encountered along the way.

After about ten minutes of shopping, a sweet, petite, gray-haired lady approached me, and in a near whisper asked, "Honey, when is the last time you looked in the mirror?"

Honestly, the first thought that crossed my mind—after what I had just gone through—was something along the lines of, "You've got to be kidding!  I'm potty training a two-year-old.  I don't have time to look in a mirror!"

But realizing that that response would have been totally inappropriate, I just smiled and replied softly, "Not since this morning."

Being ever so polite, and choosing her words thoughtfully, she gently suggested, "Perhaps it's time to look again."

Then with a wink, she turned and walked away.

I apprehensively approached one of the mirrors near the dressing room, and this is what I discovered.

Amid all the chaos—in that despicable bathroom—not only had I created a slipcover for the toilet, but I had somehow managed to leave that tiny space with a portion of the "slipcover" stuck in the top of my jeans.

As I stood there, staring, in disbelief, at the tail of white tissue trailing from my pants, I noticed a small group gathering around the area where I was standing.

The folks who, for whatever reasons, had failed to point out my faux pas, had come to see how I was handling my discovery.

I'm sure they wondered if I would just tuck tail and run!
But as I began pulling the long tissue tail out of my clothing, the thought flashed into my mind of me parading past shoppers in two stores and past the windows and doors of four other stores—in addition to all the people in the parking lot—with my tissue tail swaying in the breeze.

With that graphic image dancing around in my head, I began to laugh uncontrollably.

Then—as though relieved—those who had gathered around me began to join in.

I held the ball of tissue up in the air like a trophy, had a few more hearty laughs with those around me, and then continued my shopping.

After all, I was "mature" enough to be the butt of a joke!  ; )

“The rate at which a person can mature is directly proportional to the embarrassment he can tolerate.”

Douglas Engelbart


  1. Are you having trouble loading pictures to Blogger? I am only able to load one at a time for the last few days and don't know why.

  2. If you're asking if I'm only able to upload one picture to a post, save the post, close it, reopen it, add another picture, save the post, close it - repeat until complete - I'm afraid I've been having to do that issue for weeks now. It appears that Blogger cannot handle the amount of traffic it has to deal with (only guessing here).

    But, no. That's not my problem here. This is a "Liz" problem, not a Blogger problem. ;)

    Thanks for asking though.


  3. Hi Liz,
    I did't see an email address so I thought I would leave a note here that I mailed the pillow today. Sorry it took me so long. I had a crazy busy week.
    I hope you enjoy it.

  4. That was just too funny. I guess we all have the toilet paper stories. Honestly, I wouldn't use a grocery store that was so unbending on their bathroom policy and didn't have one for the public.

  5. Hilarious Liz. I can just see you waving that ball of toilet paper with pride all the while laughing. What a good mommy you are.
    Miss chatting with you- email me sometime.
    formerly tattered and timeless - now just - home for 6.

  6. Thanks for “Stalking Me!” I'm Stalking back! Following on GFC via Both of my blogs:
    Please follow my other blog if you haven’t already. Don’t forget to stop by next week and link up again on "Stalk Hop Friday"!

  7. What a hilarious story! Thanks for sharing. Thanks Liz for your nice comments and yes, if you live long enough all kinds of styles come back!

  8. This is a good one Liz. You sure have the potty faux pas stories. Glad to hear that you just "went with the flow" and displayed that toilet paper like a trophy.

  9. OMG, how embarrassing!! I can't believe no one told you! If I saw someone walking around like that (ESP. a mom!) I would tell her!!

  10. PS I can't believe your little one held it that long either, lol!

  11. Oh Liz,
    That is a total crack-up!!! What a great story!!!


Thank you so much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to comment.