JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

Living the nightmare

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I don’t know much about coffee, but I do know it makes people poop.

This has been well documented, and—from personal experience—I know it to be true. Because I work out of coffee shops, and because I drink coffee in coffee shops, I’ve pooped quite often in coffee shops. Which isn’t usually a big deal, as long as the seats are clean and soap available.

I write.

I drink.

I poop.

Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

Anyhow, I’m sitting here in Dana Point, at the lovely J.C. Beans, drinking coffee. And, a few minutes ago, I had to poop. So I rose, entered the bathroom, cleaned the toilet, put paper down on the toilet (an absolute must) and sat down to conquer the business at hand. Everything was going perfectly, too. Smooth sailing. Smooth, smooth, smooth sailing …

Then, I heard a jiggling on this door handle …

Screen Shot 2016-02-03 at 10.59.35 AMA little more jiggling.

A little more.

I started to speak, “One min—”

The door opened. Like, pretty wide open. This guy was standing there, momentarily dumbfounded.

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“I’m in here!” I said.

“Oh … Oh!” he replied, and slammed the door shut.

It was awkward and sorta funny—especially when, from my perch atop the toilet, I heard him and the barista discussing what just transpired, and how they really need to fix the broken bathroom lock. “That happened to me twice,” he said.

I’m lucky number three.

In an odd way, it’s sorta bucket list-ish. My three biggest nightmares have always been:

• 1. Being locked overnight in a shopping mall.

• 2. Overflowing someone’s toilet (I accomplished this four years ago, thanks for former NBA star Spencer Haywood).

• 3. Having a stranger walk in while I’m pooping.

Anyone know a good mall?