The Noise

Hello deer eater(s)!  I mean, hello dear reader(s)!

Last night I was posting a bunch of posts because it was my day of rest.  Today we have resumed work, but at a more leisurely, less likely to cause me great medical issues, pace; so I thought I would share with you a funny but true story that was brought back to my memory thanks to a comment on last night’s post about my cellphone incident.  If you would like to read that post, you may do so here, but don’t worry, it isn’t like you need to in order to understand this post-type-thing.

My last job before I got ill was actually pretty good.  There was stress, it was a call center, but it was not customer service.  I was working as a dispatcher/tech support for technicians for a cable and internet provider.  Most of my co-workers were pretty cool (with the exception of one or two, as anywhere) and I really felt comfortable there.  I was also damn good at my job and was moving up rather quickly (despite constantly fighting with supervisors) and things were looking bright.  Of course, I never did get the chance to move up because I was diagnosed shortly after things really began moving for me.  But this isn’t about that.  This is about cellphones.

One of the great things about this job (at first, they later took the trust away) was that we were able to be on our phones between calls and text our loved ones.  It was as if we were adults.  Our supervisors (at the time) recognized that some of us excel at our jobs and did not need to study between calls to do things more efficiently.  They also recognized the morale boost being trusted provided.  In exchange, we did not violate that trust, and gave our best with every call.  It was great.  At first.

Then came the interference from the higher-ups in an office in another state.  We soon found ourselves being treated like children, not allowed to use our down time to relax and prepare for the next onslaught of frustration and basic questions that we shouldn’t have had to answer from technicians that never should have been contracted with us in the first place.  So, some people (not me) responded in their own way.

I had one particular co-worker who was very nice, very good at his job, very funny; but likely had IBS.  Now, I’m not making fun of him for having IBS, I myself have horrible GI issues that might as well be IBS, but it is necessary to tell you this to set up the story.  Anyway, I’ve known a lot of people with IBS who still functioned quite well.  Not this guy.  Unlike most sufferers, he made absolutely no effort whatsoever to control his IBS.  By making no effort to control it, I mean, he ate the worst possible food imaginable if you have that condition.  Fast food isn’t just made fast…it also goes through you fast.  So, much of his breaks would be spent in the toilet.  Not that big of a deal.  He would also take extra bathroom breaks as needed.  Again, no big deal.  Do what you have to do.

One day, our schedules changed after a shift-bid, and I ended up with the coveted 8-5 shift.  Right along with him.  To keep the phones staffed, our breaks were scheduled together.  Everything was going along fine until one night I must have had some dinner that didn’t agree with me.  So on my morning break I decided I needed to use the facilities sitting down (To avoid talking about shit, oops, blew that, didn’t I?)  Anyway, the restrooms were clean here so I go to the furthest stall in the corner, which is unoccupied.  There is only one other stall door closed, so I knew that there was just one other person in the stalls.

So I do my business, somewhat embarrassed at the stench I am emitting.  And then I hear the noise.

Like chunky water being poured from a 5 gallon bucket into a swimming pool.  Over, and over again.

And then the smell hits.

Think rotten eggs, meets cow manure, meets rancid beef.  I thought I was stinking things up.  I wanted to throw up.  My stomach was taking its sweet time, so I was stuck.

Then a flush!  Thank God, I’m saved and I’m sorry I ever doubted your power!

Nope.  The noise starts again.  And more smell.

As if that isn’t bad enough, then I hear my co-worker say, “Hello?  Yeah baby, I’m at work.  No, I don’t know what to bring home for dinner tonight.  (More noise.  So loud, there is no possible way it wasn’t picked up by the receiver.)  Maybe, I’m not sure.  (Grunt, more noise, more smell.)  Well, I’m having Taco Bell for lunch, so I don’t think that would sound good.  Okay, we can just get some of that barbecue from that new restaurant.  (More noise, grunts, and smell.)  Okay, sounds good.  I love you too.”

Taco Bell?!?!  After that?  What is he trying to do, destroy his intestines?

And I thought I had an understanding wife.  Wow, that is real love, I guess.

The next time I had to use the work facilities, I walked in, heard him on his phone again, walked right back out, and took the elevator to the restrooms downstairs.

And I would never, ever touch his cellphone.

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Author: Josh Wrenn

Cancer survivor, wanna-be artist, musician, author, and all around good guy.

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