"I myself am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions." -Augusten Burroughs
"Forgive yourself, you are not perfect. Show yourself grace, you are still learning. Show yourself patience, you are on a journey." -Unknown
"Attitude is the difference between an ordeal and an adventure." -Bob Bitchin
This story is about a friend of mine. She doesn't want her real name to be used so we are going to call her...
It was the last leg of their extensive honeymoon and Teronica and her husband (let's call him The Hubs) took a train from Boston into New York. The train ride was not at all like the train rides in the Harry Potter world and Teronica was utterly, bitterly disappointed. They rolled into New York a little after midnight, took a cab to the studio apartment they rented and talked for a while with the really nice landlord; an older, short Spanish man that smiled a lot.
After the landlord left, Teronica and The Hubs set out on a mission to find food and wandered into Times Square. Even at the late hour the streets were lit up with electronic billboards and movie ads and tourists were falling over one another to take pictures of each other and the city.
Teronica and The Hubs met a really kind and well dressed older black man in a long coat. (Let's call him Roger.) After talking for a bit Roger pointed them in the direction of a busy restaurant that was still serving food.
At the restaurant bar the two quickly made friends with a young good looking couple, the bartenders and some drunk old man named Burney that smelled slightly like pee and was a regular there. Shots were taken. Laughs were had. And even Roger hopped in for a drink or two from time to time. After the restaurant closed the young couple invited Teronica and the hubs to a diner near by to grub and chat. But Teronica and The Hubs were exhausted and wanted to get an early start the next day so they bid farewell and went on their way marveling at how nice everyone in New York City was.
Teronica and The Hubs walked down the crowded street when Roger popped up and they began to talk about life and the city. “What a nice man,” Teronica thought as she listened to Roger talk. Then, out of seemingly nowhere, he asked them if they needed crack and he pulled a little baggie out of his coat pocket and quickly placed it back. In their drunken state they weren't terribly shocked and The Hubs blurted out, “No but do you have any pot?” (Don't judge them, it was their honeymoon.)
Words were exchanged quickly and within a matter of seconds, Roger had pointed Teronica in the direction of an ATM, she had handed him 140 dollars and he had introduced them to his friend who would give them pot. (Let's call Roger's friend Tyrone.) Tyrone had a slight stutter and walked with a cane. He seemed to be about 30-something...a rough 30-something. Teronica and The Hubs followed Tyrone a short bit but when Tyrone turned the corner onto a dark street lined with apartment buildings Teronica suddenly became alive with adrenaline and grabbed the Hubs and began to yell at Tyrone.
“Where are you taking us? Why are we going down here? Where is Roger? I want my money back!”
Tyrone, clearly frightened, stuttered, “I am just supposed to take you to the Rastafarians. But I am not going in. I am not going in there. Roger just promised me a rock if I took you to the Rastafarians.”
Teronica couldn't tell if Tyrone was more afraid of the Rastafarians or of her. Either way she felt like a fool as she thought,
“What. The. F*ck. Did We Get Ourselves In To?”
Teronica yelled a bit more at Tyrone then she grabbed The Hub's hand and forced him to run with her back to the spot where Roger was. Teronica looked up and down the street, among the endless sea of tourists but, alas, Roger was no where to be found.
Teronica felt angry, sad and really really stupid.
After walking a block Teronica and The Hubs happened upon a young handsome black man dressed in jeans, a t-shirt and a hoodie. (Let's call him Claude Sage because that is his actual name.) Teronica walked up to him and asked if he knew Roger. Claude smiled and expressed his sympathies. Claude put out the joint he was smoking and through conversation Claude and Teronica discovered they both had dreams of being writers and The Hubs told Claude about his own love of drumming. Then, like an awesome episode of Def Poetry Jam, Claude Sage recited his original poetry from memory. And so there they were. At four in the morning. On a corner in Times Square. With Claude Sage, reciting poetry and encouraging each other to never give up on their dreams. Claude invited them to the Burger King to discuss more poetry but Teronica and the Hubs decided to head back to the apartment instead.
Things were looking up.
On the way home all the shots the Hubs had taken began to settle and his drunkenness set in. He was not a huge drinker and Teronica cursed herself for not cutting him off long before. She dragged him into their rented apartment where he immediately sunk onto the kitchen floor and passed out in a giant pool of his own sweat. Teronica tried to wake him up but he was out. He was bad news bears to say the least. He was much worse than Teronica had ever seen him and she started to panic.
“What if something is really wrong? What if he is going to die from alcohol poisoning? What if Burney, from the bar poisoned him? What if that cute young couple slipped him something? What if Roger is outside our door waiting to kill us?” Claude Sage was the only New Yorker to be trusted and he was long gone, relaxing in a Burger King somewhere, enjoying a Whopper all the way with a cold Dr.Pepper and onion rings instead of fries and writing poetry about it.
She was living about five different Law & Order episodes all mashed into one. And she started to sob. On her knees, in the kitchen, next to her new husband.
She stripped the Hubs down to his boxers and tried to get him into bed. She was relieved when he crawled to the bed himself but he quickly fell back into his unconscious state. She plopped down next to him on the bed and sobbed some more.
“Please wake up honey.”
“Please wake up,” she sobbed.
And sobbed some more.
New York had chewed them up and spit them out all within a matter of hours. And now, her new husband was most likely going to die.
And...that's...when...she smelled it.
The worst smell that had ever hit her nose. She looked down at her husband and she knew instantly. He had pooped his pants.
In horror she stared at his sleeping face and debated what she should do.
Should she just leave him be? He did look rather peaceful. He wasn't going to die. Who was she kidding. In her early twenties she had found herself in much worse predicaments and she was okay. Her wedding vows flashed before her and she remembered that she had promised before God and her pastor, her family and her 16 bridesmaids that she would love him NO MATTER WHAT.
So in a moment of glory, one of her most shining moments, she raised her arms and shook her fists to the heavens and she said out loud to the universe, “Yes, I will still love him even if he has shit his pants. And yes... I... will... clean his shit.”
And a bright light from heaven shone down upon her and the angels sang a quick “hallelujah.”
She leaned in and with her fingertips grabbed the top of his boxer shorts and gently began to tug while leaning in even closer so she could take a little looksy.
And from the depths of drunken hell her husband turned his sweaty head from side to side and muttered a raspy, “Noooooo.”
Startled, she let go of the boxer shorts and responded, “No, what?”
To which he said the most romantic words she had ever heard,
“I didn't shit my pants. I just farted.”
Stunned she stuttered, “How did you know that is what I was thinking?”
And in his semi-conscious state he said, “Because I smell it too.”
Her husband, tall and handsome and smart, had passed gas so deadly that the smell actually made its way down the corridor of drunken hell and with its mighty grip had grabbed him and brought him back to life.
And with a tear stained face she curled up into a fetal position next to her husband and dug her head into his side and closed her eyes.
And so they slept.
Sometimes in life you will do stupid stuff...really stupid stuff. Forgive yourself and move on. And TRY to NEVER make that same mistake again.
Life is all about perspective. We CHOOSE what perspective we take. Try to see the upside in every situation, really, really try.
Open your heart to new adventures.
You can do anything.
I believe in you.
You are greatly loved.
Teronica Vowns....I mean…