Excuse Me, Sir!

I was in a children’s store yesterday and saw something that I have never seen before.  I was sitting there just watching it all go down.  I was amazed that no other person saw what happened.   Seven women were standing within a few feet of me and the little boy.  Perhaps they were lucky that they missed it, because what I saw was not a pretty sight!

So, I was in a children’s store looking for clothes for my children.  My daughter needed a dress to wear in a holiday program at school.  I decided to buy my son something cute as well and just use the picture for our Holiday card.  There was only one woman working the front of the store.  I could hear the other women in the back talking and the line was moving very slowly.   I have a broken ankle.  It is big, bulky, and was starting to hurt, so I sat down on a bench while she checked-out a few other women.  I needed to ask her about getting another size, so I just sat down and looked around.  This store has a large play area for kids and the bench is right at the edge of the children’s play area.  I turned and watched a little boy playing at the train table.  The boy was at least 2 years old and he was having a great time; he was talking to himself and the to trains, but would suddenly stop and make some very strange faces.  I was pretty sure that he needed to go to the bathroom. I looked in the line but none of the women kept looking over at him, as mom’s usually do when their children are playing by themselves.

I sat for a few more minutes and finally the one man in the store walked over to the kid and said, “Hey Bud! Try this jacket on!”  The boy stood and grabbed his crotch.  His dad said, “Do you need to pee?”  Then the little boy grabbed his bottom and his dad said, “Oh!  It’s that kind of party!”  The boy startled to waddle toward his dad and his dad picked him up.  I looked at the floor, where the boy had been squatting, and saw (there on the blue rug) what looked like the brown, rounded ends of a dog bone or biscuit.  I was looking at it and thought, “Huh, that was not there before!  What is that?”  And then it hit me!

I stayed very quiet but kept looking down at the brown wad, and then up at the dad. Eventually he looked at the floor and realized what had just taken place.   The dad finally realized that his son had just taken a poop on the floor of the children’s boutique.   He reached in his pocket and pulled out a bag of candy.  The dad loudly said, “Hey Bud, do you want a piece of candy?” and then he ripped off a piece of the bag and picked up the poop.  The dad sat the jacket on the counter and told the women that he had to step out, but would be right back.  The woman said, “We have a changing room in the back of the store.”  But the man replied, “All of my stuff is in the car.  I will be right back.”  He walked out of the store with son on his left hip and a wad of poop cupped in his right hand.

I thought about him pulling off those poop covered pants in the back of his car and cringed.  I hoped they had a diaper to put on that kid, because he did not seem quite ready for “big boy” underwear.  I wondered if the dad would actually come back in the store.  I am pretty sure that if my kid pooped on that floor, I would never show my face in there again.  I was in the store for about 10 more minutes, before finally checking out.  As I exited the store, I almost ran smack into the dad and his son.  The dad looked at me and then looked away.  He was probably wondering if I had blabbed about the “work of art” his son had left beside the chalk board wall. But, I’m no tattletale and I wasn’t looking for trouble!  Besides, whose kid has not embarrassed them in public before?  But this was a truly horrific first for me!

I decided that has to be a major difference between men and women.  I think most women would have called it a day; I think they would have decided that the shopping could wait.  But this dad was acting like it never happened, or like it was no big deal.   Maybe it was not the first time that he picked up poop balls off of the floor.  I wondered if he would have even picked it up if I had not been sitting there.  He was dressed like a “cool” dad.  He was definitely trying to look a little hip, and a little rock ‘n’ roll.  He had on very skinny jeans.   They were so tight, he could barely squat down to pick up the poop balls.  He also wore a long sleeve striped shirt, a blue puffer vest, a little wool cap and big black cargo boots.  It was 69 degrees outside.  Just looking at him in the boots, the down puffer vest, and little wool beanie made me sweat.    I wondered if he had been waiting to pull out his little wool hat and vest.  It was almost 70 degrees outside and sunny.  This outfit would have given my thin-skinned, 90 year old grandmother a hot flash.  Maybe he just wanted to look young, hip, and cool.  Hey, maybe he was.  Maybe he really was one of those rock ‘n’ roll guys and finding a little poop on the floor was like just another day at work.

This got me thinking that a lot of guys, especially those who really “experienced” college, have probably seen much worse.  My husband told me many stories from high school and college.  He grew up in Los Angeles, then went to school at Berkley, all while playing water polo, and eventually joining a fraternity with a lot of those guys. After hearing his stories, I imagine that none of those guys would even flinch at the sight of someone relieving themselves in the middle of a floor.  So, maybe this really is the difference between men and women.  Women have to clean up most of the messes because it’s GROSS and they don’t like the idea of having poop-covered kids or poop-smeared floors; also because nobody else will do it!!   Men DON”T clean up messes because a little poop on the floor doesn’t bother them; it probably just reminds them of the good old days!

The only question I will never know is how really “cool” that dad was.  I will never know if (when he walked back in to buy that jacket) he made his son stand at the counter, or if he let him go crawl around in the play area.  The train was still in the same place the little boy left it, right beside the poop smear (that was still visible) on the rug.  So do you think the dad let his little boy go crawl around in his poop a little longer?  Unfortunately, I will never know!   But what I do know is that this has forever changed the way I will look at children’s play areas and anonymous stains on floors!  Look out friends!  You never know what your kids are playing with, or in!  Rock ‘n’ Roll!




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