The Unbearable Lightness of Peeing
I went to the bathroom by myself today. It was in a bookstore in Brooklyn. The store was crowded. There was a line. I had to pee. I had locked myself out of the apartment earlier and drank a coffee in the front window of a Bodega hoping one of my roommates would walk by. No such luck. In line I made sure to look at the floor. It was my first time in a public restroom in a week. I didn't want the other women to feel threatened by my presence. I realized recently that I almost always stand with all my weight on my right foot, which I broke a few years back. It has begun hurting me significantly at the end of the day. So I tried standing on my left foot. Which I am sure made me look unusual while I waited. After the bathroom, I read three short stories and last chapter of three nonfiction books from the 'thought-provoking' section of the bookstore. Apparently, the traditional literary categories have been erased and now books are either thought-provoking or something else entirely. In this case all the books spent many chapters going into great depth about what is wrong with the world and spent one chapter talking about how to change it, so that is what I focused on. The security guards followed me with their eyes. Apparently it is unusual to read books from more than one section. For example, people either pick things from the Malcolm Gibson Table or the David Sedaris Table, from the Holiday Table or the Chanukah Table, the Science Table or the Art Table, but not both, or in my case all. Outside the bookstore I asked three awkward teenagers for a light. Which made them act more awkward. The lighter said "Coors King of Beers" on it. They shifted their collective weight as I tried to use the Coors lighter with my left hand. I don't know why I tried to light it with my left hand. I mean, I am not left-handed. It took longer than usual, so they had to shift longer, reflecting on the circumstances that might have led a person of an older generation to walk through the red tape of American social decorum and address a member of a younger age group without the pretext and correlating social laws of a classroom.Then I rode the bus home. Careful when I got off not to walk the same way as the woman in front of me. Lest she think I was following her home.