One of the most thrilling perks of being a PhD student stems from the suspense of visiting the campus restroom. No, really! I’m serious. When you share a space with undergraduate students, you never quite know what you’re going to see when you walk in the door, making for an always-captivating mini-sightseeing adventure, right in the middle of the day.
For instance, creative undergrad use of the facilities often leads to fantastic signs I’d think would be appropriate for my two-year-old son, and NOT for the over-18 crowd. Consider this gem I found in the Engineering building:
Yes, that’s right. Engineering students were apparently having so much trouble with the physics of their own fluids that a visual aid was deemed necessary.
Additional fantastic signage can be found in this newer, more upscale campus restroom:
Again, I could see this as a valid reminder for my two-year-olds, who will climb on absolutely anything they can reach. Had there been a strategically-placed stepstool in this facility, this sign could definitely have applied to them (that is, if they could read). However, I’m not so sure what grown man in his right mind would decide to sit on this sink. Not only would said psychopath drench his ass and get in the way of fellow patrons…but…I mean…why? Sure, there’s some pretty nice marble on this particular sink (I’m not taking that for granite–HAHAHAHAHA), but didn’t hanging out in the boys’ room stop being cool in middle school? Apparently not.
And don’t even get me started on the brilliant literature I find scrawled on the stall walls. As I’m sure many of you already know, going number two often inspires model citizens to share their genius insights on the human condition with future generations of defecators. It makes me feel so proud to have shared a seat with such celebrated thinkers.
However, of all the fascinating artifacts I’ve encountered in campus bathrooms, I have never been quite as simultaneously puzzled and intrigued as I was when I stumbled upon the following sight yesterday, at 10:00 am, in an Education building stall:
Let’s just take a look at this for a minute. Here we have a just-barely-unfinished bottle of Bud Ice. In a bathroom stall. In the Education building. In the morning. On a campus with a strict no-alcohol policy.
I just…Oh man, I was just so freaking excited!
I had so many questions, but absolutely no one to ask. It was such an emotional roller coaster, you guys.
So now, because my passion for scientific inquiry simply must be satiated, I cannot help posing the following questions, which, if given the opportunity, I would have asked the dudebro who deposited this bottle on the toilet paper dispenser pedestal, thus changing the course of five minutes of my life forever:
1. Dude, where’d this beer come from?
Bro, it’s 10 am. So I think I can safely assume this brew was not purchased at a bar. But then that leaves either bringing it from your fridge at home or from a local retailer. Which brings up another question.
2. Bro, why bring it to campus?
Seriously, bro. If you already had the beer at home, why didn’t you just drink it at home? Or if you bought it somewhere, why not find an alley or something to chug while it was still cold? Because of all the places to drink a quick beer before class (if you’re into that sort of thing)…well, dude, I guess I have a followup question…
3. In the public restroom, dude?
Bro, do you smell that? It’s a potent conglomeration of what our fellow restroom users have left here. That’s really going to take away from the overall beverage enjoyment experience.
4. And dude, where’s the fire?
Like I said, it’s 10 am, bro. Don’t you think it’s a little early to pop open a beer? What’s that saying about drinking before noon? Oh, I see. You’ve never heard it before. A little partying last night, bro? Did you maybe possibly drink a little too much? Got a little hangover goin’ there? Well, maybe you should skip class today. Oh, I see. You have an important exam today. Well, then, by all means, suck down a Bud Ice before going into that. You’re going to ace this thing, bro.
5. You gonna finish that beer, bro?
You went to all the trouble to smuggle it onto campus and drink it where people typically take dumps. Why leave the last sip? I just feel like if you’re gonna do this thing, you might as well go all out. Speaking of which…
6. All this work…to drink a Bud Ice?
Dude, if you’re going to work this hard to drink a beer in a bathroom stall, it really ought to be something better than Bud Ice. Might I suggest a double IPA? A craft pumpkin beer of some kind (after all, it is October)? Basically anything but that beer-flavored water you went with?
7. And bro…littering?
Okay, so you’ve chosen to drink a crappy beer in the bathroom stall. I guess I can accept that. But bro, why leave the bottle there? Bathrooms are conveniently equipped with waste disposal receptacles, known to laymen as trash cans. Have you heard of these things? They’re usually right by the paper towel dispensers. See? It’s right over there, bro. Or…if you’re concerned about your carbon footprint, why not stash that bottle in your bag and toss that badboy into a recycling bin on the way to your Psych lecture? Just sayin’, bro. The earth isn’t gonna conserve itself.
. . .
As I left the restroom, my mind still reeling with these questions, I just couldn’t help trying to imagine scenarios in which consuming most of an alcoholic beverage at 10 am in a campus bathroom stall seemed like a logical choice, and after realizing I’d been staring at the wall of my grad-student cubicle for a half hour, I decided it was probably time to move on to other, slightly more important things. Writing my dissertation, for example.
I may never know just what drove this dudebro to behave the way he did, but if by chance you run into him, perhaps while he’s shotgunning a Coors Light by the urinals in your local public library, let him know I said ” ‘sup?”
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If not… Dude… seriously?