I wasn’t going to post this story but then figured that stories involving poop and mishaps are universally funny.

In fact, if all the world leaders told each other a good poop joke, I’m convinced there would be no more wars. 

Ok, here goes nothing…

I’ve had a weird week here in South Korea. It’s certainly not Korea’s fault as this illness I’ve had crossed on a plane with me from Seattle and came to a climax here in Seoul. I’ve felt 54% at best when all I want to do is feel like myself again and explore this amazing place. 

We’re staying in an amazing guesthouse with an amazing host, and have extended our stay here for 4 more days just moments before my “incident”. I have debated whether or not so share this as it’s crazy embarrassing (to me) but I want to share the real trials and tribulations of giving up all the comforts of home and instead laying your head down at night with a formidable bitch-goddess named Chance. Plus, if it wasn’t about me I’d find it hilarious, so I find the beauty and strength in that. 

I have shared this secret with only one friend who keeps all my secrets, but now we’re all in on it - so don’t spill it, K? 

Ok, so we’re at this amazing guesthouse which is really just a house with a main living room and three rooms, one of them being a dorm. There are 8 adults in this house and only ONE bathroom. Me and Noah share a comfortable double room just next to the bathroom and that’s great for me as this illness (maybe you saw my hospital video?) has me popping antibiotics like Skittles and it’s doing all kind of things to my innards. 

At day two of my meds, I feel a serious quake so I open the door to find our host and a few other guests watching Korean dramas on the couch, so I give my best “everything is fine” smile and slam the bathroom door shut. Inside, I can see that someone didn’t flush the toilet before me because there’s a bit of tissue paper still left in the bowl. Whatever, I’ve got go sumthin’ fierce so I do my thing and flush. When I do, the water in the bowl rises higher and higher! It’s not that the last person didn’t flush, it’s effin’ clogged!!! And now it’s clogged with pieces of me in it!!! 

^ My exact reaction

I. Am. Mortified! Everyone is sitting right outside and if I leave now, they’ll know it was me! Like an animal caught in a trap, I tapped into my primal instincts and the first thought that came to mind was suicide. Really nature? Since this was my first instinct, I am now convinced that animals chew off their limbs not out of survival, but to avoid the embarrassment of being caught. Limbs heal, but embarrassment is eternal. 

After weighting the pros and cons, I thought better of it because our sweet host would have to clean up after a dead body and sewage? So that was out. I quickly scanned the room and behind a wire shelf was a plunger! Sweet, merciful Jesus a plunger! I pull it out and see that it says, “piston plunger” never before have I seen a plunger like this but I figure with this, I have a fighting chance to make things right again. 

I turn on the shower to cover up the very obvious plunging sounds echoing in the bathroom and plunged like my life depended on it! Because it did! I started to get faint and loopy from the steam of the shower and looked down only to realize that this plunger mashed and bubbled my turds to a point of becoming a soup and now I looked like a witch in the fog, stirring her brew. I couldn’t even see the hole any more and plunging was futile. This was worse, a thousands times worse. 

I was heart-broken and turned off the shower in defeat. I knew I couldn’t fight this alone and had to get someone involved… Noah. I ran outside the bathroom, flashed my “everything is normal, I just showered with my clothes on for some reason” smile to everyone in the living room, slammed our bedroom door and panic-whispered my plight to Noah. “Please tell them it was YOU!” I begged him but he just giggled at my situation and said, “Plunge harder” ugh. I couldn’t waste any more time and knew he wouldn’t budge so I had to run back into the pit of despair (aka the bathroom) before anyone else could get in there. I felt like crying.

I turned on the shower again (my second “shower” in the last 45 minutes) and went deep into a plunging trance. I have a lot of fears despite people thinking that I’m brave. When I feel like this, I have this vision that I go to, a place where I find my strength. When I am scared or in doubt… I always think of my ancestors. I think of the Ancient Hawaiians who hunted, fished and lived off of the land for generations. Proud, self-reliant warriors who walked on lava. I have been forged through those fires. I am that Warrior. What would they do?

In that moment, I wiped my brow and knew what had to be done.

I punch the murky swamp with my bare hand and feel around for the hole. Wading elbow deep in my own output, I can feel tissue paper so I ball it up with all the might of my people! “I AM A WARRIOR!” I scream in my head as the sound of flushing and suction envelop my hand. 

For what seemed like an eternity, I sat there, hand in bowl for a good 40 seconds until clean water came back up into the bowl and shocked me back to the here and now. 

I did it. I freaking did it. 

I flushed what was left of the tissue ball, stripped off my clothes and took a shower for real this time. I was glad to be alive, the air smelled sweeter, birds were chirping outside and I swear the toliet bowl even winked at me.

To the people outside the bathroom door, it’s clear there was a “mishap” in the bathroom but no one but me ever had to deal with it, and I’ll take comfort in the fact that I can handle my own shit and that no one else should or even could.

Should we ever meet in person, you should know that I’m ambidextrous so when I shake your hand you should be thinking, “Is this THE hand!?” I’ll let that secret die with me. I need some mystery in my life.