Taylor Brooke McCoy

Writer, Reader, and Person With Opinions

Misremembered Tales: Graffiti and Humiliation

Back in the days where little Taylor knew about 20% of what was going on, I got to take an adventure with my mom to WT where she was attending graduate school and teaching part time. For what reason I came along, who knows? What I do know is that at some point in the day, I had a little kid’s problem. A need to pee right now problem.

So, my mom was engrossed in some project or another, and I decided that the time was nigh for getting rid of my current problem. I inquired about the location of the restrooms and with nary a concern about my welfare walking down the hallway (just kidding, mom) I was sent in the direction of the restrooms.

I took my long, solitary journey down the echoing hallways and saw with a glimmer of hope, the gleam of a window beckoning me to the tiled room at the end of the hall. The bathroom. The haven of porcelain thrones.

I entered with no timidity or concern, for my problem had reached near-critical levels of concern. I sped into the room and mounted my throne. Sweet relief! I would not embarrass my mother at this Institution of higher learning. No, not this day!

As the relief passed, I began to study my surroundings. The tile being blue didn’t strike me as odd until that moment. Most women’s restrooms were yellow or pink, but here we were. I liked the blue, though. It mellowed me out.

The overhead fluorescents weren’t on, so there was a bit of a gloom locked with me behind the stall door. I turned my gaze to the walls and studied the varying prints of black marker, blue pen, scratches with a key or paperclip. Many phone numbers, names, and requests for camaraderie were scrawled before my eyes, but what most confused me was the simple, yet elegant portrait of a woman drawn in black permanent marker.

I thought to myself, Why would a woman draw another woman in the restroom stall? Of course, this is before I knew of a great many reasons why a woman would memorialize the female form in such a place.

Still, though, it did not register what fate I had brought on myself. It wasn’t until my eyes rolled across the words:

 

For a good time call Karen (555) 555-5555

 

I did ponder on the peculiarity of this behavior. I had never known women to solicit their company on bathroom walls!

 

Then…it hit me. As I heard footsteps clacking down the hallway, getting louder with each second, every scenario of an encounter with a person of the male variety flashed through my mind in a blazing horror.

What had I done? Had I imprisoned myself to a cruel fate, locked in the men’s restroom to die in embarrassment, hunger, and numb legs?

No. I refused to succumb to this fate. I whipped my pants up, paused to flush, and burst from the Stall of Profanity. Screaming for Women’s Rights and Freedom, I left a trail of confusion in my wake. A return to the female world! How liberating it felt!

I hoped, and still hope, to never return to that world of graffiti and humiliation again.

 

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