I’m the guy who has never taken a true sick day at work and loves to remind people of that; the guy who will rock a blazer and a t-shirt on a 40 degree day and laugh at everyone who says I’m going to get sick; the guy who dated a person who had the freakin swine flu (seriously), slept in the same bed with her two nights in a row, and didn’t get as much as a sniffle.
Now, if this were a movie, the “I never get sick” guy would undoubtedly get some mysterious exotic elephant illness towards the middle of the movie as some sort of karmic payback for him incessantly bragging about his immune system. This character would probably be played by Jim Carrey or Dane Cook, and the title of the movie would probably be “Sick Day” or “No Flu Lou” or some shit.
My life isn’t a movie, but as you would have it, that exact thing happened to me. In early December I came down with some mysterious illness that kept me in bed for three days and made me take — no lie — approximately 40 shits in a 48 hour span. (Seriously, it got so bad that I actually fell asleep on the toilet three or four separate times because I was spending so much time sitting there)
By the 4th day, I started to feel strong enough to get out of bed and eat something. I was still very sick, but I was definitely getting better. By the fifth day, I was feeling so much better that I decided to leave the house. I had just received a phone call that the Ebony Magazine that had VSB on the Power 100 list was finally in stores, and I went to Giant Eagle to purchase a few copies.
You know how in horror movies, every thing is good until one of the characters makes a really, really bad decision? Well, going to Giant Eagle in the condition I was in was me basically saying “Hey, lets go skinny-dipping in the same lake where that guy who killed all those kids last summer was last seen!!!”
When I first entered the store, everything was cool. I was still very weak from being sick for so long, but I was able to move around pretty well, my stomach wasn’t too upset, and I was basically just happy to be leaving the house and getting some fresh air. But, as I neared the magazine section, I felt a slight rumble in my stomach. Seconds later, the slight rumble started turning hot—the heat that tells you some liquid is getting ready to leave your body very violently very soon.
Still, although I felt this, I thought that I had enough time to pick up the magazine, head to the register, and get back home before I eventually exploded. I was wrong. Very wrong. I underestimated the violent intent of the brown liquid itching to leave my body, and I definitely also underestimated how weak the 72 hours of shitting had made my sphincter.
By the time I realized that I needed to forget about everything and just head the f*ck home as soon as possible, it was too late. There I was, a grown-ass Black man with multiple tattoos, a Dodge Charger, and a full beard, and I shit myself in the middle of a f*cking supermarket.
Luckily, no one was close enough to me around me to notice, but that was a small consolation as I dealt with the fact that in less than 15 seconds, I’d gone from “a guy who doesn’t shit on himself in supermarkets” to “a guy who shits on himself in supermarkets.” Not a status I was ready to accept.
Getting home was also a bit of an ordeal. Since I (understandably) didn’t want to sit on the seats in my car, I ended up getting a few plastic grocery bags that were on a table near where I was parked, spread them on my seats, and sat on them. I have no idea where these bags came from, who put them there, or what was in them before I sat on them. But, when you’re walking around with a half cup of diarrhea dripping down your leg, you’re not exactly in a place to be making rational decisions.
To add insult to injury, I got the following text message when I finally made it home::
“My bad, Damon. The Ebony with VSB in it doesn’t actually hit stores until next week”
Photo of sign courtesy of Shutterstock