People watching is the best show on earth...

May 26, 2008

I Pooped!

. May 26, 2008


I'm enjoying a tall stack of cinnamon raisin pancakes this morning in an outdoor neighborhood eatery that overlooks a little of the bay. Fellow breakfasters also brave the cold weather with me, refusing to accept this unseasonal chilly Memorial Day in Southern California. My friend and I chat about her cousin, a Marine serving in Iraq. He's especially on her mind today.

As she speaks, I absent-mindedly pour some more delicious maple syrup on my pancakes (nothing beats original maple flavor). Looking down I see the bottom two pancakes are completely submerged in syrup. Perfect.

There's a steady din of conversation around us, punctuated with seagull squawks now and then. Suddenly, a toddler's voice breaks out above the rest:

"Mommy! Mommy! I pooped! I pooped in the potty!"

He's a round little bundle with pink cheeks chilled by the crisp air. A small green cap atop his head says, "ARMY". He wears tan cargo pants and the feet inside his brown hiking boots stomp quickly toward his mother, who sits next to us at a table with an older woman and man. The teenage girl bringing him back to their table laughs loudly and claps.

Another man at a nearby table also claps. A woman joins in, a girl, another man. The applause makes the boy stop in his tracks. His mother stands up and goes to him, also clapping. A high pitched giggle bursts forth from him as mom picks him up and snuggles his face with hers.

She wears a dark green sweatshirt. It says, "Support Our Troops" on the back. As she settles him back in at the table, she sits down and I see, "ARMY" across the front of her sweatshirt. My friend and I wonder who has missed this joyous occasion, a father, a boyfriend, a brother, a son? All of the above?

A small boy's poops in the toilet - something we laugh about and take for granted; another event to write him about.

13 Whispers:

Sleep Aid said...

Thanks for the funny story. For some reason it reminded me of the childrens book Everybody Poops. If you haven't seen it then I highly recommend you check it out. And tell your friend we appreciate all her cousin is doing for us over in Iraw.

Mike at Cell Phone Recycling said...

Thanks for this Memorial Day story. The theme of our troops fighting in Iraq permeates the whole story, but it's not as somber as one would expect. The boy and the syrup in the pancake, succesfully provide a counterpoint to the harsher pictures of the war that come to mind.

Chase March said...

That’s a great story. It’s something that we need to remember too. Kids need to experience “little successes” in order to build up to bigger and better things in life. This might not seem like much to anyone who isn’t a parent but it is a big deal to that kid. And I’m happy to see it was recognized and celebrated.

Harmony said...

What a great little victory :)
Very well told, thanks!

diy help said...

hey, this is very funny, I rel i wonder how can you experienced so much of things around you and they are all so interesting stuffs! Nice to read, the combination of pancakes and army reli cool ^_^

Meg said...

hey there,
just stumbled upon your blog & i fell quickly in love with your writing. hope you don't mind - i added you to my favorite links on my blog. :)
thanks for bringing joy, wisdom, and quick snippets of life to the world.

Rosalind said...

*Is a Gaian*.

Your blog is amazing. I guess I would think that it was invasive and unethical if you published the actual conversations here, but descriptions of the scene puncuated with quotes you've heard is really very cool. I like how you don't seem to judge people in your posts, just record what you see and let the readers make up their minds... at least in the posts I've read so far.

You are right about gossip columns being far more invasive than this -- this is a reflection of real life, not an overblown rumour about the lastest Hollywood skank. These posts have actually touched me pretty emotionally.

classy & fabulous said...

Go little Army man!

Cieralla said...

It's interesting how people are the closest to us when they're the farthest away. I bet his dad will be proud when he hears the news!

Vienne said...

Hello everybody and thanks for commenting on this sweet victory!

@Sleep Aid, I have read that book and liked it very much. I also relayed your appreciation to my friend, in fact I had her read it. So thank you.

@Mike, I chose the photo for this post based on the points you make. I thought the scene was such a contrast to what I imagined the little boy's daddy doing at that moment - patrolling the desert in the dead of night, watching out for IEDs, while his son takes a little step towards manhood among pancakes and eggs under a sunny sky.

Hello Chase, you said it. It was a sweet and comical celebration.

@Harmony, indeed and thank you!

@Diy, welcome to my blog. I just try to stop my own thoughts for a moment and listen. Sometimes I hear things that I feel compelled to share.

@Meg, welcome and of course I'm flattered to be on your blog roll. Thanks a lot. I think the things I overhear prove what powerful creatures we are. Sometimes we say dumb things that perhaps we don't mean. Others might stop and think about it and maybe make a change for themselves. Other times we're so poetic and wise, everyday people being brilliant. I hope a can bring a good balance of each to this blog for you to ponder.

@Rosalind, thank you very much. I try very hard to withhold my own judgments (really, really hard!). My intent here is to offer inspiration for writers and let readers draw their own conclusions. Thanks for sharing your emotion, too. So often I'm sitting here typing my recollection with tears streaming down my face. I'm a dork like that! But I can't help but wonder what or who is really behind all these conversations and I get emotional about that.

@Classy, Cheers!!

@Cieralla, that's a beautiful quote and so very true, huh? Did you make that up? That definitely needs to be circulated.

the Book Tamer said...

Such a sweet story indeed. Congratulations for your ability to take bits of reality and crafting them so nicely into writing.

2sweetnsaxy said...

Such a nice story and reminder not only of our troops but the little, wonderful things in life.


Missing things like that is a real drag. Unfortunately, I have been the one to miss that stuff far too often for the same reason and it is excruciating.


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