Today while I was preparing drinks with straws and a cool cloth for Dustin's head, I was remembering the first time I got food poisoning. Perhaps I had it before that time, but this was the one I really remember. And I can't remember it without laughing until I cry. It was the summer of 1986 and boy was it hot. Karen and I were living in a one room apartment in Venice Beach and we had no air-conditioning. We had one bathroom. Our brother, Tod, was staying with us. Karen and I shared a double bed that was pushed up next to a wall. I slept on the wall side. Tod slept on a small couch. Like many other days that summer, we all bought a ticket to see a movie and just stayed in the air-conditioned theater eating popcorn and Reese's Peanut Butter Cups all day. We saw a lot of movies in one day,many times. That day, Tod and I shared a packet of peanut butter cups and Karen had the popcorn. We went home when the sun went down and we went to bed. Hours later, I woke in a sweat with the worst stomach pains ever. I thought I was dying wedged between Karen and the wall. I was in too much pain to toss and turn and was afraid if I did either of those things I might explode in the bed. I laid there still. Sweating. And then I heard the sounds I'll never forget. Oh my God. Oh shit. Oh shit. Oh shit. Oh my God. Oh Shit. It didn't sound like my voice but those were my thoughts. Oh shit. Oh shit. Oh shit. Oh my GOD!!!!! Make way!
Tod was moaning on the coach, tossing and turning like a sky on a stormy night. He bolted from the couch, tripped over his shoes, and started undressing on his way to the single toilet in our apartment. The toilet I really needed to use, if only I could toss myself over Karen. If only I could beat him to the bathroom. If only I could move. Oh shit. Oh shit. Oh my GOD! Oh shit. He slammed the bathroom door. Oh shit. Oh shit. I am dying! Oh shit.
My hands were clutching my own stomach as Tod's chant continued. I did not dare look at Karen (who was un-poisoned) because I could not laugh hysterically while trying not to ruin the bed. Being the loving sister that I am, I demanded he hurry up because someone else needed to use the toilet, too.
Oh shit. Oh shit. I think those peanut butter cups were bad.
I have no idea how I made it out of the bed, but I did just as Tod was exiting. I'd never been so happy to see a toilet with a working flusher in my life.
There's a reason we barf in toilets, Dear.
Visit Linda Woods Artworks for prints on canvas, paper, or wood for all size spaces and budgets.