Tweeted by me the day of the event:
“The most embarrassing thing in the history of the world just happened to me. Don’t even ask. Maybe in a yr I’ll be recovered & ready to talk”
“Just when I thought it couldn’t get ANY worse….IT DID. This one could go down in the record books. How will life go on after this…? ; )”
***Warning: You will get to know me a bit more personally if you read this post***
The stage must be set before we begin: First, if you know anyone I work with, or happen to work in the same office with me…I trust you will spare my life, and keep this post and it’s contents to yourself.
Those of you who have known me personally for even a short period of time know that a couple of years ago a lovely Dr. in Las Vegas, NV. diagnosed me with the very common yet incurable disorder known as “I.B.S.” (That’s Irritable Bowel Syndrome) There are various symptoms of this lovely disorder, many of which I do not have. The main symptom I do suffer (Or, should I say, my wife suffers) is…GAS. You see, I was having incredibly sharp pain in my abdomen. It’s become known around our house as “the knife pain”. When “the knife pain” comes there is but ONE option. Release the pressure that is causing this terrible pain. There IS NO OPTION two (Morgan). “But Aaron, you can control that! Just hold it in!” Excuse me? Here’s how it works, it’s very simple-I hold it in, I suffer. Release it, I have relief…
While there is no cure for I.B.S. most people can figure out which foods particularly upset their stomach. We have some guesses, and the ones we’re sure of I simply enjoy too much to stop eating. For example, I love fruit & fruit smoothies. When I eat an apple, you don’t want to be around me for at least the next 6 hours. No lie. Nonetheless, I have learned to live with this unfortunate disorder. Apparently, those around me have not…
I recently started a new job with a start-up company here in Austin. It’s exciting, and I have thoroughly enjoyed this first week of work…Thursday morning took a turn for the worse…not for my co-workers, or the company I work for necessarily – I was the only one from my company in the office this early…
Because we’re a start-up we currently lease some office space from another company that has an extra office. These are friendly, respectable people. It’s great, we have everything we need from a receptionist to a Keureg coffee machine in the lounge, and a copy room with every office supply item you can think of. There’s healthy/organic snacks, and a water dispenser as well. Again, this is a nice place – fancy if you will. While myself, and my co-workers come & go when we want, dress however we like, etc. we are surrounded by nicely dressed, responsible grown adults…
It was a Thursday morning in Austin. My alarm went off. As I pulled the covers off there was a potent odor released into the air. Apparently, “the knife” had visited me in my sleep – luckily, my body was able to “release the pressure” throughout the night without waking me. I woke up feeling quite crappy, so this nostril stinging smell did not help the situation. (Many of you are now feeling very sorry for poor Morgan…who sometimes experiences this, as she usually wakes up before me – therefore, she’s the first to pull the covers back-unleashing the wrath of my I.B.S.) Nonetheless, I got up, got dressed, ate breakfast and headed out for work. My stomach was feeling weird…I could sense “the knife” plotting an attack. So, I did what I had to, and spent the 20 minute drive to work “releasing the pressure” – yes, I cracked the window down – what do you think I am, some sort of sicko?
I thought I had taken care of the issue as I pulled into the parking lot. To be honest, this was the worst scent my body has produced in all the years since we found out I had I.B.S. I got out of the car somewhat relieved that I had defeated “the knife”, and headed up the elevator to the office. Walking in the door I smiled and said a friendly, “good morning” to the receptionist as I made my way to the lounge to put my lunch in the fridge, and get my cup of coffee. You see, although I had taken care of the worst of the problem in the car I knew I needed to drink a good strong cup of joe to get the ol’ bowels a movin’ – best way to start the day – ask anyone. This is when it (by “it”, I mean “it part 1”) happened…
I was all alone in the lounge, and had come in a bit earlier that morning – there weren’t too many people in the office yet. As my coffee was brewing I felt “the knife” creeping up. As the air bubble in my stomach filled up I began this thought process:
“Ok, there’s NOBODY in here. I can let this one out, get my coffee, and get the heck out. The smell will go away before anyone else comes in here……………………………………………………but wait, what if someone comes in? I don’t have a choice ….aw hell, I’ve always been a risk-taker. I’m doin’ it…”
It was at that moment that I new this was not going to turn out good for Aaron Snow. I “released the pressure”, grabbed my coffee, and turned for the door only to find a fellow office-mate (who worked for the other company) entering the room headed directly for the cloud of odor, which smelled the color green. He was smiling, and took a nice, deep early morning gasp of air through his nose as if to say, “what a beautiful morning-it’s a good day today”. I held my breath, gave an awkward smile, and walked out. It was all in slow motion and Matrix-like as we passed one another. I swear I saw his face cringe as he passed through the cloud. I hurried to my office, which was directly across from the lounge, and had a window I could look through across the hall into the tainted territory. I closed the door quickly and sat at my desk…
The next five minutes included beads of sweat, blushed cheeks, and racing terrified thoughts. I watched through the corner of my eye as, one by one, everyone in the office entered the lounge somewhat puzzled. The first victim was explaining something to each person with a confused look on his face. They were frantically opening cabinets, the fridge, and the trash can. They were searching for the answer that only I had….but would NEVER, ever, under any circumstances share with them. In the middle of their search, victim number one knocked on my office door. I motioned through the window for him to come in, and stood up to greet him. Our conversation was as follows:
Him: “We’re smelling some sort of odor in the break room that we’ve never smelled before…like rotten eggs, or sulfur or something…did you notice it when you were in there…?”
Me: (With every ounce of acting skill I acquired in theater class in 9th grade): “Hmmm…ya know I didn’t notice anything, but my nose is stopped up right now. Did you check in the trash can? Could it be some spoiled food?”
Him: “Ya we’ve checked everywhere, and can’t seem to find where it’s coming from.”
Me: “That’s weird…..now that I think about it I may have noticed something faintly…huh.”
I began questioning my deceptive choice to lie to this man who HAD to know what I had done. But it was too late now. I was in too deep. There was no turning back. I made a decision, and had to follow through.
He changed the subject, introduced himself, and began asking me about our new company. The conversation went on for several minutes, and before he exited my office it seemed as if I was in the clear. The lounge was empty, he had seemingly forgotten about the incident, and everyone was back to work – I called Morgan and told her what had just happened. She laughed harder than I’ve heard her laugh in a while, and told me it served me right. Then, I got out my phone, and tweeted,
“The most embarrassing thing in the history of the world just happened to me. Don’t even ask. Maybe in a yr I’ll be recovered & ready to talk” –
I was off the hook…
Remember when I said “by ‘it’ I mean ‘it part 1′”? (As if what had just happened wasn’t bad enough…my FART didn’t clear a room out – it was so bad it drew the entire office IN to try and figure out where the dead & rotting animal was. Then, I lied straight to my office-mates face! Not sure if grace covers an incident like this…)
A few minutes went by and that cup of jo started to kick in. I’m convinced a good strong cup of coffee is the best way to stay regular. What’s all this “fiber talk” about lately. Pshh, just give me a good strong cup of coffee dadgumit. I thought, “this is good. I can go to the bathroom, take care of my business, and ‘the knife’ will be gone for the rest of the day.” I got up and headed for the water closet. (bathroom for all you Americans-sorry, I’m feeling witty now) As I relaxed comfortably on the throne I noticed someone in the stall next to me. “Shit“, I thought. (Literally) Let’s just say the next minute or so was not exactly quiet, or particularly fresh. Poor guy next to me was probably traumatized. Turns out the guy next to me happened to be another guy from the company we share the office with. (I know this because I peaked through the crack in the stall when he went to wash his hands) He also happened to be one of the investigators in the lounge earlier when everyone was about to call an exterminator. I hope you’re following me here…in the lounge he experienced a smell like he had never experienced before. He would remember that odor the rest of his life-not to mention 5 minutes later.
Unfortunately, I’m the only one in the office who where chuck’s to work. They are quite noticeable – not your typical black Converse All Stars…he saw them. He knew it was me. He put two and two together. I was the rodent in the lounge. He had found me out. Now the question was, “will he tell the others that he now knew what they couldn’t figure out earlier?” I could just hear him in my head saying, “You guys aren’t gonna believe this! That new kid with the tattoos ripped one in the lounge! THAT’S what we were smelling! I was just in the restroom while he was tearing it up, and smelled the same thing!”
I sat on the jon humiliated, wondering how in the world I would walk back into that office, and spend the rest of my day working there…I pulled my phone out and tweeted, “Just when I thought it couldn’t get ANY worse….IT DID. This one could go down in the record books. How will life go on after this…? ; )”
Life goes on. I.B.S. still taunts me. “The knife” lingers waiting for an opportunity to torment me. I will never forget that Thursday morning in January the first week of my new job in a new place with new people when my body produced the unspeakable odor. I hope you have enjoyed this story, and it gave you a good laugh. I don’t know how I would have made it through if it wasn’t going to produce something positive like some good humor for a few. Bye for now, off to go make a fruit smoothie.