To Michael Barton, of Boogdish, Patti Smith and anyone who worked a job for less than living wage.
So I was eighteen. Straight outta high school. I got this shit summer job workin’ at this fancy lilly white pool club. Minimum wage. Five fifteen an hour. But I ain’t gonna complain about that. I wasn’t tryin’ to get rich there. I was just tryin’ to make enough money for my first two semesters at community college. And maybe a bit of spendin’ money.
All in all, the job itself wasn’t too bad. They had me doing all sorts of things around the pool club. Cleanin’ the clubhouse, pool and the grounds, takin’ out the trash. Workin’ the concession stand. Sometimes they even let me play lifeguard, I wasn’t certified for that or anything and I’m still not sure if I needed to be.
The only problem was that they didn’t have any restrooms for us employees to use. I mean, they had restrooms. But those were for the club members and we weren’t allowed to use those. That meant we had to go out behind the clubhouse and do our business. And if you wanted to wash your hands after you had to either go into the concession stand and use the sink in there or use the hose behind the clubhouse. Now, I never had no problem peeing outside. But it was pretty insulting to be told that we weren’t allowed to use the club members restroom. There wasn’t nothing I could do to change the way things were.
I ended up being scheduled a good amount of time. I averaged over fifty hours a week. Anything over forty hours got me time and a half pay. I gotta admit that I liked that extra money. I didn’t really have to go to the bathroom much while at work, anyways. So I sucked it up and went to work.
I guess I didn’t think it was too bad, at first. In fact, the lack of an employee restroom was the source of inside jokes between the employees. For example, when someone had to go to the bathroom they said they had to “answer the call of the wild,” because they had to go out into the woods to do their business. We thought it was funny, at least.
I made friends with a good number of my fellow employees. I guess it’s pretty easy to make friends when you’re more or less forced to spend a lot of time with people. Anyways, we’d hang out almost every night after work. Just hanging out at one employees apartment or anothers. It was nothing special. But I think it helped time go by faster.
Anyways, back to work. I guess the idea came to me this one day when it was raining. I mean, it was fuckin’ pourin’. It was a hurricane, to be exact. I decided to skip my lunch, because I wasn’t goin’ to go outside to eat my lunch. There was literally no one in the clubhouse. And I really had to piss. I figured I could sneak into the club members restroom really quick and do my business and get out before anyone would notice me. I was going to break the club house’s most sacred rule.
But as soon as I get into the club members restroom, I discover it isn’t empty. There, using a urinal, is the pool club’s owner. This is a guy who rarely came into work. And the only time I ever tried to use the club members restroom, he catches me. He proceeds to lay into me like I had just burned down his house. Long beratement by this guy short, I’m fired.
So I figure I got nothing to lose. I cannonball into the pool. I figured I’m gonna get wet on my walk home, anyways. That really drove the pool club owner mad. He started yelling at me, demanding I get out of the pool before he called the cops. I started to make my way out of the pool when I remembered that I still had to piss. So I just pissed in the pool.
I’m pretty sure the pool club owner knew what I was doin’. Because he stopped yelling. And when I finished pissin’ and looked over at him he had this look of shock on his face. Like I had just kicked a puppy or something. The look on his face was priceless. I waded over to the edge of the pool and pulled myself out. Drippin’ wet, I walked out of the club house and into unemployment and the storm.