I got out of the subway and walked into Subway making a beeline for the bathroom. I’ve come to the conclusion that waiting to go pee is the biggest issue of our time and that we should not “hold it” anymore. If diapers weren’t so hard to make sexy when stripping, than my groin would constantly be pee-stained and my face would be happy.
The problem/fun-part of this philosophy is that you see the inside of a lot of public restrooms. Restrooms with used toilet paper everywhere but the toilet. Restrooms with sinks that dispense different colored liquids depending on which way you turn the handle. Restrooms with graffiti. I’ve always found restroom graffiti interesting. In my old composition notebook (that I lost and cried about) I had written down the phone numbers of over twenty people who could either give be a blow job, a hand job, or a good time. I also like the conversations that occur on the stall wall. Nobody ever comes back to the same bathroom to continue your conversation so you have to be willing to accept that someone else might take up your cause and argue it for you later. If you want to assert that Michelle Obama is a slut, you better be comfortable with the fact that someone may disagree and a stupider person with less ability to spell might try to support your claim therefore making you look stupid by graffiti association.
This Subway restaurant was different.
My favorite graffiti that I ever saw was at my old high school when I went back to teach. In the boys bathroom was a large mirror with a wooden plank above it saying: “Look who can get AIDS.” Someone responded: “Not me I’m not a faggot.” to which a long a detailed argument against this young boy’s homophobia was carved into the wood. It was a near paragraph long explanation with nuance, finesse, and the jolty hand writing of a person carving into wood with a key. The next person responded: “I can’t either because I’m a pickle.” To which someone else exclaimed: “I love pickles!”
This was what I thought restroom graffiti should be; prejudiced statements that were responded to with contextually unfit eloquence followed up by absurdity.
That was what I thought until I went into Subway.
Above the sink was written: “Be Happy.” Unable to understand the command another voice chimed in: “How?” To which a follow-up was written by another bathroom soul in agreement with the first author: “Smile.” Uplifting bathroom graffiti is an untapped art. Down and to the right was a sentence written with a sharpie: “Life is short. Have fun, but be careful.” Correctly punctuated, conservatively joyous, and written with bathroom graffiti handwriting. Up and to the right was the third thing thought worthwhile to say on the wall of a public peeing area: “Life Rocks.”