On Ending Up in a Bathroom, Taking a Selfie

Jackies Diner No PottySeriously. Who takes a selfie in the restroom of a greasy spoon?

Well. I suppose a lot of people do that, actually. Like, a kazillion people. And they all put the pictures up on various social media, forgetting to hide the potty.

Anyway. Why would I do that?

Well. I’ve got a semi good reason.

Last weekend I had the honor of speaking at a Christmas Gala at a church in my hometown. Both of my high school English teachers attended. 4 out of 6 college roommates. Several friends. Plus a lot of other people.

But how does that get me in the bathroom, snapping a selfie?

Sorry. I’m getting to that.

The morning after the Gala my mom took me out to breakfast. She said something about going to Jackie’s Diner. They, apparently, have killer omelettes. I just wanted some halfway decent coffee with a plate of bacon.

Bleary eyed from hardly any sleep, I sat back, taking in the sights of Logan/Martin Luther King Junior BLVD. Then I realized that she was pulling into THE diner…

THE diner that was called Theo’s when I was in high school. THE diner that changed over to Nic’s when I was in college…

jackies diner outsideTHE diner that Steven took Cora to after he rescued her from the rain in Paint Chips! (if you haven’t read Paint Chips…then why not? Get thee to Amazon and order thine copy!)

Jackies diner dining roomRemember the puddle they made on the floor? Ahem. From their rain soaked clothes. Come on, people. Well, Jackie’s has carpet, so Steven wouldn’t have needed to mop. But, still…this is what I had in mind when I wrote the scene.

Hey, see the projector hanging from the ceiling? That’s about the only new thing in the place since I was in high school (like 17 years ago).

jackies diner coffee cupThis is my cup of coffee. It. Was. STRONG! Whew! And the waitress was just as gruff as the one I’d written. Only difference? The real waitress didn’t soften to us.

I ordered one of the killer omelettes (sorry…no sourdough for me). By the end of the meal, I had the following conversation with my mom.

“I HAVE to go to the bathroom,” I said.

“Too much coffee?” she asked.

“Mother! The heresy! There is no such thing!” Grabbing my phone. “I just HAVE to go look at the bathroom.”

“Why? And why do you have your phone? What’s wrong with you? Why is my daughter such a FREAK OF NATURE????” (okay…not all of that. But it’s funnier this way. Remember: I write fiction because I like to lie).

“I have to get a picture, Mom.”

“You are so weird. Maybe it’s from all the times I let your older siblings drop you on your head and feed you paint chips. Ah well. It was the 70’s. I mean, we had an avocado colored fridge. Seriously. It was a strange time.”

“You let them feed me paint chips?”

“Yeah. We didn’t think it would actually hurt you. Boy. Did I get that one wrong.”

(disclaimer: I have no idea what just happened there. But I’m tired and I’m not fixing it.)

So, pondering my troublesome childhood nutrition, I took to the bathroom. Standing, looking in the mirror, I breathed in deep. Then quickly regretted my decision and gagged a little.

“I’d better snap this selfie fast before I become dizzy.”

Just as I pulled the phone from my pocket, the door swung open. A small woman (Jackie, I presumed) entered. She grumped about something (I couldn’t tell what language she used), flushed both toilets before closing one of the stalls and locking the door.

It didn’t seem like the appropriate time to take a photo. Especially since the gaps in the stalls were HUGE. I hightailed it out of there.

“Did you get the picture?” My mom sipped her 30th cup of coffee.

“Nah. The lady walked in.”

“You should have asked her to take the picture.”

“Um. No.”

“You know, I didn’t really let them feed you paint chips. Right? You know I wouldn’t do that.”

“Uh huh.”

The lady walked out of the bathroom. Then, I had my chance! So, I ran to the door, took a deep breath, and rushed in. Snapped the picture. Ran back out.

“Got it.”

“I mean, paint chips wouldn’t really harm you all that much. It wasn’t like they had lead in them.”

“Actually, yeah. They probably did, Mom.”

“Well, at least we know why you’re like this. Right?”


(NOTE: my mother is a sweet and loving person. She never has and never would allow anyone to eat anything harmful to them. She is a model of motherhood and I dream of one day being half the woman she is. Just taller.)

(ANOTHER NOTE: In Paint Chips Cora has a scene in the bathroom in which the waitress comes in and they have a tender moment…that’s why I wanted to get a selfie in the bathroom.)

So. That is the strange and over-caffeinated story of how and why I took a selfie in the bathroom.

Now, your turn. Tell me about the weirdest selfie you’ve ever taken. Ahem. Keep it clean. This is a family friendly blog. Why did you take the picture? Was anyone with you? Did your parents let you eat paint chips?

12 Comments on “On Ending Up in a Bathroom, Taking a Selfie

  1. One of the only selfies I have ever taken was in a changing room in a Lansing Meijer. I promised a friend a picture because I was growing my hair out for a part in my community theater’s production of Spamalot (I played Sir Bedevere (The guy with the Wooden Rabbit idea) as well as Sir Lancelot’s Squire, Concord and Dennis’ Mother, Mrs. Galahad). It was perfect because I needed new pants (hence the changing room) and my hair was crazy that day, as it is most days.

    Side note: This story was even funnier because I actually know your mother. She would never say most of those things, but her eyes might betray the fact that she was thinking them. 😀


  2. At least this selfie had a life threatening aspect (from your description of the air – or lack thereof – you dealt with). Most selfies I’ve seen just threaten the person in the car beside you on the highway or have no risk at all. I, personally, applaud your bravery.


  3. It’s rare I take a bathroom selfie, because I find them uninteresting and as you said…awkwardly placed. haha 😉 However, I have taken selfies all over in other places. Cars, planes, trains, buses, bars, rooftops, concerts, ArtPrize, my job, tourist attractions. The weirdest…probably cemeteries. I love them. So, selfies happen there.


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