by Patrik Moss Satta-Fleming
It was 1986 and the latest rage in beautiful Dundalk, Maryland, was PHOTON, an early incarnation of laser tag: smoke machines, flashing lights, ramps, tunnels, and even an computer-automated female voice that announced the commencement and conclusion of the game. This place was awesome!
I was 16 and just had gotten my driver’s license. My sister Amy is 19 months younger, and the fact that I drove gave us both an enormous amount of freedom. Our best friend Scott (two years younger than me) also reaped the benefits of our new-found mobility.
It was a Friday evening in the early fall and the three of us were going to PHOTON. Having gone several times before, we all had our PHOTON ID cards (required for play) and money to burn. My sister and I drove around the corner and picked up Scott and we were off. The facility was about five miles or so from our house, and it typically took about 15 minutes to get there.
We were on our way when I felt a rumbling down below. Then another. Glump…gurgle…errrrk…glump. We were about seven minutes from PHOTON when I decided to relieve what I perceived to be a large amount of gas. Nonchalantly, I lifted to one side and did my best to be discreet, that’s when all hell broke loose in my pants.
Unbeknownst to Scott and my sister, I had just done a very successful job of pooping myself. It burned and I felt it begin to saturate my underpants. Panic set in: Mom and Dad’s new car with velour seats! What was I to do? An idea came to mind – I could just turn in to BRADLEY’S department store at the next light. I made the announcement, “Hey guys, I need to run to BRADLEY’S for a second…I want to look for a new cassette tape.” This idea was met with immediate opposition. “What? Now? Why now? No! Let’s go to PHOTON before it gets to crowded,” Amy commanded.
I submitted and kept driving.
Not 30 seconds later it occurred to me that I could fake forgetting my PHOTON card and would need to go home. I made my announcement…disgruntled and irritated, my passengers conceded, and I turned the car around and proceeded home.
Once I pulled up in front of our house, I hopped out of the car and waddled in. It was getting dark so I was certain they would not see any evidence of my dirty deed through the seat of my pants.
I threw the front door open and announced to my parents, “I pooped my pants and have to shower and change…don’t tell Amy and Scott!” And with that, I dashed into the bathroom.
I began peeling off my khaki pants and soiled underwear – it was WAY worse than I thought. EEEEWWWWwwwww. I jumped into the shower, working feverishly to clean myself up before Amy and Scott (waiting in the car) suspected anything. This was no small task. The 10-minute shower lasted for what felt like a lifetime. Finally, I was clean!
I hurried out of the tub, dried off, bundled the evidence up in an old towel, wrapped a fresh, new towel around my waist and walked out of the bathroom. If I could get upstairs and get dressed quickly, I could still pull this off without Amy and Scott suspecting anything, or heaven forbid, finding out! – a fate WORSE than death.
As I walked through hallway on my way to my bedroom upstairs, Amy walked in the front door. I stopped and froze as we locked eyes. The look that crossed her face was priceless…shock, anger, frustration, confusion. I softly offered an explanation, “I pooped my pants in the car, DON’T TELL SCOTT!”
She busted out laughing, turned on her heels and proceeded out to the car.
After getting dressed and collecting what little dignity I had left, I took a deep breath and proceeded out to the car.
The car was silent, Amy and Scott looked straight ahead with expressionless faces, then the giggling started – followed soon by full out hysteria.
Scott, trying unsuccessfully to control his laughter, managed to ask, “Did you get your PHOTON card?”