We runners have this innate drive to line up at the bathrooms or porta-potties before a race. For many, it is a ritual that gives us a few moments of peace in a safe place.
Kids are the same. During class time, when they ask to go, they often don’t really need to; they just want a bit of a break, an escape from the class and teacher.
Last week, we had a fire drill at school. My role is to make sure the second hallway is empty, lights are off and doors are shut. As soon as I heard the alarm, I started my rounds.
“Is anyone in there?” I called when I got to the boys’ bathroom.
Seriously? I’ve never had that happen during a drill. I checked the girls’ and the computer lab, and I returned to the boys’.
“Is anyone in there?” I yelled again.
I stood outside the entrance and watched the remaining classes leave. I saw closed doors and wondered if I would have to jump out of a window if this were a real fire.
“Hurry up!” I repeated a third time. “We have to get out of here!” What I really wanted to say, though, was “Shit or get off the pot!”
Finally, I heard a flush. And, in case you were wondering, I didn’t make him wash his hands.