Thursday, September 21, 2006

One good turn deserves another, surely?


Yesterday I was in the uni's city campus with Pip and Helen finding out vital information on how to write the perfect ARC discovery grant application (namely: take one year off to complete the paperwork or shag an examiner). After the two hours ended, my head was pounding, so I said I'd go outside for some fresh air whilst they hung around to ask the Professor for some more details (Shag who? When? How many times?)

The air on the fifth-floor foyer overlooking the indoor atrium wasn't much fresher, unless you consider sneaker feet, old chewing gum and morning breath to be particularly aromatic. As I slurped from the water fountain, one of the saddest sounds in nature reached my ears. Yes, that of a trapped butterfly, smacking its tiny little forehead over and over on the windowpane, desperately trying to get to freedom outside.

I don't mind when blow flies do it because they tend to break up the monotony by dive bombing one of my eyes every now and then and they're ugly and annoying (kind of like Adam Sandler), but a butterfly is, well, pitiful. This black and orange beauty needed saving, brother. As gently as my man-hands and long, ET-phone-home fingers could, they slowly closed around the distressed insect, trapping it. "Don't worry little one," I cooed, knowing I sounded like a looney but who gave a crap - I was surrounded by doctors and professors who were experts in their tiny intellectual fields but unable to tie their own shoelaces.

Walking towards the sliding door, I opened my hands in an exaggerated, 'The Hills Are Alive With The Sound Of Music' gesture, and the butterfly buggered off as quickly as it could. I sauntered back inside, mentally patting myself on the back for being such a caring environmentalist willing to put my money where my mouth was. No, ,make that my hands where my mouth was, or was it my brain where my hands were, or...

Anyhow, my ego was stoked and fit to burst. As was my bladder I then realised. There were no loos immediately apparent, other than the disabled facility directly outside the lecture theatre door. I snuck in and locked the door, hoping that no dead-keen wheelie would have the time to huff their chair up five flights of stairs before I'd finished.

Creak.... "Ooop, sorry!"

"JESUS, I'm in HERE!"
Oh. My. God. Someone had opened the toilet door and I was directly in their full view, pants around my knees and blowing my nose loudly into some scrunched up toilet paper. What the hell happened to the concept of one good turn deserves at least three minutes of alone time in the bog?

Thankfully, the door opener had disappeared, no doubt shocked to the core at seeing me in there, fat fluoro arse cheeks and white cottage cheese thighs on proud display. As I waited for the red flush of embarrassment in my face to fade, I made a job of rummaging through my backpack looking for the apple I'd flung in there that morning. Lana wandered out, sharing a greeting. She was in the middle of telling me about the trials and tribulations of grant applications and I nodded wisely, chewing apple and pretending I knew just what the hell she was talking about. "I mean the literature review alone took me four months to compile MillyMoo, and ---- what's wrong with you?

Patoooey! I took one look into my apple and saw the healthy snacker's nightmare - a brown hole and only half the worm. "Yuck!" Lana hastily muttered, "Oh, OK, I'd better get back to the campus," and tottered down the stairs increasing her momentum in her desperation to be rid of me so that she nearly smacked into the exit doors on her way out.

Helen and Pip emerged and I decided to brag about the butterfly and leave out the butt-bearing and apple worm incidents. Where was the good turn I was due for saving the boodiful butterfly? Maybe I'd check my lotto ticket at the newsagent or see if I could slip down a KitKat without my metabolism noticing.

Several hours later, I was hooning down the Magill hill on my new bike, wondering why it took me twenty six years to start riding again. I smiled at a fellow cycler, feeling part of a secret bikey brotherhood, a group that were fit, saving petrol and being responsible. I was a person who--- oh for a faceful of wombats' scat---swallowed a fly. No point in spitting it out, it was too far gone for that.


Oh well that was probably my good turn. A tiny bit of protein and one less blowie around to annoy me. *Sigh*

5 comments:

Attila The Mom said...

OMG---what a day you had!! The only way you could have topped it is if some scientist came running down the hall shrieking, "Has anyone seen our one-of-a-kind super butterfly that is the last of its species?"

Or maybe if the bathroom door was opened mid-fart to complete the humiliation. ;-)

Chestnut Mare said...

Very funny Attila the mom! See Millymoo, things could always be worse!!

Jilly said...

I know what you mean about the
'secret bikey brotherhood' - I feel the same, you see another rider and just nod, knowlingly... out there pitted against the cars. But the feeling of riding downhill is great - I have to sing or go 'wheeeeeeee', don't know why, must be the 3 year old coming out in me.

Samantha said...

That is one of my biggest fears, I don't know why but it's right up there with spiders and daddy long legs!

Mark Base said...

You never fail to give me a grin.