November 25, 2006
Originally published April 10, 2005
I didn't live in a house that had an indoor crapper until my parents moved to Savannah. In the coal mining camp in Lewellen, Kentucky, we had an outhouse (a two-holer--- a sure sign of prosperity) and a ceramic chamber pot stuck under my bed for night-time emergencies in the winter. You were supposed to pee in the pot if you had to go during the night.
My brother once shit in it and got his ass whipped for doing that. He was four years old and afraid of the dark. He stunk up the whole house really bad.
If you've never used an outhouse, you have not lived a complete life.
I got in big trouble once when I conspired with my friend, "Pee-Wee," to drag a big rock from the front yard all the way to the outhouse and drop it down one of the holes. That task took a lot of effort from a couple of six year-old boys. It was a BIG rock. But we got the job done.
That rock hit the shit-pit with a loud SPLOOP! noise, then slowly sank beneath the surface while we watched it go under. Rats ran around in a panic. Flies buzzed off to another outhouse. It was quite a show.
Pee-Wee and I would have gotten away with that stunt if we hadn't decided that we wanted to do it again, with a BIGGER ROCK. We found one, pried it out of the ground and were all the way to the steps of the outhouse when my father spied us. "WHATTHEHELLYOUTHINKYOU'REDOIN'?"
Pee-Wee and I, standing on the bottom step to the outhouse with a big rock in our hands, gave the typical little boy answer to that question: "Nothing. We're not doing nothing."
My father didn't buy that lie. He ran Pee-Wee home and busted my ass. I never really understood why, but I learned that day that I was NEVER to get caught throwing rocks down the outhouse hole again.
Hell, I had contemplated throwing my BROTHER down there before, but I abandoned those notions after that day. Dad put a good whuppin' on my butt. Now that my father is dead, I can't ask him a question that has plagued me for a long time. I could see getting a butt-whuppin' for throwing my brother down the outhouse hole.
But what was wrong with tossing a rock in there?
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