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The trouble with drinking lots of water is the constant peeing.

I used to make three stops, maybe four, in a day. But now? 64 ounces a day now? It’s just me making tracks to the nearest bathroom. And you would think that having to get up in the middle of the night — every night — would be the worst part.

But no.

I have to pee at work every day now. Sometimes twice. That’s the worst part. The women’s bathroom at work, I’m certain, does not meet OSHA standards and is in violation of some kind of human rights laws.

Sure, it’s clean, but that’s not the only standard by which a bathroom should be judged. It’s also a little, unheated closet-thing that is right there off the big, open room where editorial staff has their cubicles, not too far from my very own desk in fact. The little closet has tiled floors and one painted cement block which is also the exterior wall to the building that is opposite the door which is one of those cheesy hollow-core doors like you see in cheap-ass old trailer houses, such as the one I live, so I know whereof I speak.

Here’s the problem, you go in to pee and the little tinkly (or big gushy) noise you make doing your beeswax echoes off the tile and the cement wall and out through the thin door to be heard by everyone in the freakin’ room. Of all the things I really don’t care about and will hang out there for the world, this is not one. I am, in fact, a little hinky about public bathrooms. If we’re buds, you and I, no problem. We walk into adjoining stalls and piddle away without a break in conversation.

However, I don’t want to share some things with coworkers.

Back when I couldn’t make it till I went home only maybe once every week or two, I used to just suck it up, tell myself that everybody pees and go in there. Not make a big deal out of it … except, yeah, I’d make sure I started pulling TP off that noisy holder right away to cover up the initial rush of noise. Then one day this week I realized I was getting a little psycho about that, really yanking on the TP end to make that thing rattle and squeak, then turning it back to squeak and rattle a few squares of paper back onto the roll, then squeaking it back off. It seemed a little excessive, and slightly, y’know, more than quirky, maybe obsessive. Whatever.

I had to start being mature about it.

Now I wait until someone has turned on the defective fan in the men’s bathroom — that sound rattles through the whole building, and someone would have to be standing there with their ear to a cup against the door to hear any sound in the bathroom. Problem solved.

What? You think I’m going to turn on the fan in the women’s bathroom? Voluntarily? Then they’ll think I’m in there farting!!

Hydration is complicated at pam[at]viewfromthenorth40.com

of scaring my expected company away:

Does it mean that I have made profoundly poor lifestyle choices if I write up my to-do list to get the house ready for company, review it, then ask John: “Hey, hon, the next time you go over to your shop tonight, could you bring back your fumes respirator?”

And then he says yes without even needing to ask why at pam[at]viewfromthenorth40.com