Bits and bobs

Random thoughts about random things by a random person


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Pyjamas at work and I don’t care

I was on the elevator at work yesterday – going up or down, I don’t remember and, really, it doesn’t matter. It was crowded and I was towards the back left. As I frequently do, I was standing there, minding my own business, looking down at the floor. Not an exciting thing to look at, but you have to look somewhere and the floor is the least obtrusive thing to look at.

Of course, when you look at the floor on a crowded elevator you see shoes and lower legs. Sometimes I see footwear that I really like. I might even say to the person, “I really like your shoes!” But generally, I just kind of stand there quietly minding my own business.

Yesterday, though, what I saw confused and surprised me.

There was the regular assortment of spring footwear, of course: dress shoes (either on the optimistic or those staying inside), rain boots for the more realistic folks venturing outside, and comfy shoes of various types.

Amid that, I saw this flash of colour that drew my attention. There, in front and to the right of my feet and lower legs were lower legs clad in what I think were pyjama bottoms. They were a dark blue, almost navy, in what looked like a jersey knit (t-shirty material) with about a 2-inch band of multi-coloured floral satiny fabric. I thought, “That can’t be right…” so I looked again, thinking they must be regular pants. But they looked loose and sloppy like pyjama bottoms.

Unable to resist, I scanned up her person, thinking the top would give me a clue. But she was wearing a long jacket. Bummer!

Now you might ask, “Lucy, why do you even care? It’s really none of your business.” And you would be right.

While I do live by the “pyjamas are for home and not for public” philosophy, I also live by the “you do your thing and I’ll do mine” philosophy. I’ve seen pyjamas in public before – lots. I’m sure you have, too. Perhaps you even wear them in public – who knows! When I see them, I just do my internal, middle-aged woman “tut tut” and that’s the end of it.

But seeing that yesterday – in an office setting – really confused me. It was like the generation gap opened wide with this loud sucking noise and flashing lights to make sure I was aware of the distance between me and the “It” generation. If those really were pyjamas, where was I when it became OK to wear them to work, when work isn’t a pyjama-testing job?

Where was I? I was so far away from the young adult scene as to be completely clueless about this. That’s where I was.

Now, I’ve never been one to be very savvy about fashion. I have no idea what’s really in or what’s really out. But you’d think I’d have an inkling as to whether or not this is now considered fashion, right? Apparently not. Cuz whether or not they really were pyjamas, they did look like them, and I don’t even know if it’s that’s a thing (outside the pages of “The People of Walmart”).

The other side of that realization has been that I discovered that I don’t even care that I don’t know. I mean, yeah, it hit me broadside at first – “Oh no! I’m getting old!” But then came, “Uh huh. So?” Then I realized that I genuinely don’t care that I don’t know if “that’s what the kids are wearing these days.” I really don’t.

And I like it.


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Yes, I talk to my bladder

I’m not sure exactly when it happened. I don’t think it was a gradual thing, but maybe it was so gradual that I didn’t notice until all of a sudden, one day, my bladder decided it wanted the upper hand in this whole relationship we have going.

While I don’t remember the exact date it happened, I know it was sometime within the last year. I originally tried to pass it off as something else. “I must have forgotten to go before I left work” or some such. But then I really started paying attention and it didn’t matter when I did or didn’t “go”. My bladder seemed to have found an on/off switch and learned how to use it.

Now I go from happily sitting on my car or on my couch or out doing things with not a care in the world to all of a sudden very urgently needing to find the nearest loo. What the heck!?!

Naively – and completely incorrectly it turns out – I had assigned all those bladder-control commercials to being something relevant only to my friends who have had children. Everybody knows that women who have kids have bladder control issues when they get older, right? All that talk about pelvic floor and stuff – damage done during pregnancy and so on. Well, I haven’t had kids so, of all the not-so-joyous parts of getting older that are on my radar, I happily thought I had escaped that one.

Evidently not.

And so, nowadays, I find myself frequently and sternly lecturing my bladder.

I’ve noticed that there seems to be direct, exponential relationship between my proximity to a bathroom and the urgency to use it. A woman at work and I were talking about this a couple of weeks ago and she finds the same thing – at least I’m not alone in that. (She did not, however, admit to conversing with the organ in question, so that bit might be just me…)

At first glance, it might seem to be a good thing that the urgency increases with proximity. I mean, if you really have to go, wouldn’t you want to be near the appropriate facilities?

In general, yes. But in this case, no. The urgency and possibility of an “accident” is so great that the fact that I am close to the washroom is only a tantalizing, possibly unattainable tease. You know: so near and yet oh so far. Think about it: How much would it absolutely suck if you lost all control a mere three feet from safety? If you were out in the bush, miles away from civilized plumbing, well, nobody could blame you, right? But three feet from the porcelain god? Really? You couldn’t wait five more seconds?

My bladder seems to take particular advantage of and joy in its newfound control whenever I get home. Putting the key into my lock appears to be a gleeful trigger for that on/off switch. “Oh ho ho!!!!” my bladder seems to cry. “She’s close to a bathroom, but can’t do anything about it from here! I’m the one in control now!!!!!”

And I negotiate: “OK…Listen. We’re in the foyer. You know we can’t go here. I just need 40 seconds – 1 minute tops – to get my boots off and get to the loo. You didn’t need to go at all 20 seconds ago, so surely you can give me one literal minute. Please!!” The lecture, you see, turns quickly into pleading.

Thankfully, it’s never come to the embarrassing scene I’m negotiating to avoid, but if there were cameras in my house, they would catch me doing a quite laughable, cross-legged-penguin waddle (if penguins could cross their legs) to the bathroom – negotiating the whole way. “Only 10 seconds to go…c’monnnnnn…work with me here!”

And so, this is what I have come to.

My name is Lucy and I talk to my bladder.