The Urine Train

The elevator in my building has always reeked of piss but somehow I’ve been able to convince myself that the odor is due to the fact that the elevator is old and, like anything of age, it’s musty. I’ve been pleasantly comfortable riding up the five floors to my apartment eased by the thought that countless others have also endured the enchanting stuffiness of old. This theory seemed perfectly viable until I actually opened the door to a puddle of pee in the middle of the elevator. Not only had my romantic elevator dreams been crushed with one fail swoop…one fail piss is more like it…but now I was forced ride in the piece of shit box with someone else’s waste. (Please believe I was not about to WALK the five stories…) Luckily I had a scarf to wrap around my nose and mouth to protect myself from any particles that might float up from the puddle and infect me, you have to worry about that kind of thing here. To make matters worse, the piss not only alarmed me the first time I saw it but the three times thereafter that I was forced to share my upwards journey with it, it in a sort of congealing faze. Actually, I think part of me found the rotting stages of pee fascinating and even inspired a craving for a cup of tea and the Discovery Channel…TMI? Moving on. What I find really interesting about the encounter with the Urine Train is that the smell did not intensify even with the puddle of piss molding on the floor. In fact, I think the odor might have lessened which makes me question if the sight of the pee actually numbed my sense of smell…come to think of it, the scarf I was holding over my nose and mouth probably did that too. Anyway, after three days, the piss was cleared away and the rancid stench returned to normal. Although, sadly the encounter brought me face to face with the fact that my elderly elevator is in fact, just a pissy smelly mess. Could there be a metaphor here? (There’s also a rat in my hallway and the stairway smells like vomit.)


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