Posted by: cousindampier | 27 September 2013

How to Get Out of a Locked Bathroom in 21 Steps

Jon Jay was stuck in a bathroom.

We’ve all been in this position, usually because the deadbolt sticks or we’ve had a few too many adult beverages.  This time, Jon was simply trying to freshen up use the toilet before he left.  He and I were at Saranna’s apartment, doing our Friday ritual of having a beer and discussing the week.  While most of the time it is the telling of stories – Saranna’s encounter with the Kazakh water polo team, or Jon’s descent down Komsomol Peak – it is also a time to share what works and what fails in class, vent, and generally just smile.

Except this time, Jon was stuck in the bathroom.

We got him free, and learned a very important set of lessons in the meantime, which I’ve managed to break down into 21 steps:

  1. Laugh. Take a few photos, because a picture of a door with somebody behind it is way more fun that a picture of a door.
  2. Laugh more, but feel the sweat on your forehead. This laugh is more forced, because you’re slowing coming to realize how screwed you are. Except it is not you, its the poor guy behind the door. In the bathroom. With the kitty litter box.
  3. Oh shit, the cats don’t have a bathroom.
  4. Tell Jon to try the lock again.
  5. After a few mumbled words, which could be mistaken for swears by the wrong person, nothing need be said because the door doesn’t open.
  6. Take stock. You have the doorknob and the hinges and wood. Ok. Everything is there on the door.  Good.
  7. Does the doorknob have screws? Maybe we can just take it all out.
  8. Nope, no screws.
  9. What kind of black magic did the Soviets use to put a doorknob on the door anyway?
  10. Allright. Time to look at the hinges.
  11. The hinges work perfectly, but they seem to be held together with some kind of black paste which both greases the hinges and makes them impossible to get apart. Separating atoms is easier work.
  12. Start giving serious thought to breaking down the door. Look around for an axe.
  13. No axe. Who doesn’t have an axe? On the way home, you decide to buy an axe, just in case this happens to you.
  14. Realize you need to buy two axes, in case you get stuck when nobody is home. One for inside the bathroom as well. You can probably hang it up as a decorative piece above the toilet.
  15. Realize its the latch which is broken. And the latch is slanted on one side! If you can just get something around it and pull.
  16. Shoelace is too big.
  17. Floss is thin!
  18. Floss breaks.
  19. Wonder if there is a giant knife to substitute for an axe.
  20. See paper bag with the paperish handles.  All that education comes together for one brief moment.
  21. Paperish handles work and the door flies open.  You run around ecstatically with the Nate Robinson salute, only to find Jon carving a small notch in the doorframe and writing a message on the wall just like in the Zombie apocalypse movies, which is a bit of an overreaction (and possibly a small exaggeration), but to be fair: he was stuck in a bathroom without a single drop of beer.  It’s an awful fate, Jack.
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