This event occurred a few years ago, but I remember it like it was just yesterday. It was a Saturday afternoon and my friends and I had just gotten back from an all day boozy pool session (mix rum and Pina Colada flavored slushee for an optimal low-key buzz). We were hanging out in my apartment, burnt and drained from the sun, and attempting to rally for the night with a casual pregame. After slow-playing a few beers, we realized that if we had any hope of getting ourselves psyched up in time to hit the bars, we needed to pick up the pace. As a bunch of red-blooded American males, the only logical solution was to play a drinking game called Rage Cage (or stack cup/gaucho ball/stack-a-ho depending on your region). This game features about 50 red solo cups half-filled with beer, one entirely filled with whiskey, and ten guys desperate to not be the last one out.
As the game quickly devolved into a contact sport, the shit talk began flowing from all of us with words that would have made my mother grab me by the ear and wash my mouth out with soap as an adult. Amidst all the bullshit and yelling, I distinctly remember one insult that rang clear as a bell and grabbed everyone’s attention: “Shut up Tommy, you wipe your ass back to front, get your shit covered balls away from the table.” The game halted immediately. People were doubled over in laughter while Tommy was vehemently trying to argue that his balls were pristine, and chaos ensued. However, two of the guys in the room, in a move I didn’t see coming, backed Tommy’s wiping technique up. I was baffled. I understood how you could wipe in that direction, but with something as instinctual and ritualistic as wiping your ass, you just assume everyone has the same technique.
What had been a belligerent drinking game quickly dissolved into an equally belligerent debate. Thank God, there were no females in the apartment because even the most “down to earth” girl is going to bolt at the sight of ten dudes listing pros and cons of ass-wiping techniques. Front to back wipers were adamant that any other direction was disgusting and would be covering their balls with a layer of filth, and back to front wipers were saying that the other direction all but guaranteed a case of the poop hands. With time running out before we had to get to the bar, and me wanting this conversation to be over, I declared myself commissioner and demanded a vote. “All in favor of front to back?” Five hands went up. “And back to front?” Four hands went up. Even though I barely passed remedial math in college, I realized that number didn’t add up. I looked to my left and saw my friend with his hand stuck in an unsure pose and a face of someone whose whole life is being turned around. “Mike, which way do you wipe, this isn’t a difficult question,” I said. “I guess back to front?” He stuttered uncertainly. The group just stared at him in silence. “Dude do you not know how you wipe your ass?” He stared us down and tried to mouth some words but failed. Finally, steeling himself like a man going into battle, he proclaimed, “I lift my balls up and reach underneath them from the front of my body, and then wipe my ass starting from the back.”
My apartment was the quietest it had been since I signed the lease. Our friends looked at him with expressions ranging from disgust to confusion to amusement. Several of us silently mimicked the motion, trying to grasp how it was possible. Finally, Mike broke the silence. “Is that not how everyone does it?” He asked weakly, already knowing the truth. Tommy’s voice came from the back of the kitchen, with a tone of barely contained laughter, “No, you sideshow freak, do you have a stretching routine to get that kind of reach, or do you just have orangutan arms?”
Pandemonium ensued. People went next door to our friends/neighbors and told them the story, guys cornered Mike and demanded details of the process, like how often he accidentally stuck his hand into shitty toilet water, and Mike sat there with an expression of incomprehension as something he considered so normal just ten minutes ago was now being turned on its head. I later caught up with him as we waited for the cabs and saw him ripping a heater and texting furiously. “How’s it going man, you doing ok with your new outlook on life?” I asked. “Don’t talk to me, I’m yelling at my dad for not teaching my how to wipe my ass right 20 years ago.”
I’ve been telling this story for a couple years now and have actually met a few other people that wipe this way. I maintain that they are all psychopaths who probably also Put Soap On Their Hands Before Running Them Under Water First..
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