When I was growing up, besides being a professional athlete, I always wanted to be in some sort of law enforcement. FBI, CIA, Secret Service, it didn’t matter. I never wanted some desk jockey job like I have now; I wanted to be out kicking in doors and shooting at the bad guys. Maybe it was the CSI effect, my love of Batman, or my much older cousin George that was in the Secret Service, but that seemed like the life for me.
In college, I continued pursuing this idea. I refrained from marijuana and getting arrested, and I kept my partying to Admiral Nelson and 99 cent Labatt Blue tallboys. I was a gym rat and was in the best shape of my life. I even majored in Criminology, as if that mattered. I figured everyone would do that because everyone in Criminology thinks they will be a secret agent, so I double majored with a foreign language to give myself a way to stand out. Not a useful one like Arabic or Spanish, but German. Somehow, between drinking heavily 2-5 days a week, I even managed to graduate with honors.
So when graduation time rolled around, I hopped onto usajobs.gov, sent out resumes to every single law enforcement agency, and waited for the offers to roll in. I killed it in college; the world should be mine to take.
What no one told me was that anything related to the government takes forever. This was also during the hand job phase that the government typically has every so often in which they have a hiring freeze. So, with my dreams still on hold, I decided to get a Master’s degree to tide me over until my crime fighting days began. My rationale was that I would be even more desirable with a spiffy Master’s.
One day, while I was sitting in my cubicle in the grad student office (which is larger than my current cubicle), I received an unfamiliar e-mail. It was from a recruiter with my regional FBI office! I had recently (and drunkenly) broken up with a long-term girlfriend, so I told any girl that would listen about my “basically already accepted” job as an FBI field agent. For the record, this did not get me laid.
I’m not sure if anyone has interviewed with the FBI, but there are a few things that need to happen. Seeing as how they didn’t give two shits about my Criminology degree, or my Master’s, but focused on my German credentials, I had to go take a proficiency test. I hadn’t had a class in almost two years, but I figured it couldn’t be that hard.
So I hit the gym with double vigor, ran, did pushups, crunches and sprints to get myself ready for the physical test. I studied some German, set an interview date, and was ready to enjoy the sweet job I’d definitely get.
The drive to their office was an hour-and-a-half long. I drove up an unfamiliar way, didn’t realize there would be tolls, ran out of change, and had to ask someone behind me for 53 cents because I had looked under every floor mat in my car and ran out of options. What a great start.
On the day of my biggest interview, I decided that this was the morning I would start drinking coffee. I figured what better time than now to get one since I had driven forever and woke up early.
Upon arrival, and I was promptly frisked. My off-hand joke to the man, “Can you tell I’ve been working out?” went over exactly how you’d expect.
After sitting in the Cold War bunker inspired waiting room a while, I felt my stomach rumble. “Shouldn’t have drank that coffee,” I thought to myself, as I scanned the area for a bathroom. It’s not like they’d have public bathrooms, as no one goes to a gated FBI office to take a shit. After a few uncomfortable lean farts to make room, loosening and then unclasping my belt in desperation, I realized this situation needed to be dealt with.
I had to ask the woman at the desk for directions to the bathroom, and she led me to this tiny crapper. I dashed to the toilet and got my pants off just in time, or it would have gone directly into my underwear. Unfortunately, the coffee gods did not smile upon me– it was top three biggest shits in my life. It was even a no wiper. I remember it like it was yesterday. I wanted to take a picture, but the woman at the front desk had taken my phone.
So I flushed.
For some reason, the FBI bought budget toilets, you know, the ones that flush slowly and with no sense of urgency. You’d think that one of the most powerful agencies in the world would have a better toilet than my undergrad dorm that could suck down a tennis ball. My giant chocolate hotdog just swirled in circles, like it was mixing a cake. Remember in Titanic when the top of the ship went way above water as it broke in the middle and that guy slammed onto the propeller? My shit did the same thing, sans propeller. The water in the bowl was getting higher and higher until it reached critical mass and was about in inch from overflowing. I was sweating and there was no plunger, so I did the only thing I could do: turn off the water to the toilet to stop the disaster at its source.
If this were any situation other than the biggest interview of my life, I would have died laughing. Instead I slowly pulled up my pants, buckled, closed the lid of the toilet and went to take my test. I was still shaking. Someone will eventually find this, and I had no idea what the outcome would be.
Long story short, I did not pass my German test and did not get to be in the FBI. It had been way too long, and if you don’t keep up with foreign languages, you forget everything. I remember making a joke to the woman that had to sit in there three hours while I took the test on cassette (it’s the FBI and they still used this in 2013) that “I remembered a few of these words.” They told me I could come back in a year and test, but at that point, I figured that dream was over. While I don’t get to fight criminals and kick in doors, my cubicle job has the word “manager” in it, so I got that going for me which is nice..
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