I’m an Angel

Experience taught my kind to avoid public bathrooms. But since experience can’t argue with a full bladder, I took an exit that welcomed drivers to The Idle.

I parked behind some empty chairs that faced traffic. For car watching? I thought, but biology overruled curiosity, and my need for release sent me rushing into a gift shop in search of a bathroom that was, of course, all the way in the back.

A framed sign, taped between doors labeled His and Hers, read: Ask store attendant for key. I read it again, as my bladder screamed that it would not make it back to the front of the shop without exploding.

Showing my bladder that flesh was weaker than thought, I approached the cashier, and said, “May I borrow your bathroom key?”

He looked beyond my face. I wanted to think that he was admiring my glorious hair, but knew he was staring at the hint of wing tattoo escaping the top of my sweater.

“Male or female?” he said.

“What?” The question surprised me. Angels weren’t common in cold cities, but myth and reality merged decades ago. Our physiology was no secret.

“Men’s or women’s bathroom?” he said, in a louder voice.

“I’m an angel,” I said, feeling flustered. “I’m not in love right now, so… I’m neither and both. I mean… any bathroom. I just need to pee. Any key will—”

“We’ve no restrooms for people who can’t tell.”

“Who can’t tell what?” A surge of mixed emotions set my skin aglow, then the man reached under the counter, and my wings and sword burst fully out of my thoughts.

“I’m not afraid of you,” he shouted, brandishing a crucifix between us.

Wings retracted and sword returned to non-being, I walked away from the trembling fool, too furious to apologize for the puddle my bladder rained on his filthy floor.

.
the wee notes…
– Linked to the Imaginary Garden with Real Toads ~ Mythical Prejudice (Poetry and Flash Fiction with Magaly): write a 3-stanza poem or a very short story (313 words or fewer) that explores prejudice from the point of view of a mythical creature who is part of our modern world.
– Many mythologies and theologies speak of angels as sexless and/or genderless. So, I’ve wondered how these beings might be treated if they were citizens of a world that is very much like ours, but where myth has become reality.
The Idle (still in the making) a tourist attraction in Indiana, which will involve rows of chairs “overlooking the downtown’s interstate”. The idea behind the “attraction” is that some people might enjoy watching traffic… as long as they are not stuck in it.

47 thoughts on “I’m an Angel

  1. Excellent! I loved that you picked an Angel! It certainly highlights how stupid these bathroom restrictions are! They way you wrote her urgency, the panic of a bathroom emergency hit real close to home!

  2. Bwahahahahaha❤️ Oh my god this is freaking awesome, Magaly 😀 I love the humor and hint of sass in this especially; “I’m an angel,” I said, feeling flustered. “I’m not in love right now, so… I’m neither and both. I mean… any bathroom” is so clever and absolutely hilarious! Beautifully executed❤️

    Lots of love,
    Sanaa

  3. This gave me a chuckle of empathy. I’m no angel, but age has brought me to the place where “flesh is weaker than thought”. Also, in Eastern Kentucky, “car watching” is a popular activity. People set out chairs, even couches, overlooking roads so they can watch the cars and trucks go by. I used to work in that part of the country and when I first witnessed this I thought they were kidding. Nope. It’s a real thing.

  4. A chuckle of empathy from me too – for the same reason as Holly. Love how your words echoed the bathroom problems (for some) today. Brilliantly executed!
    Anna :o]

  5. I’ve always been suspicious about why mainstream Christianity downplays or ignores the old medieval view that angels are androgynous, neither male nor female, beyond gender. Current popular culture portrays all angels as being uniformly female unless they are warrior angels like Michael or otherwise in positions of authority over the heavenly host (Gabriel, Uriel, and the other one whose name escapes me right now).

    Personally, I’ve never had to undergo bathroom gender hostility issues but I had a super butch girlfriend many years ago who did. I always told her that when some other woman objects to her presence in the bathroom, she should just raise her shirt and give her a big ol’ titty flash (since she didn’t bind her breasts). But she was right, that probably would have just made things worse!

    • I’m rather suspicious about the same thing. I mean, it’s not like it’s “written” and told and retold… But hey, people are weird. And self-blindness seems to be in vogue.

      I just roared imagining the face of the person on the other of the booby flash. I know it didn’t happen, but I can imagine. 😀

  6. Spot-on, the hysterical fear of the cashier brandishing the cross. And I hear the right wing judgment in “we have no bathrooms for people who can’t tell.” A sadly accurate, witty and timely satire on current hysteria over gender issues. You are brilliant.

  7. Magaly, am smiling a huge grin, right now, after the nonsense that happening, in both Washington and Ottawa, concerning the trans-community. Only wish, people place their ignorance and fear, where it belongs, in the garbage bin. Just pardon the coughing come, from the north, as I have a chest infection, and not from the increase pollution, from the coal-burning electricity plants.

  8. Love❤️ Why do a-holes so often use crucifixes? It’s peeing down here at the mo… Angels with bladder problems up ther haha

  9. I might be there only one Magaly , but, I’m seeing inconsistency in your plot.
    If angels be Gender-less and Sex-less why the need to pee?

    Thanks for dropping by to read mine

    Much love…

    • It could be that everyone else already knows that sex and gender are not only about genitalia. In the context of the story though, the angel says, “I’m not in love right now, so… I’m neither and both.”

      The angel didn’t say “I don’t have a vagina or a penis.” Being neither could imply that the angel has both organs, but they are inactive when not in use–like the wings and the sword, the penis or vagina might only come into being when needed. Hence the bit about not being “in love right now”.

      I hope this alleviates your confusion.

      Also, here is the definition of “sexless”, from the dictionary. I hope it helps: http://www.dictionary.com/browse/sexless.

  10. That was an awesome piece of writing…and I totally understood that gender and the need to pee are separate issues…or do angels and daemons all have colostomy bags? XXX

  11. You can take this some fascinating directions, Magaly. How much are angels the mythic background of androgynes? Did they fall from heaven for not telling which bathroom they’re destined too, or does death resolve difference? Idle butts watch passing cars, but what do they know of angels? Lots of fun here, and thanks for the challenge.

    • Brendan, “Idle butts watch passing cars, but what do they know of angels?” sounds like the title of a story I would delight in writing. I might have to. Thanks a bunch for the chuckles… and the thinking worm. 😉

  12. Thanks for the reply Magaly, actually I did find your Angle story quite amusing, and after this morning’s drizzle, I kinda I wondered, if such incidents happens in the heavens above too [the bathroom confusions – that is]

    Happy Mother’s Day

    much love…

  13. How sad that you have to be either or.. and maybe it takes an angel to tell us the absurdity of the borders we make up… maybe peeing on the floor is the right solution.

    • You taken the words out of my head, Bjorn. I was just telling my Piano Man that I wondered if the people who are trying to make this stupid bathroom restrictions into law have thought things through. I mean, where are people going to pee? In the bushes? On floors? On other people’s shoes? Absurdity galore…

  14. I imagine if the angel was in a better mood, they might have had a good laugh at the attendant brandishing a cross. Of all the silly things! Still, I image they will have a good chuckle at the thought of him cleaning up the golden holy water left on the floor after a time.

    And I’ll bet you learned about the Idle from Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me!

    • “…golden holy water”, lol! This can make vampire hunting quite historical. 😀

      And, of course, I heard of The Idle on Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me! Then I went and read more about it, and I couldn’t believe it. I was even more shocked when further reading showed that the practice is very common…

  15. Loved reading your short story, Magaly. Texas has gone, and is going more still, ultra conservative. Here your Angel might have been asked to see “its” birth certificate. Seems humans are still being born male or female. Perhaps we need to put a halt to that. Is there a movement already started?
    ..

    • I’m glad you loved the tale, Jim. It seems to me that humans continue to be born human, which involves evolution of biology and of thought that some groups and individuals fail to acknowledge. Perhaps, we need start an Open Your Eyes and See What’s There Movement.

  16. Excellent words Magaly!
    I know one time I was in a supermarket and the women’s washroom was full! I said to the girl, there is no one in the men’s washroom, would she mind me using it. She had no problems and said go for it. Well, when I walked out, there was a guy waiting to get in. You should have seen his face, when I walked out. I smiled and winked! I think the guy was scared to go in there! LOL!
    Big Hugs 🙂

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