1. "Wash your hands, sir?"
  2. Oh, he's alright, but thank you.
  3. "Wash your hands, sir?"
  4. Yep, he's good too.
  5. And now they both leave without looking me in the eye.
  6. Hey guys, I'm a bathroom attendant at a trashy club. I hate myself more than you could ever hate me, so do less.
  7. "Wash your hands, sir?"
  8. He didn't say anything.
  9. But of course he doesn't need another grown man to wash his hands.
  10. He has been washing his own hands after going to the bathroom multiple times a day for years and years.
  11. I don't think tonight is the night he forgets how.
  12. "Mint?"
  13. Nope. No one wants a bathroom mint.
  14. Or any of the little colognes I have.
  15. Everyone at Luva Night Club is already wearing cologne. It's a night club. It is cologne.
  16. I am irrelevant.
  17. A bathroom attendant performs tasks it is easier for you to do yourself.
  18. And until we have the technology to make someone else go to the bathroom for you, it will remain that way.
  19. As cool as that technology would be, I know me. I know I would end up being the guy who spends his entire night going to the bathroom for other people while everyone danced.
  20. This guy just left the urinal, saw me, and ran away without washing his hands.
  21. This happens multiple times a night.
  22. The majority of people in this building have unwashed hands because of me.
  23. My very presence has contributed to the spread of disease.
  24. All because everyone is so scared of me helping them and then them having to tip me.
  25. I'm the villain of the club bathroom.
  26. Hey jerk, you think people have actually tipped me?
  27. Every dollar in this jar is my own.
  28. I get multiple $1 bills from the bank before work and slowly put them in throughout the night when I feel down.
  29. If someone calls me "bro"? Throw a dollar in.
  30. If someone does cocaine on the sink, winks at me, and says "our little secret"? Throw a dollar in.
  31. If someone asks me how their hair looks and then makes a point of saying they wish they had cash to tip me, but only have card right now? Throw a dollar in.
  32. Sometimes I drink the half-killed drinks people leave on the urinals.
  33. Yes, I drink bathroom drinks.
  34. But I spend all night in a bathroom anyway, so any drink for me is a bathroom drink.
  35. I spend all night in a bathroom, Raul.
  36. This is the part of the night where I remember that.
  37. Two guys at the urinal are talking about how hot Stacey got.
  38. And now I have to offer those mouths a mint.
  39. Apparently Stacey was always, like, alright, but lately? Damn.
  40. I want to feed them cologne.
  41. "Mint?"
  42. Oh, looks like we are at the point in the night where drunk guys audibly laugh at me when they leave.
  43. Later on, I will have to clean up vomit.
  44. No amount of assorted colognes and mints can erase the smell of club rat vomit.
  45. It smells like kale and MDMA.
  46. What the...
  47. A guy just barged in and said "I need, like, 10 mints!"
  48. He's looking at me to respond.
  49. He's looking at me like he needs me.
  50. "Sir, I have 50 mints, maybe more."
  51. Woah, he needs to relax. This guy is freaking out.
  52. He is sucking on so many mints at once.
  53. "Would you like some cologne?"
  54. Yes, yes, God yes, he wants cologne.
  55. Should I... ask?
  56. "Is everything ok, sir?"
  57. Oh God, I have unleashed something.
  58. He's going on and on about how he's not a club guy but he came here because he messed things up with this girl who he had been friends with since they were little kids but he's always had feelings for her and something finally happened at their friend Brad's Housewarming Party and they hooked up, but then he got scared so he didn't
  59. pursue it, because, I mean, she's just that girl from Maryland and they were going to take on the big city together, and it was so much, so then she got angry because he went into his shell, which is what he always does when things get real, and so he's here tonight to show her that he can be the guy who goes to clubs, the guy who leaves his
  60. apartment and doesn't just sit around surrounding himself in his Criterion Collection comfort zone, her words, so he's here, but now that he's here he doesn't think he can be that guy, because he really can't fit in with these people, and he knows he's not better than them because at least they are trying, and that's admirable, but he can't shake
  61. who he is, and he's not Mr. Greygoose-Finance-Haircut, and he doesn't think that that will ever be enough for her, because yeah she doesn't want a douchebag, but she does want someone who can enjoy themselves, and enjoy others, and his whole "woe-is-me-here's-what's-wrong-with-The-Bachelorette" thing will never be enough for Stacey... so, yeah.
  63. That's crazy.
  64. Ok, he needs to calm down.
  65. I don't think mints are going to help him with this.
  66. After like the third mint, it's all the same anyway.
  67. But look at him, freaking out, sucking on redundant mints.
  68. What do I do?
  69. "Sir..."
  70. He looked at me like baby deer.
  71. "Oh, my name is Raul."
  72. What do I do? I don't know him. I don't know this situation. All I know is that Stacey has impressed some meatheads.
  73. "Um, would you like me to wash your hands?"
  74. Trembling, he said yes.
  75. Ok, here we go.
  76. I'm washing a hyper-ventilating man's shaking hands.
  77. Adding some soap.
  78. Firmly cleaning his hands.
  79. This is the most oddly personal thing I've ever done.
  80. He's just a guy standing with his hands in a sink as a stranger in a bowtie stands immediately next to him and caresses his lathered fingers.
  81. "Dry your hands, sir?
  82. He meekly nods yes.
  83. I think...
  84. I think this is helping him?
  85. Do I give advice? I mean, what is the bathroom attendant, if not the old timey bartender of the restroom?
  86. I just... no one has ever talked to me outside of a stray "sorry." I don't know what to say.
  87. "Sir-"
  88. He is looking at me like I can grant him absolution.
  89. "Would you like to drink a bathroom drink with me and then go dance with Stacey?"
  90. Wow, he's saying yes. Does he know what a bathroom drink is? I mean, I guess it's self-explanatory.
  91. Cheers.
  92. We are drinking someone's else's drinks in silence, but it feels right, I think.
  93. He just said thank you, hugged me, and left.
  94. We both knew a tip was not appropriate. You don't tip a hug.
  95. Wow.
  96. I guess... I guess that's what I'm here for.
  97. The bathroom attendant is the guide to the wallflower, the shepherd to those who struggle to have a good time. The attendant is overlooked and underpaid, but he is present, and he is waiting to supply the anxious with confidence in the forms of mints and little colognes.
  98. The attendant is not the hero of the story, but rather the wise sage that guides these heroes. Men and women come to the toilet looking for respite from the nightly quest that is "going out." The bathroom is a safe space to regroup, and the attendant is its caretaker.
  99. Raul, you are a bathroom attendant. You are a good one, and that is a good thing.