Kickin’ it old school today with my BlogHer Voice of the Year Humor Honoree post. People with small bladders, unite. 

My family covered roughly 11,000 total miles in rented conversion vans during our yearly road trips when I was growing up. We always took along the same things:

  • a Game Boy
  • several economy-sized bags of Funyuns
  • our homemade “Pardon me, do you have any Grey Poupon” cardboard sign that we hung out the window when cars passed
  • masking tape, so my brother and I could divide the van right down the middle and hit each other if we crossed the line
And my tiny little bladder.My dad meticulously planned the trip for months. He bought duplicate Rand-McNally maps, charting a main route on one map, and several alternate routes on another map. He liked to be prepared. I didn’t volunteer, but he always made me his sidekick.

At the beginning of each trip, he would hand me a blank notebook. I was in charge of writing down the gas mileage we got with each tank and the exact time we crossed state lines. I nodded my head each time he told me to write down new information. I pretended to be equally intrigued by the gas mileage, but really, the only thing that was going through my head was, “This Is Some Bullshit.”

On one trip, we drove from Texas to Niagara Falls, with a pit stop at the Smithsonian.

Somewhere outside Washington, D.C., my bladder failed me. I purposely didn’t drink more than two sips of soda during our lunch at Crystal’s so I wouldn’t have to use the restroom.

I started complaining. I threatened to pee in my pants if my parents didn’t find a restroom. My impending disaster didn’t move my dad. He had a schedule, and he was going to stick to it.

My mom tried to be helpful. She suggested I pee in the McDonald’s Happy Meal plastic pail I had in the car.

Even as a 7-year-old, I had standards. There was just no way I was going to ruin a perfectly good trick-or-treat pail by peeing in it.

I started crying. I told my parents that Jesus was watching and that He would send my parents to Hell. The threat of eternal damnation did the trick. My dad agreed to pull over at the next rest stop, but not before giving my mom the “why didn’t we just use birth control” look. Then we got stuck in traffic.

Half an hour later, when we got to the rest stop, I carried my pee-filled bucket to the garbage can. Just as I was about to throw it in, my mom shouted, “WAIT, it’ll be good as new once I wash it out for you.”

I’m starting a support group- Frequent Urinator Club for Kids or F.U.C.K. for short.

It could be a bi-monthly shindig, offering support for the bladder-challenged younger folks. We could exchange gas station bathroom reviews, watch instructional videos on how to construct makeshift restrooms, and collaborate on a short pamphlet for our loved ones about our special needs.

Road trip stories, y’all?

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  • http://ohnoa.com/ Noa

    I fucking loved it the first time, and I fucking love it now. This post is spectacular, and not the least of the reasons why is that imagining you, staring sadly, dejectedly at a McDonald’s Halloween Bucket while plotting a future support group so this travesty never happens again is magical. 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      since you love it so much, i’m nominating you the marketing exec. because if anyone can get peeps to join a small bladder crew with her charm, it would be you. =P

  • http://www.nebynw.blogspot.com Sarah

    We also took yearly road trips but I don’t have any stories like that. I would, however, stay up late into the night when my parents would drive and my sisters were passed out on either side of me. For some reason I was never able to fall asleep. But maybe my parents should have tried to let me drive because sometimes now when I drive I have a hard time staying awake. Maybe that’s just the old age. ;)

    I did however once lose a Danielle Steele novel out the window on a trip through the southwest. I think one of my sisters chucked out the window when I wasn’t looking. And if I remember correctly it was a library book. We had to go back and find it, luckily it wasn’t too far back and we recovered it.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      you have just dispelled a myth for me. i always thing that if something falls out of a moving car window or just a moving car in general, it will be smashed to smithereens. all things except clothing and maybe shoes. 

      glad you recovered the book. if you hadn’t, i totally would have made your sis pay the fine.

  • Random

    My parents tried to put me in diapers.  As a 5 year old.  I self potty trained at 18 months (even then I realized it was not awesome to sit in your own pee). 

    15 years later I was vindicated.  I had an ultrasound where the tech actually said “Wow, did you know you have a REALLY small bladder”?  The two thoughts that went through my head were: 1) YES!  Thank you for confirming that!  UP YOURS MOM! and 2) No SH$(*$*(T!!!  I’ve only been living with it for 20 years! 

    On the up side, I know where every bathroom from Houston is for a 100 mile radius on any major highway leaving town.

    I think I just nominated myself as your vice president.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      i think you just did, too.

      this is an excellent bit of news. do you think you’d be up for charting some bathrooms, lest i make a visit to Houston?

      • Random

        Of course!  I got your back!  I heartily recommend the Chic Fil A on 45 north. :)  Clean bathrooms with the added benefit of a milkshake.   

        At least now that I’m an adult, I no longer make me pee between open doors on the passenger side of the car beside the road.  Classy.

        • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

          There’s only 1 chick fil a that i know of within an hour’s distance of my home. i crave it ALL the time. especially the cole slaw. and the little ice dreams. stop me. my mouth is watering.

          • Random

            I only crave Chic Fil A on Sundays.  It’s my curse to bear. 

            Okay, so now when you come to Texas we have a plan for Chic Fil A and tequila slushies.  Brilliant. 

          • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

            nuh uh…ME TOO. EVERY SUNDAY. or rather, every sunday when i lived in georgia and texas. now, i know better than to crave that shit at all. it gives me a sad face. do you ever go to sonic? buffalo wild wings? those are my current two faves. 

          • Random

            Did you know that there is not a SINGLE SONIC IN THE LOOP IN HOUSTON?  I DO!  Did you know that when I realized my bf’s ‘hood is RIGHT ACROSS FROM A SONIC AND A CHIC FIL A I literally did a happy dance????  Happy hour drinks 1/2 price at Sonic from 2-4….  Yes, I heart Sonic.  And I heart BBW.  I need more boneless chicken wings and Route 44 drinks in my life. 

            Actually, the bf is super science guy.  He explained to me, on like our 3rd date, why Sonic ice is better than all other ice.  I’ve loved him more ever since.

          • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

            girl, DO share this ice info. 

          • Random

            Okay, turns out it’s not COLDER (even though it does last longer, so you would think it was,  right?)…. It’s made under pressure and that’s why it stays colder longer.  Because it’s DENSER!  And that’s why it’s so fun to crunch!!!  Genius.  The boy is a genius.

          • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

            he’s a keeper. 

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Erica-McCarty/1848530094 Erica McCarty

        Count me in! I have TWO chic fil a’s within a 15 min drive (one is like 5min!). They do have the cleanest bathrooms around…now if only we could convince these women that “hover” and pee to maybe clean off the seat for those of us smart enough to carry a purse sized lysol …it would be awesome.

        • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

          So what you’re trying to tell me is that you live in Heaven. I assume Heaven has two Chik Fil As within close proximity to one another.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=699935880 Amanda Kirk

    I’m am definitely a member of the F.U.C.K. club.  Growing up my family made biannual road trips from Washington to Utah to visit the grandparents.  It’s a 12 hour drive for anyone not familiar with the route, and was driven in one day, hence the agitation at me when we had to stop at EVERY rest stop. 

    One particular trip my dad and brother decided to kill time (probably driving through southern Idaho) by making up nicknames for the members of the family using Star Wars as inspiration.  My dad was Oh-go-on-be-quiet, my brother was Luke Whinetalker, Mom was 3-pop-sip-io (Diet Coke drinker) and I was honorarily crowned Princess Pee-a. 

    Oh the hilarity that nickname brought my dad and brother and it has followed me for years on every road trip and remains one of the families ‘favorite’ told stories.  

    As a 31 year old kid, I STILL have to pee all the time, everywhere I go, and when I have to pee, I have to pee, get out of my way. 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      i think it makes me the most horrible person ever that i find comfort and delight in the fact that you too suffered through nicknames and taunts by your own family. 

      once, after we got back in the car, my dad drove one block and asked me if i needed to pee again. well played, dad, well played.

  • http://angie-uncovered.com Angie Uncovered

    I AM SO FUCKING PROUD OF YOU!!!   Congrats girl! 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks, babe!

  • Jessica Kielman

    Hilarious!  I love it!

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks for stopping by!

  • http://kelli-marksthespot.blogspot.com/ Kelli Marks

    Congrats Lady! That is super awesome. And I probably mentioned this the first time you posted this, but Brad has a tiny bladder. He plans his meals/drinks around trips. “Well, I haven’t drank anything for a few hours and I ate a slice of bread, we should be good to leave now.”

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      Brad and I…we think alike. It’s pretty clear that we’re both very awesome people. You’re so lucky to be married to that kind of awesomeness. I know Harv is. =)

  • http://www.mommakiss.com/ MommaKiss

    First, congrats!! Second? My children would be members of F.u.c.k. in a heartbeat.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      Junior F.U.C.K.ers. Wait, that sounds very bad. I’m going to think of a new title.

  • Karissa Baker

    My dad is an avid planner too… I had to pee in a diaper borrowed from my baby cousin once (I was about 11) because my parents wouldn’t stop when I needed a bathroom. Traumatic.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      the diaper thing is totally akin to peeing in a bucket, so i can say with great confidence…i feel ya, girl.=)

  • Amy in Australia

    This is hilarious! I’m so excited for you–congratulations!! See–all those years of peeing in buckets have really paid off.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks, amy! i’m just glad something good came out of all it! 

  • http://shelaughsatthedays.net carrien-she laughs at the days

    I had no sympathy for my dad on a road trip once when I was driving, remembering what he had put us through on road trips all my life. (Obviously I was not a kid at this point.) Weak bladders run in the men in my family. I didn’t stop until he begged and ran out on the side of the road. Well, now I have a first born who needs to become a member of the F.U.C.K. group stat and after 5 pregnancies I could probably do to join myself.

    Moral? Dads always get payback in the end.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      you and i…we should map out all the blogher bathrooms and share with each other. =)

      • http://shelaughsatthedays.net carrien-she laughs at the days

        You’re on. :) Do you arrive on Thursday?

        • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

          yep. i’m driving down in the afternoon. are you staying at the hotel or going back home every evening?

          • http://shelaughsatthedays.net carrien-she laughs at the days

            My original plan was to drive home every night. I realized yesterday that could be pretty dumb so I’ve asked a friend in Pt. Loma if the baby and I can sleep in her guest room. In which case I will be around all Thursday afternoon too.

          • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

            perhaps we could go to the thurs eve party together? already going with my good friend, noa gavin, but we’d love to have you. 

          • http://shelaughsatthedays.net carrien-she laughs at the days

            I just found her blog last month!

            I would love to go with you. for as long as the baby can deal…. fingers crossed.

  • http://weeklytvreview.blogspot.com/ The Watcher

    Did your brother use the time you were peeing to move the masking tape ever so slightly so he had a little more room? That’s what I would have done.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      he probably did. he was all kinds of sneaky back in the day. 

  • http://twitter.com/shoebootie Nadine

    I peed in a Burger King cup in the car once…. as an adult.  You never really grow out of F.U.C.K. entirely.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      wow, props to you for that. those things are not as wide as a mcdonald’s happy meal pail. you must have amazing aim.

  • http://chicktuition.com jacqui

    The club is an awesome idea…I can see how it got you Honoreed. Also, the homemade sign was a total winner. I can tell your family was really classy like mine.

    Congrats again, girl!

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      Our family puts the “ass” in classy, yo.

      thank you!!

  • http://www.womenofcertainage.blogspot.com CaliforniaGirl500

    found you via Blogs of Note.  congrats!

    you describe my best friend’s car trips from LA to International Falls, MN every summer with her 3 sibs, father & mother in the station wagon.  I’m sending your post to her. 

    i still have a “tiny bladder”. 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      omg, that’s a long-ass car trip! 6 peeps in the wagon. please give your friend some major kudos for me. 

  • danneromero

    Very humorous. In your face funny, with a splash of ‘you-talking-to-me!’ attitude. :D

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks, D! much appreciated!

  • Johi Kokjohn-Wagner

    My parents would pull over and make me squat in the ditch. One time I thought that I was being discreet and found out when I got back to the vehicle that having your mayonnaise white ass FACING the road was actually like having a giant day-glow arrow pointing at you.

    If I was lucky, we were pulling a horse trailer and I could use that for a bit more privacy. There is nothing like a horse eating your hair while trying to empty your bladder. And don’t say “gross” because where do you think the horses piss? Hint: Not in a happy meal trick or treat bucket.

    Congrats on the nomination, lady! You deserve the best! 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      i’m just jealous i didn’t have a horse trailer to call my own. damn, why you gotta be all fancy? 


  • http://www.thepunctuationmark.com Punctuation Mark

    congrats!!! you are sooo talented and this post is definitely a winner!

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks for the kindness!

  • RandomHandprints

    this post rocks it big time. congrats on being a hilarious VOTY!  (and of course i’ll be joining f.u.c.k.)

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      all members of f.u.c.k. get a little lapel pin. it’s a little gold outhouse. i’ll bring yours next week. wear it proud. wear it loud. well, that made no sense but damn, it sounds good. 

  • http://awakeningsandreflections.blogspot.com/ Jaime

    I love funny women!  You are a wonderful writer and I’m so glad that I found your blog.  I forget things easily and never would have remembered a McDonald’s Happy Meal pal until you wrote about it.  I love when someone sparks childhood memories.  One of my favorite lines from one of my favorite movies (Gone Fishin’) is, “I have memories of that car that I can’t even remember”.  Congrats to you!

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks, jaime! i love it when things i see or read spark a fond childhood memory. the other day, i saw a picture of those hamburger shaped playthings that they used to have in the mcdonald’s play area…where you climb into the hamburger and it was so tiny you just had to kinda sit there. fond memories. 

  • http://twitter.com/reprojeans RJ

    Awesome! I found you through the BlogHer post–and will now be hooked on you like dew on the grass (can you tell Im from the south?;)

    I *loved* the old school McDonalds happy meals–my two year old actually just played with an old sand bucket that a Happy Meal CAME IN back in the 80’s…ahh memories.

    Definitely will join and be a proud member of f.u.c.k.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      ah, a fellow southerner. i like you already. (i spent some time in georgia)

      so glad to have you as a member of f.u.c.k. small bladders everywhere should unite.

  • Miranda Kaye

    Ahhhh memories! This is the post where I confessed to peeing in a water bottle on a trip in Florida. :) Good times, good times. Congrats Sister! It’s an honor to know an honoree. 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      LOL. Thanks for reminding me. Good times indeed. 

  • http://beforethebabywakes.com Alexandria Campbell

    Well congrats on your nom or win. I’m a little fuzzy on how all that works. But family used to drive from Virginia Beach to Baltimore once a month to see my grandma & my mom loved making us pee in cups or on the side of the rode. I will tell you once, not on a road trip she had one of my little sisters pee in a cup in a mall (NO IDEA WHY. Maybe we were in a dressing room) and I mistakenly took the cup to be lemonade. Yeah. It wasn’t, 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      holy shit. ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. wow. talk about special childhood memories. 

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_QAOKY2Y3GZ5WKJPPWHVSCQLI4Q Andi Davies

    My mom tried to make me pee in a bucket once while we were waiting for the ferry (we lived in Seattle at the time).  I was about 3 and was like, yeah, I don’t think so.  Another time, we were driving over Snoqualmie Pass when it was getting close to snowed in — we were heading to my grandparents place in Tacoma, and Snoqualmie?  Does not have rest stops.  Or easily accessible bathrooms.  Not to mention, I’m pretty sure we were racing the pass closure at the time because of the weather.  I opted to hold it FOR TWO HOURS.  Two hours.  To this day, I have a nervous bladder and go at every opportunity because seriously?  TWO HOURS.  

    All of which is to say, I feel your pain girl.  

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      you bring up something important in the small bladdered (is that a word?)-the OVERpeeing. Taking any and every opportunity. Just in case. Because, seriously, TWO HOURS is no joke. You musta been sweating bullets.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_QAOKY2Y3GZ5WKJPPWHVSCQLI4Q Andi Davies

        I burst into my grandparents house, gave them each a quick peck and made a beeline for the bathroom.  I have no idea how I made it.  No idea at all.  

        • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

          cuz you’re gangsta, that’s how.

  • http://writingwishing.com/ Alison

    First, congratulations on the BlogHer honoree thingy!

    I was ‘blessed’ with a small bladder too. So much so, my parents nicknamed me “The Toilet Inspector” as I pretty much visited all the public toilets in Malaysia. 

    The plus side? I trained my bladder to the point where I can hold it in for HOURS. Yay me.

    Love this post, F.U.C.K. indeed. :)

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      whhhatttt? you can do “The Hold.” I have never been able to master that. I’m “The Sweater.” If I have to go, I start to sweat. 

  • http://thefredeffect.com Fred Miller

    My brother peed in a cup and tried to toss it out the back window of a suburban while we were towing our camper. Of course, the backdraft blew it back in over all of us. A baptism of piss.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      wow….that is the most literal definition of karma i have ever heard of. what goes around most certainly comes around. =) that is a story i would tell at every party forEVER.

  • griffey max

    ILove this post,thanks!

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress


  • not4u66604

    loved f.u.c.k it was cute and funny

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress


  • http://www.generationwyno.blogspot.com Briana Guy

    I would totally join your club. Peeing in buckets is THE WORST.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      esp. for those with bad aim

  • http://dropsofserendipity.blogspot.com/ Worldly Wise

    Awwwwwwwwww poor you…. I know how it feels…. At least this happened to you when you were seven… This happened to me when i was 20!!! And on a trip with all my buddies…. It sucked having to pee behind a rock which wasn’t really behind anything coz up in the mountains there were no Mc Donald’s for miles!!!!   :'(

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      that would totally prevent me from going into the mountains/camping/being one with nature again for a long time. 

  • http://www.oncemore.typepad.com jenfromboston

    oh, that SUCKS.
    Nothing that entertaining for us (which is surprising given that there were 4 kids (incl 1 spazz brother) and we were all w/in 7 years of age of each other. I do remember once making a trip tot he Cape in our old stationwagon, and going over the Sagamore Bridge, bumper to bumper traffic, & my mom made us pray the car wouldn’t over heat on the middle of the bridge in the parking lot-like traffic (it was getting that close).  You know how you get the car not to over heat? Turn on the heater. In July. OMG.
    Regarding your bladder issues, I do identify, and I know that my aunt, who occassionally had my sister & I for overnights, referred to us as “The Tinkle Twins” since she kept hearing the patter of our feet back & forth from the room to the bathroom all night.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      ok first, i just have to throw out there real quick that i totally learned something new from you right now. heater prevents overheating. good tip, yo.

      and, seriously, omg, heater in july. ahhhhhhhhhhhh. but also, hahahha. what a memory! what a sweaty mess you tinkle twins musta been. =)

  • http://www.oncemore.typepad.com jenfromboston

    yeah- it’s not a fail-safe method, but if you think about the concept, you’re taking the abundance of heat from the engine and letting it release into the cabin of the car. It buys you a little extra time, I guess, but not so much time that you can forgo a bunch of earnest Hail Marys.  
    Oh yes, it was “cozy”.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      makes me remember the times i had to be squeezed into a van with my brother, mother, father, granny, great aunt, second cousin, and two first cousins. nuttin’ says family lovin’ like being squished, hot, stinky and cranky for hours on end.

  • mmcseptember13

    Love your writing style, you are hilarious!!  So glad I found your blog.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks for checking it out!

  • mmcseptember13

    Love your writing style, you are hilarious!!!  So glad I found your blog.  Its quite entertaining. 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks so much for stopping by!

  • Sarah Winton

    I just stumbled across your blog and love your concept! I recently went a month without shopping and it was much harder than I had thought it would be. Good luck!

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      hi sarah, kudos to you for your monthlong shopping ban! yes, it IS hard, whether it’s a month or a year. anything in particular that was the most difficult for you to give up? for me, it’s been shoes. *swoon* i love me some shoes. 

      • Sarah Winton

        it was all hard but for me the most difficult was make-up and bath products. it’s so easy to grab a lip gloss, nail polish or bodywash without thinking about it.

        my weakness is for clothes of any sort. sweaters, tee shirts, skirts, shorts… pretty much anything but pants at the moment. *sigh*

        • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

          i hear ya. it is so hard to put down a 4 dollar lip gloss. i mean, it’s only 4 dollars!

          p.s. i’m totally down with readers linking to their blogs. next time, you can click the “optional: link to your site” selection when commenting and it turns your name into a clickable link. 

          • Sarah Winton

            thanks, apparently i’m too distracted by lip gloss to figure that out!

  • http://www.insignificantatbest.com lisa from insignificant @ best

    You could also be like that crazy ex-astronaut (sp?) and wear a diaper cross country!  That chick knew how to keep a schedule.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      that chick knew what was up. maybe this is something i need to think about.

  • http://allpointswhole.wordpress.com/ karin (allpointswhole)

     I was just reading your about me section and couldnt believe some of our similiarities! I too was a teen mom and spent my 20’s the same way. I also moved frequently, totalling 30 times by 30 years old. So glad I found your blog…you crack me up and I love it!!

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      no way! i always feel less “alone” when i encounter someone with a similar story. nice to know i can share with someone who gets it and vice versa.

  • http://www.carlychubbycheeks.blogspot.com Carly Ann

    I am in an english handbell choir and we go on tour every three years. This past summer, we did a New York/DC tour. Well, we ended up stuck in traffic on the George Washington Bridge coming back to our hostel and my friend Jill had to pee really bad. Rather than jump out and actually pee on the bridge, we convinced her to pee in a Starbucks cup… It was a venti, and this girl weighs all of 100 pounds. She filled it literally to the brim, and had to stop herself. Then we awkwardly had a cup of urine in our rental van for the next hour until we got to a garbage can.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      that is both disturbing AND impressive. and also, totally hilarious.

      i played in a church handbell choir as a kid. for like a month. i could never get the timing down right. =)

      p.s. i’m down with readers who link. would love it if you would click the “optional: link to your site” option during commenting and it turns your name into a clickable link….(oops, which i totally see you did. prefer to not have links in the actual comment. thanks!)

  • http://lessthankate.blogspot.com/ LessThanKate

    This is the first blog I’ve read of yours – and, as a should-be member of F.U.C.K., I loved it! Continued reading and don’t think I’ll stop until I’ve read all of them! 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      hi katherine…we can always use more member in F.U.C.K. strength in numbers, i say. thanks for the kind words!

  • Mohprice

    I just started blogging a few days ago, driven by the sudden urge to record the day-to-day hilarity in my life, and your blog is one of the first that I’ve stumbled upon. I must say that it is absolutely hilarious, and I will probably read through all of your archives.

    I am also definitely a member of f.u.c.k. Every year my family takes a 19 hour car ride to St. Pete, Florida and I am completely cut off from drinking for that entire day. It doesn’t help that my liquid-of-choice is Lipton Green Tea, which inconveniently flushes my system once every ten minutes.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      When you get the blog up and running, I hope you’ll link to it with the “optional: link to your website” choice during commenting. I dig checking out new blogs and remember what it was like when I started last September.

      My family and your family have resorted to the same thing. Every time I go to take a drink during a road trip, I get a few ugly glances. Pffft.

  • http://icarryyourheartinmine.blogspot.com/ Divs

    HAHA. This reminds me of the time that my family and I were moving to Atlanta from So Cal. My dad had this ambitious plan to drive from Simi Valley to Atlanta so as not to spend too much money transporting the car by movers.  After a lot of unhappy yelling and poking at each other, we made it to Texas and my mom and I begged to continue on a flight. UNFORTUNATELY my  dad ordered my mom to pack our passports (those were our only form of IDs at the time) and so we had to continue on in the car.  That was one of the most horrible weeks of my young life I think.  And just a few weeks ago my dad wanted to take another roadtrip to Niagra Falls from Kentucky…during the long weekend.  parents are crazy!

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      that is one long-ass family haul. i’m glad y’all survived it. and i bet it totally made you want to take that road trip to Niagara Falls. HAHAHA. That’s the way to celebrate a long weekend- being squished with your family in 100+ plus heat for hundreds and hundreds of miles. 

      p.s. would love for you to link to your blog next time by choosing the “optional: link to your website” option during commenting instead of in the body. much appreciated. 

  • Nathan Schauer

    This is some very fine and funny writing. Perfectly constucted with twists and turns in the road.  You’re a damn good writer –

    Hoping you will give me some feedback on mine – I write in a similar style – Nathan Schauer

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks, nathan. 

      p.s. would love if you linked to your blog next time by choosing the “optional: link to this blog” option during commenting instead of in the body. much appreciated.

  • Sunshine2share2000

    Your pretty-damn-hilarious, and a fine-fine-writer. Congrats on making the Big wall of fame.

    PS. Clever kid you were at seven. Reminds me of my Lily and her quick wit at a young age and still. Oh, the stories and the years of blogging of her on Journalspace.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks for the compliment. i appreciate the kindness!

      p.s. it’s sad and lovely to think our girls at a younger age. even though my daughter is only 11, i still think back at her being 7 or 8, and it makes me wistful!

  • http://www.wagthedad.com Wagthedad

    I am a guy, so aiming issues are obviously different, but my parents never stopped before I was the age of ten solely so that I could go to the bathroom.  I used the empty Folger’s coffee can, except when I got stage fright, and then they did stop, but that only happened once.  You see, when that happened, I had to use the corn field, which was kind of scarier than the Folger’s can.  Besides, they threatened not to give me any liquids unless I stopped having to pee so much.

    I would have to pee about every 20 minutes, BTW.

    God, the things we talk about.  What was up with the dads who freaked out about loading the car every time it was time to leave on a trip?  Did you have one of those, dads, too?

    OMG I forgot this.  My dad and mom smoke a lot.  My dad smokes like 3 packs a day.  When I was a kid, if we were anywhere south of Chicago, the air conditioning was always on.  Thing is, my dad was all about “messing up the suction,” and so he would only crack HIS window about a quarter of an inch.  If we tried to roll the windows down in the back, he would claim it “messed up the suction” and that we would have to breathe more smoke if we did that.

    This was at a time when everybody already knew about secondhand smoke, mind you.  My dad just didn’t want to lose any of that precious freon. 

    If he had any money I could sue his ass.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      totally off topic but…didn’t AC with freon just smell the best? was it weird that i just said that? i’m not a freon sniffer or anything. i swear. 

      i grew up on Stephen King. If my choice was a corn field or a Folger’s can, i too would have taken the can. btw, Folger’s…that stuff brings up such good back in the day memories. Who drink that stuff now? Is it still around?

      Does your dad have any prized or valuable collections? You could sue him for those. 

  • http://allysgrandma.wordpress.com Allysgrandma

    When I was about 5, my family of 7 drove from Humboldt County, California to Texas.  This was in 1962 or so.  I distinctly remember laying on my mother’s lap as she rubbed my back enouraging me to hold it….only it wasn’t pee, it was poop.  My dad (God rest his soul) was very mean and would not stop. I think I held it. 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      That deserves a club even special-er than F.U.C.K

  • http://www.brookefarmer.com Brooke Farmer

    Every year my family took a road trip to either Florida to see my mother’s side of the family or to Mass to see my father’s. 

    Every single trip was a disaster. My parents wouldn’t rent a van. There were three kids in the back of whatever fucking Buick or Nova they had at the time. Sometimes there was a dog. 

    And the three kids all pretty much hated each other. 

    And once, while squeezed between my brother and my sister my mother suggested I pee into a plastic cup. If I’d had the luxury of a van I might have done it. But there was no fucking way to make that work in the space I had. Plus, I thought she’d lost her fucking mind. But apparently she was just taking lessons from your mother. 

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      i think they got it out of some free pamphlet. 

      i’m just happy to have made it through with some semblance of dignity. well, that’s probably gone now that i’ve posted it on the internet. 

      • http://www.brookefarmer.com Brooke Farmer

        Free pamphlet = get what you pay for. Fail. 

  • http://www.favorazzi.com/ favorazzi

    i love this site i had a great laugh reading your roadtrip story

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      thanks a bunch.

  • http://twoifbyc.blogspot.com/ Cari

    I’m definitely part of the F.U.C.K. club. We took so many road trips when I was a kid, but thankfully I didn’t have to threaten my parents with a trip to hell if they didn’t take me to a bathroom–they happily pulled over on the side of the freeway when I had to pee. I didn’t even get a rest stop.

    One of the funniest/most mortifying memories of me peeing off the side of the road was on a road trip through New Mexico. I was peeing off of a two lane highway in the middle of the night, when I found myself bathed in the glow of a huge semi’s headlamps. Fun times. There’s nothing like a huge spotlight on your ass while you’re watering the cacti.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      haha….definitely, that spotlight TOTALLY helps with performance anxiety.

  • Jessica Ames

    I’m 15 and i have the smallest bladder ever. I’ve peed on the side of the road more times than I can count. I haven’t done it before, but I might have to use the eternal damnation threat sometime.  That’s a good one.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

       hey jess, if you decide to use the eternal damnation threat, you’ll have to let me know how it works out. =)

  • Joyhawk

    Enjoyed this post, and your latest one about Grandma.  Just discovered your site tonight.  Love it and look forward to reading back through your blogs. 

    I was surprised to see that you are so young, I thought I was reading the blog of someone much older.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

       Thanks for the kindness. Thanks for stopping by. My daughter just called me old today, so you calling me young totally cancels her comment out. =)

  • http://twitter.com/Olsen_RM Rebecca

    I remember reading this post but I wasnt brave enough to post a comment.

    No special reason…it just takes me a while to man up and post a comment, I am currently working on building the courage to comment on Noa’s blog.

    Did we do Road Trips? Hell yes. Some were fun, some were torture…it depended on how old we were and how long we were trapped with my parents in a moving car.

    But regarding the F.U.C.K group…i have a story. Its really my mom’s story but I was there.

    This happened during summer (i swear stuff happens to me on other seasons as well but when i was a kid I spent summers in the US so lots of road trips).

    We were going to visit family friends that lived maybe 5-6 hours away, we usually stayed the weekend.

    At the time my mom was pregnant with my brother. I have said it before, my dad is very organized, very schedule oriented so my mom judging by previous trips to the same place knew that we were bound to stop for a coffee and an ice-cream cone at the same place we always did (M’donalds).

    She had to pee…she was pregnant but she knew we were stopping soon.
    Right? we were stopping soon. Yes we must be stopping soon. Any minute now. My dad never deviates from plan so M’Donalds must be just behind that moutain.    * * * * Ok…its not behind the mountain but still lets not panic. We are stopping at some point.

    Finally, my mom asks my dad when we are stopping because she really has to go.

    The ONE time my dad decides to just drive without stopping and my mom was pregnant. (MEN!)

    So my dad says “Oh well I will stop on the road…there are some bushes over there”

    My poor pregnant mom. Of course she went around the bushes, praying no cops would drive by at that exact moment.

    Needles to say, after that trip my dad ALWAYS asks if we need to use the bathroom.

    • Sweetsepgirl

      Um yea, that is Mc’Donalds.

      • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

        Ohmygod, your poor mama. She musta been sweating bullets. How I know that feeling. Like, the mental game you have to play with yourself just to get through the next miles, oh no, wait, that’s five miles, oh damn, wait, that’s 8 miles. PULL OVER! 

        I’m happy to hear that pops learned his lesson after that. =)

        I know Noa would love to have you…you’re hilarious and she appreciates humor more than anyone I know. 

  • https://theaccidentalfreelancer.wordpress.com Rachel B

    My family isn’t one for road trips.  Maybe that’s because my brother, sister, and I hated being crammed in the backseat together.  Maybe it’s because I threw up every two hours on the side of the road.  Maybe it’s because my parents made us listen to Zamfir: Master of the Pan Flute on repeat.  Whatever the reason, when I was around the age of 8 my mom declared a ban on family trips, thus allowing her to excuse herself from any trip that included more than 2 other members of the family.  

    That being said I never had to deal with the inconvenience of finding rest stops for toilet breaks.  This wasn’t a problem until I moved to Africa and realized that a) no towns are close to each other, b) every car trip is going to take 5 hours regardless of how close the town might be in miles, and c) there are no rest stops in Africa.  

    Africa is where I perfected my squatting in a bush routine.  It’s not as classy as peeing in a bucket but at least it’s socially acceptable (mostly) and you don’t have to carry the pee bucket in the car with you.  You just have to watch out for snakes and elephants.  

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      I like your mama’s style. Of course, now that I’m older, I don’t have problems with road trips….but as a kid, I would have LOVED to excuse myself from any trips. 

      I tried the squat a few times. Sadly, I have very poor balance or grace (I have been know to fall over while sitting in a chair…sober) so I’m very envious of those who have mastered this skill. 

      A kudos is in order. Although, I find it awkward to congratulate someone on a pee squat the first time I meet them. Um, maybe next time?

  • AshleyW

    I see your McDonald’s Happy Meal bucket and raise you a roll of toilet paper and a gallon ice cream bucket, two permanent fixtures in our van as a child.  My mom hated stopping for 3 kids’ urination schedules on the 2 hour trip to my grandparents.  You filled it, you emptied it…  

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      i just hope to sweet baby jesus that y’all didn’t take any sharp turns.

  • http://mommyonthespot.blogspot.com Erin@MommyontheSpot

    I think as a child, I could have started a local chapter of F.U.C.K.  I remember peeing on the side of the Route 80 from Detroit to New Jersey while my mom tried to cover my ass. . . literally.

    I then would hand over that local chapter of F.U.C.K. to my daughter, who is having a fantastic time exploring all the local public restrooms.  It was especially nice at the zoo since she went about every 45 minutes. 

    The positive point to this is that I have thighs and arms of steel from all that squating and lifting.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      Nothin like the pee squat to tone and shape those legs. Yes, I am very familiar. Man, it certainly feels good to know someone else with this tone and trim routine.

      Moms are good for covering our asses…in many different ways.

  • Lady Jennie

    All I can say is – I think your dad and my dad are related.

    That and CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      that would make us family. and that would thrill me. 

      and thank you!

  • http://rosa-i-think-i-will-stay.blogspot.com/ Rosa5900

    How about 4 kids in the back of a Lincoln Continental, with mom and dad in front, and Dad chain smoking his way from Philadelphia to Canada with windows closes? Lest we complained, he ensured us that the vent was open.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      good lookin out, pa, openin’ the vent and all. 

      my dad used to smoke a lot in the car when i was a kid. now, i would totally be horrified if i saw this happening, but it was acceptable back then….so funny how things are different!

  • http://www.createdby.co.za/ Amanda – CreatedBy

    My best friend made me swear never to tell this story. Ever. 

    Naturally, I will tell you though. 
    Two years ago, we decided to allow my boyfriend and his best friend to accompany us to a music festival that we go to every year. It’s like the best music festival ever though, and he was already showing signs that he was going to have to walk home. We rounded the last bend ready to leap into what is usually the best weekend of my life and found the longest queue of traffic I have ever seen (insert useless derogatory comment from dickhead boyfriend). After 20 minutes of listening to him moan, he and his buddy decided to fuck off. Leaving us in the hot car with nothing but the alcohol and the stereo which was fine, but I needed to pee. Badly. And there were no bushes. Seriously, this is South Africa. But there was their beer cooler. So we drank their beer, pissed in their cooler box and had a frikkin awesome weekend, only made better by watching them fish their drinks out of the ice that had since joined the remnants of my bladder.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      My lips are sealed!=X

      You ladies are gangsta!! I would have thought about that but not had the balls to do it…so kudos to you! And also, HAHAHHAHAHA.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kisssmytulips Maria Arr

    Can you imagine a grown ass woman peeing inside a small Toyota Rav4 in a little kid’s sand castle pail?

    Haha. That’s what happend. Bad thing was, I wasn’t even on a road trip. Just chillin out by this bridge back home, had my car parked,enjoying the beautiful scenery, when it dawned n me; skipping the restroom at Starbucks was a fail. Bc I had to take a piss. Bad. I couldn’t even think about driving off and going to the nearest gas staion bc I knew I would’ve wet my panties. So, the next best thing I could think of was, I had a sack of my son’s beach toys in the trunk. Found the biggest one I could find (when I meant big, it was extra medium). Better believe I went in the back and pissed inside the little ass pail. Needless to say, I hope my 6 year old won’t notice a pail missing from his sack bc that red pail with the yellow handle and the castle imprints is history.

    • http://flourishinprogress.com/ Elizabeth-FlourishinProgress

      Girl, you gotta do what you gotta do!

  • Bunny

    You got that right…F.u.c.k all the way..lmfao….
    I need Help sometimes…So one time far younger when i was having a test…

  • Clarice A.

    I was adopted at age 14,three months before my 15th birthday,and was put into cloth diapers and toddler size rubberpants right away and had to wear them 24/7!I wore them as a flower girl in a wedding,on road trips,for all the holidays,under my communion dress at 15 and any other places we went.I was just past 16 when my parents decided i wouldnt have any more accidents and took me out of the diapers and rubberpants.