A man playing videogames on a toilet blasts off as he notices a zombie coming for him

Marathon Video Game Nights With Friends and IBS

Reconnecting with my friends has been essential these last few years. Between the pandemic’s isolationism and my moving across the state of New York, texting and playing video games with my best friends has become important in my week-to-week schedule. It’s always something I look forward to every time. It’s a chance to catch up, kick my feet back, and enjoy some adventure, survival, and army-type video games with my good childhood buddies.

These nights are coveted for me. I love playing a round with these 2 guys, Pete and Pat, 2 of my longest friends from an era of neighborhood tag and short-film making. The best of boys. So naturally, I hate having to poo during our game sessions.

There’s nothing wrong with a pee break after a riveting game of video game golf, but as we all know, stopping due to IBS is something we all wish we could avoid. I mean, don’t get me wrong, my buddies have been understanding. They are hyper-aware of my gut and butt troubles, but I just feel like this time we have together is special, and I hate having to put the controller down.

One night with friends

It was on one fateful night, one like any other. I had been feeling nice and symptom-free for a couple of days so. Naturally, my tummy ego was up. Tonight my friends and I wanted to revisit a classic game from our youth: Call of Duty: Black Ops: Zombies

It is a video game where you and your friends fight off waves of German zombies during WWII and The Cold War. Each passing wave of enemies gets faster and harder to defeat. We’ve only ever gotten to round 37, which takes a mere 3 hours to get to. It’s a big deal.

Every attempt we make is one step closer to vindicating our younger selves. Planting a flag into undiscovered earth, the likes of which we’ve been aspiring to get to. A goal we’ve been dreaming of is Round 38.

Food choices with IBS

It was on this day that I decided to chance fate herself. We booted up the game, sat down for the long road, and I ate some chili. Why did it have to be chili?

Maybe I wanted to please my mom, who served it to me. Even so, my body very much rejected my mouth’s hubris in a fashion that made me want to pause this game so badly. But alas, I couldn’t. Multiplayer games, with other people online, can’t be paused. What was I to do? Let these zombies devour me? Throw in the towel on this amazing run. We had made it to round 35.

Our goal was within reach, but as my guts began to feel the pressure, so did I. I frantically looked at my bathroom, calculated the trajectory, and traced an eye-line all the way to my TV. Yes... it was possible. I could see the TV from my toilet.

Video games from the toilet

So, I did the unthinkable. I backed into the bathroom and sat on my trusty commode, playing this game. There I was, dodging zombies left and right. Reloading and fighting off hoards of the undead, all while blasting my butt-hurt tum into the toilet. I even strategically muted my call at just the right times, so I was never off their radar for too long. I made SURE to wipe and wash my hands before touching the controller again. After all, we use and keep our phones with us. I’m not THAT nasty of a boy.

After all all those shenanigans, and with my body at peace, I exclaimed in joy as the ticker went to round 39. We did it! We managed to survive long enough to get past our record. One that has stretched back as far as 12 years.

I have always hated being inconvenient, especially when I put so much on the line to enjoy this time. But in this one instance, I could balance IBS and my social life without anyone batting an eye. Now all that’s left? Round 40.

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