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Toilet Art

One of the most decidedly Texas institutions found along our freeways would have to be Buc-ee’s. They have an excellent marketing campaign utilizing billboards beginning about 40 miles away from their stores. The signs say things like “Eat here. Get Gas.” and “Ever had a Beaver Nugget?” (I have - they tasted like cereal and it felt like I would never reach the bottom of the bag). After seeing all these signs, especially if you’ve never been to a Buc-ee’s before, you almost have to stop and go inside. Besides, when they say they have the cleanest bathrooms, they’re not lying. You might as well stop and use them rather than take your chances down the road.

On my way to Harlingen yesterday, I stopped at one of their newest flagship stores in Wharton, TX. Their beef jerky makes for a great snack when you have about four hours left to drive, and I wanted to take advantage of their bathrooms (without having to worry if I’d have to wipe pee off the toilet seat). In the bathroom, I noticed that they had hung “art” on the wall behind the toilet. By art, I mean that there was a framed 36″ by 24″ piece of gunny sack hanging with a price tag of $9.99. I laughed to myself, wondering who would ever buy that; not only was it hideous, but when people asked, would you tell them that you found it in the bathroom at Buc-ee’s hanging above the toilet?

When I travel, the most interesting thing to me is all the different people I come across. When I had walked into Buc-ee’s, I could easily tell that people here were definitely not from the “big city.” Everyone moved a little slower (including the mom and her son who I was stuck walking behind with no way to get around) and it was apparent that Buc-ee’s was one of the biggest things to come to their city in a long time. So, I guess I shouldn’t have been shocked that when I came out of the bathroom, I walked by a couple in their 50’s and overheard the wife, who was holding up the gunny sack toilet art, telling her husband how amazing it would look in their front hallway. I can only imagine how the rest of their residence was decorated.

And with that, I bought my peppered beef jerky and continued on my way.

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