Trapped in the Denny’s bathroom

When I was a small child, about 4 or 5 years old, my father took me to eat dinner at the local Denny’s, a diner chain. I think my mother was having some sort of medical appointment and therefore it was just the two of us.

During the meal, I announced I had to use the restroom. My dad pointed the way to the ladies’ room.

I went in, used the facilities, and then tried to leave the restroom. But I couldn’t get a good grip on the door handle, which was just over my head. I kept trying, but it was no use.

I have no idea how much time actually passed (probably mere seconds) but I knew that my father and all males were forbidden from this room, so I was trapped. That’s when the tears started.

Eventually, two ladies walked in, and found me crying hysterically. They brought me back to our table.

After that, everytime we passed by Denny’s in the family car, I ducked dramatically, refusing to acknowledge the existence of Denny’s.

8 thoughts on “Trapped in the Denny’s bathroom

  1. Erik Victory says:

    Back when I was 7 or 8, Mom used to drop me off at those summer latchkey things so I could sit around and do absolutely nothing constructive, only in a school’s cafeteria and not in front of the living room television. One day we all went on a field trip to Sunrise Mall to see some crappy movie at the discount theatre, and some way or another, I got completely lost and the latchkey staff (possibly purposely) neglected to notice. They left in the busses and consequently I was left all on my own. I walked around the theatre and the mall and the parking lot crying until some redneck guy realized I was a lost child and took me to the mall’s info center. They gave me lots of balloons and visors and shirts and pencils and stuff to make me feel better, and when mom picked me up from the mall, she went back to the school to sign me out and complain. That whole time the latchkey supervisor stared at me with all my Sunrise Mall regalia with complete contempt, like this was all my fault and I staged the event for free mall merchandise.

  2. joynmsu says:

    I think it’s time for Mom and Dad to weigh in here. What are their memories of these scarring childhood incidents?! Mom? Dad?

    Also, I find it funny that you grew up and worked as a Latchkey instructor yourself.

  3. Betty Victory says says:

    Sorry Erik, I don’t remember much about you being lost !! I tend to think the Latchkey people did that on purpose. That does sound terrible for you. One time I got lost in Lichenstein’s (a large department store that no longer exists) and I remember how horrible it felt. Also, I was traumatized when my mom first left me at Sunday School !! I cried the whole time. Erik, I do remember really chewing out a female PE coach, (a sub, I think) because she made you run when you had asthma.

    Joy, I do remember about the Denny incident. I felt very guilty about it, but was in the hospital for minor surgery. I remember your reaction every time Denny’s was mentioned. I also remember how much you REALLY, REALLY hated me leaving you when we lived in Georgia at the mothers day out thing.

  4. Dad says:


    Yes you are correct that it was probally only a very short period of time. As I remember, I took you to the Ladies Room entrance, and waited for you just outside the door. After I heard you trying to get the door open, I asked the Denny’s waitress to help you. She did have a big order in her hands, and went to deliver it prior going into the bathroom to check on you.

    By the time she did open the door, yes you had started crying. As for your distaste for Denny’s – that probally was, and is still is a good thing.

    As for Erik’s adventure, I too do not remember many of these details. After about the third or fourth grade, for my own mental health, details of the many “Erik Adventures” are sketchy at best. I know that there is a best seller inside Erik’s head about his adventures, and hope I live long enough to read it. That’s probally the only way we will ever hear about the Joy’s car “joy ride” night in El Paso, and just what it took to actually fail Keyboard class at Franklin HS.

    I am also a little afraid he is now compiling adventures for the second book “Erik’s Guide to a BA in Less than a Decade”- Yes I know you are only half way there, just make sure you complete one or both of the books soon, to help pay for the ride.

    Sorry for the “pay for the ride” remark, probally too soon to attempt humor….. dad

  5. joynmsu says:

    Oh goodness. Well, to be fair to Erik, he’s still on the 5-year plan like me.

    I did not know he failed keyboard class. That is impressive, actually.

    And I too think Erik has a book, or a few, in his head!

    Ah, us Victorys.

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