The Post Where I Think I Failed a Drug Screen

As I’ve mentioned in a previous post, I’m branching out a little from stay-at-home motherhood. I got a fun little part time job a couple of weeks ago, and last week I got another. One small hurdle. The second job requires a drug screen.

I didn’t bat an eyelash when I was told I’d need to trip off down the road to go pee in a cup. I don’t do illicit drugs, and I drink a lot of water, so I was good to go all around. Should have been a piece of cake, right? Wrong.

It’s been awhile since I’ve done a drug screen. Let me just say that criminals have gotten sneakier. The last time I jumped through this particular hoop, they handed me a container, I went in the bathroom, took care of business, passed (pardon the expression) the cup through a little door, and went on my merry way. Let’s just say that a great deal has changed.

I was told to put my personal effects in a drawer and empty my pockets, which was understandable. You never know when someone might sneak in a vial of urine in their purse. Movie theatres have this trouble all the time. Or maybe that’s just with candy. I forget. I dutifully tucked all my stuff away. I am now surprised that they didn’t check under my skirt to make sure I wasn’t hiding a small pee donor. Then the nice urine lady said “Now wash your hands with that soap.” That soap. There was only one kind of soap available, but it’s nice to feel like maybe I had options and was choosing the right one. It’s a test, after all, and I like passing tests.

While I pondered the significance of that particular soap, Nice Urine Lady disappeared. And then reappeared. And handed me a cup. “Fill it above the line and bring it back to me. Don’t flush the toilet. You have four minutes.” I hate working on a deadline, but I soldiered on to fill the cup.

The first thing that I noticed was the pretty blue water in the toilet. I wouldn’t mind having a car that color. The second thing I noticed was that the bathroom had no sink. At all. What kind of fun house bathroom was this? How’s a body to wash their hands before exiting the restroom if there’s no sink? I finished my duty (duty, people. Not doody. Just not.), and all I could think of was how much I did not want to touch that door handle. And that’s when I failed my drug screen. By flushing the toilet.

I challenge anyone in a public restroom who was not born in a barn to consciously walk away from their work and see how difficult it is. (Just make sure you walk back, though. To take care of things.) Butย Nice Urine Lady had told me not to flush. I remembered that as my foot came down on the flushy thing, but it was too late. In the split second that followed, I racked my brain for a way to bring it all back. I was unsuccessful. Everyone in the waiting room was treated to a “NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!” To catch the full impact, it must be read aloud with Doppler effect. Or just click this:

Cup in hand, I did the walk of shame back to Nice Urine Lady. “I guess you know what I did,” I muttered, shamefaced. She nodded. “Don’t worry. It happens all the time,” she said in a tone that implied that it never happens. Let me just say that being asked to pour my own pee-pee down a sink was not one of my finer moments. I picked up my purse and told her I’d be back next week. She shook her head. “If you leave now, we have to count that as a refusal to test.” Refusal to test. Awesome. So now Nice Urine Lady thinks I’ve got something to hide. I took a deep breath and resolved to see this thing through.

I may be limited in many regards, but by golly, I can pee in a cup. Nice Urine Lady gave me three hours to get the job done. Thirty minutes and a glass of water later, I was ready to try again. What can I say? I’m an overachiever. ย “Are you sure?” NUL asked. “Because if you can’t fill it past the sticker, you have to start over…” But sometimes you just have to believe in yourself.

In that 30 minutes, though, I learned some things. First off, the water was blue because Nice Urine Lady made it that way when she disappeared. I still don’t know why, other than it was to indicate if I poured something naughty into it. I have no idea what that substance would have been. Second, the rules say there can be no running water in the room, which explains the lack of sink. Again, I don’t know why. Because it interferes with magical energies? Third, there are some seriously sneaky people in this world if this many rules are needed.

It’s a crazy world we live in, people. A crazy world.



75 thoughts on “The Post Where I Think I Failed a Drug Screen

  1. WOW….! It’s been awhile since I’ve been tested, I guess. BRUTAL. The first time, eons ago for my last job, I was on a migraine medication that showed up as cocaine. Me: “Here’s my script. This may show up as cocaine in the sample.” Post-test (mailed, not waiting): Sorry, you failed for cocaine. (@#@#(!!!!

  2. Pee in a cup is no longer pee in a cup. Can’t they just do a prick test? Prick your finger and litmus paper it. LOL I take it you passed though – the drug test, not more water – although you would have had to pass the water to pass the test … don’t mind me, just passing through ๐Ÿ˜‰

  3. Funny stuff! I hate drug tests – the implied assumption of guilt and the fact you have to prove your innocence with pee. It’s hard to maintain any semblance of dignity in a situation like that.

  4. You are a pee pee champ. And yes, I really just said that. I HATE peeing on command. I don’t think you were reading my blog yet at the very beginning of my pregnancy, but I wrote a post about the first trip I took to the OB and the peeing trauma I underwent. It was horrible. I wish I had your bladder. Wow, I’m saying all kinds of crazy stuff this morning.

  5. I just dropped my son off at his first day of pre-school and have been sobbing ever since. I would like to thank you for turning my sad tears into happy ones with this bad boy! “Nice Urine Lady” and the “Noooooooooooooooooooooooo!” really made my morning!! (Good luck by the way!)

  6. Wow. I don’t think I’ve ever been drug screened, thankfully. I don’t think I’d be able to take the guilt. Although the last time I had to do that at a doctor’s office, there were way more steps than I’d remembered from before, mainly in regards to hygiene. Along with the cup, I got a list of step-by-step instructions (that had like 10 steps to it), and a couple of what were basically moist towelettes. It was quite an experience.

  7. Last time I had to do a pee test, they turned off the water (I think from their secret pee-spying room), so even though I automatically hit flush, it didn’t. I was saved by the nice pee lady.

  8. It’s hard for us nice, innocent people that there are so many crooks in the world! I agree. Just take a prick from my finger and be done with it. I don’t think I could have done that a second time!

  9. It’s disturbing to think that the screening probably wouldn’t be so Maximum Security if it hadn’t incrementally had to – that it was at level A, and people found a way to cheat, then B, then C, etc… It’s like the old axiom about people spending more time planning a robbery than it would have taken to just earn the money.

    I’d like to think some kind of motivational 80’s rock was playing as you bravely attempted the second cup.

    • I’m always fascinated by the evolution of things, and I am now so curious about what specific things led up to the tightened rules. Like I wonder how hair dryers came to add the warning “Do not use while sleeping.” Because someone did and it ended badly, or because they’re pretty sure we’re just that stupid…

      The song that should have been playing was Europe’s Final Countdown.

  10. Oh my, oh my, oh my, oh my! I have never had to do a drug test.. and i never will, daisy does not care..Why do they have a toilet in there anyway.. for the REAL over achievers I guess! c

  11. I’ve blessedly never had to do this in any iteration (except at the doctor’s office, where all you do is *pass* the cup through the little window), so I can’t even relate. I sure hope you really, really wanted that job and that you really, really like it.

  12. I am glad it all came out OK. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I was reading and thinking…oh I hope she doesn’t have to down a gallon or 5 of water, blow up ala Violet Beauregard, and then get too nervous to fill the cup a second time. ๐Ÿ˜†

  13. This made me laugh. I worked in a place where we had frequent surprise drug tests. It was always the same routine, but we had to list if we ate a poppy seed bagel that morning, because apparently those little seeds show up. It never failed; I always ate the bagel.

  14. I’m crying. You flushed the toilet and failed a test. I can just see your hangdog expression. I’ve had to do that for a job once years ago and it’s just plain awkward. The only difference is my nice urine lady actually WATCHED me pee. What if I missed and got some on my hand? She would have seen it.

  15. I have to do pee tests on occasion for my job. Supposedly, it’s a random occurance, but usually the people who are selected have just come back from leave. I actually wrote a blog post about one pee test that was not so random. ๐Ÿ™‚ I do have a government job, by the way–if you count being in the military.

  16. Wait, I’m still confused as to why the water is blue???

    What a hilarious experience. If you weren’t a blogger, I would suggest you start a blog and that this would be your first post. It’s just so bizarre yet intriguing to hear about peeing for a purpose.

  17. I’ve never been drug-tested … maybe it’s not a British thing?? (I’m assuming you’re not in the UK!?) But I literally giggled reading this. The good thing is, it enabled you to write a funny blog entry – every cloud and all that! Haha,

    – Nina.

  18. Whaaaaat? I don’t understand any of those rules. No flushing? No sink to wash hands? On a related note, the stepson of a friend is trying to rehab (unwillingly) and she discovered that he uses something called a whizzinator to beat the drug tests. Google it. Unbelievable.

  19. This reminds me of something comedian Paula Poundstone said. She had to get her urine checked to make sure she wasn’t still drinking. She felt like she’d hit rock bottom, then realized that there were worse things. Like being the pee lady. Lol.

  20. Hahaha! I remember my first drug test…I got the paperwork and realized I have to pee. RIGHT NOW. So I called the place and booked it over there to do my business. I had to jump away from the toilet after with my hands in the air…just so I WOULDN’T flush the toilet… Haha. I feel your pain.

  21. Love it! Thank you for the entertaining post! I enjoyed it so much that I invite you to consider submitting some of your stories for a couple of anthologies I’m compiling. If you are interested in learning more about what I have in mind, please email me at for details.

  22. Pingback: So Maybe I Failed Another Drug Screen | Becoming Cliche

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  24. I am sitting in a doctor’s office waiting to Lee because this just happened to me! Literally your first instinct when you’re done your business is to reach back and flush. So you do and I let out a similar sounding no. I came online to see if anyone else has done this. So glad that I’m not alone!!!

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