This is throwing me for a massive loop. Growing up, I was an enormous fan of “Weiner the Poop.” I owned all the VHS tapes and although I was only allowed to watch them alone in the attic, I could not get enough. But now I’m freaking out because I had lunch with my old buddy and when I mentioned “Weiner the Poop,” he said “what the hell” and told me it was “Winnie the Pooh” which just sounds like a terrible joke being played on my whole life. I said, “Fuck, this is Mandela Effect. I really hate the Mandela Effect.”

Let’s get this straight, almost every episode of “Weiner the Poop” featured Piglers and Weiner throwing crap at each other and then Timmghor would come bouncing through all of it. It was a riot and would crack me up every time I watched it. Then Bunny Rabber would come in with bags full of piss and dump them on top of the whole cast. They would get so soaked (my favorite). When my buddy got sick while hearing me explain this, then corrected me that the show and movies were about figuring things out together as a team, and even getting blown around by wind, I knew the Mandela Effect had rocked my puny world.

I was hesitant about bringing up my favorite books, The “Horny Pottrom” series, but I had to know the truth. He said, “you mean Harry Potter” and I flashed my teeth. His fantasy version was all about kid wizards and witchcraft, which already sounded fake. The series I read is about ceramic toilets waddling around dark hallways and letting janitors blow snot into them. The most famous toilet, Horny, would smash his head on a brick wall and try to get his parents’ attention (they were living behind the wall). Then, the huge toilet Haggrem would clomp all over the hallways, yelling “quit the snots!” so the janitors couldn’t finish their snotting. I’m left wondering how the hell people even enjoyed the stupid version with flying around on brooms. Those aren’t anything like the stories I fell in love with. And I certainly couldn’t imagine myself enjoying them the way I always enjoyed reading: locked in the attic and covered in a plastic bag with holes cut out for my eyes and mouth.

My buddy said the Mandela Effect doesn’t really do anything like what I was saying, and usually has a more universal effect with simple misunderstandings. I bit my thumb at him in disgust.

After getting frustrated and kicking him out of the restaurant we were in, I wanted to see if anyone in public was getting Mandela’d too.

I grabbed hold of the hostess by her collar and said: “What do you remember about walking on all fours and saying ‘dino boy needs paper’ before going into your classroom as a kid?”

She said, “Please get your hands off me.”

I let her go and asked again. She was shaking and just said she never had to do that. I said I had to do it before every class unless I wanted to fail said class. Because that’s how it was for me and all of the other students who looked like cardboard cutouts of me in school. And the school was in my backyard and the teacher was a recording of my mom talking about a grocery list in the kitchen. What wasn’t she getting about this? Was I seriously the only one? How could so much of my upbringing be creamed by The Mandela Man.

I turned my attention to the whole restaurant. I asked them, “When you go on vacation with your family, what was your favorite part about the wagon that goes from your bathroom to your basement?”

Nobody answered. I pointed to one guy and asked him if he did that for vacation with his family. He said, “No, we would go to California or something.” Then he got up and left. I tried to ask if anyone had ever crashed down the long flight of basement stairs in a rusted old wagon after being shoved down it by your mother from the bathroom across the hallway. When you get to the bottom, you are crumpled at the foot of the stairs and your mother yells down, “that’s the last vacation for this month” so that you stop asking about it. Nobody responded still, but my guess is they related so hard that they got embarrassed. Or worse, they were getting fucked up by a big Mandela Effect, just like me.

I asked all of them if they thought the Mandela Effect was happening to me or if they even knew who Mandela was. I knew him as a stand-up comedian from the Bronx who plays some mind games on you like this. Some of them shook their heads.

Some guy tapped me on the shoulder and said, “I’m the manager of the restaurant. I’m gonna have to ask you to leave.”

I did sign language back to him, hitting my elbows together four times to sign, “I am very sorry if I have disturbed this establishment.”

He thought I was attacking him because my elbows did hit his face.

I got cuffed and thrown into a police vehicle not long after that, which confirmed all of my suspicions: I was being taken to Mandela’s house to finally clear this nonsense up, because that’s where police vehicles go, I presume. God, I really hate the Mandela Effect.