Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Hate: Public Bathrooms


So I'm dinking around on Youtube a few days after I wrote this post and I see the video on the other end of this link. Unbelievable! Apparently, someone out there is just as twisted as I am but I feel completely vindicated in my feelings about public bathrooms!

So I'm in O'hare airport and I get a certain rumbling down below that lets me know that there's no way in H-E-Double Hockey Sticks that I'm going to be able to make it until I fly to Boston, secure my luggage, secure a rental car, drive to my hotel and settle in to the privacy of my own little sanctuary to do my business. It must be done. I must actually drop a deuce in a public bathroom. Oh, I've done it before, mind you. But my therapist says it's done irreparable harm that, despite an enormous boat payment that I could help cover with weekly appointments, is simply untreatable. I won't bore you with the details of the transaction in the loo but it was highlighted by an overflow next to me. Oh, the humanity!

My biggest beef with public bathrooms is that they aren't my own. At home, I rarely pee on the wall and flushing is not just a courtesy, it's a given. I also have a nice selection of magazines to read that I might not otherwise have time to review. Soap for the hands afterwards? Of course! Would you prefer to smell like lilacs or roses? Two-ply and plenty of it. It is an unhurried event as long as the kids aren't causing each other to bleed and, I dare say, quite relaxing.

Not so in the world of I'll-just-rest-my-cigarette-on-the-edge-of-the-urinal-while-I-pee. If it's "go" time, man, I hold the world record. Get in, release, wash up and get the heck out! I'm not really a fan of people in general, and I really don't like people in the same Porcelain Prison while I'm doing my thing! No time for the May 1983 issue of Popular Mechanics, thank you very little, I've got business to take care of. And, apparently, half of the Western Hemisphere has taken care of their business right where I'm standing.

Bathroom-ing is not something to be shared with someone else. As much as I don't get the whole deal with women going to the bathroom in pairs, it's just not cool for guys to do it at all. Conversations are not meant to be held in such environs. Talking with someone is best done eye-to-eye not eye-to-urinal-handle-dripping-with-condensation. And yet, I really don't want to look you in the eye and chat while I'm taking a leak so it's best that no talking occurs. If there is a burning topic of conversation (i.e. something related to free stuff or beer or chicks or something) the only legal place for that discussion is while washing one's hands and/or yelling over the hand dryer. Otherwise, keep your eyes straight ahead and we'll all be OK. Also, please do not call me on your cell phone while you are in there. If I hear an echo or grunting or what sounds like a babbling brook, I'm hanging up on you.

I'll admit that there are two exceptions to my hatred for public bathrooms. The first is grafitti. I dig grafitti and there's no better place to read a humorous debate over someone's ex-girlfriend's special skills than a men's room stall. What else are you going to do in there? There's no Us Weekly so you may as well write a poem that has the word "Nantucket" in it.

The other exception, surprisingly, is the port-a-potty. I know you are probably thinking that, if I can't stand a somewhat civilized bathroom in Ohare airport, how could I possibly dig a port-a-potty? The key here is the privacy. Is there anything more cocoon-like than a port-a-potty? Slide the little plastic handle in place so the poor leg-crossing bastards outside know that you're in there and the world is your oyster! No chance of an overlfow here - just drop it in! Want to use the entire roll of TP? Go right ahead - nothing to clog up here! Assuming no one tips it over while you're indisposed, you're good to go and you can let your troubles just fall away! When you're done, you can slide the little lever thing back with confidence and stride outside with nary a care in the world. You're probably also thinking that the facility in the actual airplane is quite cocoon-like also so why couldn't I just use that one? Yeah, and monkeys might fly out of my butt, too.

So there you have it. You can invite me over to your house any time because there ain't no way I'm going to cross the threshold into your water closet and cause undue gross-ness (whether solid, liquid or gas). Public bathrooms are also what's keeping me out of prison and the armed forces. I would have knocked over countless liquor stores by now if I could have had my own facility with a lock in my cell. Now that I think about it, though, my general fear of being shot PLUS the whole shared bathroom thing is what's keeping me from signing up to join the army. You know how we all can sleep better because certain people are on duty in the military? Well, you can sleep better knowing that I'm NOT on duty....

Also, on a related note, it's best not to come to my house at about 6:15pm as I might be unavialable for a few minutes...


msufan413 said...

I must say that 6:15pm est is an illogical time for refuse deposit.

As for public restrooms, I took a heaving dump at the Great Wall public bathroom in China 4 weeks ago and havent yet forgotten that awesome historical event and maybe I never will.

I sat there on the throne, nearly 2000 yrs old (well at least the hole and dirt were, not the commode). All Chinese in the joynt except this round-eyed 220 pounder dumping a load of spring rolls and twelve (12) cups of black tea from the night before.

I felt dirty, but after using my personal sanitation/cleansing tools, I felt revived and somehow tied to the Wall for eternity.

Nee How.


msufan413 said...

I was once in a bar/karioki in Korea in June 06 and had diahrea so bad, I actually had to visibly exit the joynt, make for a tree in a surrounding area park and let it flow, Hindu style. Ass-cheeks spread wide and spraying various garlic and chile infused refuge across what looked to be a worship area. It was dark and most of the folks remaining in park at that hour probably dumped there only minutes earlier, so I felt at home and kind of refreshed. I went back to meet my Korean team, washed up and was 100% satisfied all the way thru my karioki song (Dream Weaver, by the way).

I could have 20+ blogs on where I shat, the odd circumstances behind them and some historical analogies as well. My view is to take advantage of poverty-infused countries, try your style outdoors or in a parking lot and see what you can come up with.


msufan413 said...

One of the better amenities/luxories my company affords is in paying for up to three (3) Club Memberships for flight organizations. About $1000 goes to me, so I use it to make sure I am covered in airports for the sole purpose of shitting in a club-oriented atmosphere and thereby getting a fairly clean restroom. That may an option for Miller as his bowel systems are irradic at best.

Stalls are clean, full of good mags (though some are in Mandarin and Vietnamese) and also the TP there is an upraded version of what you see in public stalls only feet away.

Its quiet, private and plenty of room to stretch out, about the size of a handicapped stall in other bathrooms.

When you exit, there are real towels, nice selection of handsoaps and even hand lotion/after shave for freshing up. In Singapore, there are ass-rinsers (I cant spell b-a-d-a-y). I stopped using ass-rinsers in 2004 do to me getting a $800 wool suit soaked and had to sit in it til I hit Hong Kong.

Obviously the worst bathrooms are in Newark NJ airport and then take your pick: OHare, Detroit, Laguardia, Atlanta and Memphis. Torontos Pierson is also quite sad and stinky as the entire using population is Indian and also the cleaning folks are Indian, which means that they clean to Indian standards. Dots arent the best cleaners anyways as in New Dehli and Mumbai they shit in a river and then 2 miles down they drink from it.


MJ said...

Interesting topic. Not sure what inspires someone to write about this uh, experience, but I suppose you're not alone in your thoughts.

Almost always, I have something to say. This post leaves me a bit speechless.

wundermary said...

"If I hear an echo or grunting or what sounds like a babbling brook, I'm hanging up on you."

Ha, GRUNTING! I think I'd just die laughing if one of my friends called me up and grunted on the phone...

Gilsner said...

Oh... if I only had a dollar for every bathroom blog rant… I'd have 3 dollars! (That's right; I'm counting yours along with mine) I share your thoughts on conversing in the can in an earlier post of mine. Still, I’m glad that negative experience, as a whole, means I won't have to send you a file-laden cake care of a federal penitentiary any time soon. The thing is... I’ve often been confused by men (for many reasons, really) being able to pee side-by-side. It’s just not something I think I’d be able to do without copious amounts of alcohol. Hmmm… might explain the poor aim-age? As for graffiti, I saw something in a stall just last Thursday that said: “Does a white kitten have teeth?” I wasn’t sure if it was a joke or a profound philosophical ‘if a tree falls in the forest’-type question. Sometimes peeing makes my brain hurt…

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