Feb 27 2011
Greetings Cool People,
For this week’s blog, I had a mad desire to write an obituary for public restrooms. But let’s be realistic. We need them. So, in my picky fashion, I’ll just vent.
If you’re anything like me, then you know the awkwardness of being in a single-occupancy restroom and having someone knock on the door or jiggle the handle while you are using it. We’ve all had to yell out, “I’m in here,” or “Just a moment!” to a total stranger, and it’s not high on the fun list of life.
Being a person who tries to follow the golden rule, I never enjoy inflicting this kind of awkwardness on anyone else. I’m a “waiter.” No, not the food-serving kind — the person who politely waits outside the door only to watch someone else step right up to it, turn the handle, and go in. Isn’t that one of the most self-deprecating duh-you-moron moments you can have?
Why can’t all doors simply have signs like this? You know, just like those delightful little “Vacant” signs we’ve come to love on airplanes. I believe they are one of the reasons the skies are so friendly.
And this lovely door actually flashes when someone is inside, providing that someone remembers to properly secure the door. But my favorite part (not!) about this door is you need a code to get inside. Hello? I need to use the Ladies’ Room. Now. I don’t have the “password.” Will “911” open the freakin’ door?
One Sad Reason Ladies’ Rooms Are Messier Than Men’s Rooms:
When women see THIS:
Instead of THIS:
They will improvise and use toilet paper to create their own seat cover.
Using all of that paper to cover a seat results in this:
And a big mess on the floor.
I am never one to condone slobvitity. I’m a huge advocate of carrying one’s own supplies and respecting the space that we all must use.
I really appreciate stalls with broken locks. I enjoy having to extend my arm of choice and twisting myself into a soft pretzel just to hold the door shut. With that approach, when I am ready to stand, I love the challenge of having to quickly head butt the door to keep it shut because I need two hands free. As if that weren’t enough, I’m usually trying to hold onto my purse because there is no freakin’ hook! And sometimes, I’m treated the charming sound of automatic toilets continuously flushing because I’m not exiting the stall quickly enough.
In fancier restrooms, there are often attendants. These are the people who have a small storefront on the counter: gum, candy, mints, hairspray, etc. You don’t buy these items; you just leave a bigger tip when you take something. I always feel weird taking stuff. To me, it feels like: “Hey, I just spent two dollars in the Ladies’ Room for a mint.”
But restroom attendants will make sure the bathroom is clean. That’s important. Not so important is the grand, hand-sweeping gesture they make to indicate the secret location of the sink when you emerge from the stall. After you have washed, the attendant will hand you two towels as if you are royalty, often with a nod of the head. With a polite smile, you lay a dollar in the tray, and hope that you don’t have to purchase any more towels that evening.
Truthfully, I can deal with public restrooms when I must. I cannot deal with Turkish toilets.
Don’t even get me started!
Yours in pickiness,