Sunday, November 13, 2005

Basic Etiquette v.2: a guide to acceptable bathroom behavior

I can't remember where the hell I read this--I think it was in a psychology class I took the first time I tried to go to college--but it really stayed with me because it was really disgusting, and also kind-of seemed true.

Anyhow, what I read was that women's restrooms are basically the most disgusting places on the face of the earth. Whoever the writer was speculated that this is because women are forced to be pretty and neat and nice in their public lives, so when they go into the public restroom where 1) no one can see them and 2) they don't have to clean up the mess because it's not their bathroom--they go crazy. I mean years-of-built-up-tension-peeing-all-over-no-hand-washing-nose-picking-crazy.

And I can't say I disagree with the author's theory.
I mean, I'm a girl. I use public restrooms, and I have noticed that they are mighty disgusting, most of the time. Further, I've noticed that they are disgusting in a bizarre this-disgusting-mess-was-made-on-purpose sort of way sometimes.

For example, I have had the unfortunate experience at least three times in my life of walking into a bathroom stall and seeing that the walls were smeared with shit. I'm guessing that the shit didn't fly out of someone's ass and smear itself on the wall. Once my friend walked into a public restroom and found a piece of poop on the floor next to the toilet. Then there's the pee on the seats, the used tampons thrown on the floor, the sinks filled up with paper towel--I'm just saying that it's impossible that these disgusting things are occurring naturally.
Someone is doing them.
Like, on purpose.
And I think they need to stop.

Seriously, girls--listen up.
It is 2005.
You don't have to be perfect and nice and pretty in your public life. You are allowed to have opinions and even express them. You can yell if you want, and burp--as long as you say excuse me--and wear jeans more than once without washing them, and throw your hair in a pony-tail 3 days in a row because you just don't feel like washing it.
But you cannot--and I feel very strongly about this--smear your shit on the wall in a public restroom.
A line must be drawn, and shit smearing is so far across that line that it's not even funny.*

*Friends Interlude--you have crossed the line! You're so far over the line, you can't even see the line. The line is a dot to you!*

Now I know most women aren't going into restrooms and saying to themselves you know what? i'm sick of the system. i'm sick of pretending to be perfect and clean and non-gassy all the time. i think i'll feel better if i reach into the toilet and smear this shit all over the wall.
But I do think there is an unfortunate paradox going on where some women are being really disgusting, and it's causing other women to do mildly disgusting things.

Consider the pee-on-the-seat issue.

Does anyone else think it's crazy that we spend so much time trying to teach the men in our lives how to properly manipulate the toilet seat so that we don't end up sitting in pee or falling into the bowl, and then we go out in public and pee all over the seat like a bunch of hypocrites drunk on our own power?
I think that the problem is that women are afraid to sit on seat in public restrooms because of the few crazy-shit-smearing women out there. And the bathroom gets more and more filthy because of this.

Women are not meant to pee standing up,or even squatting.
We aren't good at it.
Hence the pee on the seat and the floor and on your shoes, and so on.

So, I'm putting my foot down.
I'm starting a revolution.
If we can all just make a decision to go into public restrooms and not do disgusting things, won't we all be happier in the long run?

If everyone would just Sit On The Damn Seat like a normal person, then no one would accidently sit in pee because they weren't paying attention.

We wouldn't have to worry when we wear flip-flops into the bathroom that we might step in someone's pee.

From there, I'm sure it's only a short step to world peace.

In case this was a bit too ramble-icious to make much sense, I will now provide a brief list of basic public restroom rules.
1. do not under any circumstances reach into the toilet and remove your poop, for wall-smearing purposes or any other reason you may think of.
2. the age old rule 'please dispose of waste in the proper receptacle?' it's not an old-wives tale. just do it.
3. if you really cannot bring yourself to sit on a toilet seat because you're afraid it has been soiled by people like you who attempt to squat and then pee all over the place--you should really take a little wad of toilet paper and clean the rim of the seat off. Because being forced to confront Someone Else's Urine all over the seat of a toilet is far worse then thinking about how someone else's buttcheeks sat there. Because buttcheeks in and of themselves aren't really all that gross. Even if they are covered in cellulite, they're better then urine. I promise.
4. Wash your hands! Especially now that you know how disgusting the bathrooms are!


Blogger Pete said...

That is so awesome that you used that friends quote! I totally thought of that as I was reading and then you used it. Very funny.

Gotta say that I'm not sorry I don't have to clean the women's or the men's room at the restaurant, esp. the women's room.

1:07 PM  
Blogger Pete said...

Also, this being the case, I don't get, in anyway, sex in public bathrooms. For example the two cheerleaders from the Carolina Panthers. I'm just saying, EEEWWWWWW!

5:10 PM  
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Anonymous Erika said...

Super Tiff

I can't say I've ever seen shit on the wall but I believe that to be unnormal behavior. I agree with the butt cheek statement. I find that it's just regular skin and that as long as there are no pink parts touching the seat we can avoid the urine or fecee splatter (remember Hogs Heaven)without posing any real danger. It's amazing how people would rather pee all over the place than touch a place where a butt cheek (not butt hole) has been. Ladies, men have peed in front of each other with the fear of the man beside him comparing penis size or noticing that abnormal left curve so lets learn to share a seat and warm the cold porcelian for the next lady.

12:23 PM  
Blogger Lady Strathconn said...

Great blog, and great comments!

I can totally relate to everything except the poopy on the walls. That's just gross, I am glad I have never seen it, or there would have been my lunch on the floor.

And the Friends reference, my husband and I use it all the time. Those writers certainly added a lot to our cultural language.

1:32 PM  

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