Clean seats

When I arrived at the hotel this morning (the hotel in which we stayed two nights ago, but not last night), I headed first for the bathroom – 1)I was there early for the event I was photographing, and 2)I have to pee just about every hour, anyway, and sometimes even more often.

I walked into the first stall, and discovered that I was the first person to be using that stall and toilet for the day – the seat was up.

It filled me with a bit of nostalgic excitement, as I recalled my elementary school days of being the first to use a freshly cleaned toilet at school (you know, the little ones with stalls that only go a few feet high, so the teachers can help out if needed).

I always loved it, and I found myself wanting to give someone else the joy of discovering that she was the first to use the toilet since it was cleaned, so I started actually putting the toilet seat back up after I used it (and yes, I was always very careful to be clean when using the toilet, so it was practically still perfectly clean anyway [and yes, I know it is totally absurd at the same time as sweet]).

That way, whoever came in next could be as delighted as I had been upon discovering a freshly cleaned toilet.

I never allowed that someone might do the same thing I was doing, because, well, I frankly knew it was a little crazy… I didn’t mind, though – I just wanted people to be pleased, and this was one little way in which I could offer that.

I briefly considered that it wasn’t actually still perfectly clean anymore, since I had used it, but that also wasn’t the point… I hadn’t actually dirtied the toilet, and so I found no reason not to allow someone to be delighted at a fresh toilet nonetheless.

Also, I think I secretly thought no one consciously cared about the toilet being freshly cleaned, but more that they cared in a fun away about being the first to do something, even if that something were using a toilet on a given day… so the cleanliness wasn’t exactly relevant in the first place with what I was doing.

You know what I mean?

Anyway, this morning, I had a sudden curiosity as to whether someone had done what I had done in elementary school, but I quickly – immediately, actually – dismissed it as just about impossible, because, again, frankly, people aren’t really weird like that… that’s a Hannah thing, mostly.

Also, I don’t even do it anymore, as an adult, so I really don’t see any other adults being that weird in their behaviors…. you know?

So, anyway, I got to use a fresh and clean toilet this morning, even though it was way late morning (close to noon!) and I thoroughly enjoyed the fun of it.

I also enjoyed how, upon leaving my stall, I saw that the first stall on the other side of the row was also unused so far for the day.

Fun, fun, fun, I mentally thought.

And then, of course, Dork…haha…

A good morning, I dare say. 😛

Post-a-day 2019

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Men

Are all men alike?

Will every man urinate pathetically, getting urine on the toilet and the floor around it, even in his own home?

Seriously, if they are all going to be like that, I kind of don’t want one… that’s just so ew, I can’t figure out how other people can stand to live with them and share bathrooms with them.

I mean, what is the point of potty training them, anyway, if they just get it all over the place as adults and never seem to care?

Also, why does every man’s bathroom in my near-age bracket contain a boatload of icky short hairs that just make it look like he pulls them out of his nose every morning?

I mean, really, guys?!

Come on

I think seeing a guy’s bathroom would give me a big heads up as to whether he even would be worth considering, because I need a clean bathroom in my home in life.

Period. ;P

Post-a-day 2019

Forward thinking

The problem with everything being automated, electronic, is that, as I have said many times before, when the power goes out, not only can you not see the toilet, but you can’t really use/flush the toilet, and you can’t even wash your hands afterward… which gets really terrible in a building filled with a thousand-ish high school girls…. even if the power is out for a short time.

But we live in Houston, Texas, where hurricanes take out power for days just about every year in the late summer and early fall.

Forward thinking, to me, doesn’t just mean going digital and automatic/electronic/whatever… it’s about actually thinking through things…

Post-a-day 2018

Nonsense that really does make sense

The following is something I actually planned to tell a friend today, but I forgot to tell him.  It was in preparing to tell him, thinking of how the conversation might go, that I realized how odd the whole thing was.  See for yourself below…

……………..

I remembered to check the ingredients of my deodorant, because, when I was sniffing my toilet paper, I saw patchouli incense on the floor.

……………..

How’s that for normal, eh?  Just try to make sense of just about any of that.  😛

Post-a-day 2018

Effective Toilets

One thing I love about the Europe in which I lived is the practicality of concepts and mentalities.  The main example of this which comes to mind right now is that of toilets.  Public toilets, specifically, I mean.

At my campus in Toulouse, France, was my first experience of the idea of one set of sinks for toilets of both genders.  There were the individual stalls, as in any US bathroom, though with doors and walls that closed off each stall more effectively from outsiders’ views.  However, each stall was labelled as for male or female users. Then, over to the side, was the countertop sink area.  Just one sink area for everyone to use.  It was practical, efficient, and sufficient.  It was odd, at first, walking into the same bathroom as the guys, and even talking with them while in line in the bathroom and at the sinks.  But I never felt uncomfortable, because I still got my own, private little space to do my private business.  The privacy part was kept even more private than the stalls in the US, where we have nonsense structures that require us to avert our eyes whenever we enter the bathroom, because we get that one-inch-wide view all along the length of either side of every stall door, and, whether we like it or not, leaves us knowledgeable of the color of everyone’s underwear.  (No joke here.  We totally have trained ourselves to look away as fast as possible, and also not to remember what we see, but it doesn’t change the fact that we totally see it and on a regular basis.)  (Also, the urinals were still kept for the men, the  private trash bins by the toilet were kept for the women’s stalls, and girls didn’t have to worry about guys urinating on the seats or floors around where we’re dropping our pants.)

When I was in Germany most recently, I was using the toilet in the airport just before my flight.  When I walked out of the stall to go to the sink (in the women’s bathroom), a male cleaner walked into the bathroom with an indifference nonchalance.  He walked to the trash bin and emptied it to his cart outside the bathroom, and refreshed the bag.  Then he swept the floor a bit and wiped down the sinks, checking the soap and paper towels.  Not one person flinched during this process.  No one was embarrassed.  But there were other women in the bathroom, coming and going as though all was well and normal.  And, for some reason, I was delighted and warmed at that fact.  I think I even giggled when I left the bathroom, because I was imagining how people back in the US might have responded (and, potentially, panicked like no other).  Again, just like in France, he wasn’t in the actual privacy portion of the bathroom, so it didn’t really matter so much that he was there.  He was only passing through – it wasn’t like he was hanging out in there all day or anything.  He cleaned up and got out, just as he probably did in the men’s restroom.  So what that he was a man?

In the US, our restrooms are shut down from use whenever someone of the opposite gender cleans them.  And that really sucks at times.  Really.  Because, sometimes, you’ve just got to go.

However, one restaurant in Houston gives me hope for our city (if not quite our country yet).  It has regular-looking entrances for the men’s and women’s restrooms, on opposite ends of this one wall.  Upon entering either of those doors, one will discover a beautiful wall of sinks between those two entrance doors.  That is, both doors lead to the same room of sinks.  From that room, continuing in the initial direction, there is a second door, which will lead into the separate-gendered toilet rooms (men’s and women’s).  And, in those, the individual stalls are like their own little rooms, with real privacy to handle one’s business.  (None of that eye-averting necessary.)  It’s wonderful.  I ate at this restaurant with my dad once, and he and I specifically left the restroom from the opposite doors – he went through the women’s and I through the men’s – so that we might surprise the person with us at dinner.  She didn’t notice, of course, but we had fun being rebellious in a way that didn’t actually matter.  😛

Anyway, I really like that kind of bathroom, and I really like the general mentality of efficiency I have found wherever I have lived (and visited) in Europe.

Post-a-day 2018

 

Toilets self-proclaiming status

Tonight in the wine garden at the rodeo, we had a unique scene occur.  I was standing in line for the toilets – a very long line that doubled in size just in the time I waited in it.  I found myself wondering how the men’s toilets were.  They were part of the same trailers as the women’s toilets.  There was even a door on the inside that connected the men’s to the women’s toilets within a trailer.  Well, two guys come waltzing out of the men’s toilets in the trailer next to ours, and declare ‘Hey, we’re unisex here; you can use these, ladies.’ A small, but somewhat mad dash ensues by ladies that had been a ways back in our line.

They say that…” I begin, but end there, for my conflicting thoughts couldn’t agree upon an end to the sentence.  It boiled down to the question of who would be liable for the issue of inappropriate bathroom use by the opposite gender – because I know that it is actually a thing – and the matter of 1) if anyone actually cared, and, if so, 2) who would be the one/s to correct/stop the behavior (aka enforce the gender rule of the toilets).

Sure enough, within moments after my statement, a grounds service person heads calmly up to the men’s bathroom and the line of ladies standing at it, and tells the ladies that they can’t use the men’s bathroom.  By the time I was going into the trailer, – by the way, these are fancy trailers with flushing toilets and hand washing and even paper towels – the man had almost persuaded the likely drunk final three ladies from the men’s toilets.  Though, I’m not sure he managed to get them out before they used the toilets.  We could see straight into the men’s bathroom while the door was being held open, and it cracked me up, because there were two women standing in the walkway-type area of the trailer, next to the stalls, the worked outside the trailer, failing to convince them that it wasn’t okay for them to be in there, and a man’s head and cowboy hat 100% clear above one of the stall doors, while he clearly was using the toilet within the stall, but still chatting with the people outside of his stall, who were standing in the bathroom (i.e. the ladies), plus the man outside the trailer.

The whole thing just cracked me up.

Also, there were only two or three stalls (I think two) in the men’s section, whereas the women’s section had five stalls.  I appreciated that fact.

Post-a-day 2018

Nighttime Window

I open my window at night… late, late at night, when I am awakened to heat by the sounds of someone climbing the stairs to go to bed in the middle of the night, though I never know it at the time, and neither does the stair-climber.  My room is hot, too hot for comfort, especially in the middle of winter, even though it is Houston.  I crawl to the edge and climb out of my bed, down to my shoes, and stumble to the bathroom to relieve my suddenly compressed bladder.  When I return, the heat hits me like a physical wall of warm fabric floating just inside my doorway.  I stumble back to my bed, letting my shoes fall as I climb into it.  I sit for a moment, considering…  The lights are off, so it is all right.

I lean forward on my hands and knees, and I slide open the large window a few inches, before sitting back and relaxing, waiting for the cool air to stream firmly into my room.  I always consider going to sleep with the window left open.  I always close it after only a minute or few, so that I may go back to sleep, at ease.  I want the cooling air, but nothing else is welcome.  In Houston, many a thing might aim to make itself welcome through an open window at night.  And I really don’t want to wake to a rat diving between a stack of boxes.  I want to keep this room clean, please.  And so, I shut the window every time, even though I’m never quite cooled off enough for good rest.  Each night, I silently wish for a screen for the window, while disregarding the wish, because I wasn’t to see the world clearly through the window, whether closed or open, just free of screening… so it cannot be.

So, I open my window at night, out of practical reasons, but silently wish to experience the magic I feel is waiting just outside, waiting in that cool, crisp, winter wonder air.

Post-a-day 2017