Tuesday, March 11, 2008

It's Normal to Die a Little When You Visit the Public Restroom

Look, I don’t like public restrooms. I’m not going to pretend I do. I realize it’s cooler to be the overly laid back guy and get juiced about having a place to squirt my shit on the go. But I never was overly laid back guy, and I never reveled in staking out a public location to drop body garbage.

I know it's an unpopular stance. I probably sound a lot like someone from 1820 right now. And if you were to coax a scientist into taking five minutes away from designing new patterns for a Fruit Roll-Ups commercial to actually put in some work and build you a time machine, and you flashed in a man from that year, he’d probably throw his arm around my shoulder and reminisce about how much better it was when public excretion was handled much more simply. By squatting down and laying one out on the sidewalk. Tell me where to sign up.

"Hey, where's the nearest public restroom facility?"

Yes, public restrooms probably save lives (and make lives, bow chicka bow). It’s where gross people get hand jobs, where overworked Wall Street junkies find motivation to live, and where fat girls go to cry whenever something this shade of negative happens to them. Seriously, fat girls, get over it. And without the establishment of a public restroom, where would all the homeless people have their tea parties?

But here are the facts. We as a society have definitively proven we can’t handle the responsibility of maintenance in a public forum. Ever seen a highly trafficked public trash can? You understand this. The next time that you find a living or recently living thing disposed in a public trash receptacle, your synapses will spark a connection with the dead part of your brain and suddenly, it'll start to make sense. So who in the name of little boys everywhere thought that we would be able to handle pissing and shitting in a public arena?

Now imagine the public restroom equivalent.

Personally, I can’t stand the public restroom experience. Maybe it’s the failing lighting, the wandering eyes at the urinal, the stale hue of piss steam that’s lingered uninterrupted in that tile cavern of a room since the Kennedy administration, the sound of a fart so violent and throaty you have to stop yourself from offering help, the blood on the stall lock, the urinal with a baby-sized shit in it, the guy pissing onto your foot from the next stall, the surely Nobel prize-winning air blower invention, you know, for those times when you’ve got just under 3 1/2 hours to dry your hands, the scruffy guy posing as a restroom attendant who turns on your faucet, the pantless children that follow you and call you daddy, the puddles, the hair stuck to the tampon stuck to the handicap men’s room stall, the backed up toilet that contains all the telltale features of a recent abortion, the broken lock that triggers the door to open as soon as you squat, that man that waits in the doorway for you to finish, the prostate problem three urinals down whose tragically slow trickle magically convinces your dick to copy, the limitless skyward reach of bodily fluids, the used condom by your foot that reminds you what quality of toilet water just shot up your ass, the waterproof brown paper towels, the masturbating homeless people, or of course, the distinct smell of cigarettes, porcelain, and intestinal wall. And while I can’t seem to put my finger on what it is that makes the public restroom the clusterfuck of disaster that it is, there is one thing we can all agree on.

This is somehow the scientists' fault.