Monday, December 24, 2018


I've often lamented there should be a government position of Bathroom Commissioner. This person would be in charge of creating and enforcing a set of standards for public restrooms. I shouldn't have to read directions on how to dry my hands, whether or not the device by which I dry them is paper towel or high-pressure air. I shouldn't have to wave my hands this way or that only to leave the bathroom with still wet hands. How often have I done that only to have another woman dry her hands effortlessly, having discovered the secret to operating the towel dispenser?

Toilets that flush automatically often don't. In such cases, one must find a secret button located uncomfortably close to the open toilet bowl. Sometimes, this button is obvious. Other times, the only thing one can do is run one's hand over the entire surface of the plumbing at the back of the bowl with one's face hovering over one's own waste until flush!

When a toilet does flush automatically, it is usually either before or during the event for which the device was devised. This can be rather surprising if not disgusting. Assuming you are not on the bowl at the time, the "bloom" created by flushing a toilet without a lid potentially exposes you to more germs than are on the toilet seat itself. (Time - You Asked: Should I Use a Toilet Seat Cover?)

How does this work?
Automatic sinks can often be as confusing. What is the magic hand motion to make them work? How do I adjust the temperature? Even sinks with handles can be confounding. Is a joystick really a good idea?

Bathroom design is another thing. Stalls at airports should be sufficiently large enough to accommodate one's luggage. Coat hooks allow a person to wash one's hands without also having to juggle coats or purses.  (Thank you, PDX!) The hotel where I now sit has two sinks. Both are located behind doors that, when open, block the sinks. The towels are hung on the walls opposite the sinks, 10 feet away. Whose idea was that?

Soap. Foam soap is mostly air. I realize it saves money but it doesn't work as well as liquid soap. Sanitizer should be available in more locations. First, in restrooms that only have foam soap but also outside restrooms where one cannot exit without touching the door handle.

Hand sanitizer should also be available anywhere where food is served such as fast food restaurants or buffet lines but that's someone else's job. Maybe we should have a Hand Sanitizer Commissioner.

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