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Monday, September 6, 2010

The Porta John, A Love-Hate Relationship

I have to laugh every time I work at an auction. The ones that are held 'on site' have a Porta John delivered. I always laugh at where the "john" is actually placed. It's never in a discreet area out of the way! Take this photo below for example. I took this picture from my perch in the auction truck. See how close it is to the actual auction taking place? People are sitting in their lawn chairs and standing all around it! See the man just to the left of it? He's actually leaning his arm against it! Did he move when I went in there? Well, no! And believe me, it just feels strange to be half naked and squatting over the toilet with men in lawn chairs just mere inches away...even if there is a plastic box surrounding you! LOL! This predicament reminded me of a hilarious account of women and public restrooms. I found it on Google, without an author. Maybe you've read it before, but it's worth sharing as I've added it below...
When you have to visit a public bathroom, you usually find a line of women, so you smile politely and take your place. Once it's your turn, you check for feet under the stall doors. Every stall is occupied.
. Finally, a door opens and you dash in, nearly knocking down the woman leaving the stall. You get in to find the door won't latch. It doesn't matter, the wait has been so long you are about to wet your pants!
. The dispenser for the modern 'seat covers' (invented by someone's Mom, no doubt) is handy, but empty. You would hang your purse on the door hook, if there was one, but there isn't - so you carefully, but quickly drape it around your neck, (Mom would turn over in her grave if you put it on the FLOOR! ), yank down your pants, and assume ' The Stance.'
. In this position your aging, toneless thigh muscles begin to shake. You'd love to sit down, but you certainly hadn't taken time to wipe the seat or lay toilet paper on it, so you hold 'The Stance.' To take your mind off your trembling thighs, you reach for what you discover to be the empty toilet paper dispenser. In your mind, you can hear your mother's voice saying, 'Honey, if you had tried to clean the seat, you would have KNOWN there was no toilet paper!' Your thighs shake more.
. You remember the tiny tissue that you blew your nose on yesterday - the one that's still in your purse. (Oh yeah, the purse around your neck, that now, you have to hold up trying not to strangle yourself at the same time). That would have to do. You crumple it in the puffiest way possible. It's still smaller than your thumbnail .
. Someone pushes your door open because the latch doesn't work. The door hits your purse, which is hanging around your neck in front of your chest, and you and your purse topple backward against the tank of the toilet. 'Occupied!' you scream, as you reach for the door, dropping your precious, tiny, crumpled tissue in a puddle on the floor, lose your footing altogether, and slide down directly onto the TOILET SEAT . It is wet of course. You bolt up, knowing all too well that it's too late. Your bare bottom has made contact with every imaginable germ and life form on the uncovered seat because YOU never laid down toilet paper - not that there was any, even if you had taken time to try. You know that your mother would be utterly appalled if she knew, because, you're certain her bare bottom never touched a public toilet seat because, frankly, dear, 'You just don't KNOW what kind of diseases you could get.'
. By this time, the automatic sensor on the back of the toilet is so confused that it flushes, propelling a stream of water like a fire hose against the inside of the bowl that sprays a fine mist of water that covers your butt and runs down your legs and into your shoes. The flush somehow sucks everything down with such force that you grab onto the empty toilet paper dispenser for fear of being dragged in too.
. At this point, you give up. You're soaked by the spewing water and the wet toilet seat. You're exhausted. You try to wipe with a gum wrapper you found in your pocket and then slink out inconspicuously to the sinks.
. You can't figure out how to operate the faucets with the automatic sensors, so you wipe your hands with spit and a dry paper towel and walk past the line of women still waiting. You are no longer able to smile politely to them. A kind soul at the very end of the line points out a piece of toilet paper trailing from your shoe. (Where was that when you NEEDED it??) You yank the paper from your shoe, plunk it in the woman's hand and tell her warmly, 'Here, you just might need this.'
. As you exit, you spot your hubby, who has long since entered, used, and left the men's restroom. Annoyed, he asks, 'What took you so long, and why is your purse hanging around your neck?' This is dedicated to women everywhere who deal with a public restrooms (rest??? you've GOT to be kidding!!). It finally explains to the men what really does take us so long. It also answers their other commonly asked questions about why women go to the restroom in pairs. It's so the other gal can hold the door, hang onto your purse and hand you Kleenex under the door!

42 comments:

  1. Hope none of you laugh so hard at this that you wet your pants. ha. :)

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  2. Oh, it was a close call. I decided to go before I read it, just in case.

    That is so funny, but so true...have we not been there done that several time in our experience.

    Thanks for my laugh today, I must share this with my daughters.

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  3. haha. oh my betsy...porta johns are bad enough to begin with and there is not much insulation in a thin piece of plastic...

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  4. Just stopped by to say hello. Looks like you're having a great summer.

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  5. Brian ~ the girls I work with were saying that...no sound insulation there...oh dear. :)

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  6. Strider ~ hey there...how are you? You need to open up your blog again! I'm getting tired of looking at that profile page! Although your grandsons are growing up fast! Cute picture there!

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  7. I laughed so hard then read it out loud to my best friend, by the time I was done we had tears running down our faces!

    Love the photo, love the story!

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  8. Hm. I just came to your blog with a visiting friend. Interesting post for me to choose as an "introduction." ;-)

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  9. OMGosh! That guy leaning up against it is creeping the heck out of me...what a moron. I love how inconspicuous it is...gah!

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  10. That was so funny and so true! And that big green one right out in the open..must have been put there by a man! ;D

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  11. So, so true!! This was so funny to read and yet I can picture myself there, for sure and you are right, my mother would be appauled:-)

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  12. Julie ~ that is SO true! haha.

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  13. Such a funny post Betsy,lol.Hilarious more like it ha.

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  14. Laugh! A good thing I 'went' before I sat down to read this!

    The Porta-John - unbelievable!

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  15. Hehe, this was a great post Betsy! And so true, I think we all recognize at least some of the sentiments.;))
    The picture is hilarious too; everyone knows and sees (hears??) when one is entering and using the restroom, there is no doubt.;)
    xo

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  16. Oh, Betsy! I am laughing out loud! How funny! And the funny thing is...every word is true! I scrolled down and took a peek at your frog. I have one just like it that lives above my back door behind the frame and comes out every night to serenade us with his loud croaks! I will miss him when summer is over. Enjoy your Labor Day weekend!...hugs...Debbie

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  17. I don't think I have ever read this! HILARIOUS! SO TRUE! SO TRUE!

    I hate the ole Porta John. One of my sons refuses to use public johns...PERIOD! It can be a problem at times!

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  18. I think I might address the placement of the porta john with the auction's organizers for improved placement next time. :)
    Love the public restroom story! Sad, but so true.

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  19. Oh, I'm ROFL!!!!!!!!!! Too, too funny!!!! Love this post!!! Betsy, you are simply the BEST!!!! Thanks for posting this and giving me my laughs for the day!!! I needed this!!! Great stress reducer!! Hope you are well! While I've been away, I've missed visiting you!!! So great to be back! Have a fabulous Labor Day!!! ~Janine OX

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  20. Totally hilarious! And all your female readers can relate.

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  21. this was just too funny

    just got home...my husband and i have been helping to care for his dad who is just released home following a stroke...boy, could i use a laugh...

    we are exhausted...this brightened my day.

    thanks, betsy

    sending love,
    kary
    xxx

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  22. And we all get to do it with kids hanging off of us, too !!!

    Gloria

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  23. Gloria ~ oh, isn't that the truth! The only thing worse than going in alone is going in with a child. Oh the memories! I wonder how many times I said, "Don't touch ANYTHING!" LOL! And...thanks for stopping by! :)

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  24. Public rest rooms are by absolute bete noire!!!!! I can't possibly put enough exclamation points to express my revulsion!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I'm soooo neurotic, it's like a hell on earth in one of those.

    I will add, when we were on our road trip last summer, we discovered along the highway in Alabama (I think) the worlds cleanest, most beautifully-designed public restroom ever. I swear, it was nicer than my own bathroom at home. If only every bathroom could be like that...

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  25. I hate the port-a-johns and try not to use them. But now I will have the thought of the closeness of the people outside, just a little plastic wall between us. YUCK! lol

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  26. SO FUNNY! My mom and I were just talking about this the other day!!!!

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  27. Haha, Betsy! That is so hilarious, girl! Public toilets have always creeped me out.

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  28. girl you crack me up... we laugh but it is all soooooooooooo true..
    but glad all had a good time..
    Happy Memorials Day.. cya soon

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  29. Oh my gosh, it's a universal experience!!!! I hate "the stance." I've never been able to execute it properly. Needless to say, I always line the seat with paper.

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  30. Ha Ha Ha.... SO TRUE, Betsy... We could all write books about our bathroom experiences... Not long ago, I went to the potty in a Walmart Store... In the stall beside me was a woman having a loud conversation on her cellphone ... This went on when I first got in there and was still going on when I left.... AND--You should have HEARD the conversation. it was hard for me to leave until I heard more of 'that' story!!!!! ha ha ha

    My knee is doing fine, thank you for asking.

    Enjoy your similar Labor Day meal... but don't labor too much today.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  31. Betsy,
    my biggest fear about the port let is that while I'm using it someone will come with great force and knock the dang thing over. With me in it!! Isn't that gross.

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  32. Cindy ~ that is SO true. I always think that about the ones set up really close to a road. It makes me feel a car is going to hit it! ha.

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  33. The park where we had our son's rehearsal picnic had a porta john so we did our best the make it better. Having a basket available filled with extra tp, moist bathroom wipes, air freshener spray, anti-bacteria pump, hand lotion, tissues, and when it got dark - four candle jars inside!

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  34. Corners ~ now that was a great idea! And I hope it wasn't in the middle of all the action! ha.

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  35. Yucky Pooh! Those things get stinky...how could they be so close to all those people...what were they thinking? Pretty funny!

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  36. I haven't laughed that hard in eons! Thanks so much Betsy.. much needed reprieve.. and yes.. I almost wet my pants! hahahahaha.. thanks so much!

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  37. Kristy ~ hey, I recognize your pretty face! :) Thanks for stopping by!

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  38. Bleh!

    I have a roll of TP in my truck at ALL times in case I have to use a porta-john. I used to carry several rolls in my Army rucksack.

    Funny, though... in freezing climates with a bit of sun, they're quite nice to get warm in.

    But you didn't hear that from me.

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  39. Oh gosh, this is hysterical! And, yes, why would anyone lean against a porta john on purpose? Gross!

    I have so much more sympathy for my mother now that I have a daughter to teach this to. It's always such an ordeal to go to a public restroom.

    Thanks for the laugh this morning. My side is still hurting...:)

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  40. Hahahahaha! This is funny! Difference between males and females???? The world is the male's urinal! hahahaha!

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