Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Potty humor but that's to be expected, given the author

As part of an overall package of a "hands-free" washroom experience that placates all of those germophobes out there, newer buildings on campus have washroom entrances with an open hallway in an "S" shape that allows for privacy while not requiring a hand to make contact while pushing or pulling on a door handle to enter or exit the washroom.

"I wonder if I should tweet this."
This shape, however, presents possibilities for a bottleneck if someone leaving goes on the "wrong" (ie. left side) of the hallway while scooting around (yo, this ain't Old Blighty, so you pass on the right hand side), especially if the architects were rather limited for square footage and didn't have the entire entrance hallway wide enough to permit two people to pass by each other without clipping shoulders.  With Sunday night's Walking Dead premiere fresh on my mind, today I encountered what I would describe as a shambolic snowflake who would be the equivalent of a tortoise relative to the hare-like speed of a Nicotero zombie.  He stared down intently at his smartphone while shuffling along at several mm per second, coming around the washroom entrance corner with all normal courtesies abandoned when simultaneously confronted with 21st century technology.  I had to slowly back up, in sync to his slow advance, before he eventually glanced up and belatedly realized he was blockading the whole washroom entrance while gazing at the wonder of a 5 inch AMOLED screen with QHD resolution.  Awkwardness did not ensue, as he simply flattened himself against the wall and resumed his previous activity and rate of movement without missing a beat, without any change in facial expression that displayed surprise, apology, or any sort of shame.

During the exact same visit to the washroom, I shit you not (ha ha, pun there...), as I was finished washing my hands at the sink and making my way to the exit, another student burst around the entrance opening at full speed, already trying to undo his pants (more like fumbling ineffectually; I formed a mental picture of an old elementary school teacher tsk tsking and proclaiming "haste makes waste!") while running along, and yelling "Ai! Ai! Ai! Ai!" in a tone of voice that matched the frantic and panicked look on his face as he realized that he'd had to navigate around me to get to the bank of urinals, thus losing a precious 0.3 seconds that apparently he couldn't spare (and, from his actions up that moment, it was clear he could not spare).  With the reflexes of a cat I sidestepped as this fellow zoomed by me, akin to the way Neo bent over backwards and dodged those bullets in The Matrix, buffeting me in his slipstream.

I've made a mental note to avoid that particular washroom in the future.

Prof Poopiehead


  1. A hands-free washroom is a start in the right direction, other frustrations aside. I am shocked at how many people come in to use the bathroom and leave without washing their hands. And then students want me to look at what they are doing at their workstation, which involves me using their keyboard and mouse. Needless to say, I carry hand sanitizer with me, and no, I'm not paranoid. Just a realist.

  2. It never occurred to me that avoiding germiness was the goal of those bathroom entrances! I thought it was so that students weren't as enclosed, and hence would be less likely to skip class in the bathroom. Although really, WHY would you want to spend 90 minutes hiding in the BATHROOM?!?!

  3. I'm glad women's restrooms don't require that we pee next to each other while standing up, for more reason than this.

  4. I have little to add to this conversation, other than to note that I hate how these entrances allow the sounds of flushing etc. to leak into the hallway.

    I did also want to say that this was (in my opinion) some very effective writing. I loved that about CM and love it here, too. If we had a "like" button, or maybe an "I know, right?" button, I'm sure it would have received quite a few clicks.

    OK, there's this other thing: I presume the term 'washroom' was used ironically. Good one!