Using a Public Restroom: Please Lock the Door

Toilet paper
Image via Wikipedia

One of my very first blog posts, on October 26, 2009 was about not locking the door in a public restroom. I had the misfortune of walking into a gas station restroom to a woman in a lace thong with her jeans around her ankles. It was not a pretty picture, I assure you. Well, it seems that the peeing public still has not figured out the concept of a door lock. When you use a bathroom in a public place, you should always observe a few simple rules of etiquette:1. Keep it clean. This is the least observed rule ever. Throw out your paper towels and don’t leave toilet paper everywhere. Why is that so hard to understand?

2. Don’t take 10 minutes primping in the handicap stall when there is a line out the door. We have to pee, and your hair isn’t going to look any better anyway.

3. Lock the door. It seems simple, yet for some reason people are reluctant. It is often a simple push button or latch. Try it.You might like it. I know I will.

I often go to places where they have single-stall restrooms marked “Men” and “Women”. I can’t figure it out. If there is only one toilet, why does it have to be gender specific? Generally, in these situations, I will use whichever one is available. If someone is in the “women’s” bathroom, I will use the “men’s”. Who cares? In theory, there shouldn’t be anyone else in there.

So this weekend, post-Key West Half Marathon, FKGuy and I went to Azur for brunch. It is always a treat, and frankly, there is not better way to celebrate crossing the finish line than a plate of perfectly poached eggs.

After running (run/walk/run) 13.1 miles with no pee break, I arrived at the restaurant in need of a bathroom. There are two bathrooms – gender specific – but meant for only one person. When the “women’s” was locked, I tried the “men’s”. Unlocked. Alas, there was a guy, probably in his 70s, peeing. Apparently he had never seen one of those newfangled things called a lock. He looked at me like I am in the wrong. Here’s a hint: if you don’t want company, LOCK THE DOOR.

On his way out, he gave me the evil eye. I smiled. He glared. We had a nice moment.

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