The Joys Of Picking A Public Toilet

Public Bathroom

I’ll spare you the trauma of showing any photos of said toilets encountered.  But feel free to read on for the gory details.  I’m all too happy to provide them so you can get as clear a picture as possible of the trauma I go through when forced to use a public restroom/bathroom.

This is why, when I’m out in public, I will “hold it” as long as humanly possible—and even beyond human possibility when I have to go to the bathroom!  My bladder would have to be on the very verge of bursting into flames before I even consider giving a public restroom a fleeting thought.

I loathe using public bathrooms, toilets, restrooms, loos, ladies rooms, the facilities, whatever you want to call them.  Is there any wonder why?

I usually only use them if there’s a major emergency where I have no other choice—and then there’s a major production involved:

  • I push the door open with my foot, shoulder, or back—but if there’s a handle involved then I have to use an elbow of some sort.  I mean, grosswho wants to touch the door handle?!
  • Upon entering, I first have thoughts of all the other souls who have passed through this space before me touching God knows what with their hands that have been God knows where—considering 50% of the population doesn’t believe in hand-washing from my observations.
  • I scour the room for toilet seat covers—if there are none, oh the bloody agony as my skin crawls!
  • I get the “eenie, meenie, miney, moe” song involved in the choosing of a stall door.

First of all, HOW IN THE DICKENS is anyone even missing the INSIDE of the toilet stool altogether??!!!  From whence do you come from anyway?  Do you not SEE how big the hole is to begin with?!  I mean, you have a lot of space to work with, people!  Even during the times I decide to actually bend my knees to halfway stand to keep from touching the rim while using the facilities, I have NEVER missed the inside of a toilet.  What whaaat?!!  Goodness gracious alive!

I, obviously, have a level of great talent that some of you cannot seem to master even with training at ‘Toilet University’—and I’m darn proud of my talent!  By jove, how does the entire toilet rim from front to back on both sides have tinkles all the way around it?!  Anyone?  Hmmmmm?!

Now as you might have guessed, I was not looking forward to doing the “eenie, meenie, miney, moe” song again.  (That song is starting not to be quite as fun to sing as it used to be.)  And before I blasted through door number two, I didn’t think it could get any worse.  How wrong I was, indeed.

How is that much toilet paper inside the toilet stool in the first place?  If you have to use that much toilet paper at least be smart about it and flush as you go along, people.  Wipe a few times, flush, wipe, flush—be smart about it.  Come on!  A toilet stool is only going to flush a certain poundage of toilet tissue all at once.  Gee willickers!  Thanks for the gross-looking clogging inside a stool that is now unusable!  And only Lord knows what’s underneath all that toilet paper!

Boy, as you might have guessed, I couldn’t wait to see what Door #3 had in store for me.  Well, well, well.  Low and behold.  Ewww!  Come on now!  Seriously?  FLUSH, people!  I don’t want to see ANY of your business that hailed from your body ever in life!!  ARE WE CLEAR?!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The “eenie, meenie, miney, moe” song is getting pretty old at this point—but when I FINALLY DO find the most decent toilet to use (if you can even call it that), of course, it’s lacking a door lock to keep the bloody door from swinging open AND lacking a door hook for my coat, purse, or ANY OTHER FREAKING THING I’D LIKE TO PUT DOWN SO I CAN ACTUALLY USE THE FACILITIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Now my only options are to:

  • just throw my things on the disgusting floor itself or
  • figure out a way to hold my things while trying not to touch the rim of the toilet seat AND holding the door closed all at the same time!!!

As you might have guessed, I opt for the latter as I refuse to put my things on a cruddy floor.

Does anyone out there feel my misery yet???!!!  DO YOU ALL HAVE A CLEAR PICTURE OF HOW MY BODY IS POSITIONED AT THIS POINT just to use a public restroom?????  Is there ANY wonder I avoid them like the plague?!!

Oh, oh, oh, guys, guess what??!!!  Here’s the best part.  Now that my entire body is in this awkward position using the bathroom while trying not to touch the rim, while holding all my things, AND trying to keep a miserable door shut—low and behold—THERE’S NO TOILET PAPER IN THE STALL!!!  Can life get any more joyful for me at this point?!

So thank you to all the people of the world who seem to take great pride in making my life miserable any time I have no choice but to enter a public restroom.

Am I asking too much of a public facility?

So, if you have nothing else to do today, I strongly suggest carrying around your own personal door lock, door hook, and handwipes—I mean, who wants the cooties?  Or do yourself a favor and do everything in your power to avoid a public restroom.

Take-Away Life Lesson:  Clearly you need to haul around your own personal toddler trainer toilet seat every time you leave the house.  It’s much more convenient and much cleaner, safer, and less traumatic than what you’ll have to face when entering a public bathroom.

142 thoughts on “The Joys Of Picking A Public Toilet

  1. Absolutely hilarious and I so feel your pain. I detest public restrooms to the point of it being a phobia. One of my major pet peeves are the people who talk on their cell phone while in a stall only to leave without washing their hands and this was at work no less – disgusting!!!!

  2. My face was cringing the whole time reading this post, not because it was bad, but because I was thinking about every nasty toilet I have walked into!! I wonder the same thing…like, really? If you leave stuff on it, clean your mess up! There was a lady at my school that would use the toilet seat paper covers, but she would leave them there and not flush them down! My friend basically had to tell her to clean up her mess. Some people. smh.

    My husband doesn’t use public bathrooms either. But when he does have to go, it always ends bad b/c he will see the nastiest toilets, and come out telling me how gross they were! lol. Therefore, solidifying his reasoning as to not use public restrooms.

    Just a fun fact, Mythbusters found that the first stall is usually the stall that barely gets used. So, if you have to go then always go for that one =)

      1. I can totally relate on this topic as I have anxiety about using public restrooms as well. The first stall may offer less privacy, but it will most likely be cleaner!! YAY! =) lol

  3. First rule of survival: always check that there’s toilet paper….ALWAYS!! 😉 I still don’t understand why or how people can forget to flush, it’s common sense isn’t it? And try being in a cubicle when the person who is knocking doesn’t hear you are in there and breaks the lock when trying to enter….another reason to ‘go’ before leaving home. :/

  4. Well observed. I really love how someone can “make a deposit” and then leave it there for the next person to enjoy too, and often it seems to be laying on a bed of toilet paper!?!? Some people!

    1. No, we say “stool” here too for what I was referring to. Never used one of those lady devices and hope I never have to!

  5. Hilaire and phew it’s not just me! I once flew from London to LA without using the toilet due to filthiness (not recommended for those without toilet jedi skills).

  6. Oh my goodness! I LOVE this post. I was cracking up. I feel the same exact way as you. I feel so grossed out and I totally understand the door lock situation. It either doesn’t lock or it locks in a weird way completely missing where the lock is supposed to slide through and you think you’ll get trapped in there. Squatting is my only way of being able to use public restrooms and it sucks trying to keep your balance above a toxic waste dump. I’m glad to see I’m not alone although people call me a germ freak. You have to be in this world, lol!

  7. LMBO I Know Im late on this post!!! But I must say HILARIOUS! Thanks for the good read and the nudge. I enjoyed your post and a few others as well.

  8. Lol I’m so glad to read about your rant–I’m glad I’m not the only one who dreads using public bathrooms!
    I always try to use the bottom of my shoe to open a bathroom stall door. Once I’m inside, I pull out some toilet paper to use for locking the door (don’t want to touch the lock/handle with my bare hands!).
    My current workplace has double doors for the bathroom…so when I leave, I use paper towels to open the first door, quickly toss the paper towels in the trash, then slowly open the second door with my foot…I try not to kick hard cause I don’t want to startle people, but I honestly don’t care if I do! Better than touching the yucky door.

  9. Great read, funny, and I could picture it. Been there, done that! And if you think Jim Kaszynski’s, Thailand was bad, I’ve got him beat.

    Turkey, buss drive across county, late evening, under a Mosque, no light, just enough light from the outside filtering in through a small opening in the wall, just enough light so that I did not step into the hole in the ground, no paper, only some stale water in a rusty tin box. And just a tricke of water in the sink to wet my hands afterwards, a towel that looked like it had hung there the last 20 years (which I did not dare to touch). My goodness I’m glad all I had to do was having a tinkle 😉

    That, in my book is roughing it! 😉

    1. OH MY GOODNESS! I don’t know what I would do had I encountered something like that if I’m already freaking out by what I have to go through now. 🙂 Geez, Louise!

      1. LOL 🙂 it was a part of a holiday experience, that I have thankfully never had to experience again 😉 all other places in Turkey, was proper toilets or porcelain hole in the grounds, with lights and toilet paper (even though it taught me to never travel without a small wad of tissues in my “pocket” 😉 )

  10. Thanks for making me laugh! If you want a real experience, go to Thailand where I live, you must bring your own T,P. and squat to the ground level and hope you keep your balance, but it only cost 10 cents. Oh yes you have to take a bucket of water to flush. Hey, it’s like going back in time. I love Thailand!

  11. Girl I can’t help but laugh .You made a serious thing funny:) But what grosses me out in a way is women’s tampons.. they do have boxes for them I believe .:)

      1. Oh hope you took that last message as a joke I wrote crappy and topic as for toilets .I wrote this because I wasn’t sure how you would take my sense of humor .The message you wrote wasn’t crappy:)

  12. hahahahaha I couldn’t explain it better, this, and almost everything in this world, wouldn’t happen if we all together would act differently because the people doing it wrong, doing a mess in the public places, well I think they do this because they don’t give a #$%*& about the next one, you know? And that’s so sad! we are not alone in this world, “I am not alone in Barcelona as you are not alone in your city so be respectful and we all will be happy”. I think that’s the key

  13. My brother is an architect, and once, when he came to visit us in London, he made us visit the Barbican not for an exhibitions, not for the lovely cafe, no. He made us go to the public toilet there, because it is so unusual and ingenious.
    It is, actually. Especially after you had a coffee in the cafe! 😉

    1. Ha-ha. I love it! I’ve been impressed with some restrooms so much, I’ve gone to a certain place just to show my family or friends what the bathroom looks like. Lol!

  14. Must admit, I laughed when I saw the title of this article! But of course, the subject is no laughing matter and I totally feel your pain. I also get enraged when there are nasty public toilets in department stores as it really puts you off doing your shopping. Having said allll that, the public toilets in Harrods are absolutely delightful, but I guess they have to be as the Queen pops in from time to time!

    1. Oh, I can totally believe the restrooms in Harrods are definitely nice. I would expect that of them. How I’ve always wished I could visit Harrods one day. The shopping frenzy I’d go into!! Seeing how I live clear across the pond, that seems to be a far away dream. But at least I don’t have to be afraid of their toilets if I ever do make it there one day! 🙂

  15. I hate going into womens public rest rooms. They are so unhygienic! When I have no other choice and I leave it with a cringe look on my face, my male friends all ask and say the same thing… “Unbelievable! We thought it would be cleaner than ours!”
    Pfft. I wish. If only rainbows and butterflies came out of there. Some ladies, seriously!

    1. Lol. I wish rainbows and butterflies were lurking in there! It’s quite pathetic. If only the men really knew.

    2. I don’t want to burst your bubble, but I’ve done janitorial for about 35 yeras. The men’s room is always worse. Always. Believe me. If the women’s is bad and skunky, the men’s is guaranteed to be blood curdling. It’s just that many men can’t tell what clean is, apparently, or they wouldn’t be leaving evidences of their visit everywhere. Cough. …

      1. I thought so too but the shockers I’ve witnessed made me believe otherwise. Maybe it’s just the women in Australia…
        I commend you for being in the janitorial industry for so long. You are one tough cookie it seems!

  16. It’s interesting that you should bring up this topic and be so “passionate” about it… because I kinda imagine you asking Rosario to clean up the whole toilet before you enter it, Miss Walker. 🙂

    I have been quite lucky because all the shopping malls I love visiting have very clean toilets. By clean, I mean four-star-hotel-level-clean. There are fresh tissue papers, soft music, smiley janitors, auto-spraying air fresheners. (And they call Indonesia a third-world country!) LOL!

    1. Lol. You know I would, Hari! I’d harrass Rosario to hop all over it! That’s awesome your malls are that way in Indonesia. There definitely are some way nicer public restrooms here than others. And I LOVE when I happen upon these treasured finds. But it’s sad that it’s just not standard practice for ALL restrooms to be this way. You just never know what you’re gonna get depending where you’re at.

      1. That’s true. One can never tell how the toilets are gonna look like by judging the other parts of the buildings. I’ve seen really ugly toilets in really nice schools. I don’t even have words to describe it, simply disgusting!

  17. I feel your pain. Just think yourself lucky you don’t have to use MEN’S toilets. The sheer grossness often found therein defies belief. (Although, from what you report, the ladies don’t seem a whole lot better,) Sometimes I wonder if an animal has been in there instead of a human being. All it takes is a little care and consideration for the other people using the facilities afterwards … but that seems to be beyond some people. I feel sorry for the cleaners – I mean, no toilet cleaner can expect their job to be a bed of roses, but they shouldn’t have to deal with some of that stuff. BTW, in my experience toilets in shopping malls or airports are generally better (or at least, not as bad), maybe because they’re cleaned more regularly … but as for those in public parks – urghhh …

    And I had no idea I’d have quite so much to say on that topic …

    1. I can’t understand it any better than you can. Yeah, I feel sorry for the cleaning crew that has to deal with public restrooms. I think some of these people using the bathrooms ARE animals that just don’t seem to care how unsanitary they are.

  18. Just got back from vacation. Oh my Lord. How I can relate to your situation! If you get a chance, go back to one of my earlier posts titled, “Rules For Old People-Rule 1.”

    1. Lol. That was both a funny and horrid post you wrote and I can totally understand your plight. Hope you had a great vacation!

  19. So interesting to have the same habits to use public toilets. covering with toilet paper is a good idea. In addition, you made me laugh by this post.
    Thanks for sharing. 🙂
    good luck.

  20. First, let me get this out.. HaHaHaHaHaHa!

    That was quite hilarious because I have the biggest issue with public hygiene. When I say public, I am referring to spitting on the ground directly in front of others as they walk by, not washing hands after doing God knows what, and of course–vile rest rooms.

    We use urinals and the urinals are HUGE. Unless you are walking around with 75″, you CANNOT miss urinating inside the urinal. What do you see as you walk towards the urinal? You see urine splashed on the floor. How? Why? Did you just walk to the urinal and urinate on the floor instead? You then have these disgusting guys who just finish number 2 and walk directly out of the rest room. What????? So hand washing is out of the question…okay, got it. I’ve heard it is far worse in the “lady’s” room–If I can call all women who use it, a lady. Lol

    1. Lol. Glad you could get that laugh off your chest, Errol! Oh, my! I had no idea such vile things were going on in the men’s room as well. But I guess after what I’ve seen in the women’s room I shouldn’t be surprised that gender makes no difference. Eww.

        1. You have no idea, Errol! Once you’ve entered one too many public restrooms this way, you pretty much give up hope and never want to enter them again. LOL!

  21. Sounds like you were using the facilities at the Wal-Mart by my house 😉
    What’s funny is that half the time it’s closed for cleaning, but when you finally get to go in you would never know…

  22. Absolutely agree on this one. I thought I was alone on this haha 🙂
    One restroom which didn’t give me the jitters rather impressed me was the one at New York airport. Scans your thumb and automatically changes its disposable seat cover. I am yet to come across another such hygienic restroom. Oh!! The woes….

    1. That’s cool! I’ve never heard of such a restroom. That’s pretty neat it does something like that. I’d love to see how that works.

  23. Oh my word, you would have love the specimens emerging from the ladies’ room the other night: slovenly, hot messes with TP stuck to their heels. I can only imagine what they did to the seats!

    1. Ha-ha! Boy you guys are lucky in a way. It’s torture for me. Which is why I’d much rather “hold it” and endure how uncomfortable I feel until I can hopefully make it home in time!

      1. Dang spell check… *urinal, not uriburn – or whatever it is! Decades ago, we tried to export this “device” for Japanese women to, ahem, use. It had a cup with a balloon attached. It was filled with the same powder that absorbs the pee in diapers!

        1. LOL! I couldn’t figure out what “uriburn” was supposed to be. Some kind of disease you get from “holding it” or what?! Lol!

          1. You brought back some bad memories with that question. Lol!! I’ve actually USED a men’s restroom at work before—not realizing it was the men’s restroom. When I went to wash my hands AFTER using the restroom, I noticed urinals along the wall. (I didn’t notice them when I first walked in the door.) I couldn’t understand why there were urinals in the ladies’ restroom. It took a few minutes, but then it dawned on me what happened—and I hightailed it outta there before a man walked in! Thank goodness no one was in there but me that whole time! Whew! To my defense—that restroom actually USED to be the ladies’ room for many years until they remodeled and switched the positions of the men’s and women’s restrooms. I just forgot because I was so used to walking through that same door. Lol! Can you imagine if the big guy in charge walked in? Or was USING the urinal while I was coming out of the stall??!! Omg that would have been embarrassing!!

          2. I told that story for DAYS after! You’d think I’d keep a story like that to myself, but I couldn’t believe I did it AND that no one walked in during that time. It was too funny.

  24. Lol !! I was cracking up here cause what u addressed is so darn true !!! I too am a …. will hold and behold till I burst kinda gal ..hate public restrooms

  25. Oh…Yes! I am a sister of the “can’t stand a public restroom” club. I laughed so hard I almost….well….you get my drift! haha I do all the things you do, and I am a master at the squat…there is a technique that is necessary…thought about putting it on utube for those who need tutelage. One time in the middle of the….squat, I got a huge cramp in my lower back…it wasn’t pretty. But I, unlike most, tidied up after myself. Great post…you really had me laughing 🙂

  26. That’s terrible and funny in so many different ways. Hahaha. These restrooms are the way they are because no one treats it like they would their own bathroom at home!

    1. You finally said it! That’s exactly what it is. OR it could be this is how they live in their own homes, perish the thought.

  27. I’m laughing so hard. But seriously, you haven’t seen anything if you haven’t used a public road side facility on a Chinese bus trip and I’m not talking about the tourist bus, I’m talking about the traveling with chickens bus. There are no doors, no toilets and not papers, no sink but plenty of flies. ^_^ Cheers and I do feel your pain. The first world can do so, so, so much better. Even our pets tinkle cleaner.

  28. I suffer the same as you on this issue. I would hold it as long as I can humanly possible (my husband said humanly impossible in my case since I hold it in longer than most people I suppose) to avoid using the public restroom. My work place isn’t that bad in the conditions you’ve described but out of the office…’s fair game. Everything you’ve described I’ve pretty much seen. All I can think of is WHY?! HOW COULD THEY MISS?! It’s not a tiny hole!

    You got me laughing over here reading about it!

    1. I’m sure it’s bad for the bladder to hold it so long, but I do what I must. My sentiments exactly about missing the hole. I’m still trying to figure out how that is even happening in the world.

    1. I think it’s because I see people do some of the most disgusting things in the real world with hygiene the reason I’m so leery about these restrooms in the first place.

  29. I don’t know what city you live in, but even the toilets in public campgrounds are never this gross, not even the “one-holers”, so to speak. I can’t say I have ever seen anything like you describe. Well, EXCEPT where I worked – IN A MEDICAL SCHOOL in a southern state!!! Can you believe it?

    I have a nifty item that might work for you:

    You can outfit a zip lock freezer bag with this device, and whatever accompaniments you desire – to deal with the seat and clean up. It rolls up into a compact package that would fit down the side of a generously-sized handbag. I slip mine into a zippered pocket of my photographer’s vest, so it is always at hand – so to speak – even if we go on an impromptu shoot!

    Even frequenting primitive areas out here in The Wild, Wild West, I have used this device only once, and then only because there was no “seat cover”, and more or less to try it out. Even pit toilets are usually stocked appropriately, and are relatively clean, if a bit odiferous by nature.

    The non-flushing? I agree – ewwwww – mega gross. There is no excuse for this except as a power play by the perp! Perhaps there is some satisfaction to be gained by “doing unto others” in an anonymous way that gives pleasure to twisted minds.

    Virtual hugs,


    1. Lol. You make me laugh, Judilyn. Thank goodness you don’t see much of this. But the “medical school” had me cracking up. Of ALL places!! And that pic is an interesting looking dillymajoogle there.

  30. I laughed so hard at this post. What made things even funnier was that I was on the phone about an appliance order as I was reading it. The guy on the other end of the phone couldn’t figure out what was so funny, hahaha. And yes, using a public restroom in the conditions above can easily turn into a circus act. I honestly have no idea what some people are thinking.

  31. Having travelled quite a bit in India, I would swap your bathroom experience for the ones I had there. Swarms of flies, heat, stench and a hole instead of a toilet. Oh yes and a bucket of dirty water instead of toilet paper. I will let you guess how you finish the paper work yourself!

  32. Too funny! Thanks for the good laugh on this Friday morning. I agree with all of it! I’m a big fan of a toilet cover and a hook and can’t imagine the idea of putting my purse down on the bathroom floor. Disgusting!

  33. Eww…and unfortunately true. I’ll take the “comforts” of home any day. Well said…hopefully, your commentary will reach the “right” people and change a thing or two!

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