Toilets on planes are loud. I mean really loud. Loud enough where they’ve scared people (especially kids), been discussed by stand up comedians, imitated by an a cappella music group, and videotaped and put onto YouTube.
People have wondered why they’re so loud. Moreso, people have wondered how to make them quieter. Here are answers to both questions…
We were hanging out on one of their 2nd-floor terraces when nature started calling, so I walked to the elevator and up to the 4th floor. Since there was a bar (named “Edge”) there, I figured there would, therefore, be facilities, as well. And I was right – there was a men’s room and a ladies’ room right off the elevator.
I opened the door to the ladies’ room and the room was dark but as I stepped in to look for the light switch, the light suddenly went on automatically. I was then able to see that the “regular” light switch had been replaced with something different, so I surmised that in an attempt to save money on electricity when no one was actually in the bathroom be green, the light was controlled by a motion sensor. Interesting. Continue reading “My Unusual Toilet Encounter At The Epicurean Hotel”
The first time I encountered a squat toilet was the early-mid 1990s, when I went to Japan with a friend of mine named Teri. It was a very different experience for a Westerner to visit back then…the internet wasn’t as all-encompassing as it is now, so you had less opportunity to learn the ins and outs as a visitor. There weren’t nearly as many “English subtitles” to help you with street signs, transportation, etc. (I spoke about 100 words of Japanese at the time [including the furniture one would find in a living room, because you NEED that as a tourist], Teri could only say “thank-you” in the language, and neither of us could read or write in hiragana, katakana or kanji. Teri and I would sit with a map and compare characters to figure out where we were and where we wanted to go). And there were many less Western-style toilets than there are nowadays.
We were in a public park and I had to go. I had little idea of how to use a squat toilet the right way, and although I didn’t make a mess, (thank goodness), it was NOT a comfortable position for me to be in.
If you’re ever in NYC, especially if you’re a tourist, it’s not always easy to find a public toilet. Some places let anyone use the facilities, some only allow customers and clients to use them. You might go past a public restroom but not want to use it because based on smell and visuals alone, who knows what’s been going on in there. You may be in the middle of a residential area (they exist!) and just not know where the nearest bathroom that’s open to the public is. And let’s face it…sometimes when you gotta go, you gotta GO, right?
Well, Dr. Wansoo Im, who has his PhD in Urban Planning, has developed a fix for that. An Associate Professor at Meharry Medical College and a former Adjunct Professor at Rutgers University, Dr. Im is a pioneer of interactive, web/mobile-based Geographic Information Systems to support community-based participation and research on a wide range of social and environmental issues. Dr. Im’s projects have included nationwide watershed maps, maps of potential mosquito breeding grounds that could contribute to the spread of the Zika virus, and a mapping project of operating gas stations in the wake of Superstorm Sandy. But the best project he’s worked on, at least for tourists, is the one where he’s developed a community participation-based interactive map of every available restroom in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Queens and Staten Island.
Joe and I went to Chicago to visit a friend in the mid-1990s and when I stopped at the ladies’ room after we landed at O’Hare International Aiport, I was surprised to see the oddest looking toilet I had ever seen in the U.S. The toilet itself was pretty typical but the seat had a plastic wrapper on it. The sign in the stall said to press the button and the plastic would be replaced for my hygienic safety, or some such. When we went back to Chicago last summer, these weird toilets were still there, still freshly wrapping the seat in plastic for your butt.
When you visit any website, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. This information might be about you, your preferences or your device and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to. The information does not usually directly identify you, but it can give you a more personalized web experience.
Because we respect your right to privacy, you can choose not to allow some types of cookies. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings. However, blocking some types of cookies may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer.
Strictly Necessary Cookies
Strictly Necessary Cookie should be enabled at all times so that we can save your preferences for cookie settings.
If you disable this cookie, we will not be able to save your preferences. This means that every time you visit this website you will need to enable or disable cookies again.
These cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites.
They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.
Please enable Strictly Necessary Cookies first so that we can save your preferences!