“Is this the line?”
“Someone in there?”
“Is it locked?”
“Has anyone checked?”
Long silent pause.
“Anybody up for using the Men’s Room?”
Ah, the rushed, anatomy-clenching small-talk of Ladies while waiting in line to use the Ladies Room. The Powder Room. The Restroom. The Sitting Room. The Public Convenience. The Comfort Station.
And I mean anywhere, any time, any place.
When are we Ladies going to speak up? Organize. Mount (or rage) a Ladies Room Initiative on architects, engineers, developers, building inspectors and public officials to give us a break.
A Ladies Room break, that is.
My recommendations are simple:
1) A mandated 3-minute line limit
2) 5 Ladies’ Toilets (and wash basins) to every 1 (yes, one!) Men’s Toilet.
Hopefully, # 2 (recommendation, that is) will ensure the enforcement of # 1.
Why am I so (I just have to use this expression) pissed off?
Well, last evening I attended an outdoor concert in a nearby waterfront town.
The evening was spectacular, with the August sun setting amid ribbons of whispy pink, blue and purple clouds. The grass was greener than green. People of all ages blended in a delightful kaleidoscope of colors and sounds.
And then, as we are known to do, Ladies needed to use a restroom. The nearest “convenience” was within a little ice cream shop. But Ladies were required to purchase ice cream of some sort prior to the privilege of “convenience.”
Ah, ha! Pay for pee. Or worse.
That’s when the Ladies began talking.
Of the sports facilities. Mass transit systems. Malls. Ski resorts. Beaches. Restaurants. All the places, and all the times, we waste precious moments of our Ladies’ lives waiting to “go.”
And being the Mom of two daughters, I have done my share of waiting.
I recall one gorgeous winter day of skiing in New Hampshire when Audrey and Jane were probably 4 and 6 years old. There was the inevitable, “Gotta go”… and off to the Ladies Room we went.
Now to understand the time factor in accomplishing this deed, one need understand the anatomy of woman (no, I will not get graphic here!). But the anatomy DOES lie under ski pants, long underwear, panties… and to access these three items, one must remove glove liners, gloves, and ski jacket (and there is no place to put these things).
And by this time both Mom and girls are sweating so profusely that almost everything has to be removed so that the sweat does not freeze the girls’ little buns off once outside again.
Then back to the slopes, where my husband and two boys have not only used the Men’s facilities, but have made 60 runs and are back in for dinner.
And of course asking, “Where have you been?”
And skiing aside, there’s still “a lotta to gotta” in any Ladies’ situation.
We have belts, snaps, buttons, zippers. We have pants, panties, pantyhose, control things, and monthly additions to the repertoire.
We must bend, squat, stretch, straddle. All the while taking great care that our hems don’t touch the nasty floor.
We must balance pocketbooks, shopping bags, luggage. We must fully contort our entire bodies to reach the toilet paper dispenser only to find that it is empty, or just as bad, designed to allow .15 inch of toilet paper (therefore needing 2,000 of them to make one clean wipe-swipe).
We must squeeze into the tiny stalls with our little daughters (and oftentimes sons), working in a frenetic pace so no tiny hands touch ANYthing.
“Don’t touch!” we say. No “please” here.
Of course, we have already prepared the toilet for the deed by gathering reems of toilet paper to wipe away the previous Ladies’ sprinkle, and then layered the toilet with 10 inches of paper (because we all know that the waxy pre-made toilet covers will blow away if you breathe, or at best crumble to the size of the face of your watch).
And oh yeah, we must have the dexterity of a Rockette to flush the toilet with our shoe.
Hours later, we emerge from the stall just to discover that your daughter has, in fact, touched EVERYthing. And there is no soap.
Men… well, they must either pull down or unzippedy-do-da. Fish around for a fraction of a second. And “go.” That simple.
And men don’t even necessarily need a toilet for this function.
So, okay. Let’s get back to our LRI (Ladies Room Initiative). And let’s keep it simple.
We don’t need to “powder” in these rooms. We don’t need to “rest” in these rooms. We don’t need to “sit” in these rooms. We don’t even need to be particularly “comfortable” in these rooms.
We “gotta go.” We “gotta wash” (with soap, please). We gotta get in, get out, get back to what we were doing before duty called.
In fact, our motto will be: WE GOTTA BE IN AND OUT AS FAST AS A MAN
And that means a 3-minute line limit, and 5 Ladies’ toilets to every 1 Men’s.
Nah. On further analysis, the LRI is getting a little demanding here. A 2-minute line limit and 10 Ladies’ toilets to every 1 Men’s.
And one more thing. Mandate #3… Tot Toilets and Tot Basins for our Little Ladies. Just the right size!
We “gotta go” for Accessibility. We “gotta go” for Cleanliness. And we “gotta go” for Enforcement of our Rules!
Perhaps even a Pageant Platform in the next Miss America Competition.
And now for the contest to go along with the Ladies Room Initiative – The Gotta Go Giveaway!
We want to hear about the best, worst, funniest, grossest, most frustrating, most humorous – whatever! – public restroom experience you have had.
Write a blog post about it, link back to this post, and sign Mr. Linky so we know you’ve entered.
What’s up for grabs?
These fabulous TOILETries…
- Dior Miss Dior Cherie Perfumed Body Moisturizer (6.8 fl. oz)
- method lavender + lemongrass air enhancer
- CALDREA rose pomegranate Hand Balm (4 oz)
- Aveeno spf 55 Continuous Protection natural soy and vitamins C + E Sunblock Lotion (3 oz)
- C.O. Bigelow Mentha Body Peppermint Oil Vitamin Body Wash (8 fl. oz)
- Sadick Dermatology Lip Balm with attachable carrying strap
- Max Studio compact double mirror with black velvet carry case
- JOEY new york Crystal collegen boosting lipstick
- Completely Bare size medium white flip-flops
And a fabulous large black DKNY burlap-ish tote carry bag
*Contest ends Friday, August 17th at 5:00 PM EDT!*