Monday, 21 November 2016

Public Toilets are not as much fun as I first thought

OK, I appreciate that the last few blog posts have either been complete works of fiction, or opinion pieces… What there has been sadly lacking, is posts where I am either physically injured – or at the very least, suffered embarrassment so pure, so lurid, that it would cause a park-bench to spontaneously procreate with a Mallard.

This happened to me a couple of weeks ago, and it still makes my rectum clench and my eyes screw themselves shut when I think about it.

I am allegedly part of the senior management team for a multi-national service providing company… We own a few chains of hair-dressing companies, both famous, and not so famous… But it’d be a fairly safe bet that if you’ve ever been to a ‘chain’ salon rather than an independent – It was one of ours.  Our main head office is in Coventry, near Warwick University, and the office building we are in is owned by Tesco the retailer.

A couple of months ago we received a notification from the landlord that the toilets in the building were scheduled to be refurbished.  And it carefully explained that this was nothing to do with the set of catastrophic leaks we’d been suffering because the students in the flats upstairs (The top floor of our building is student accommodation) had taken to pouring pan-fulls of rice down their drains – And blocking them up… Anywho, so the day arrived and the toilets were shut – All at the same time, for a couple of months minimum.  Yeah, I know, that’s a mental amount of time to be without facilities and my plan to have those big, yellow rubble-chutes you get on building sites leading from everyone’s office windows down into some kind of septic tank was vetoed avec le grande vitesse – Although, they did provide us with Portaloos such as you would find on a building site. Now, these have (for they are still on site) upsides and downsides:

  • They are heated
  • They are segregated by gender
  • They are pretty clean, all things considered

  • There are two sets of two – to replace two sets of five
  • They are not just for us, we share them with the Site security team and the builders actually performing the work
  • They are locked, and if you wish to use the toilets, you must ask for the keys from the main reception desk (Only we need to do this, Security and the builders are considered adult enough to use the ‘knock and wait’ system).
  • They are built over an apex in the carpark – Let me explain what this means… The top-left and bottom-right corners of the block of four ‘stalls’ are higher, by quite a significant amount, than the other two corners. This leads to a rocking motion when people stand up, or sit down, or breathe heavily or perform any function that use some kind of repetitive movement. I’m sure you’re all imagining the hilarity.

Now, there are also public toilets on site. For the use of the public, as the name would imply and occasionally – If there are no keys available, or if there are keys available but the toilets are still full, or if the entire block of toilets is rhythmically moving backwards and forwards like Optimus Prime thinking very hard about a particularly lovely cement mixer… You can use them – I know now that this is purely for emergencies – Because the public are filthy disgusting animals.

A case in point… The case I was alluding to at the beginning in fact – Which would make everything up until this point the preamble, sorry. It was the week after payday, characterised by my ability to buy lunch that I didn’t have to rehydrate with boiling water upon my return to the office.  I was halfway through lackadaisically choosing my food from the vast display of everything ranging from Greggs to Subway when I had the feeling that I needed to ‘make room’ for what I was about to eat with a certain degree of urgency.  I travelled to the public conveniences and got out my smartphone (remember… degree of urgency, this becomes important momentarily) I checked Facebook and had a quick look on Twitter to see if anyone famous, or pleasantly semi-naked had followed me. I concluded my business and pulled up my hand-tailored Japanese Kendo trousers to be presented with an unusually uncomfortable feeling.  You see, in my haste, I hadn’t remembered to check whether some incontinent pensioner/juddering drug addict/tiny-penised gentleman with no feeling in his hands had urinated all over the floor like a toddler with a firehose.  So, the seat of my trousers was covered in pensioner/druggie urine. I sat back down and pondered my situation – After some thought, and someone trying the door a couple of times. I decided that the only thing to do was draw the sopping trousers tightly over my manly buttocks once more and walk the hundred yards to Tesco and buy a new pair.

Luckily, I was wearing a long coat. But still, I should just like to state for the record that there is literally no feeling worse than walking through a shopping center that features both a Wilko and a Peacocks, a Greggs and an Iceland with a unidentified old man’s urine squelching between your buttocks.  Tescos had one pair of gentleman’s semi-formal slacks in my size… I changed in the changing rooms, bundled up my defiled trousers and threw them in the boot of the car then returned to work (They have since been washed nine times, in bleach and fire).

Fast forward to last Friday – Same toilet – Different stall – no random urine, but neither was there any toilet paper. (Yes, I know, SOP is to check before you sit down).  Luckily I had some paper about my person.

Sadly it was a single A4 sheet of high-quality laser printer paper… It had the menu for the office Christmas party printed on it.  It wasn’t hugely absorbent… And yes, paper-cuts to the anus do indeed, sting like a badger.

Sweet dreams children!

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