DILEMMA: The Cubicle Question – Part I

Missing a trick?

loo sign

loo doors

Summer is upon us and soon we’ll be spending more time at service stations, airports, cafes, parks and festivals. We’ll be eating, dancing and drinking and we’ll be paying the unavoidable visits to the public conveniences.

Now, like everybody else, the OWL is grateful that such facilities exist and even more grateful to the people whose unenviable job it is to maintain them. But we’re also aware that not all visitors pay the facilities and their staff the respect they deserve. Who hasn’t innocently opened a cubicle door to be met with horrific evidence of the careless behaviour of the previous visitor? (The OWL is familiar with at least one lady in her fifties who after a particularly nasty experience concluded that in future, a nappy was her only viable option).

But what about those of us who are not prepared to go to such extremes? Are there any tricks?

Based on chats with friends, the OWL has compiled a list of – sadly – quite familiar advice; always bring tissues, particularly for the door handle, learn to breath through the mouth, carry sanitizer in your handbag, practice the half-squat position. This is all useful enough, but what if you could go one step further? What if there were a way of predicting which loo is likely to be the cleanest? For instance, in a row of four is there one that hardly anybody chooses and which is therefore likely to be cleaner than the others?

Sadly, even when controlling for turnoffs such as visible liquid, loo roll on floor, or shifty behaviour of recent visitant, the OWL has been unable to theorize the conundrum. Hence, we have decided, hypothesis-less, to carry out an empirical investigation. We are going to visit a range of public conveniences. And we are going to count.

Visit OWL IN PEARLS next week for a full report on our findings.

PS: If you visit a loo staffed by an attendant, please always give them a tip. They deserve it.

Leave a thought