There comes a time in every person’s life when we have to make the ultimate sacrifice: using a public restroom. Be it a growing need in your local Barnes and Noble, or a shocking emergency that has you marching to the nearest bathroom in Walmart, navigating the communal lavatory is no simple task–at least not in my escapades in the women’s restroom.

Number One

The itinerary for these excursions into the public restroom are usually painless. You know what you have to do, you go in, do your business, and come out. It’s a simple procedure… only everyone else seems to be having difficulties. You walk into the stall with designs on a quick wee, but the scene that awaits you is shocking. Urine covers the seat, the walls, the floor. There may be a lingering remnant floating in the toilet bowl waiting to welcome you to Chez Stall. The floor is coated with a thick layer of shredded toilet paper that looks as if a dog got in the stall and couldn’t figure out how to use the toilet paper dispenser. As you stand there, now a material witness of this crime scene, you cross your legs, too aghast to even know where to begin to make this disgusting stall remotely clean enough to drop trou.

Bitches can never spare a square.Image from Google
Bitches can never spare a square.
Image from Google

Naturally, the messy stall scenario only happens during happy hour in the public restroom, complete with every stall occupied (even the handicapped stall!) and with an eager line of fellow pee posse members just waiting for their opportunity. What follows is a disgusting quick-cleaning that tempts your gag reflex more than once, or a squat so well-intentioned and desperate you’ll feel it in your quadriceps for the rest of the week.

You’ll finish, and you’ll even start to hear the distant, loud hand-dryer at the end of the tunnel–you’ll reach for the toilet paper to conclude this transaction, and come up empty. Why yes, all those gnarled scraps at your feet are all that remains of the tissue in this stall. If you have your period, you’re now on the verge of tears as you realize the only option is to cross your fingers and do the shimmy of shame over the toilet. I’m afraid it only gets worse if you have some weightier bathroom business to handle…

Number Two
Sadly accurate.Image from Google
Sadly accurate.
Image from Google

A public number two is a circumstance of untold magnitude. First of all, if the mere thought of doing this deed in public is on your radar, it’s safe to say the resolution of this issue is imminent. In short, you’re dealing with an emergency which left untreated, will result in an accident. You make your way into the public restroom which, by some miracle, is empty! You sit down, on your mark, get set…when someone else enters the bathroom and settles into the neighboring stall. You’re poised, clenching your jaw, and waiting. Well, you can’t do it now! How long could this person possibly be? You’ve waited this long.

So you decide to wait them out.

But nothing happens. You’ve unknowingly entered into a Cold War-esque standoff, with each party waiting to see who’s going to drop the first bomb. Either way, the end result is mutually assured destruction. There’s a brief timeframe where you can trick the other bitch woman into thinking you had other matters to attend to. A tampon to change, a reluctant pee, a tank top to straighten–but there’s only a narrow window of opportunity before it becomes clear of what both of your intentions were. In this circumstance, you have the choice of either admitting defeat and retreating or engaging in full-blown warfare complete with flushes to cover the sounds of explosions. When you have to poop in public, there are always casualties–be it civilians or the last remaining shred of your dignity. ♦

It’s a game of Russian Roulette, these public restrooms. Sometimes you’ll get that pristine stall, neat and orderly, that doesn’t look like someone suffered through the plague within it. But other times… You’ll get the stall that reminds you in permanent marker “fukk you” as you pee, with all kinds of fluids and debris scattered in the stall like shrapnel. What takes place behind that door that doesn’t lock properly is always a disappointment. The only real moral of this story is this…

Hold it.

What are some of your public bathroom experiences? Fess up–we all have them.

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33 thoughts on “Public Bathroom Blunders

  1. Y’all women is nasty. The women’s bathroom ANYWHERE is the worst because women never want to shit at home. Men don’t care, we’ll shit in the back seat of the car with our date driving, fuck it. You gotta go, you gotta go. But women don’t want to shit in, around, or near men (except them German ‘shietzer’ porn chicks…nasty), so they ONLY use public restrooms to pound poo. And we don’t know, we’re clueless. Plus women don’t have a discernable ‘poo march’ like men do which makes it harder to tell. That and we like the illusion of thinking you don’t do that cause, I mean, what if we wanna lick that butthole later? Mmmmmmm, scurvy…

    1. That’s because women have been conditioned to have poo shame in order to overcompensate for men’s poo exuberance! Also, no man’s ever turned away from that at the risk of a little scurvy.

  2. You seem to have done a thorough study on this subject matter, or are all of these experiences first-hand?
    Lol. This is very funny, but sadly true.
    In matters of this nature, I try to convince myself that impressions are of no significance, then go ahead and do what must be done.
    Enduring certain discomfort is not worth it.
    For ladies, I recommend that you carry toiletries in your hand bags; just incase…
    Bold post. It’s worth it though.

    1. Ha! Unfortunately, they are first-hand experiences. Ultimately, when the time comes and you just gotta go, no matter what kind of situation awaits you in the public bathroom you’ll just have to endure. Personally, I think we should get some kind of medal of honor each time we make it out of a public restroom without a disease or a germaphobia complex.

  3. Hilarious post and oh so true! As a bit of a germ freak, public bathrooms are a nightmare. I especially hate it when the stall is the size of a freaking matchbox and you can’t for the life of you move without touching something icky. And really, why must the stall doors swing inwards? There’s hardly any room in the stall anyway, but when they swing inwards and you’re trying to get out, you basically have to cling to the top of the door to make sure you don’t fall backward!
    And I am definitely a hover-er, I never sit on a public toilet, I don’t care what anyone says, I’ve seen what is left on them and I can’t imagine sitting in it, let alone trying to clean it up so I could sit. Oh, and it annoys the heck out of me when there are no hooks to put your purse on to keep it off the nasty floor, because seriously, who is willing to just drop their purse in the middle of or beside a questionable looking puddle? Hmmm…sorry, I think I’ve begun to rant… 😀

    1. I hate that, too! I also hate when there’s no hook on the door to hang your bag or your coat–like what am I supposed to do with this stuff?!
      Oh jeez, I started responding before I finished reading what you said, so yes, as you can see I agree! 🙂
      Back to the stall doors, though, I really wish they were floor-to-ceiling. And I hate when the stall door isn’t close enough to the stall and you can see out and, presumably, other people can see in! It’s all just so awful.

      1. Oh I agree, it freaks me out if I can see outside the door because you know that means someone can look in!

        And it took me a minute there after reading the first part of your reply because I was wondering if I hadn’t typed that part of my comment and I was really confused lol. 😀

  4. I was at a bowling alley yesterday to watch my daughter compete. After making the 2-hour drive, which began with a sausage bagel, I slipped into the restroom to make room for lunch. As I walked in, I saw a guy at the urinal next to the stall, which had side walls about three feet high. I’m 6’2″, and realized that, from a seated position, my knees would be above the stall walls, and that whoever was at the urinal next to me would be looking down at me. Sorry, but not a good place for me. My sphincter got a work out for the next three hours until I could get to a REAL toilet.

    1. Well, I can see where you first went wrong: sausage bagel. The walls were short?! See, I think the men’s room scenario is even worse, because typically if a man goes into a stall instead of opting for the urinal, every other guy in there knows what’s up. …But then again I also think men are more comfortable with all the bathroom stuff. Us women have poo shame.

      1. Yeah, bad planning on my part! Although I didn’t expect to be in a stall made for a Shetland pony, either. And let me tell you, after baring witness — at least olfactory-wise— to some of the bomber runs I’ve fallen victim to, there are definitely men who should be ashamed too!

  5. Public toilets can be described in two words: incredible or horrible. You find it incredible when it’s surprisingly clean, otherwise it’s just horrible most of the time.

  6. You think you have a standoff. Just try it a man’s bathroom when you are standing right next to them(as there is no other choice) and you get stage fright. Usually one has to give up and pretend like they didn’t have to go. That is truly horrifying.

    1. Men are always talking about this stage fright for peeing–I don’t think women get that. Probably because, for us, peeing in public doesn’t involve exposing our genitalia. Whose bright idea was that, anyway?

  7. I don’t so much get performance anxiety (I think of my expulsions as an aural treat for the brave stall neighbor) but my weird public toilet habits are all about cooties. There has to be a hook on the inside of the door for me to hang my bag and coat on and I hate when there isn’t because if you put it on the floor, gross, and it you try to hold it, you’ll get pee on your feet for sure. Also I hate to touch the flush so I have to take toilet paper, use it to unlock/crack the door then press the flush, throw in the paper and leave. Don’t even get me started on the main entrance door handle. Sleeve-grabs all the way.

    1. About the germs, my one irrational bathroom fear is that a rat will crawl out of the toilet hole and bite me in the vag, and that could really happen anywhere, so a little bacteria doesn’t scare me in the face of a rat bite to the vag. I touch the door, the lock, I even put my bare ass on the seat and dispense with using those tissue paper toilet seat covers. I mean, is that really protecting me from anything? I have yet to discover I got sick from some public bathroom germs, so I’m going to continue carpe diem-ing until I get a staph infection or something.

  8. I worked at K Mart long ago, just another notch in my prolific work life belt. A woman came into The Mart and her ass literally exploded in the bathroom. Try to picture a grenade up your ass that exploded after a bad nacho and ice cream experiment. There was shit all over the place, it looked like someting out of the movie Seven. This lady must have finger painted in shit;) Anyways I refused to clean up this God awful mess and was quickly demoted to buggy pick up. I would round 1000 of the steel herd before I would ever clean up a shit bomb(Man Law #132);)

    1. Oh my gosh, I used to work at Sears (the stories of which I’ll be putting on here as soon as I finish writing more of them) but people were always shitting all over the store. Once in the kids department ON ACTUAL CLOTHES THEY HADN’T BOUGHT. Another time there was a turd in the men’s fitting room atop a pair of Levis. Like, we have public bathrooms in there–who the hell is popping a squat right in the middle of the store or in the fitting room?

  9. I work part-time in a clinic. It’s not a big clinic and there is a small bathroom that everyone uses. Only last week I came back from lunch on Tues to find a massive puddle of wee spreading across the floor from the toilet and heading towards the door. Why can men never aim straight? But to do a whole wee on the floor? Surely the purpetrator also got their shoes? Surely they could not be completely oblivious to the fact that they had just done a wee NEXT to the toilet rather than in it? Then, on Thurs, I come back from lunch to find that someone has smeared poo across the sink. Poo. Smeared. Across the sink. I have no idea, nor do I want to know, how the hell they managed that.
    Then there was the time I had to get the train to London. It was packed, standing room only. I was stood, along with several others, in the entrance way of the carriage, where they also put the loo. This girl got up out of her seat and went to use the loo. The smell that accompanied her on her way out was truly the MOST DISGUSTING SMELL I HAVE EVER SMELT IN MY LIFE! It wasn’t just as if something had died in there. It was as if several creatures had died in there and then putrified in their own excrement for two months. I’ve never smelt anything as bad as that. And to make it worse, me and my fellow entrance way huddlers had no way to escape it. It makes me queasy just thinking about it.

  10. I used to work at a grocery store and as a result of that, I no longer use public restrooms. My first job was cleaning the bathrooms because I was the only female they would assign that nightly chore to (can’t give anyone cause to insinuate sexism!). I’ve developed a bladder of steel out of necessity. One time, I found a loaf in the tampon box. Explosions were commonplace in the men’s bathroom, with extra attention paid to the urinals. I mean after all, why use a toilet when you can clog the urinal instead? I have seen rivers of excrement flow throughout the bathroom, I have seen things in places I’d have never imagined, quite frankly… I’ve seen too much. The horrors were enough to snap my mind. One time, a drug dealer invaded the women’s restroom to flush his drugs and was hogtied and ceremonially carried out by the SWAT team that had chased him all throughout the store.

    I never had a chance to even like or use public bathrooms. I never had a chance…

  11. I remember one time I had to use the men’s room & have a friend guard the door because the ladies was THAT crowded & I was THAT desperate. Ugh! It reeked! I had to breathe through my shirt or gag. I did the whole TP around the rim and still hovered above.
    Gotta say, though, the most hilarious thing I ever witnessed happened at Roscoe’s in Boys Town. For once (and probably because I was in the gay man’s world) THEY had the bigger, nicer rest rooms with lots of stalls while the ladies only had 1 tiny, cramped one. A total chick/cat fight broke out because a girl tried to cut in line (which was 10 min long).
    My biggest pet peeve…trying to pee while the person in the stall next to you is chatting away with God knows who. I don’t need random strangers on the phone listening to me pee. It’s bad enough there’s someone in the stall next to me!

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