An in-depth and exhaustive study into the quality of my school’s bathrooms

From creepy to unusable to a glorious refuge away from the laws of school and god, these are the rooms where business gets done.

Scientists have proven that no two fingerprints are alike, the same is true with bathrooms: each are as unique as an exquisite and ephemeral snowflake.  

A school of over a thousand students and only ten total bathrooms. That’s 100 students per bathroom. If they each use it twice a day, and urinate 500 ml each time, that’s 200 litres of pee, not all of which is going straight down the toilet, unfortunately. I’d tell how much gets splashed around but my home economics teacher refused to lend me the measuring equipment for this project.

Of course, it’s natural that some students make a mess. Apparently, when people wash their hands they like to create a little puddle pond on the floor, perhaps for the purpose of cultivating biodiversity. 

Students may only “need” to use the washroom about twice a day, but it gets a lot more traffic than that. The bathroom is essentially a student lounge — as a place to talk and hang out with their friends like nine to five workers chillin’ in the break room. You might expect a lounge to have soft furniture, but any high school student would disagree: they retain too much vape smell.

Due to gender reasons, studying the girls bathroom proved to be a challenge, but I thought to myself it is worth a try. I stare from afar, trying my best not to look suspicious, using my peripheral vision to see any qualities that I should note down. The girls coming in and out didn’t seem to appreciate my scientific spirit. I got the “look,” in the interest of my safety I abandoned the research.

Out of all the bathrooms at our school, the creepiest are the gym bathrooms. When the P.E. teacher asks me to do push-ups on the dirty floor, the first thing I think is, oh no, I’ll have to wash my hands in the bathroom. I have never used the toilets there and against the advice of my editor, refused to do so for the purpose of this article. The atmosphere in there is not welcoming. The lights are supposedly activated by motion sensors but sometimes they doesn’t activate at all, meaning that if you are unfortunate enough, you will have to do your business in the dark, waving your hands around like an orangutan. Not only that, but the bathroom door doesn’t stay open as it has a self-closing mechanism. It ever so slowly creeps to a shut and clicks with horror movie finality. If you are in the gym, and have a bathroom emergency, have a plan B. Zero out of five stars.

The bathroom located on the west side of the building is the oldest. Entering, it looked empty, but it didn’t smell empty. As soon as I entered one of the stalls, I saw the culprit, but I’m sorry to report that I didn’t do anything to resolve the situation. Would you? As I moved to the next stall I noticed that the door wouldn’t budge. I ducked down to see that there were no shoes. It was the classic locked-from-the-inside prank. Since both stalls were essentially unusable, this bathroom couldn’t fulfill its main purpose, nor would you want to lounge there, but it seems that the last person to use it had a blast. One out of five stars.

The smallest out of all of the bathrooms in the school does not have a door, which isn’t great for privacy, but is great for hygiene. (Have you considered how dirty a bathroom handle is? If not, I’m sorry for making you aware of that.) This bathroom will not be a fun time for anyone who is even slightly claustrophobic. If I had to guess it would only have room for about five people to stand inside, but if you see more than two people inside a tiny bathroom, I suggest you walk away. The water stream in the sinks is so weak, you don’t so much wash your hands as lightly moisturize them. Two out of five stars.

Then there are the universal bathrooms, one on the second floor and the other directly below. They are both similar and have a lockable outside door. It is a single person bathroom, but that doesn’t mean that is doesn’t have space for two or four. It has enough space for a person to live in. What makes this different than the others is that it is very private. You could take a nap or even be naked and nobody would ever know as long as the door is locked. On one hand, this is an incredible refuge away from the stresses of school life. On the other hand, it is astounding that the school board allows such a space, completely cut off from all laws and social conventions. The possibilities are both glorious and frightening. All things said, it deserves a four out of five. 

The best bathroom in the school was built just last year and is one of the more popular ones. It has three spacious stalls with toilets that appear to have been beamed down from some futuristic space station. It has a sensor that flushes automatically once both the toilet seat and cover are down — a genius invention for which I hope the inventor won a Nobel Prize. There are also two urinals and although they are quite close together, it makes for more of a bonding experience if you urinate next to someone. You can sort of nudge them conspiratorially with your shoulder. — Don’t try this with this a stranger though. The hand-dryers do not disappoint. Like a hurricane in a box, the Xlerator Excel Dryer will not only blow all of the water droplets from your hands, you can exercise your biceps by pushing into the airflow. The only problem is that there is nowhere for the water to go but onto the floor, a major design flaw in most bathrooms which creates a slipping hazard under every hand dryer. Nonetheless, the bathroom is a superb piece of architecture in our institution. Five out of five stars.

A good bathroom attracting people like bees to a sunflower. Anyone who uses public bathrooms has their favourites and their go-tos. Given how necessary they are, and how both fantastic and horrendous they can be, let’s all celebrate the best bathrooms… to a certain degree.

Image Credit: Struggle Siege

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