Thursday, October 10, 2013

Gender Neutral Bathrooms


The Prude is back and she says make all public bathrooms "Gender Neutral."
In my mind, should have been like this all along.
     Be sure to include a changing station, urinal, toilet, sink, soap dispenser, towel dispenser or air dryer that works, mirror, and waste can.  Handicapped accessible of course.  On the back of the door should be guidelines for all.  Or maybe just a pretty sign ordering all to:  
Clean Up After Oneself.
     I signed a petition today, to bring Gender Neutral bathrooms to every building of the College of Dupage.  The petition was by Bradley Setter, and if you click on his name you will be linked to the petition and can read what Mr. Setter wrote and sign, if so inclined.
     Although I agree with all that Mr. Setter writes, I think there should be gender neutral bathrooms everywhere.  A public place should have at least 2 restrooms: A Family Restroom and a slightly smaller Gender Neutral Restroom with the above sign on the door.  Larger buildings, more of each.

Here's my thinking:

     It's practical.  It's the potty for pete's sake.  Hopefully everyone understands by now that all humans need to go from time to time.  Shouldn't be a big deal, but should be somewhat private.

     Why gender neutral?  Because regardless, of gender, we all do the same things when we go to the restroom.  Maybe we should change the name to something other than "restroom"; lest those folks that construe the sign to mean a place of rest, or relaxation.  It's not.   Go in, do your biz, then get out. Next.  Maybe we just use the term "Loo"; everyone understands, and a company somewhere has a monopoly on bathroom door signs.  This company could also make the "Clean Up After Oneself" signs.  Things could be worse.

     Just think if Chuck E. Cheese would have had a Gender Neutral Restroom, they may not have gotten in the hot water of late.  As much as I dislike Chuck E, Cheese, I know this instance is hardly unique.  There are so many times a parent is with their child of the opposite sex, and the child is of a certain age where they're old enough to go by oneself, but still too young to be unsupervised.  Think a gender neutral bathroom would come in handy for this situation.  I think it's also high time a changing station is put in all restrooms regardless. 

     Yes, half of the population has a certain occurrence called menstruation each month, (and no, we don't all do it at the same time) but as long as feminine products are wrapped and disposed of properly, (in the trash can, not the toilet) no one need be the wiser.  And hey, if something is seen by a child?  What an opportunity for education!

     Close to twenty years ago, I visited one of my all time favorite restaurants for the first time.  Since, this is not about their food, I am not going to disclose the name, in fear of health ninnies out there.  While there, a time came that I needed the loo.  Their loo can best be described as a single facility outdoors, with the only door to it, being a swinging door that did not go all the way to the floor .  I waited because I "saw feet beneath the door."  When the inhabitant emerged, I recognized him as the head cook/chef of the establishment.  He was approximately 250 lbs. glasses, with massive curly salt 'n' pepper hair with a red bandana tired around his head for perspiration control.  He nodded and acknowledged me with a broad smile and a twinkle in his eye, and that is the only image I have of their loo that is little more than a pot, sink, and a swinging door, outside.  Obviously I lived, and I have returned to that great place many times.  The restaurant that is.

     We all go.  No biggie.  Shouldn't be a whole lot to chat about, regardless of what Charmin's, Cottonelle's, and Poo-pourri's ad campaigns imply.  Everyone should be entitled to a certain degree of privacy.  Average time should be no more than 10 minutes.  This includes makeup touch ups.  Allow time in your morning or whenever to apply it at home. If you have bathroom issues that extend beyond 10 minutes, you should expect that degree of privacy to start to dwindle as the next person waits patiently.  If ill and requiring longer time, you shouldn't be out in public in the first place, but home getting well.

     Anything else, should be done elsewhere.  This, I will leave to your imagination.
After all this is the Prude, and I believe in above all, a little decorum if you please.