This full house really has a big flush problem

by Cheryl Price

It has been brought to my attention that my columns are too serious and issue-oriented. Therefore, this week my column will go straight to the toilet.

First of all, I continue to be quite irate that several years ago, when tampon machines were removed from the ladies' restrooms, many were replaced with condom machines. I think it's all fine and good that UH supports easier access to birth control, but I have yet the need to locate an emergency condom between classes. I have, however, missed the tampons when I have been unable to remember how to count to 28.

Second, I heartily agree with Cheryl Luedke's past column on ladies' bathroom sanitation. It appears that student orientation should include a session on how to operate a toilet effectively. That means FLUSH, people, and twice if necessary. And human waste only, please. The endangered tampons, abundant condoms, and baby (as well as adult) diapers DO NOT BELONG. If you become so excited that you have misjudged your aim (which I have to say is quite remarkable for women since they lack the necessary appendage to be creative), it is polite to clean up after yourself. And remember that toilets, like people, have limits. Do not try to flush an entire roll of paper or a six-inch stack of paper towels. If you couldn't pass it without pain, neither can the john.

Third, bathrooms are not the place for sexual encounters. It is hardly romantic, seductive or private. And although the condom machine is right there, that was not the intention when it was placed there. Besides, it is hard to take care of business when the people in the stall next to you are shaking the walls.

Along the same theme, the Moody Towers community bathrooms are same-sex for a purpose. Wait for your own apartment to create your own homemade steamy shower scenes.

Fourth, bathrooms are not for supporting your nicotine habit. There's nothing like walking into the facilities through a cloud of smoke to a toilet full of cigarettes. Those are not the kind of butts they were designed for. No dip or snuff, either. That's what sidewalks are for.

On a positive note, the bathrooms in the Horizons cafeteria get a gold star. Motion-detector lights, sinks and toilets are not only economical, but the wave of the future. And they are always so clean and well-stocked. If only all UH bathrooms were this way.

This may all seem rather trite, but when any prospective student, VIP, or potential UH financial supporter comes to visit the campus, sooner or later they will have to answer the call of nature. When presenting an image, we are only as good as our bathrooms. I hate to think we may lose a star student or athlete, a dynamic speaker or a large chunk of funding, quite literally, down the toilet.

Price is a senior hotel and restaurant management major.

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