Monday, August 25, 2008

The Bathroom Tourists

My sons are bathroom tourists.

Anytime we go to a restaurant - and we go to a lot of restaurants - both boys find some excuse to visit the bathroom.
Several times.

This would be less irritating if I had no plan to, say, eat at these restaurants. Unfortunately, I usually wait until I'm hungry to visit a restaurant and eating is pretty much the foremost thing on my mind. I might even go alone, but society pretty much demands that I feed my family, too.
Damn society.

Instead, like most parents of young children, I spend only 25% of my time at restaurants actually eating. Another 50% is spent repeatedly visiting the bathroom. The final 25% is spent yelling.

"No. You cannot go to the bathroom. I don't care if your bladder swells to twice its usual size and then explodes; you are not going to the bathroom again."

And then I usually take them to the bathroom again because I see fellow diners are dialing 911.

I know why my sons like going to the bathroom. It's those frickin' paper towel dispensers with the laser-activated mechanisms. My kids enjoy washing their hands and then waving them like a wand under the dispensers until the box magically rolls out a sheet of gritty paper.

I get that. I really do. I myself frequent exactly one movie theater in Florida and I do it for one reason only - the theater has the new Dyson Air Blade machines that actually squeegee your hands with air. Sometimes, I lose complete interest in the movie and spend most of my time in the bathroom. Sometimes, I'm forced to stand in a line of like-minded guys, each one tearing himself away from the Dyson with an embarrassed laugh.

I swear to you right now that I will have one of those Dyson Air Blades in my home - right next to the immensely practical urinal I'm planning to install.

Occasionally, I don't mind the frequent trips with my kids to the bathroom. My favorite trip so far was to an older diner attached to a drug store. We visited the bathroom, and after the boys finished their business, 5 year-old Julian walked expectantly to the paper towel dispenser and waved his hand under it.

When nothing happened, he waved his hand again. Still nothing. 9 year-old Gabriel took a swipe, apparently under the impression that Julian had waved his hand incorrectly.

I reached over and pulled down on the black old-style lever on the side of the brushed metal dispenser. One sheet advanced and my sons' mouths fell open.

They liked even better than the lasers.


Den, of Earth said...

I like the air dryers, they actually seem to dry my hands. Maybe its just me but I can use up to five sheets of those paper towels before my hands feel dry...

Anonymous said...

It is important to mark territory in as many bathroom facilities as possible. The Way of the Wolf