Thursday, October 26, 2006

in a cautiously indirect manner

Crabwise means sideways. Sometimes that’s the only way to get through to people who don’t know how to listen. Crabwise also means ‘in a cautiously indirect manner.’

I’d like to write a book called The Public Bathroom Diaries, or perhaps just start a blog on the topic. Among other behaviors I find odd, about 90% of the time that I use the two-stall bathroom at work (mainly when I am already in one stall and another person comes in), the person who enters the stall next to me sighs, moans or sings. Occasionally that person speaks to me. Intuitively I think the sighing and moaning is a faux expression of exhaustion by that person who really just wants to let you know she’s there and because the silence is uncomfortable for her. The faux exhaustion is common where I work and, possibly, common in many office environments: people are unhappy with their station and so complain about their jobs, and they all think they’ve got the worst lot. Never have I walked into a public bathroom and sighed or moaned, or sang. I’m inclined to say something crude when it happens. You got the runs again? I know—it’s frustrating. You’ll get through it. And then I’ll step up on my pot and lean over the wall to pat her on the back.

Crabwise there are cameras watching your every move, so sing out loud your every secret.


Blogger kim said...

I think people really need to learn some public bathroom etiquette, or else they should not be allowed in. There is not much creepier than someone moaning or sighing in the next stall. And talking is also out of the question. I hate people who being their cell phones into the stall with them. The person on the other end does not want to hear that! And if I entered a bathroom with someone (which I prefer to avoid) our conversation is on hold from when we enter the stalls until we're back at the sink.

10:49 AM  
Blogger kim said...

i know i left you a comment somewhere, but its nowhere to be found. my regards...

7:11 PM  
Blogger {illyria} said...

what a capital idea! much of human nature (much too much, sometimes) can be found in public bathrooms, i think. a book on public bathroom grafitti would kick ass, too.

opening lines:

written in cubicle #2, on the door, in mangled handwriting:

god is dead. - nietszche
nietszche is dead. - god

11:20 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

kim! nice to hear from you. i figure this bathroom stuff should be common sense, but evidently it isn't so common.

illyria--the opening lines rock. perhaps i should start this up. i've been complaining about it, well, for an eternity, but more so since i've been working at this hospital. p.s. i love the word "capital" used that way.

9:05 AM  
Blogger kim said...

duh, my comment is right under where i said my comment was missing. the loss of my mind has been confirmed

10:36 PM  
Blogger {illyria} said...

you're so lovely. :)

1:10 AM  

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