free at last!
August 4, 2008
My kids used to be afraid of my mom’s toilets. Well, let’s face it, I used to be afraid of my mom’s toilets too.
My mom moved out here to Utah about 10 years ago, and when she was ordering fixtures for her house, she left no doubt about her requirements for the toilets: they must flush like they are jet powered, and leave no trace. She got her wish–they flush with a giant whoooooooshing sound, and I’m pretty sure you could put two 12 inch subway sandwiches in there, and they would “leave no trace.” It’s that giant whoooooooshing sound that unnerved my kids (and me). While the whoooooooshing sound makes you confident in the toilet’s disposal capability, you worry about clothes, personal items, limbs, that sort of thing.
My mom also installed a toilet SEAT that was cushioned. Squishy. Sofffft. Which is nice when you’re sitting on it, if a little unsettling.
But when you’re NOT sitting on it, you get a whole nother problem. That is, when you lift the seat and lid to do the standing up thing, the seat and lid, being a little thicker than your average seat and lid, wouldn’t stay up. The first time this happened, I walked in, lifted up the seat/lid combo, and began (intransitively). Slowly at first, then faster, the lid/seat combo also began, to fall back down into place. There’s this panic moment, after you “release the hounds” and then the lid/seat starts falling, where you think you can arrest forward motion, or maybe you think your “shut off valve” is stronger than it is. But in the end, you get a terrible mess.
The first few times I visited my mom and used the facilities I would have this dilemma–do I raise the lid/seat and awkwardly hold them up there with my knee and fire away, risking life, limb, and hard-to-explain stains on my pants? Or do I leave the seat down, raise the lid, and violate the prime directive and do my best to thread the needle? (And NO, just plain sitting was NOT an option–I am a MAN damnit, we don’t sit unless we NEED to sit!) Eventually I settled on threading the needle, and doing some clean up dabbing when my concentration wavered.
I was there yesterday, and when my diet coke had settled, I wandered into the bathroom, expecting the usual monkey business. But lo and behold! A new plain vanilla seat/lid combo that, when you lifted it, stayed lifted! My brother Steve had thrown out old unreliable, and installed my salvation. Cue Beethoven’s Ninth!
Free at last, thank God Almighty, I’m free at last!