1.5 Public Washrooms

TORONTO, ONTARIO: I work in a variety of places and do not own a car and so, I frequently use public washrooms, whether I want to or not. Coffee shops are increasingly locking their doors, so they’re out. Bookstores such as Indigo or Chapters or whatever it is called are usually not bad. Subways washrooms are disgusting. Shopping centre washrooms are a toss up. The washroom in question that concerns this entry is located at the Yonge and Eglinton Centre. It is on the low end of the shopping centre washroom spectrum. The washroom is on the basement level next to the food court. It has no door, just a short curved hallway that leads right into the washroom. Facing the room from the door, the sinks are on the left with urinals and stalls lining the right wall.

I walked into the washroom and there was an affable older man standing in the middle of the room. There was loose change all around him on the floor: Pennies, dimes and nickels must have just fallen out of his pants. Oh, and did I mention his were down around his ankles? I stopped and he stopped. Our eyes met and there was a pause. After a very long second, he shuffled into the nearest stall – I was amazed that he didn’t trip over his pant covered ankles. He shuffled into the stall looking like he was in a potatoe sack race.

This was a little awkward but I really had to go. I stepped up to the urinal. I looked over at the stall with the old man in it. A hand appeared and started reaching for the change. Another man entered the bathroom and stood at the urinal next to me. The hand disappeared. The man next to me had no idea what just transpired, didn't know there was a man with his pants around his ankles waiting for us to leave.

The man at the urinal next to me finished up and left. I couldn’t go anymore. I stepped over to the change and kicked it towards the bottom of the stall and quickly left. I was trying to help, to do my part. On my way out, I heard the stall door opening. I just hoped he washed his hands.

Any public washroom stories you’re interested in sharing?