The Personalized, Digital Restroom

August 9, 2013

The public restroom is changing, becoming more… digital.

Digital restroom

We’ve heard this week of smart toilets in Japan getting hacked. It is a brave new world out there.

I think restrooms are getting digital like everything else out there, but in a way, the smartphone has made them personalized as well – even the public ones.

Here are a few public restroom experiences I had in recent months. All are true stories.

The Jukebox

You had your share of it I assume. You go into a public restroom, and there’s elevator music in it, but not exactly elevator music. In my case it was rap music coming from one of the stalls.

What’s the deal here? Can’t they use a Bluetooth earpiece? Or lower the volume maybe?


The Family Quarrel

People for some reason are just fine with answering phones inside restrooms – even public ones. I can’t bring myself to answer calls in such occasions – not even in the privacy of my house.

The worst ones, or most interesting ones – make your pick – is definitely when a couple is fighting it out over the phone. I get to hear the one sided version of the husband, but it is enough to understand that I am not the only married person with family issues.

And I say – keep it elsewhere – why fight in public (restroom)?

Karaoke Time

Now to the bizarre. I guess this one is actually a refinement of the Jukebox phenomena.

I went into a public restroom once (in a wedding – no less), and there were people there inside their stalls, happily singing along with a smartphone. A single smartphone. Two people in two separate stalls. And if you wonder, they were both above 40 and didn’t know each other before this chance meeting.

They both couldn’t carry a tune, so it was hard to enjoy the experience.

The Multitasker

This is the person that makes you wonder how the human race got to the top of the food chain.

It is the multitaskers – the people that can stand and pee while at the same time reading on their smartphone or watch a movie.

And yes – I am not making these guys up. Would you be willing to use the smartphone of such a person to make a call?

What’s your awkward restroom moment?

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