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Thursday, August 7, 2008

4 Star Toilets in Beijing!

A Squatter With a View

So, our boys are used to "going" in awkward places; or even just aiming to the side of the road while riding. But, what about all of those sissy basketball players, synchronized swimmers and all of the poor westerners flooding into Beijing for the 2008 Summer Olympics?

Having been to a few 2 1/2 to 3d world countries myself; and having used a vast array of intriguing squat toilets; I feel qualified to analyze, evaluate squatters and to advise anyone who might be traveling towards Beijing in the next few days.

First tip: Bring Your Own Toilet Paper! I know, I know, it's awkward to try to travel lightly with a bulky roll of Charmin sticking out of your L.L. Bean Safari Jacket, but believe me you will thank me when its over! 
Second Tip: Lower Your Standards. China has a star rating for toilets. One star equals a urine saturated hole in the ground that is flushed out with water once a day (depending on traffic.) The attached video is probably depicting about a 2 1/2-3 star toilet. 

See the bucket behind the squatter below? That's for one of two things; or maybe both. This squatter obviously does not flush, so after you "do your business" the polite thing to do is to fill the bucket with water from the nasty spigot in the upper left, and rinse out anything that might remain when you are finished. The bucket could also be a receptacle for used TP as many squatters aren't exactly connected to the City's sewer system, and thus filling the squatter with TP would make it even more disgusting for its next visitor.

Third Tip: Don't Look! No Matter What! Although your curiosity might try to get the best of you; resist all urges to actually look at the squatter. Aim as best you can (without looking) do your business, and get the hell out!

Fourth Tip: Regarding Flushing.........If you find that you are in a squatter that actually has some sort of mechanized flush system; do it with your foot! I don't care if the handle is on the ceiling; Don't touch it! You might want to do some warm-up exercises prior to entering a squatter with an inconveniently located flushing handle. 

The squatter below looks pretty good to me. I'd give it 4 stars. Again, if you are smart you will still follow all of the above tips if you hope to return to your own country without any funky "shit related" diseases. 

Fifth Tip: Think Before You Eat or Drink! That moo goo gai pan might look and taste delicious right now, but think of the ramifications if it ends up causing you to be overly intimate with a squat toilet as you suffer through your case of "the trots." I strongly advise you to drink bottled drinks (only,) never use a glass or cup, and stick to that jar of peanut butter you packed for all of your nutritional needs. 

In all fairness, China has been trying to upgrade its public toilets to be more accommodating to the Westerners who will be pouring in for the 2008 Olympics. They have taken down all of the WC signs and replaced them with signs that say "Toilet." Great News! New Signs! What an improvement! They haven't taken down the signs that say "Piss OK, Shit No Way!" Honest to god-- these signs are up at many public toilets around Beijing! 

So, enjoy your stay in Beijing and try to limit your urination and defecation needs by any means necessary. Hold it until you get home if you can. 

Post Script: Great PR in revoking Joey Cheek's Visa, China! Real Nice! Are you trying to look like a bunch of jerks or what??!!

Let's not politicize the Olympics, OK?  :)

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