Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Travels in the east: further ponderings while upon the porcelain throne of amenities

Kobe overall, as I mentioned before, is extremely neat and clean. I notice about 40-50 percent of people wear those surgical masks on the streets. I have heard that the Japanese were extreme germ-a-phobes and this is an obvious example. They were the first country to deal with anti-biotic resistant germs due culture fear of germs and resultant overuse of anti-septic.




But one experience has trumped all others- the act of a dump itself. So far I have noticed the minor difference is bathroom stall doors go also to the floor as opposed to American ones which is usually a foot off, bad news for self-hating politicians who like to play footsies in public restrooms. The real difference is the toilet itself. There is the obvious difference when you first see one. On the left-hand side of the toilet (when front one, right –hand side when sitting) is a armature with a number of buttons. There is also a wire or pipe connection and the seat is noticeably thicker than a typical American one.



The new experience continues when you first sit down because the seat is heated. It is actually quite disconcerting the first time (now it is old hat). The seat has a substantially difference feel. Now from here is where you have a choice. You can do nothing and you experience is really limited to the heated seat. All you have to do is just ignore the command console on the right-hand side. Naturally, curiosity got the best of me. I pushed the symbol that looks like a butt getting hit by a water jet. The warm water hit with such force and at such an angle that tickled so much I almost jumped straight up. I began laughing uproarishly (ok, that might not be an actual word). And those of you who know me personally know I laugh big. I didn’t stand up and kept laughing. I now stayed on the seat strict to prevent the imaged jet of water spraying all over the bathroom , although in truth I don’t really expect that now that I my butt is being tickled and I can think clearly. So at first I stayed laughing hysterical on the commode assuming the water would shutoff on its own. It quickly became obvious that it wasn’t shutoff on its own while I am sure the rest of the floor on my hotel was wondering what was going on. I decide to look down at the control panel and I am slightly confused. It takes longer than it should to realize that maybe the button titled “OFF” would shutoff the water. I hit the button it thankfully stops. All in all quite the new experience.



I recommend these and actually this is my new bar for success- getting one of these installed at home.

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