Pay Toilets - 9/17/04
I was in Santa Monica today (home of the beautiful parking meters) and I got stuck on the Promenade with a bladder full of vinegar and no bathroom. So I had to do something I vowed I would never do: use a pay toilet.

It wasn't the quarter I spent that could have been better used on a jawbreaker or one-fourth of a D.D. Reese icecream cookie sandwich. It was the principle. Pay toilets? What's next, pay air? Pay water? Actually that's already a billion-dollar industry, one which I avoid at all costs. What's worse is that it wasn't even a very nice pay toilet. Half the faucets didn't work, there was no toilet paper and they'd just finished painting the stall walls so I had to crouch into the fetal position on the pot to avoid getting green paint on my shoulders. C'mon Santa Monica, what am I paying for?

They're encouraging public urination. Not that I need much of an excuse anyway, but now they're practically demanding that I find a fire hydrant or empty wall or short tourist. What if I don't have a coin? Am I going to hold it and pee-pee dance my way into a bar to find change? Am I going to beg? Maybe that explains the prolific 3rd street panhandling phenomenon - those people aren't actually homeless; they're just waiting to use the toilets and being slowly driven to madness by their floating back teeth. Clearly, I don't have the patience of those homeless people. I'm just going to pee on something. In fact, with a little attitude adjustment, it's almost like a job. I get paid 25 cents every time I leak on something that's not a pay toilet. Hell, gimme enough Mountain Dew and that could be a seventh form of income.

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