Thursday, April 7, 2011
I went to the dentist today and took a potty break in the bathroom the dentist shares with other offices and found this sign hanging inside the stall. It made me almost miss the hijinks of working in an office. Like people putting notes on their lunch bags stored in the common fridge so food bandits won't steal it. Once at my last job I saw a yellow post-it note on a brown paper bag in the fridge that said, "This is MY lunch! Go make your own, it's not that hard!" The handwriting was that of a madman, a madman whose lovingly made peanut butter and jelly sandwich had been stolen one too many times. It had a "I'm mad as hell and I'm not gonna take it anymore" furious scribble to it that I appreciated. But the message itself was direct, succinct, even providing a thoughtful suggestion with encouragement that the task was perhaps not as difficult as the lunch bandit had imagined. Perhaps that lunch bandit did in fact start making his own lunch after encountering that note and thought after he put the top piece of bread with jelly onto the bottom piece slathered with peanut butter, "You know what? It ISN'T that hard!"
But this sign. This sign has not left my mind since departing the dentist's office. I can just picture the lady stomping back to her office, grabbing a piece of paper off the printer and furiously writing her outrage in, not polite cursive, but a very blunt print. Why does only Flush get the courtesy of filled in block letters? Do you think she did several rewrites before deciding on exactly three exclamation points after "Before you leave" but only two after "I don't want to do it for you?" Do you think she brought a roll of tape with her into the bathroom or assembled her sign with a small strip of tape in the isolation of her cubicle? I wonder if she displayed it proudly to co-workers as she made her way back to the bathroom with this message that seems to me will just tempt the non-flusher to continue not flushing. This is almost like an "I dare you" to a non-flusher I would imagine. It probably will spark a "whatchya gonna do about it" reaction in someone who doesn't flush their own waste.
I think I would have made my sign more official if I were so inclined to tape a message in the public restroom of my workplace. I might have made it in PowerPoint and put some letters in bold red and such. I might have implemented sarcasm: "As much as I enjoy viewing your excrement, my carpal tunnel syndrome is flaring up so for the time being would you mind flushing yourself?" Perhaps I might have signed it from "Management" so it had a veiled threat that the non-flusher could lose her job for further offenses. Perhaps I'd even add some design elements to match the restroom decor. I bet I'd spend an entire afternoon creating my sign rather than doing my work.
Speaking of work, I am taking pictures of bathroom signs that are none of my concern when I should in fact be working. But there is none of this fun sign-leaving business going on in my bedroom where I do my work. Maybe I'll leave a sign on the bathroom mirror for my husband to artificially create the camaraderie of the workplace....