6 Tips For Pooping In Public, Because Whatever, We're All Grown-Ups Here And You Can Do This
A lot of people have a "thing" about pooping in public. In my experience, these people are overwhelmingly of the female persuasion. I sympathize: Society has conditioned us to believe that women don't have bowels, but are instead plugged up with an arrangement of assorted rose petals and fragrant, exotic spices. Or at least, that this is the outward impression we should always be giving. But behind closed doors, we're capable of hell farts and "ass water" (aka, the thing when your poop is completely liquified), because human anatomy is such that we have to expel both the things we ingest and the noxious gasses those things create. And for some of us, a tandem lactose intolerance and uncontrollable cheese addiction is a reality. (Don't judge me. Cheese is delicious.)
What I'm trying to say is, when you've got to go, you've got to go, whether that's in the comfortable privacy of your own home or at a busy bar. You're probably going to blush and avert your eyes and pretend you don't know me when I say this but here it is: Sometimes there's a poop that's so urgent you have to go IMMEDIATELY. You know the one. It's the kind of poop that starts with a sudden cramp, and you know, you just know, you've got thirty seconds before you're touching cloth. The kind of poop that sends you red faced and scrambling for the closest porcelain, so sweaty you start stripping off as soon as your ass hits the seat. When these poops come, they come. Meanwhile, you're an adult, and this is life, and any urge to defecate should be met with the respect it deserves, no matter where you are or what you're doing. Go forth. Poop in public. Here are some tips for public number twos, for even the shyest pooper:
1. Know your schedule
If you can pre-empt your poops (the aforementioned sneak attacks excluded), you can manage your public pooping. For instance, when I worked in an office, my first poop of the day would come around 9:30AM, which was lucky because it meant I could be the first one in, and poop in peace. Have mercy on the days when I was running late and still on the subway at that time. PLAN TO POOP.
2. Prepare a comfy throne
I've always said utkatasana (chair pose) in yoga was practice for female public urination. But nothing can prepare you for a hovering shit. No matter how badly you have to go, you can hold it long enough to cover your toilet seat in paper. You deserve to be comfortably seated when pooping, even in public. There's something about a squatting poop that just feels so undignified.
3. Aim well
I have no shame about public pooping, as we've established, but some people can be put off by it. There's not a lot you can do to get around some of the less savory smells and sounds (seriously though, farts are hilarious, I always giggle when I hear someone else farting in the bathroom, so don't stress too much), but if you're particularly shy, you can aim carefully to reduce plopping noises. Put some paper in the bowl, and aim at the sides. If you poop silently, the smell could be coming from any stall, and you'll get away with having pooped in public covertly. Meanwhile, I definitely don't think you should be that worried about the sound of a turd hitting water but what do I know.
4. Carry matches
I'll admit that sometimes some smells are better left un-smelled. A regular poop smell in a bathroom is to be expected, but sometimes poop smells like sulfurous roadkill, in which case, be a pal to your fellow bathroom users and light a match to burn up that lingering gas.
5. Know what your bathroom options are
When you're in public, scope the bathrooms. Like the terminator, walk into a room, and let your computerized vision seek out all available poop palaces. If you're out and about, take a mental note of every Starbucks you see (because let's be real, Starbucks is just a public bathroom that happens to serve coffee). That way you can beeline when nature calls.
6. Embrace it
I mean, you could always just do like me and aim your poops right at the centre of the water to make the loudest possible noise, thereby freaking out all the people like you who are totally anxious about pooping in public. Or whatever.
Images: rebeccagrace/Flickr; Giphy