In light of the “men’s room etiquette” schooling we all received last week courtesy of Sen. Larry Craig, I thought a brief round-up of rules from the ladies’ perspective might be in order. Here are some unwritten guidelines you might not be aware of:
1. Courtesy flush – yes, gals use it too… it’s only proper to flush the poo even if you’re still doing the paperwork. Little-known fact: women also sometimes use what’s called the “hailing flush,” which is where you flush as soon as you hear someone else enter the bathroom. Newcomers can pinpoint the stall from which the hailing flush originates, and will therefore refrain from trying the door to the occupied stall. Especially useful because it seems that making the two parts of a stall door latch actually match up is just too damn hard for the people who install stalls.
2. Sharing resources – It’s okay to ask the person in the stall next to you to pass some TP under the stall wall. It’s NOT okay to ask them to pitch your used tampon for you, even if the little discard bin in your stall is full.
3. Shoe-tiquette for women – perfectly acceptable to study the shoes of the person in the stall next to you to figure out who makes a lot of potty noise. NEVER cool to remark about it to them later.
4. Gals should always wear clean undies. Those who study shoes might inadvertantly also study the undies bunched at your ankles, and then you’ll be busted not only for the decibels in your drop but also for skidmarks. And trust me: no one wants to know what your “period panties” look like.
Editor’s note: This post originally appeared on my now-defunct blog, DMweblife, in September 2007 at the height of the Larry Craig gay-sex-at-the-airport scandal.