Thursday, April 14, 2011


40. London St Pancras Int. Station. At the queue for restrooms. 

In January, I stayed in Poland for two weeks. Whoever has been to Chopin's birthplace, no doubt, remembers many wonderful things from there. Me, I remember the toilets. The Poles, out of either minimalism or laziness, simply draw a circle or a triangle on each public toilet door, depending on the gender. Which symbol represents which gender, I never actually figured out. When I first saw these signs, I spent several minutes pondering. ("Is, mmm, it supposed to be of a triangular shape? That would fit, but what about the circle? I am somewhat familiar with this particular branch of biology, but a circle would not be how I draw certain things. Maybe from that angle?") In the end, I just gave up and used the parents-kid restroom. Here in London, the British would not do this to me. 

There she stands, one hand resting on the end of a mop, the other free to serve as a visual aid. Meet - I shall call her - the Toilet Director. 

"You, move forward just a little bit, juuuust a little bit, thaaat's it. Wait. Ok, that door is open. Now you go. Yes, over there. You, move forward. No, not too much. See the line? You stand right there. Oh, that one is open. Now go. Darling, darling, are you coming inside? Are you? Good. No, you, don't rush. It's too early in the morning and everyone's rushing. That would make things chaotic. You wait. Oh, two doors. Two, can we get two people to go? Gooood. Darling…" 

Poland, take notes.

41. Seen on a conference bag (which looks like a BORDERS canvas tote bag):

"After the conference, please feel free to use this versatile bag for any of the following alternative uses: 

BOARD WIPER - FANCY DRESS [w. picture of the bag on someone's head, with two holes cut out] - PILLOW 

And many more, like... shopping bag, gym bag, flag, dust cover, gift wrapping, oversized mitten, tea towel, frost cover for a very small windscreen, handkerchief, transportation of highly classified government documents, a really cheap present, ineffective water container, a solution to the economic crisis."

42. Where the wild things are. 

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