Sunday, November 12, 2006

Let's Talk Toilets... aka What a Potty Mouth!

Admittedly, this is an odd topic of conversation. But, I feel that I know you well enough by now to bring it up and it's been on my mind. I hate toilets here. There, I've said it. Let's talk about why I hate toilets, shall we? There are numerous reasons, perhaps I should bullet them (my boss says all Arabs love bullets, do you?)...
  • The seats and covers are held on by flimsy little pins and rods that don't stay together. THis leaves them flapping around and constantly falling off.
  • They barely have any water leaving little "presents" along the side of the tank (ewwww).
  • There is no standardization on flushing mechanisms, so it can take some time to figure out how to make to flush.
  • Some have two buttons and some have one with no explanation of what the difference is.
  • Toilet paper is typically not flushed (again I say, ewwwww).
  • Some people cheap out and, rather than having a bidet have a hose to spray yourself. Unfortunately, the ladies at my office spray themselves and leave water all over the seat. Allow to say once again ewwwwwwww!

Okay, so these are the primary issues I have with toilets in Jordan. If El 3atal and I decide to build a place at some point, I assure you, I'll take a very active part in the toilet selection process. Oh, and I probably won't waste space on the bidets. One for the guest bathroom and none in in the rest...

Happy flushing!


At 3:36 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


AS a Jordanian,I find this comment a bit strange. Because , you could easily change your toilet with a different or a better style. There are many French, Italian, and differnt international brands of toilets in the Jordanian market (so much for the local products encouragement!...but what can we do international products are simply better)...So you can get differnt flushing styles and seat designs.

The problem with the sewage pipes underground are smaller than those in Europe or the US and I agree it must be annoying for someone not used to this.

As for toilets in public places such as your office, well you've probably noticed by now that the Jordanian motto goes as 'If it's not mine then hell with it', so people use the toilets for their own comfort splashing the seats or not flushing after using it since it is not theirs or in their own homes.

My sister lives in Europe and she has specifically asked for bidets to be added in her bathrooms. Their neighboors joke sometimes and call her husband the man with two toilets!...I for one cannot imagine using a toilet without a bidet!

At 12:14 AM , Blogger Fedaykin said...

Toilets in Jordan are utterly disgusting. Nobody knows how to fit them, nobody knows how to clean them, and nobody knows how to use them. How ^*(*@@#$ difficult is it to lift the seat up when you're standing? Make any sense at all?

And don't get me started on the lack of soap and paper. Even in public establishments and companies! What the hell??? You have to carry them around with you everywhere you go?

At 5:05 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

i had a problem with the toilets when i first moved also.
they are designed to use as little water as possible(that is why u have little gifts)
the one with the two buttons are for half a flush and a whole flush i guess you are supposed to judge which one u will need
i am not even going to comment on the toilet paper(in somepeoples minds it does not exist)i would never flush it, i would not want a back up sometimes you get back up from hair(just the idea of having to clean it is nasty )
people here treat public property so bad i guess when they use the bathrooms they try to see how dirty they can leave it
you forgot a very impotant issue with the bathrooms here the smell there are some that no matter how or what you clean them with there is a smell, you can thank the design of the toilets for that also

At 8:03 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

this is a hilarious post, i enjoyed it thoroughly. i disagree, however, that this is a behavioral problem in Jordan so much as it is a matter of circumstances and practicality. I live in the US and people here also treat public restrooms very badly (look at any gas station and rest stop along I-95:p). The difference is that there are water consumption regulations that apply to homes and are more relaxed when it comes to businesses and public places (ie. public bathrooms are VERY powerful and use something rediculous like 5 gallons a flush). Imagine using up that amount of water in Amman in one flush! It should be a felony in light of the water situation there :)
It's a cumulative effect where if someone walks in and sees something somewhat disgusting they will attempt to do their thing and get out of there as quickly as possible. It all piles up such that if you're the tenth person to jump in there, you're in REALLY bad shape!!! Welcome to Jordan ;)

At 10:38 AM , Blogger MommaBean said...

Raya, thanks for your comments. Actually, since we're renting (don't get me started on the differences there), there's no incentive for me to change anything no matter how annoying in a place I don't own. So no money going into new toilets anytime soon.

Fedaykin, Amen.

Anonymous 1, I actually asked one of my "stupid American" questions about the two buttons. The irony is that El 3atal didn't know either :).

Anonymous 2, I agree wholeheartedly that American public restrooms tend to get pretty gross. Although, ladies rooms typically don't even approach the nastiness level of men's room. Nice to be a girl :).

At 8:17 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

But I find the lack of Bidet totally disgusting! Sorry to break it to you, but It's absurd not to wash up after you're done.

And you're generalising too much
I mean, come on
you can't judge on PUBLIC TOILETS
they're even disgusting here in London!


At 11:10 AM , Blogger MommaBean said...


Too funny and clearly a cultural difference. As I said, I'd have a bidet in my guest bathroom, but not in mine. Washing up without an appropriate towel is distinctly anathema to me. Oh, and I'm pretty sure I allowed that American public restroom are typically awful. But, as a guy, you may not realize that gals' restrooms are better :).


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home