Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Blockages

What type of person wilfully blocks a toilet?

I really need to know. It’s something I’ve never done myself or even, for that matter, ever had the urge to do and yet frequently in the course of my day-job I come face-to-face with bizarrely blocked toilets on a frighteningly regular occurrence.

It’s like there’s some sort of club or secret society that I’m patently not a member of.

Most of the time the troublesome blockage is caused by a beer can or a rolled up copy of Heat magazine. You’d think that top shelf magazines would be the obstruction of choice but, no, these rarely make an appearance in my experience. Miles and miles of scrunched up loo paper feature quite a lot too but this is plainly the work of amateurs or bored school children – so much so it’s barely worth commenting on. It takes a dedicated expert to do the job (pardon the pun) properly. Because let’s face it: a beer can or a rolled up copy of Hello Magazine requires a fair bit of planning and effort to see it securely installed. Such blockages are the by-products of finesse and a certain amount of personal refinement. They’re out of the ordinary and the items chosen to perform the snarl-up usually have the flavour of social or political comment about them. It’s sculptural graffiti. 3-D satire.

The most bizarre blockage that I can recall (and I recall it only because it was so bizarre – I don’t particularly catalogue these lavatorial events) was a loo that I encountered at the end of Dover pier. Somebody had shoved a whole, unused loo roll down the toilet. Then, not content with this ironic swipe at the Andrex ideal, they had then dropped a “log” of nuclear-submarine-like proportions straight down the central tube of the loo roll thus spearing it not unlike a big blue fish in a barrel. Hoop-la indeed.

I have to say that I was both incredibly impressed and disgusted with this singular feat of precision bombing.

But the same question still remains: what type of person chooses to do this? Who in their right mind decides that today is the day they are going to block a public convenience?

Am I failing society by not blocking a toilet myself? Am I missing an essential life skill? Or am I just lacking in ambition?

Oh well. Bombs away!

11 comments:

MOTHER OF MANY said...

I sometimes think I have missed out on a lot in my life as I have never had the desire to involve myself in such activities as toilet blocking.My lack of interest in other activities such as mindless acts of vandalism, graffiti(though I can appreciate the quality of real graffiti artists),robbing phone boxes and mugging old ladies leads me to believe that I must be getting my endorphin rushes in alternate places to these toilet blockers.Perhaps you and I Steve get our rushes in a job well done, raising a family and living just a contented life.

TimeWarden said...

You should keep a diary!

If you're looking to write a sequel, how about a post on what type of person wilfully empties a bowser and then vandalises it? Especially during a time of crisis?!! Although, bowsers aren't on street corners at any other time but, unfortunately, brain-dead youths will always be existing amongst us.

-eve- said...

LOL! This was a fun read. Wow, yes, that fish in a barrel really sounds like quite a feat...! LOL!

Steve said...

I feel embarrassed Tim. I had to look on-line to find out what a bowser was. How have I got this far through life and not known what the word "bowser" defined? My head is currently hung in shame.

Steve said...

Hi Ally, sadly I suspect I get my endorphins solely rom writing scathing blogs about people who block toilets! Plainly I need to get out more!

Old Cheeser said...

Mmm, an interesting choice of post, Steve!!

What intrigues me is what lead to your musings on this subject in the first place??!

Actually, I think it's what Donna Noble does on her lunch break. In between filing her nails and lunching at KFC. Oooh miaow.

Rol Hirst said...

I'd like to know who goes around breaking all the locks off toilet doors so that I have to stand with one leg propping it shut while having a pee...

Steve said...

Yes, Old Cheeser, I can just see Donna Noble blocking the toilets in Cardiff with the after effects of a cheap kebab and a bottle of Diamond White... thank God the Tardis is bigger on the inside than it is on the outside, eh? Pheuw...!

Steve said...

Hi Rol, ah yes - I have perfomed the Jake The Peg at many a public convenience in my time too! I'm always nonplussed by the people who like to stab their fags out on the toilet seats as well.

Old Cheeser said...

Ha ha ha, very good Steve, I can feel inspiration for a mini play coming on...In fact although I like your suggestion, I actually think it's Martha Jones causing the blockage when Donna shoves her down the bog in a bid to get her out of the series:

Martha: But you can't do this Donna! I'm the current companion!

Donna: I don't care! Get daaaaaarn that bog!

Martha: Donna, I'm appealing to you! I'm a nice person! I'm a trainee Dr for God's sake!

(Dramatic pause)

Donna: Am I bothered?

(Proceeds to shove Martha head first into the toilet bowel)

Martha: Nooo - uumph!Just stop -

Donna: Face? Bothered?

Martha: Please! Donna! Stop -

Donna: Face of concern? Nah!

Martha: You can't kill me -

Donna: Not bothered!

(Shoves Martha further down the toilet until her head is almost under the water)

Martha: I'm the most popular assistant since Sarah Jane -

Donna: Not bothered!

Martha: I'm sassier than Billie -

Donna: That old slapper from Swindon? She ain't got nothing on me! Donna Noble rocks!! Bye bye, you silly mare! I AIN'T BOTHERED!!!

(Flushes the toilet and Martha's wriggling legs disappear from sight as she goes round the U bend).

(Suddenly we hear a familiar wheezing and groaning sound as the TARDIS materialises nearby)

Donna: Oh Dr? That's you, innit? I'm coming ... Alriiiiiight?

Etc....

Erm - forgive me for highjacking your blog rather there, Mr Steve! Hope you liked!

Steve said...

Yes, Old Cheeser, liked very much! Excellent dialogue and scene composition. I think it should be RTD who is flushed down the toilet and your-good-self firmly ensconced in his BBC office where you can create an entire DW series in this vein!