I’m not sure which is more rare… a unicorn or a clean mens’ room.
– The Lexicon Ninja Guide to Wisdom
As a precocious (but not ‘out’) gay school boy, I remember my female friends sneaking me into the girls’ locker room for lunch hour. There we would sit and laugh over our standard meal of Saltine crackers and Hi-C juice boxes. The one thing that still stands out in my memory was that the place was immaculate. It smelled like a wrestling match between Secret underarm deodorant and AquaNet. The lockers were decorated with colorful stickers, and the showers were filled with bottles of fruity lotion and flower-scented body wash. It was probably the least offensive smelling bathroom I had experienced in my teenage universe.
By contrast, the boys’ locker room smelled like rotting flesh. There were walls filled with crusty boogers and toilet paper (some used) was strewn everywhere. Add a few mangroves to the floor and it would’ve looked like the bed of a drained swamp. I dreaded changing for P.E. class in this “chamber of death”. Upon entering, tears would well up in my eyes from emotion – but also (no doubt) from the gaseous breakdown of various hydrocarbons and bacteria. The whole scene was basically a crime against humanity.
Luckily those days are long behind me. However, I often get a surprise flash from the past when I enter a public restroom for the gentlemen. Lately, at work I’ve been noticing that someone is leaving a “pube salad” in the urinal. It’s revolting, and as a dude, I really don’t care to have it staring back up at me while I do my business. It’s like looking into the Sarlacc pit from Return of the Jedi where certain death awaits as you are slowly digested over a thousand years.