Modern restroom design is a direct response to pandemic planning

I invested the very first two weeks of my quarantine shitting in a portapotty in the car park of my structure. It wasn’t fantastic– however hey, at least it was constantly equipped with hand sanitizer.

I drove 300 miles in late March where I might at least be with my pregnant other half, and where at least I might shit inside your home.

I returned house a few days ago to discover that the restroom still wasn’t completed (though at least I might shower and shit now). Disappointed, I started to unload my things, and ended up listening to this brand-new NPR Short Wave podcast, which oddly made me feel much better. It traces the history of indoor pipes– including the uphill battle of trying to get individuals to understand that no, actually, a centralized sewer system will be better for your sanitation, and you should not fret about the shit from other individuals’ shit contaminating your home. It goes on to describe how things such as porcelain/tiling and first-floor “powder rooms” in fact served practical functions, making it simpler for people to distance themselves from prospective disease carriers, or tidy things off after hosting guests with unsure medical histories.

To be clear, I’m not sure why this made me feel much better about my aggravating restroom contracting experience. Or the lethal virus that continues to rave just outside my doors. It did. Or at least, I got me thinking about what other sort of strange innovations will be left in the long-term after this particular crisis finally ends. That, and I’m glad that my restroom is mainly tile now.

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How Contagious Illness Shaped American Bathroom Design[Short Wave / NPR]

How Transmittable Disease Defined the American Restroom[Elizabeth Yuko / CityLab]

Image: Public Domain by means of Pixnio

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