The Fine Art of Restroom Rating

When you gotta go, you gotta go. But there are places where you really shouldn't.

We contact a friend, who happens to be the former head of the California Psychological Association, and ask him about our fear of troughs. He tells us of an anxiety disorder called paruresis (DSM IV, Code 300.23), which is essentially a fear of voiding in a public restroom. Has he ever been to a restroom that had a trough? Yes. Does he think that troughs contribute to paruresis? Absolutely. Does he think we can get troughs banned in S.F. on account of the Americans With Disabilities Act? Sadly, no.

Honorable mentions

Public restroom at the Marina Green (ooh, nice breeze!); Noc Noc (holy graffiti, Batman!); Macy's Union Square, sixth-floor women's room (now we know where the term "the throne" comes from); Hobson's Choice Victorian Punch House (the green fluorescent lighting in the women's room may cause instant seizures); Universal Cafe (fresh flowers); The Attic (they've improved the place by getting rid of the dreaded "puffy toilet seat," but still); Mecca (a bathroom straight out of Gotham City); The Eagle Tavern (this bar has a trough and a mirror that runs the length of the trough, and this particular mirror is really friggin' low, so unless the Eagle is frequented by midgets we suspect the looking glass has ulterior purposes).

And a sincere thank you ...

To the Dial Corp. of Scottsdale, Ariz., for its miraculous Antibacterial Hand Sanitizer, which we used religiously throughout this expedition.

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