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Gertie Talks About Toilet Tribulations!

To flush or not to flush? Low-flush and high-pressure? Black market toilet rings? Let me make restroom recommendations for y'all!

Dear Gertie, hi. My roommate insists on leaving her urine in the toilet so she can "conserve water." While I admire her environmentally conscious approach, it drives me crazy to when I go to use the washroom and am constantly flushing what she has left behind. I don't want to cause any animosity, but I think this is gross. Isn't there some kind of scientific backing on why you shouldn't leave urine in the toilet bowl? Please give me something to go on.

P'd Off

Dear P.O.'d, unfortunately there ain't no law about leaving pee in the toilet, but there is common sense. Leaving all that tinkle in the toilet invites all kinds of cooties and bacteria to grow. The smell'd be worse than Cousin Floyd's huntin' port-o-let behind the trailer. Whoof. This means that y'all're gonna have to clean it more often, and more scrubbing bubbles means more water and more chemicals in the water and air.

If your roommate is dead set on saving water, then recommend that she just pee in the tub, sink, or outside. Make sure she takes baths because showers waste water too. Shoot, the next thing she'll do is cut back on toilet paper saying that yer killing trees to wipe yer fanny and then make you use leaves. If all else fails, the next time your bowels get to moving, just leave her a little unflushed present in the tidy bowl.

Dear Gertie, what's the deal on these low-flush toilets? Eunice clogs up the crapper 8 times a week!


Dear Jeremiah, you must have one of those older low-flush toilets from the early 90's. Unfortunately there wasn't a recall on those awful models, just higher sales of plungers. Back in the good old days, toilets flushed at 3.5 gallons per flush (gpf), but in 1992, the federal government outlawed toilet manufacturers to make toilets that flushed more than the 1.6-gpf models. Those new toilets were barely strong enough to flush a toddler's solid waste, yes, it was a draining experience.

With public outcry (and the busting of black market 3.5-gpf toilets), crapper manufacturers made higher quality flushers. Yer best bet is to get a new (not cheap) toilet or find an old 3.5-gpf crapper at a yard sale.

Gertie, will I get thrown in jail if I have an outlawed toilet?


Dear Bernice, no, sugar, you're fine. There ain't no Potty Police roaming around for illegal toilets to put you in Lavatory Lockup, I promise. While it ain't illegal for you to have a 3.5-gpf toilet, it IS illegal to manufacture a toilet over 1.6-gpf.

Dear Gertie, when is it OK to not flush the toilet?


Dear Ned, Lo'Reeta, my proper etiquette connection, says to flush every time you go. But like everythang there are a few exceptions. Don't flush after you pee if:

  • You're on a fixed income and the water bill is high
  • It's the middle of the night and you don't wanna wake Momma
  • You're late for church - God'll forgive ya
  • You want to make your roommate mad
  • Uncle Cletus and Aunt Josie come to visit - they'll never use your indoor plumbing anyhow.

Dear Gert, I just hate them cold toilet seats. What can be done?


Dear Agnes, over there in Japan, they got them toilet seat warmers. Shoot, they also have a bidet, bottom-washer and dryer, a lid lifter, and a digital clock that tells you how long you've been in the bathroom. It produces a discreet flushing sound to disguise any unpleasant noises. Some models come with a remote control, and a popular portable unit sells for $100. Now, ain't that living? Click here for more.

Also, you could get a squishy toilet seat. I love mine, although they wear out in about a year or so.

Dear Gertie, what's a bee-day? Momma said she wants one for Christmas.

Signed, Earl

Dear Earl, when I was in the hospital after having a baby, I found out what a bidet was. It's basically this little hose pipe that's hooked up to the toilet so you can spray yer (ahem) purty parts. You can't hardly sit after having a baby, and spraying warm water on your stitches is just wonderful. Just install a water spicket there in the bathroom and hook her up a hose pipe.

Also, Lo'Reeta shared her homemade recipe for a bu-day ... Here's what I do for a bu-day. Just hook up the garden hose & stick it through the broken screen (or the knot hole in the outhouse). Than when you want a bu-day bath, just yell for one of the young'ns to turn on the water - but NOT TOO FAST! This works best if the outhouse is on a slope & the water can drain down on the garden.

Dear Gertie, Lurlene insists that I close the lid before I flush. Is she nuts?


Dear Melvin, well, some scientist types did a study and found that when a toilet is flushed little drops of water shot out of the toilet. Here are some little blurbs I found on the Internet:

  • Apparently, every time you flush, aerosolized particles from the toilet float as far as 6 feet away. So flush with the toilet lid down - and get a new toothbrush. ~Harvard Gazette
  • The water in a typical toilet (around 65 to 70 degrees) is a real nice place for bacteria propagation. In other words, every toilet has the potential to change from a Fecal Fountain into a Fecal Volcano. So, if you have a sink with a toothbrush holder above it right next to your toilet, it is very likely, if you keep your toilet lid UP when you flush, that you are spraying a fine mist of bacteria all over your implements for oral hygiene. Needless to say, you could reduce aforementioned spray considerably by closing the lid prior to the flush. ~Mr. Greer at Cartalk.com

Pretty scary stuff. I think I'll keep the ol' toilet lid down - just in case. I shudder to think of the sonic spray of public toilets, makes me rethink the intellect of flushing in public.

Dear Gertie, I would like to know the point of those nasty squishy seats. Are there people who actually sit there long enough that their butts get sore? I mean I am in and out as fast as possible. They gross me out. I can't use them - I am serious. I find something about sitting on something squishy like that to go to the bathroom nauseating


Dear Cyndi honey, I'm all for squishy seats. It all started back when I was pregnant. Since I spent 70% of my time on the toilet while pregnant, I might as well be comfortable. Four pregnancies is a lotta time on the john. Also, I hate sitting on a cold hard seat. Brrrrr! I went through a squishy seat a year. Nauseating? Well, I reckon if the boys peed on em a lot and they squished and bubbled when you sat down, yup. Eww. That was mighty gross.

Dear Gertie, why do toilets in restaurants, airports, doctor's offices, etc. make a sonic boom when they flush? They upset me and scare the kids.


Dear Angela, these toilets use high water pressure to produce a sonic boom that scares the kids and informs everyone within a two-mile radius that you just downloaded your bladder. Since toilet makers can't make decent flushers anymore, the commercial crappers had to be able to flush better since the public had a tendency to try and flush cell phones, wigs, and goodness-knows-what-else. The good news about high-pressure crappers is that they save water and the force of the water keeps the bowl cleaner longer, the bad news is that they are loud and some of em explode.

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