When you’re on the road all day it’s inevitable – it’s going to come up. You’re going to need to use a public restroom. Quite possibly for #2*. I have spent the last several years at a job that requires me to drive all over Michigan and Ohio, and I have spent plenty of time in public bathrooms. So I give to you Dennis’s guide to public restrooms!
Are you a public restroom novice? Don’t know which ones to use and which to avoid? There is an easy rule of thumb. When stopping for a much-needed potty break, refer to this scale:
#1. – Retail stores – usually the cleanest – most major retailers have a policy about cleaning them at least daily, and the employees themselves have to use them.
#2. – Restaurants – Usually pretty gross. With the constant flow of people in and out, the staff is too busy to keep them clean. Especially at fast food places, those are the worst. Try to avoid.
#3. – Gas Stations – Almost always Gross. I have seen things in gas station bathrooms that would horrify some.
#4. – Rest Stops – Last resort. Gross, rarely cleaned, and if rumors are to be believed, havens for illicit behavior (dirty sex stuff).
Retail bathrooms are the best, but some are better than others. My top 4 by chain:
#4. – K-mart – Not terrible, it’ll do in a pinch. The toilet paper at K-mart is pretty weak, though.
#3. – Target – Usually decently clean, but fairly busy bathrooms. Not for the shy.
#2. – Toys R Us – Surprisingly clean and usually empty in my experience.
#1. – Wal-mart – Surprising, right? It seems, though, that they have a several times a day cleaning policy there. Rarely do I ever see a dirty bathroom at a Wal-mart. Also, they usually have two sets of restrooms in a store, one in front, and another in the back by layaway or site-to store pickup. The one in back is usually less busy, mostly used by employees. Also, if you have no shame, they often have a family bathroom in the back, which affords you a totally private experience.
Of course, your results may vary. Get out there, don’t be afraid to poop in public! Remember, everybody poops!
* (#2 is code for poop.)