~Further, there shall be an area for you outside the camp, where you may relieve yourself. With your gear you shall have a spike, and when you have squat you shall dig a hole with it and cover up your excrement.~ The Torah, Deuteronomy, 23:13-14.
Said to have been invented over 4,000 years ago in Greece, the toilet is basic to Western civilization , as are other specialized areas in other cultures/civilizations. Sir John Harrington invented the first flush toilet for his godmother, Queen Elizabeth I in 1596- had it installed in the Queen’s Palace, he did. The first patent went to Alexander Cummings two hundred years later in 1775. (Good ol’ Tom Crapper did hold three patents for improvements on the flush toilet, but didn’t invent the thing – just gave his name as a lasting legacy.)
By a certain age, usually no later than three, most of us are “potty” trained, that is we relieve ourselves in the places designed by our culture for such activity. So ingrained is this training that we can hardly force ourselves to do our “business” elsewhere. When I was in college during the dark ages of long ago, my psychology professor told us that there had been a study, whereby students were told they could have as many glasses of beer they wanted, the catch being they couldn’t leave to use the restroom. They would have to urinate where they sat. The study showed that the majority of students passed out before letting go (and not from consuming too much beer).
So why am I regaling the mighty toilet? the can? the dunny? the lavatory, the porcelain throne? Well, Chameleon has a son, who at one time was my nephew by marriage and this young man is a sailor out to sea serving in the Navy. Seems that there are some serious issues going on with the heads aboard his ship the USS George W. Bush. Chameleon is trying to get her voice heard by as many people as possible to see that this shameful situation is corrected – NOW.
Please see her blogs: www.marybrotherton.com & need2go.blogspot.com.
My pseudo-nephew is lucky that he has Chameleon as an advocate, but our service people should not have to write home to Mom to get something accomplished. Military funding should at the very least make sure that our service people get the basics of what they need – and working toilets out to sea doesn’t seem like that much to ask for. Go, Mary.