A Test Run Would Be Nice

Recently we went out for brunch at a nice restaurant in the Short North.  Our meal was perfectly enjoyable, but my dish was a bit messier than a mere napkin could manage, so I went to the restroom to wash my hands.

The restroom is one of those with a rectangular paper towel dispenser — the kind where you are to remove the paper towels from a slot in the bottom that is supposed to allow the towels to be taken out one at a time.  I washed my hands and went to get a towel, but found that the dispenser had been left so crammed with paper towels that it was impossible to remove one.  Due to the sheer weight of the towels that had been packed into the dispensing space, I couldn’t get my hands into the slot. My efforts to extract a towel had me desperately clawing away at the towel opening, trying to remove a whole towel, but the cheap paper towels were immediately ripped to shreds.  I never did obtain a complete towel, and had to make do with tiny towel fragments instead.  The whole experience left me a frustrated, wet-handed patron who was cursing the paper towel manufacturers of the world — and whoever decided to overfill the towel dispenser.  It didn’t exactly give me warm and fuzzy feelings about the restaurant, either.

This isn’t the first time this has happened to me lately; overfilled towel dispensers have unfortunately become commonplace.  I suppose the bathroom attendants of America figure that if they overfill the towel dispenser, they’ll have to fill it less often.  But bathroom attendants, hear me!  Have pity on the hand-washers!  Doesn’t anybody do a test run anymore, to see if a device is actually working as intended?  Is it too much to ask that an establishment have a towel dispenser that actually allows a patron to wash their hands — and then properly dry them?

 

Another Hazardous Intrumentality

IMG_3775Today I saw an alarming warning sign.  It appeared, of all places, on the metal lid of one of those rolling cloth towels you find in some older restrooms, and I saw it as I was drying my hands.

IMG_3774What were the warnings?  First:  “Use only to dry hands and face.”  Ewww!  I never considered it could be used for other drying purposes, or washing purposes.  I must admit that that warning made me eye the visible cloth toweling suspiciously and wish that I had dried my hands with toilet paper.

Second:  “Do not hang from towel.”  Check.  Say, is that warning really necessary?  In the history of Anglo-Saxon jurisprudence, has there ever been an incident of a tort claim caused by failure to warn not to hang from a cloth towel dispenser?

And third:  “Intentional misuse can be harmful or fatal.”  Harmful, okay.  Fool around with the towel, slip on a wet floor, dislocate something.  But fatal?  How?  Hanging?  Choking?

The sign didn’t say, and left all my questions unanswered.