Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Something Smells Fish: Fresh From Today's Washington Post

One of the benefits of elective unemployment is the amount of time you have to do things you never used to do: go to the gym, figure out what "On Demand" is, shower as infrequently as possible, and read the paper.

Today's Washington Post had an interesting bit of news from Japan:

Toilets a Worry if Tokyo Quakes
Japan's disaster prevention panel said that nearly a million people would be unable to find a toilet if a major earthquake were to hit Tokyo on a weekday. The panel studied a simulation of a magnitude-7.3 noon-time quake in the capital.

Wow. Where even to begin?

1. WHY wouldn't they be able to find a toilet? (Jeez, Post, don't forget the W's of newspaper reporting!) Is there a toilet shortage in downtown Tokyo? Shouldn't they fix that now, before disaster strikes?

2. If all else failed, couldn't a Japanese person let go of decorum in consideration of the emergency, if only long enough to relieve him or herself behind a dumpster, or in a McDonald's?

3. Surely bottled water is a more pressing need in a major disaster. Do they intend to fill their water bottles from toilets? Is that the problem? Seriously, why toilets?

4. If the earth were shaking and you were huddled under your desk for protection, what could possibly make you think to leave shelter to seek out a toilet? Haven't you already soiled yourself?

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