In March 2013, one in three households in the Nadia District did not have an indoor toilet. In less than two years, the local government built over 350,000 toilets. And even though everyone now has access to a toilet, the Wall Street Journal reports that the practice of open defecation has not died out, partly because some Indians believe it is unsanitary to defecate in the home where you live and eat, and groups of local voluntary “toilet police” are now regulating this issue, photographing offenders, and publicly displaying these photos in the case of repeat offences. It’s a fascinating story about one of the biggest changes happening in the world today, well worth reading.
While India may be short of toilets, California is short of water. NBC reports on the LA water district’s plans for a “toilet to tap” programme. California is currently in its fourth successive year of drought and the city of LA imports most its water from other parts of the US, and so the plan is to copy Texas and to start recycling human wastewater for the purposes of consumption. It may sound unappealing, but all water is recycled anyway. I always find it best not to think about what it is recycled from.
On the other side of the US, an Atlantic City casino found its toilets blocked by a fraudster. NewsMax is running this story about a man who smuggled fake casino chips into a poker tournament. When the man was in danger of being discovered, he flushed $2.7 million worth of fake chips down the toilet in the casino hotel, causing a “blockage”. Not only must he now pay the casino for the losses when they had to cancel the tournament, the court also ordered him to pay $9455 for plumbing costs to the hotel.
Japanese toilets are famous for their use of technology – warmed seats, toilets that play music when you pee, toilets that spray your bum clean and blow it dry. RocketNews reports on a Japanese toilet paper dispensing machine, which will dispense clean sheets of toilet paper, without any need for you to touch the toilet paper holder. Bewilderingly, it also folds the paper into a point. I suppose it makes it easier to make a toilet paper aeroplane so you can send messages to the occupants of other cubicles.
Finally today, a wonderful vine from @colinchadwick (You’d be surprised at how many interesting hits you get when you search the hashtag #toiletvine).