A sleepy fan, an economist’s bladder, responsible protestors and toilets filled with interesting ideas

A team of firefighters were called to Barnsley FC when an alarm was activated by a man standing on the roof of a portakabin at the grounds on Saturday. The Daily Star reports that the man had fallen asleep on the toilets at half time. He had had “a few beers” and woke up seven hours after the match ended (Barnsley lost) and found the entire stadium locked up and in darkness. He climbed on top of a portakabin to seek help and found that he couldn’t get down. The Star interviewed a firefighter who said, “He had no shoes on and had lost his mobile phone and his hat. He was more bothered about his hat though. He seemed a smartly dressed lad.”

The Bangor Daily News (Bangor in Maine, not Bangor in Wales or Bangor in Northern Ireland) ran this blogpost by a retired economist who is infuriated by the lack of public toilet facilities in Maine now that his bladder is ageing. He posits that the new state motto should be “Maine – Just hold it!” He goes on to list various day trip destinations from Bangor and ranks them according to the quality and/or presence of their toilet facilities. He only gives the I-95 southbound on Newport an F. Apparently you would need to a trained guide to find a toilet there. On the other hand, he gives Schoodic Point an A grade, claiming that the toilet facility there “makes winter visits a treat for locals and tourists alike”, which is wonderful, but seems like an exaggerated importance on the value of toilets, and that’s coming from an actual toilet blogger.

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Portable toilet on fire at the Fees Must Fall protest. (Picture from eNCA)

eNCA reports on students from South Africa, who are currently holding the largest protests in the country since the end of Apartheid in 1994. According to this report the student campaign “Fees must fall” has been remarkable for being so peaceful, in spite of its size. The writer of the story is impressed with the behaviour of the student protestors, who have been seen cleaning up after their protests and even organising study groups during the protests. When some portable toilets were damaged in one of the protests, some of the students even started a campaign to fundraise to pay for the damage done to the toilets, which you can donate to here.

Finally today, we look to that always satisfying source of toilet-related news, Japan, where the Japan News reports on the winner of the Japanese Toilet Grand Prix, which is run by the national government and apparently rewards “toilets filled with interesting ideas”.  The winning toilet was at Shinseiwadai Kindergarten in Kawanishi, Hyogo Prefecture, where, according to the article “small children frolicked with delight”. The toilet “features an objet d’art in the shape of an apple tree about one meter in diameter. Its branches stretch up to the ceiling, where a blue sky has been drawn. When the kindergartners enter the space, a sensor activates a cat, elephant and giraffe and music begins playing.” I have added it to my must-see list of toilets.

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The winning kindergarten toilet (Picture from the Japan News).

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