The Luxurious Commodity that is the Loo: An Appreciation of the Toilet
Toilet, John, Loo, Crapper, Water Closet, Potty, Lavatory, Oval Office, Privy, Latrine. Whatever you preferred vernacular is, many of us use the good ole’ toilet on a daily basis (assuming regularity… or indoor plumbing).
Popularized by British plumber Thomas Crapper (now a rather infamous name) in England during the latter part of the 19th century, it has become a popular and useful invention, though an also under appreciated one. Most of visit the toilet on a daily basis (assuming regularity), and often visit it multiple times throughout the day. Some use the same toilet day in and day out, while others may use several different toilets in the course of their daily lives (just think, a trucker might use hundreds of different toilets in a year). If your keeping count of how often people use the toilet in the world, you can check out the flush meter on worldometers. Some stand, some sit, some even do both. Hell, some even squat. Some pull a lever, and some yank a chain. No matter the way you use your toilet, take this day to give your toilet some appreciation (with a 21 flush salute… not really). Most of us go through the day without giving any though to the toilet, and how vital it is to the lives we live. Toilets have helped prevent the spread of diseases, and have allowed people to live more sanitary, hygienic, and overall healthy lives. Without the toilet, the zombie apocalypse may have already happened.
On a more serious note, we should all take the time to recognize the immense poverty that we are encountering in the world. According to the World Toilet Organization (WTO), around 2.6 billion people around the world do not have accesses to a flushing toilet. Even here in America, there are many people in the fringes of society who consider indoor plumbing a luxury. A luxury? For the majority of our society, the toilet is not seen in such a glamorous light. In industrialized first world countries, toilets are considered a basic necessity rather than that of a luxury. We all have to remember how fortunate we are to have all of the benefits that come along living in a prosperous nation, and that even the most basic commodities such as a toilet are used by even some of the poorest of Americans. It can seem a bit silly to speak so magnificently in talking about the subject of the toilet,bue the real foolishness is being so flippant about something so important. People do not realize how important the toilet is to modern society, and we should not take it for granted. It is just another one of those little things that people just brush off on a daily basis. In this modern technological age, we are afforded the luxuries and comforts that modern day inventions have brought us, without thinking about how lucky we are. Around 40% of the worlds population does not have access to a toilet on a daily basis, and are stuck dealing with the unsanitary and unhealthy conditions that a lack of plumbing brings along.
It can be easy to look past the modern commodities that we are fortunate to use everyday, but sometimes we just have to sit back and be thankful. Well today is that day. I would strongly encourage anyone to visit the WTO website and make a donation. Even a small donation can make a difference. It may sound cliche, but if we all can give just a little bit, the numbers will add up quickly. I would also strongly encourage everyone to raise awareness about the World Toilet Organization by posting on the Internet (social media, blogs, forums, etc…), and also telling friends and family about it. You might get a few odd looks and tilted heads, but it can make a difference. You might not sway many people into donating money, but raising awareness alone can make a big difference.
So today when you use the loo, just remember how lucky you are.