Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Paper Tiger

I'm not one to rant... OK, that's a total, utter, preposterous, fabrication. Ranting is both my release valve and my joie de vivre. My raison d'ĂȘtre, if you will. Enough french though, for ranting is what I am about to do...

Now, far be it from me to denigrate any level of work or employment. Indeed, I have been the holder of many an unfulfilling, even depresssing job. Yes, I've made the triangular boxes that sandwiches come in (didn't last long at all in that one). Yes, I've stuffed envelopes (met Labi Siffre doing that one). Yes, I've been a barman in a horrible, violent pub (sacked). Yes I've worked at M&S (sacked after 3 weeks). Yes, I've been a florist (er...). Yes, I've emptied sacks of mail at the post office all day (technical name - 'Tipper'). Yes I've been a cleaner, both in an office and a secondary school (the lowest point on my own employment journey). And yes I realise there are a thousand worse jobs out there than those few examples, and yes I realise that many people are both lucky and thankful to have a job, any job. And no, I dont think any single one of those is less worthy than anything that I do on a daily basis.

However. I am really struggling to have any respect for whoever it is who cleans/maintains the toilets at school. Not the students loo's - god knows anyone who has to go in there deserves a bloody medal (usual ambient odour of girls loo = fags, usual ambient odour of boys loo = indescribably disgusting smell of a floor soaked in piss for 30+ years... really don't even try to imagine it). No, the person who does the staff toilet. This person is a BLINKIN BUFFOON. I'd like to make it clear that I have self-censored myself there.

It's not the cleanliness, though that ain't great (but I put that down to having to share with other males, we're barely above animals when it comes to watching what we're doing. Or indeed, cleaning up after ourselves. Except me of course). Its the goddamn toilet roll that is riling me. Well, the toilet roll dispenser to be exact. This thing:

(It's called a 'flat-pack toilet roll dispenser' in case you were wondering - I've just spent about 30mins google-image searching for the correct one. I never realised there were so many! There's a whole industry out there...).

The guy who refills this is an idiot. Every single time I use this toilet I have the same problem. Every other day, morning or night (I dont when he does it) he does the same thing. And it must be done with planning, which makes it even more enfuriating. He clearly see's it as a time-saving strategy, so that he doesn't have to fill it every day. He pushes in as many of the tissue refill packs as he possibly can. 'Ahaha' he must think, 'how clever am I? I wont have to come back to this baby tomorrow...' Well you're not clever. You're a pillock. You've pushed the tissue in so hard it wont come out the little slot at the bottom. No. Everytime I pull a piece it just tears. Little strips of loo roll the size of the end of my finger. Or at best, feathery strips a few centimetres long. So that I'm having to ball them up and try to wipe my BOTTOM WITH A STUPID BALL OF LOO ROLL, LIKE SOME KIND OF CRAZY WEIRDO, WHICH SOMETIMES, WHEN THE UC IS BAD CAN TAKE BLOODY HOURS AND LEAD TO ALL SORTS OF UNWANTED FINGER-RELATED UNECESSARY-NESS. STOP IT, FOR GODS SAKE!

So today, after school I went in there and stuck a post-it note on the dispenser. Then imagine my smugness dissolve when as I left school I witnessed one of the deputy heads coming out. Thank goodness I didn't sign it.


Maria said...

Ahhhh, but will anyone recognise your handwriting?

Can you not pull the dispenser apart so that you can grab a handful of paper as and when you need it. At my workplace, the dispensers aren't locked, you can just pull them open. The other day I went to get some hand paper towel out of the dispenser and the whole lot fell out onto the floor! Or you could purchase a key from somewhere for that type of dispenser and keep the key in your pocket so that you can help yourself to full sheets each time you visit the loo.

Whittles Wobble said...

Ok, so since I don't have GMail, I've decided to write you a random comment in hopes that you'll see it and I can get the message across about where I get my Digestive Advantage supply! I don't know what you have across the pond, but here in the states I just go to a local pharmacy. Here is the website for Digestive Advantage:

And the purple box is the one I use. It really worked for me and I hope you might find some relief. I can't even imagine being a teacher and having to stand up in a classroom all day fighting an internal battle. But it is a bit inspiring to me. I always wonder how other people cope and what kinds of jobs they've chosen. Anyway, I'll be glad to know if you can find it and if it helps you. Look forward to reading what else you've got on here...

Rich said...

Hi Maria - I'm glad you're encouraging me to vandalise the school toilets, because that's what I feel like doing! Aha, just like being a student again. I'll have to have a closer look to examine the key hole.

Hi there Whittles (or should I say Wobble?). Thanks very much for the comment and the info. I'll have a little investigation. I think this kind of stuff is stocked in health food shops over here, rather than pharmacists, but I'm not sure. I did start to look into this sort of thing last year, but things kind of stablised and I lost my impetus.

What is really amazing is being able to read about, and converse with, people in North America (and elsewhere) fighting the same battle. I'm looking forward to dropping by your blog regularly.

Charlotte said...

*laughing* a lot!! Bloody hate it when that happens in public loos, can't imagine the level of annoyance you must have dealing with it daily. It maybe time to have sneakily hidden loo roll that can be retrieved when you need it - or a pack of tissues. Hope the cleaner reads your note :-)

Rich said...

Hi Charlotte - yeah, I reckon I'd have to go with the tissues... I can't imagine explaining to some gobby 15 year old why I'm wondering the corridors with a loo roll!

aliwalidoodah said...

Oh I have been there!! And those roll dispenser ones where you have to fish around inside to find the end of the roll to pull it out, shredding your hands on the serrated (sp?) edge in the process, only to start pulling it and have it tear off. Grrr! I share your rage!