A (girl) friend of mine recently asked why it is that men read the newspaper in the toilet.
The answer of course is simple; men read in the toilet because it's quiet, peaceful and there are usually no women in there.
I know this because I used to be a man (before I got married).
Every Sunday morning I'd grab the ‘Good Weekend’ supplement, my cigarettes/lighter and lock myself in the bathroom. The light blue tiles were cool under my feet, green pot-plants were thriving in the steamy atmosphere created by the shower and the little picture window afforded both a gentle breeze and pleasant view. It was a very, very nice place to be; tranquility itself.
I'd park myself on the throne, pants around the ankles, magazine spread out on the floor, and light up a cigarette. Then I’d begin reading the articles, cover to cover, whilst very carefully ashing the cigarette between my legs.
This zen-like ambience would invariably be broken by a pounding on the door, my ex-wife wanting to know what I was doing??
"I'm reading the paper."
"I can smell smoke."
"I'm reading the paper and smoking."
"Why are you doing it in there??”
"Because it's quiet."
"Why is the door locked??”
"To stop you coming in."
"Why, what are you really doing??”
"OK, Columbo, you've caught me. I'm having a party in here. All my mates are in here drinking Absinthe off the nipples of hookers that climbed up a rope and through the 30cm square window three stories above the ground."
"Can I come in??”
"Do you need to go to the toilet??”
"Then, no. You can't come in."
"Because I want some peace and quiet. Now, go away."
"It's just revolting, you sitting there with that awful smell..."
Now…This is where I believe a lot of the confusion seems to lie??
I suspect that most women believe men who spend say 30 minutes reading in the toilet are actively engaged in doo-dooing for the entire time. That whilst flipping the pages over, we are straining and groaning, all manner of evil gases escaping, and that the toilet is inexorably piling up with poo.
In fact, we read for about 29 of those minutes, then we close the paper, do our business, wipe our bottoms, flush the toilet, put the seat back up just to annoy you, wash our hands and leave.
But back to the story…
"No, it doesn't smell in here. Just some cigarette smoke."
"I don't believe you."
"I don't really care."
"Let me in."
"No. Go away."
She'd eventually skulk off somewhere; I'd light another cigarette and return to my reading. After about 30 minutes and a few more cigarettes, I'd do my business and conclude the session.
As soon as the door opened, my ex-wife would brush past me in the doorway, step into the bathroom, take a big breath and say,
"Oh my god, that smells awful. How can you stand it??”
"I can't. That’s why I'm leaving."
"Oh, gross. It stinks."
"Yes, that's why I do it in here, rather than the lounge room."
"Well mine doesn't smell like that."
"No, of course not, my darling. Yours smells like potpourri; I think we should keep it in a display bowl on the coffee table..."