Public Restrooms. Public Enemies?

As I have mentioned in a previous post, I have many pet peeves. One of those pet peeves happens to be public restrooms. I don’t mind using a public restroom. What annoys me is the design and functionality of most. Each trip I have taken to Walmart in the past 2 years has led me to writing this post. It’s been a long time coming….

First of all, let me just reiterate that it is NOT the “public” part of the restroom I don’t like. What I don’t like is the design and function of those restrooms. Why don’t business owners and builders work a little harder to get this right? Surely, the following list of flaws aggravates others too! Read my list and then let me know your opinions.

1. Automatic Flushing Toilets.  Do we really need the toilet to flush for us? Is this something that’s so difficult for us humans to do? Granted, some people are lazy slobs who don’t flush when finished, but the majority of us do. I wouldn’t mind the automatic flushing, IF I were finished before the flush! Sometimes, a simple movement will trigger the sensor, telling the toilet to flush. Maybe I’m just too short or something, but this should be taken into account. Not everyone is the same height, right? I mean, when you’re sitting there and the toilet flushes 3 times before you actually stand up, there’s a problem. I have started draping a piece of toilet tissue (when possible) over the bar behind the toilet to cover the sensor! I have even considered bringing stickers in my purse to cover them! Who likes being splashed with “dirty water?” Not me.

2. Seat Covers. Some restrooms have them, some don’t. I wonder if the ones that don’t provide seat covers know that there are old women out there who actually squat over the seat to avoid germs…..and then actually get the seat wet (you know what I mean) for the next person? All I have to say is ewww and thanks a lot.

3. Toilet Tissue Dispensers. Ok, we need the toilet tissue dispensers but do they really need to be so low on the wall that the simple reaching for it triggers the automatic flush?? Sometimes they’re so low that it’s difficult just to get some tissue out. Do I really have to carry my own tissue?

4. Automatic Water Faucets. No touch means no germs. I get it. However, can the water just stay on long enough for me to finish? Why must I keep moving my hands about trying to get the water to come back on?

5. Empty Soap Dispensers. How hard is it for the soap dispensers to be filled at each scheduled restroom cleaning? Should I start bringing my own soap too?

6. Hand Dryers. Why must it take 5 minutes for my hands to be blown dry? I don’t know about you, but I’m always in a rush and if there are no paper towels, it’s much quicker to just drip dry or dab my hands on my pants. Thank goodness some restrooms also provide paper towels.

7. Dirty Door Handles. So….. They go through all the trouble of having automatic flushing toilets, automatic water faucets, no-touch hand dryers to avoid germs from being spread but they have doors with dirty handles. They forget about the people who don’t wash their hands before they leave the restroom. They still touch the door handle. Doesn’t that defeat the purpose of washing my hands and being careful not to get some unwanted germ that could make me ill? When I’m ready to leave the restroom, I use a paper towel (if provided) or my shirt to open the door.

8.  Small Stalls. Honestly, I have been in stalls that are so small and so poorly designed that my knees hit the stall door. Sometimes, I can barely get in the stall because the door swings in so close to the toilet. They can’t do better than that?

9. Writing On The Walls. Come on people. Grow up. Show some class. If you want to write on the walls, write on your walls in your home so the rest of us don’t have to see it.

That just about wraps it up. One last thing though before closing, though. I wish adults would teach their children some class and manners. Have you seen the messes left behind by young children? Ugh.

I’m positive I could think of a couple more things…..just give me another trip to Walmart to refresh my memory.

Round and Round

I have many pet peeves. Ask anyone who knows me. I bitch a lot, about a lot of things. I can’t help it. My biggest pet peeve is incompetence. I just can’t understand why people can’t be more competent in their jobs. Don’t employers train the people they hire? Of course they do. They just hire idiots or foreign-speaking people who don’t have a complete grasp of the English language. Just email (or call) any business’ customer support and you’ll see what I mean. Perhaps you’ve already had experience with bad customer service reps? I sure have. Every single time I have a problem and contact customer support, I get the run around.

Last October, we changed ISPs which means I had to change my main email. I went through all of my accounts and changed my email to the new one. I tried to log into my account and I couldn’t. I don’t know why. My password is always one of 4 different variations of one word. I had just used my account not too long before that when I purchased a digital camera online. I tried several times, for several days and then I just gave up. I opened a new account. I then asked customer service to delete my old account. Even though I emailed them the pertinent information to prove my identity, they emailed back with:  “………we cannot delete an account without proof of your identity.” I was aggravated to say the least. I emailed them and politely explained to them that “….if they had read my email thoroughly they would have seen that I sent all the information they would require to prove my identity.” They actually did what I asked them to do at that point.

After I got my accounts all updated with the new email, I went back to and attempted to order my prescriptions online, which I had done many times before on my old account. Since I now had a new account I was required to open a new pharmacy account. The site would not let me do this. I got a message stating that “The information you entered is already linked to a different email address. If you have already created an account using a different email address, please sign out and then sign in again using your other email address. For additional assistance, please contact customer service.” My old account had been closed, so I contacted customer service.

Customer service sent me instructions on how to create an account. Aggravated again? You bet I was. I explained to them again, that I cannot create an account because my old email is linked to my name and Rx information. I told them I needed to have the email associated with my old pharmacy account changed to my new email. They answered back with instructions on how to change my email address. More aggravation sets in at this point. After another email to them, explaining the situation yet again, I was told, “Please call your local Walmart pharmacy and have them change the email on file.” Ok. That’s the best answer I’ve got since I started this. Easy enough.

After several months of perpetual forgetfulness – too many things on my plate I guess – I finally called my local Walmart pharmacy. The pharmacy technician said they don’t keep emails on file. She double-checked on their computer, looking up my name and said, “Nope. We don’t have a place here to enter an email.” She apologized and I told her it wasn’t her fault and thanked her for looking. Back to the drawing board.

Wednesday, April 13 – Friday, April 15: I tried again to open a pharmacy account. I thought just maybe they fixed a glitch in the system that had caused this problem. No such luck. Same message. Again, I emailed customer support, explaining the problem. I get instructions on how to open a pharmacy account. I explain again. Then, I get instructions on how to change my email. I explain again. Then I am asked to provide detailed information pertaining to my account, i.e. name, birthdate, address, old email, phone number so they can delete my old pharmacy account. This would allow me to then open a new one. I’m thinking “Ah. Finally. Someone who knows what to do.” Wishful thinking. The next response from them sets my blood on fire! I’m told, “Your account for [current email] does not have a pharmacy account created.” REALLY? REALLY? I had to explain yet again. Obviously, my emails are read by different customer service reps each time. There are no case numbers assigned to the emails, and none of the emails are signed with a name.

I was absolutely livid when I got the next response, which read “Dear William, We apologize for the delay……..and we have escalated the issue to a Customer Service Manager, who will be contacting you within one business day.” I replied back to them, “My name is NOT William!” I insisted that they get someone COMPETENT to call me or just don’t call me at all! IDIOTS!

My phone call came Sunday, April 15, in the evening. The customer service manager apologized for my trouble and repeated to me the problem I was having. I told her she was correct. She then, retrieved my old pharmacy account and changed the old email to the new email and told me I shouldn’t have any problems now. She even read off to me a few of the previous prescriptions I had ordered refills for. Seemed everything was in order. I thanked her for her help, letting her know how appreciative I was and we hung up. After checking, my problem had finally been solved. Simple. As it should have been at the very start.