Renovations II: Does A House Really Need Bathrooms?

toilet made of toilet paper

[This is a sequel to Renovations: My Handyman Superstar Challenge, published on December 7, 2013 — but can be read on its own.]

A few days ago, I was sitting in the downstairs bathroom, looking with pleasure at all the renovation work I’d done so far: ripping out the linoleum floor, yanking down the light fixture, dismantling half the shower stall, removing the doors from the sink cupboard, ripping down the towel rack, tearing out the toilet-paper holder, removing the curtains and getting rid of a mysterious wire on the ceiling that was apparently connected to nothing (I say that because nothing stopped working.)

Anyway, my wife was a bit critical of the removal of the towel rack and toilet paper holder. She said, “They were fine and now we’ll have to go out and buy new ones.”

“Not true,” I said, explaining my new interior design philosophy — “dual-use minimalism.” That means I am striving to design a bathroom that is as simple and uncluttered as possible, by using items with double functions. So, instead of wasting space with a toilet-paper holder, I plan to just slip rolls onto the handle of the toilet plunger. Our plunger’s handle is long enough to hold a pile of five TP rolls. And instead of having a towel rack AND curtains, I’ve combined them both into a single item I call “turtains.” I just hung a couple of towels over the bar that used to support the old frilly, lacey curtains I never liked. The turtains hanging over the window give better privacy than before and now, when you want to dry your hands, you just reach up to the window over the sink and dry them on the plush, ultra-absorbent turtains!

When my wife stopped giggling over the word “turtains,” she said, “Well, how are you going to replace the sink cupboard doors?”

“Big books,” I said. “One of the doors will be replaced by the National Geographic Atlas Of The World and the other by Sharp Magazine’s Book For Men, hanging on wires. They’ll block the underneath of the sink from view and, when reading materials are needed, can be temporarily removed.”

“Well, if you’re so into dual-uses, why not just get rid of the sink and have people wash their hands in the toilet? After it’s been flushed, of course.”

“Hey! I never thought of that!”

She added, “Why not triple-use, then? Get rid of the sink and the toilet and do it all inside what’s left of the shower? Or let’s push it even farther! Get rid of all our bathrooms completely and just do everything outside when it’s raining. Kitchen too — let’s wash dishes in falling rain!”

Clever ideas with real potential, in my opinion, but it turned out that she was being sarcastic.

[To be continued, maybe ...]

toilet paper roll on plunger

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8 responses

  1. This bathroom thing reminds me as to how hard it is to choose a lousy toilet. We decided to renovate a couple of years ago and were drawn into the world of toilets. I had no idea that you have to choose one piece or two piece, 14″ or 16″, and white, linen, bone, silver, fawn beige, or black. Then there is a need to know the distance to the septic system, and the GPF (gallons per flush). Thank God my wife is the decisive one.

    1. We named our new toilet the “THUNDER THRONE 3000.” However, it has failed to live up to its impressive title.

  2. I’m liking your wife more and more. Smart lady you have there. Maybe she is the funny one in the family.

    1. I passed on your comment and she says, “Thanks.”

  3. A lot of Korean bathrooms have the bathroom floor double as the shower. I’m sure your wife will appreciate this nugget of wisdom.

    1. Thanks, Ben, I’ll pass it on. Do Koreans ever plug up the drain and use the whole room for a bath? Hold on, that wouldn’t work, as the water would flow under the door and into the hall … too bad.

      1. Yes, actually they do. You just need to make a little step down from the door jam to the floor of the bathroom. I’m actually flooding my bathroom right now so that I might recline in luxury with only a slight chance of electrocution.

        1. Hold tight to your tablet!

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