-- Or, how to celebrate the wonders of water-closets--

Copyright Theolonius McTavish 2004. All rights reserved.

November 19th is a very auspicious occasion. It's none other than "International Tinkle Pantry Day".

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the little known term "tinkle pantry", it is the focal point and modest appliance found in most "water closets", "places of ease" or "comfort stations".

North Americans probably know the tinkle pantry by way of more familiar terms such as the "powder room" and "restroom", or the ever-popular family "throne room".

Few realize that the average person visits the toilet 2,500 times per year, or 6-8 times per day, which all adds up to about 3 years of one's life. Considering the fact that this humble private and sometimes public privy is the most frequently visited room in any home or workplace, precious little has been done to recognize it's vital role in society.

If truth be told, the tinkle pantry is a subject most avoid so as not to be considered a scruffy scatalogical storyteller. Considered a taboo dinner table topic, it is shunned by everyone except toddlers and parents who rejoice at this first step into adulthood by passing "Toilet Training 101" with flying colours.

It is rare indeed to see a politician of any stripe spend much time waxing on about the virtues of toilets. Precious few communities or even corporations consider celebrating with parades, marching bands, or even an official holiday, the invention of the toilet (several thousand years ago in ancient China and modernized by a British plumber named T.J. Crapper more than a century ago).

But, times have changed. Four years ago, the World Toilet Organization, (comprised of 17 toilet associations, although the US, one of the most fastidious and hygiene conscious countries in the world has not signed on yet), decided to recognize and honor the 'great equalizer of humanity' with it's own day of remembrance - November 19th -- "World Toilet Day".

This year, November 17-19, in Beijing, China decision-makers not to mention movers and shakers from around the globe will be gathering to discuss "hot" topics in the world of tinkle pantries (see one of the 41,900 website pages devoted to this world summit conference -- www.worldtoilet.org).

This year's "World Toilet Summit" conference will include among other presentations:

-- The Toilet - A Tool of Social Change
-- The Horizontal Society
-- Toilets as Tourism Attraction
-- Start-Up of a Toilet Association
-- Generating Revenue Through Advertisements in Good Toilets
-- How the Loo of the Year Awards Translates Good Toilets as Marketing Tools for their Owners
-- Dry Toilets, Natural Toilets, Mobile Toilets, and Humanized Toilets
-- The Interior Design of a Toilet Caters to the Diversity of a Culture
-- The Provision & Availability of Toilets in Establishing the Code of Practice for Toilets
-- Is the Provision of Good Toilets Critical in Hosting World Events?

So, if you're looking for something to do on November 19th...why not whip out your favorite plonger,...pay a trip to your favorite plumbing and hardware store, ...or maybe check out the world's first "National Toilet Map" published by the Australian Government at www.toiletmap.gov.au.

About the Author

Theolonius McTavish, an eccentric reporter and visitor to throne rooms of renown and off-the-beaten track places of ease when not thoroughly ensconced in the palace of the "Quipping Queen" at www.quippingqueen.blogspot.com