What happened to Peiping?Bill's Briefs, Latest Issue Thursday, June 22nd, 2017
Social Chaos: Bill's Briefs
Compass points, as in, “Go north and turn west on Elm” are meaningless to me. In Maine things were clearer: “Go straight and turn left where the Nash dealership used to be.” Now car-less, I rely on kind friends to drive me while I sit and look pretty. How we get there is a mystery. My inept locator mode extends worldwide and I blame it on my elementary school. Those compass insets on the maps clearly showed “north” meant straight ahead. This led to years of confusion, ridicule and unfortunate consequences in the classroom.
Confounding my mistakes has been the constant disappearance of global landmarks. Since finishing sixth grade I have been plagued by the switcharoo of names, allegiances and boundaries. I dare say some people aren’t sure who/what they are or where they live.
Peiping is gone, also Canton. They used to speak Cantonese. What do they speak now? I can’t even find Stalingrad where two million were killed in six months (Look it up). Yugoslavia has gone mad and shattered all to pieces. The USSR now is transformed into a jigsaw puzzle of hard to pronounce names and a rainbow of colors.
Closer to home it seems the concept of the “Great 48” has been abandoned as we acknowledge the “Fab 50.” Puerto Rico is on a path to making it 51 and destroying our flag design! Are Guam and Samoa next? Poor little Sri Lanka and Burma have vanished and disquieting rumors abound of Scotland, Wales and the Channel Islands.
I’m aghast at the Wikipedian predictions of California’s secession and/or dropping into the ocean. Confusion reigns. A geography class in college might have helped. But I was a theater major.
Restroom art and inspiration
I know not how the new LGBT generated toilet regulations will affect the senior women, but they are sure to create a different world for the men and their long dependence on the facilities as repositories of inspirational works and literary endeavors.
This is clearly demonstrated in a friend’s one-of-a-kind table once the wall of a Yale University men’s room stall. The pristine, white marble slab, a goldfish bowl or pot of geraniums alternately filling the hole in the center, is the stunning focal point of his patio. New guests are encouraged to peek underneath where they find the site festooned with art, poetry and phone numbers. Careful examination reveals varying degrees of artistic aptitude and displays of an appalling lack of anatomical knowledge.
Chuckles are chucked at the naughty puns and tsk-tsks are tsked at the sad examples of wishful exaggeration. Such is the case in many a men’s room. Contrariwise, women’s room walls, I assume, are unadorned except for occasional dainty flower art or, in a sweet, childish hand “Kathy loves Richerd.” The atmosphere sadly lacks the stimulation, humor and sober contemplation available to men as they do their business. With these thoughts, I conclude the new directives concerning the seating (or standing) areas for all genders and persuasions, with its implied sterility (of the walls), bodes ill for creative minds and limits the space for those wishing to advertise their talents.
Building new stalls is not in itself a problem, but to another point: discovering condom machines next to those dispensing feminine products will be unsettling for many. Some, I suspect, will have to have them explained.
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