Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Japanese toilets

I'm back safely from Tokyo, and since toilets are a popular topic on this blog, I thought I'd comment on the hi-tech toilets common there.

The attached photo is from the men's room in a karaoke bar I visited last night. You'll notice the wiring and motor apparatus on the left of the lid. There is also a control panel on the right, with a whole number of buttons and switches, all in Japanese of course.

These toilets commonly have heated seats, automated seat and lid operation, little robot arms with warmed water and air for washing those sensitive parts, scent dispensers, and sound generators to either mask the noise of the user's functions, or to soothe the user for a more successful result. I'm not exaggerating; see here for a summary of Japanese toilet tricks.

I thought the hardest thing I had to do last evening was to hit the high notes in ABC's "The Look of Love" in front of a dozen colleagues, but no, I had to figure out how to flush—and only flush— this toilet at 1AM, especially after the ingestion of a number of alcoholic drinks. Thankfully, I managed it with no problems, which I can't say for my rendition later that night of The Jackson 5's "I Want You Back".


Margaret said...

This is my favorite blog post yet! Brilliant! Would have paid good money to see you figuring out the toilet panel (would pay good money to own one of those babies!) and please please please tell me that somewhere someone is holding film footage of you hitting those high notes. Come on now, your loyal readers want the whole show!

Anonymous said...

At least you didn't send us another picture of you sitting on one!!

Don said...

Marg- I have lots of hysterical footage of other people singing but none of me. However, there were a lot of cameras in the room, so I'm sure there will be Zapruder-like clips surfacing soon. Stay tuned.