Question the Bathroom

Have you ever stopped to really think about bathrooms? Like, really questioned the prevailing standards of how bathrooms are designed? I’m of the belief that not too many people have done that, because if they had, there’d probably be more options on the market. 

I mean, almost every bathroom I’ve come across in this part of the world is a variation on the same theme: chair-like toilet that’s too high for optimal positioning, sink that’s too low to be really useful, shower freshly scrubbed with toxic chemicals and maybe a bath. Other common inclusions are fairly poor ventilation, and a cup of toothbrushes placed mere centimetres from the toilet. 

You get where I’m going with this. Contemporary bathrooms are unhealthy, not to mention wasteful. We’re just so used to them being the way they are that we don’t imagine they could be any other way. It’s like, if you were doing a bathroom remodel, would you consider a composting squat toilet? Probably not, unless you’re one of the few people who’ve taken a nerdy interest in toilet design. The rest of us just default to what’s on the market, wrongly assuming that toilet manufacturers know best. That’s fair – we don’t have the plague, right? But it’s still wrong. 

Don’t even get my started on contemporary kitchen design. Melbourne homes might have beautiful, functional kitchens, but there are plenty of ways they could be improved to radically minimise energy wastage. People are generally a bit more open to talking about this than they are to discussing bathroom makeovers. I don’t know if it’s because they unconsciously consider talking about toilets to be uncouth, or because they don’t want to face facts because they’ll then have to do something about it.

It could also be that they just don’t believe there’s anything wrong with the current design. That doesn’t surprise me, given that it artfully conceals the more horrifying aspects of the space, such as its connection to a sewerage system.