So, What takes you to the toilet?

I know quite a few folks who find inspiration in the bathroom.

I also know creatives who find ideas while they are in the bath, having a shower or sitting in the throne. (No wonder some ads are shisse, right?)

Jokes apart, taking a piss could be quite an inspirational moment too. So much so, a colleague of mine who is a Chicago-based senior creative, used to call every loo-break an “opportunity to find an idea.” Do we find inspiration, do we find ideas, or do we “come-up” with an idea is another point of discussion, but what genuinely baffles me is the connection people have with their bathroom to their brains. Be it a quick dump or an hour-long soak in a bubble bath with a glass of bubbly and someone to share. Both bath, and the bubbly.

I know someone who would take a good book, a pack of cigarettes and shut the door behind – only to spend the whole night on the throne and emerge in the morning with a big smile on her face. A night on the throne without any disturbance and a book covered from cover to cover. (I often used to wonder if she read naked. I wasn’t married then, and I was allowed to have such wonderful thoughts.)

Going back to the topic. I also know people who take the Daily Mirror to the toilet. Then there are some of us who read trash and gossip columns while attending to the matters. Then there are the ones who go in with a book of Sudoku, or a crossword. Oh, the intellectual type.

I’m not even going to talk about the ones who take Playboy to the bathroom.

The new generation (jeez, I feel so old) has their inseparable gadgets and their digital life continues non-stop without a loo-break. Soon there might be a day when there’s a little stamp at the end of a mail that reads “sent from the loo, via my Blackberry.” Be it the Blackberry, the iPhone or a simple phone with a tiny monochrome monitor, 140-character input is all you need to stay in touch with the world. Besides, one’s private life ain’t so private anymore thanks to social networking, and there is no harm in letting the world know that you are taking a good dump. Besides, that’s a sign of good health too. Right?

So what do you take to the toilet? A book? The newspaper? Your mobile? Or just a quick cigarette? I’m not talking about the days you are constipated, I was just wondering about our habitual rituals and morning regimes...


  1. an archie comic and my vocal chords

  2. my phone, I like listening to music in the echo-y abyss that is the bathroom! ;) lol

    and a nice warm bath always gets my creative juices (if I have any) flowing... :D

  3. readers digest or anything I can grab my hand on (readable material I mean) while running towards the loo

  4. Strangely, I don't take anything - I always like to my bathroom stay as short as possible.

    Though, when I'm extremely tired and felt like having a hot water bath (not shower), I usually take a glass of wine.

  5. a book and a smoke

  6. At home it's usually a good book. Anywhere else and I'm in and out as quickly as possible.

  7. Haha, great post. I get the loo thing. I've actually been struggling to get back into reading these days so I think I might resurrect the old reading-in-the-loo habit again.

    Also, so many of my posts have come to me in the shower. I think it's because it's the only time of day where I can truly relax. I *love* long showers. And thoughts just tend to wash over you with the water. It's great for creativity. Mm :)

    Btw, sorry about the email confusion!

  8. my phone.

    or my imagination. :D

  9. Thank you guys for your feedback. Quite interesting, to say the least!

    @Dee: Archies? Wow!
    @Chavie: see, the new gen kids - the Phone! ;)
    @Surani: Anything you can grab while running to the loo..? LOL, can’t help but that statement makes my imagination run wild. Sorry..!
    @Sach: Bro, you are like me. Ever since the kids came in to my life, I have lost my quality time on the throne. And the bloody apartment here has no bath to indulge in..!
    @Anonymous: Smokes it was, once upon a time for me too.
    @RD: Hah ha ha, in and out – very true.
    @Gypsy: Agree with you on the shower thing, I too love long, warm showers. Should keep a pad of stickies and a pencil handy in the bathroom, it helps.
    @black: Phone AND imagination sounds better. ;)

  10. I wonder how many comments you will get on this post. It seems like it has a greater volume of comments than some of your others. Plan to check back and see how many people want to share their secret activity!

  11. Like Dee said my vocals chords and maybe like a good unputdownable fiction.

  12. Gadgetgirl, I guess reading material rank at the top. And I too think “unputdownable” should be officially English. ;)

  13. oh well...most of the time its the weekend newspaper..

  14. I read about 5 minutes each day in the toilet. I read many great books this way. Of course it takes a long time to finish a book, but these are the books that I wouldn't otherwise read.

    "Guns, Germs, and Steel" by Jared Diamond, "Collapse" by Jared Diamond, "The Road from Damascus" by Scott Davis, "1491" by Charles Mann, "Team of Rivals" by Doris Kearns, "Life of Pi" by Yann Martel, "The Looming Tower" by Lawrence Wright, "A Murder In Ceylon" by Ravindra Fernando, "Lucy's Child" by Donald Johanson, and "Paris 1919" by Margaret McMillan are few notable books that I finished reading in the toilet. I am reading "Mao" by Jung Chang these days and I am at page 438. :-)