Deep Thoughts

Things have been running really smoothly at work. After 3 years here we really have our shit together and the operation pretty much takes care of itself. This lull in activity is a welcome respite and has given me some time for contemplation and reflection. Deep thought, philosophical musings, as it were. Consequently, I came up with a list of things that have recently pissed me off.


It Ain’t Rockettoaster Science

Rocket Toaster V1 – Now THIS could be confusing.

So we have these toasters in every DFAC that are very common on buffets and in military messes around the world. They’re the ones that have a sort of wire conveyor belt. The idea is: you put your bread in one end, it gets carried along between hot elements to toast. It then falls off the end of the belt inside the machine and slides down to the front where you pick it up. They’re really a pretty decent, efficient design unless:

PICK. IT. UP.

1. An amnesiac has used it before you. How the fuck do you put bread in a toaster, walk away and forget to pick it up when it comes out 30 seconds later? What else are you doing in the DFAC besides getting your damn breakfast? Follow on bread, i.e. mine, then gets trapped behind the offenders. This happens far more often than one would think possible. Idjits!

2. They don’t actually toast the bread. Very often, the temperature and belt speed controls (which, obviously, determine the darkness of the toast) don’t actually do anything and you sometimes have to put the bread through several times.Maybe I’m just being pedantic but I think that to be called a toaster, it must actually toast.

Stupid is as stupid does.

3. An absolute moron has used the toaster before you. Last week, in the Northline, I went to use the toaster and there was an entire sandwich…meat, cheese, bread laying in a disgusting heap in the pick up tray of the toaster. I’ve used my incredible CGI skills to produce this illustration of what happens inside the toaster. Who in their right mind would expect a sandwich to endure being flipped upside down and dropped onto a slope? Then they just go and leave it there because it is a hideous mass of ex-sandwich. Just today, I saw a soldier (I won’t divulge what country he was from but his last name ended in “escu”) loading two pieces of bread into the toaster with a slice of cheese on top of each. I was going to say something but I really wanted to see how this was going to work out for him. Predictably (at least I predicted it…he looked surprised) the bread and cheese glued themselves to the sloped area way back inside the very hot toaster. As he reached way in to get it I thought “Burn yourself, oh please, burn yourself”. Sadly, he managed to extract the bread without injury but he looked less than thrilled with the idea of eating the smeared cheese with burned crumbs all over it.

Tip for newbies: When the foil wrapped butter is too hard, place it on top of the toaster as your bread goes through. Do not send it through the toaster on top of your bread (yes, I’ve seen it done).

This Is A Desert?

Seriously?

The rain and mud has started. Two days ago, we even had goddamn snow! What the hell? It’s been colder here on some days than it has been at home and I live in Canada fer chrissakes. I don’t like the cold. I was pretty sure I had something called Raynaud’s Phenomenon because I found it on the internet. I told my doctor about it. He did a bunch of tests. It turns out I’m just a wuss.

Anyhow, not only has it been cold but it has been bloody wet. Luckily our new accommodations are on higher ground than our old ones but we’re still not immune. It turns out the concrete foundation of the building is cleverly designed at one end to remove all the water from the outside stoop by funneling it under the door and into the hallway.

That ain’t right. I oughta do something. I know. I’ll write a blog.

Not eloquent prose but they’ll help too, I suppose.

I very helpfully took pictures of the water and hid in my room at the dry end of the hall as I studiously contemplated how to properly document this for the world wide web, the results of which you are reading now. To be fair, some of the others did their small bit to help in this crisis too. Something involving squeegees, mops and sandbags I understand. Not everyone can do the important jobs like mine, so thanks for taking care of the trivial stuff guys.

Abysmal Ablutions

I know I’ve talked about various issues surrounding the washrooms in our accommodations and the associated etiquette before. However, there are some recent developments and ongoing issues that I just can’t let go without comment.

What the hell is up with the “bucket shower”? Some of our “flatmates” use a bucket to carry their toiletries to the shower room…soap, shampoo, etc. That seems reasonable enough. While I haven’t seen it myself, J tells me some folks then get into the shower stall with the bucket, fill it up, close the curtain and turn off the water. J has then heard “thrashing and splashing” going on. I asked him if they were washing out of the bucket. He answered “I would assume. I didn’t open the fucking curtain to find out for sure.” This made no sense to me. How is that more efficient than taking a shower? “Perhaps they are just frolicking as one is wont to do at the beach“, I suggested. J expressed concern for my mental health.

My feet are filthy! Now, if I can just manage to lift my foot high enough to get it in that sink.I wish there was another option!

This bucket shower, at least, doesn’t impact those of us who don’t partake. The sink shower, however, is more obtrusive. It happens in various forms. The one I witnessed involved running water at the sink with one’s shirt off and splashing water (in a seemingly frolicksome way I might add) all over the upper body, head, hair, floor, mirror, and walls. On one occasion, even over the door of a stall of which I was the unlucky occupant. Others have reported people washing one foot at a time in the sink. While I admire their physical balance, their mental balance is questionable. Please bear in mind…we have showers! We even have a thingy that looks custom designed for foot washing. What the hell is going on?!?

Did that shit come off your body??

Speaking of showers. You remember the sign that says not to wash anything besides yourself in the washrooms? Well, I don’t think it’s being adhered to. Look at all that shit in the bottom of the shower. This stall is right beside the goddam foot washer or whatever the hell it is that is pictured above. They can’t use that? They have to use a shower stall? Ugh…

Now I know you’ve heard enough about the poo water on the floor. Tough shit. I have to live with it. The least you can do is read about it. As usual,there was moisture on the floor of the bathroom today. It was kinda brown. Now, it’s very muddy and wet outside so it is certainly conceivable that this could’ve been just muddy water tracked in. Photographic evidence suggests otherwise. You can see in the left photograph that the wet area begins outside one of the “squatter” stalls and runs towards the top of the picture (where the floor drain is). In the right picture, you can see a clear, brownish line where water has run down the edge of the raised floor of the squatter stall (yeah, that hole in the floor is the “toilet”…to each his own). Maybe it’s just water that has been sullied by muddy boots but my contention is that any water that runs out of a toilet stall (particularly one with a poo atomiser) is poo water by default.

Investigative journalism at its best.

On the bright side, I know that at least one person in our building has graduated from the “I don’t wash my hands after using the toilet” crowd into the “(sidelong glance) uhoh, there’s somebody else in here, I had better run my hands quickly under the tap so he doesn’t say anything but I’m not gonna use soap, no way, no soap” crowd. Baby steps.

Bottom Line

“In sum, thought and reflection have been rendered thoroughly pointless by the circumstances in which modern men and women live and act.” – Jacques Ellul

People, they’re the worst!” – Jerry Seinfeld

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4 thoughts on “Deep Thoughts

  1. Isn’t it great living on base? How about when some of these 19 year old geniuses destroy the shower heads or leave their underwear, socks or other bits of clothes outside of the shower stall area. Apparently they don’t teach accountability in the Army…

  2. Excellent post today, actually made me laugh out loud and snort the mouthful of Fresca I was attempting to drink while reading!!!! When will I learn NOT to drink and read your posts??
    Glad to hear that you do not have Raynauds Phenomenon, especially considering it usually affects women, especially in the second, third, or fourth decades of life.

    Do you ever get the feeling that poo in some form or another is going to haunt you for the rest of your life?

  3. You ALMOST out did yourself today kafoodie!!! Now I am going to wash my hands in my nice new bathroom sink before grilling up some giant new yorkers!

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