Monday, May 09, 2005


Welcome to "The Gods Are Bored," where we support senate filibusters and all other efforts to separate church and state. When the day comes that all Americans embrace druidism - the only True Religion - then we can have a theocracy. But not until then!

Today's topic: What do low-flow toilets and Ronald Reagan have in common?

My many intelligent young Princeton readers are too young to remember Ronald Reagan as anything more than a smiling face on the television, spouting rhetoric read from cue cards. Funny, that's how I remember him too, only I'm not a college kid. I'm a geezer.

Ronald Reagan had this theory called "trickle down." I'm a goat judge, not an economist, so if I get this wrong don't sue me. The theory seemed to go like this: If you make rich people pay less taxes, they'll buy more stuff, creating manufacturing jobs and other perks for the less fortunate. In other words, the newly generated wealth will "trickle down" through the whole economy.

I don't think Ronald Reagan told Americans that the rich would be buying more stuff made in Sri Lanka by kids working 14 hours a day. But hey, the kids need a job, eh?

Whenever I use my low-flow toilet, I think of "trickle down." Because Ronald Reagan's theory didn't work, and neither do low-flow toilets. Low-flow toilets are supposed to cut down on water use (and the bored gods are all for that, they care deeply about non-renewable resources). Trouble is, the doggone things don't perform. You've got to flush them three times to do the job that your Eisenhower era toilet did on the first flush.

In this old house of mine, I could have flushed Jimmy Hoffa down my 1952 potty in one piece. (I didn't, I'm pro-union, you can't pin that on me.) Then comes along a nice bequest from a rich old uncle, a nice new bathroom, and the Ronald Reagan "trickle down" toilet. If the item needing to be flushed is bigger than a quarter, you're going to have to flush and flush and flush and flush. So how much water are we saving? Not a drop. We're deficit spending. And how much did the "trickle down" theory help the average American, say a humble goat judge? Not a damn bit.

I'm working twice as hard to learn 2/3 the income I did in 1995. And I don't think I'm atypical.

Here's my radical solution to using too much water through flushing toilets. I have my Appalachian background to thank for this one.

Let's revive the outhouse.

For those of you who've never used one, that's the little shed with a moon in the door (and a hornets' nest in the roof) where you go to ... well, you know. Let's just say that "turtle dove love" could be performed there, if you have a sack of lime on hand to cover up the evidence.

For every McMansion, an outhouse. No, that wouldn't work. We'd need 5-outhouse McMansions. But oh, how this would stimulate the economy! We'd need a whole new industry to come and suck the stuff out (in the olden days they were called "honey-dippers"). Jobs, folks! Zero water use for bodily functions! And, take it from an old Appalachian American, people. Outhouses are aesthetically pleasing structures. Ever notice how many artsy photographs you see of the few still remaining among us?

I say the government should hire me as a consultant. Such good advice, going to waste on a blog no one reads.

And by the way, for you greenhorns out there: Some outhouses had two holes. Not so two people could use it at the same time. One of the holes was big, one was small. And you judged your entree into adulthood by when you could perch on that bigger hole.

This is the kind of thing they don't teach at Princeton. So if you go to Princeton and you're reading this, I've enriched your fertile brain.

Tomorrow: (gasp!) Kept Women


Brian said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brian said...

I had the same experience with low flow toilets in both new and old houses. I started to believe that toilets NEVER worked because I'm only in my 20s and half my life new houses have had low flow toilets.

Try out the Toto Drake since you can't use Flushmaster in an old house.

Blurezer said...

Love it!!! Im wondering when the US government will admit that the trickle down theory was wrong. They were lets tax tax and tax some more. I see nothing wrong with taxing for better roads, better life, better transportation...