3 Crappers, 2 Days, 1 Bladder
After being awakened by Magic’s Silver Hammer one too many times, I decided to go for a long walk. Being the kind of person I am, Dog Shit Queen and all, my sense of noblesse oblige forced me to consider how I could spend this time productively (in the interest of my people). Then it hit me: why not patronize and review Greenpoint’s public lavatories? I have. In explicit detail. As you will see.
- The American Playground
Location: Franklin Street between Milton and Noble Street
- McCarren Park
Location: Nassau Avenue between Bedford and Driggs Avenue
- McGolrick Park (AKA: The Crapper of Death)
Location: Monitor Street between Nassau and Driggs Avenue
Note: I prepared for my toilet-going
jugger pissernaut by drinking several glasses of water followed by copious amounts of iced tea. It worked. I was downright uncomfortable when I reached my first destination…
#1 The American Playground
Number of stalls: 1
Overview: Not many people seem to know about this one. Even I did not give it much thought until several summers ago when I got sick at a street fair on Manhattan Avenue. I cannot explain the pain I felt in my gut that day save to say that it was like having the Battle of Guadalcanal in my bowels. I trotted double-time with the hope that I would make it to this crapper in time. I didn’t. I ended up shitting (if you can call such an involuntary and violent act of purgation that) in front of the rectory on Milton Street. (Sorry padres, but I suppose it’s kosher given I was raised protestant.)
After several frantic calls to my husband, he bought paper towels and met me at the American Park. Even though I didn’t make it to the crapper, I found the fountain they have there very useful to clean myself. I suspect a number of other people hereabouts have used this fixture for a similar purpose. With varying degrees of success.
Observations: In order to reach this privy I had to pass an Algonquin Roundtable of Polish bums replete with its very own Dorothy Parker. Whether or not this woman’s repartee was witty and cutting as Ms. Parker’s is anyone’s guess. I wouldn’t know because:
- She was speaking Polish. I think.
- She wasn’t really “speaking” as you and I know it. It was more akin to screaming.
As I approached the women’s bathroom, the smell of stale piss hit my nostrils. What I beheld inside wasn’t much better.
By all outward appearances the place seemed fairly clean. The fetid odor, puddle of fluid and swarms of flies seemed to indicate otherwise.
That said, toilet paper was plentiful and the toilet seat was dry. Contrary to what many of my fellow females will tell you, we are just as disgusting— if not more so— than men when it comes to spraying piss in public bathrooms with total abandon. In fact, the crimes my fellow XX chromos commit are much more venal given that we sisters have to sit down to do our business. Any chick who has ever fallen prey to stealth piss left on a toilet seat will know exactly what I am talking about.
Soap was plentiful, but paper towels were lacking.
Nonetheless, a garbage can was on duty.
After my first inspection I did a spot of shopping and downed more fluids. I was hot and my feet hurt so I went to San Loco and had a margarita. I consider this a business expense, as I needed something to stimulate urination and wanted to self-medicate before going to my next destination. In hindsight, this was an excellent decision.
#2 McCarren Park
Number of stalls: 2
Overview: This is arguably the most trafficked public restroom in Greenpoint. For this reason my expectations of it were pretty low. The fact that some weird dude was malingering nearby whilest rolling a joint didn’t assauge the prejudices I harbored regarding this public pissoir either.
Observations: Unlike the American Playground, this bathroom didn’t smell. Not any worse than Greenpoint in general, anyway. But it did have a lot trash laying about, despite the presence of a garbage can.
You will notice that this trash can is tethered to the sink with chains. I suspect this was done not out of fear of theft, but rather the likelihood that this recepticle would try to flee from the disgusting people who use this bathroom. I say this because as I was pulling out my camera to take pictures of this public crapper, a rather staturesque and VERY ANGRY parks employee popped out of a door whilest ranting to her co-worker.
Like most heavily painted and ancient doorways I have seen in New York City, I thought this one was no longer in use. It is. And behind it resides some very pissed off civil servants you do NOT want to fuck with. This woman passed by me like I was not even there and yelled:
They throw trash all over the place, don’t even flush the toilet and then complain that this bathroom is dirty. These people are disgusting!
She then punctuated her outburst by throwing a wad of trash in the toilet, flushing it and going back from whence she came. I was more than a little spooked by this, but proceeded to do my duty.
Here is the stall I patronized.
Both the floor and toilet seat were wet. But after I flushed the toilet I noticed that this was probably due to the tsunami-esque water pressure these toilets sport, not errant pee. These toilets are fucking fierce. If there was ever a Kings County Crapper Rumble, these bad boys would win.
Hands Seats down.
Otherwise, I think paper towels were present. I did not document this because frankly I wanted to get the hell out of dodge before that woman came back.
DAY TWO: The Reckoning
I collected my senses, got hydrated and returned to McGolrick Park.
#3 McGolrick Park
Number of stalls: 1
Overview: I have a deep-seated hatred of this bathroom and its employees. Unlike McCarren Park, this one is not patronized by legions of hipsters and bums: its clientele base is mainly the stroller set.
Observations: I had to wait to use this one. This is because “Mommy” was entreating her young ‘un as to whether or not she was “finished”. Clearly she had, or I have would not have had the chance to use this particular toilet. But there was some ‘unfinished business’ for me to contend with nonetheless…
There were bleach puddles on the floor. I had to roll up my pants so they wouldn’t get soaked. The entire bathroom reeked of Clorox— perfect for a humid 80 degree day.
Although I found toilet paper to be plentiful, I found evidence that this is (was) not always so.
The faucet is still fucked up, there was soap, but no paper towels and someone (else) left a gift on the sink. Probably…
because there was no trash can to be found.
What I am to make of the previous data, you ask? Well, Miss Heather has made a handy chart for you.
Statistics aside, here is my advice to fellow Greenpointers regarding our public lavatories:
- Always carry anti-bacterial wipes with you.
- Don’t fuck with the employees at McCarren Park.
They will kick your ass.