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Nowhere to Go

By J.J. Gasparotti

A disgusting complaint you hear about tourists, aside from the fact they cost us $4 each, is their predilection for urination and defecation in folks’ gardens. A noted naturalist pointed out the way to differentiate between human scat and animal scat is to look for toilet paper.

This conduct doesn’t endear these visitors to the locals who clean up after them. But these public poopers really aren’t any more to blame than the folks, in slums all over the world, who poop in plastic bags and fling them out the door. Flying toilets is what they call those bags. That’s the only toilet lots of folks have.

Often times the reports of public urination or defecation in Laguna occur in areas where we provide no public toilets. The beaches and parks in the north end are adequately served. But with the exception of Aliso Beach and the Montage, the south end is a public toilet desert. No wonder they’re having these problems.

It’s a sad sight to see a mom, with a couple of small children, approach the lifeguard at a southerly beach to inquire about a public bathroom. “There aren’t any,” is the response. Mothers have been known to say that they’d give blood for more public bathrooms at Laguna’s beaches.

There was a group of fools who tried to fill that need. Their movement to construct public toilets was backed up everywhere they tried to locate some. The neighbors of a proposed site would quickly organize in opposition and hire a lawyer to further their obstruction.

These opponents would always say that anyone needing relief could come to their door and ask to use the toilet in the home. Santa is coming twice this year.

Efforts finally focused on developing toilets in the alley behind Bushard’s Pharmacy. At one point, a senior city staff member concerned about the facility becoming a toilet paper bum’s nest, wanted the door to fly open after five minutes. Can you see our mom now? The kids are done, it’s her turn to have a seat, and the door flies open.

No wonder they’re putting that art monstrosity in the Village Exit. It may be hideous, which is always more expensive than just plain ugly, but it isn’t a bathroom. Everybody knows, you never want a public toilet. God only knows what will go on in them. You’ll just have to clean and stock it.

Folks will use these sanitary facilities instead of a bush or a bag almost every time. It’s a First World thing.

J.J. Gasparotti moved to Laguna Beach with his family when he was 11 years old. He has loved it ever since.

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