Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Bare Essentials

This is my first post for Bathroom Blogfest 2011.  It's kind of weird to admit that I've been taking pictures of bathrooms all year with this in mind... 

Let's start at the beginning with toilet paper.  Is it really too much to ask to have a roll of toilet paper that actually rolls? A roll of toilet paper that doesn't force me to claw like a hamster to pull out a thin, square of paper? These two pictures were taken in a Wegman's (of course) restaurant.  Not only was there free rolling toilet paper, there were extra rolls!  Talk about customer service.

I would like to wash my hands with water. I don't want to wave my hands up and down and side to side in front of a faucet. I want water when I want water.  How many times have I had to simply GIVE UP and use the little bottle of  Purell I've learned to carry with me every where for just these situations. Sigh.

And last but not least, if and when I am successful at getting water, I want to be able to dry my hands on PAPER TOWELS.  I don't want to hot air blowing on my hands. Note I specifically didn't say  hot air *drying* my hands, because it never does.  And the automatic hand dryers have the same flaw as the automatic faucets do; I can never figure out how to wave my hands in such a way as to turn them on.

Next post will include photographs of public bathrooms that exceeded the bare essentials standard.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A Few Observations on Books

Another fall, another group of freshman.  Here are a few comments about books from the beginning of fall semester.

  • Freshman are clueless as to how to buy their books. It makes sense. They never had to buy their books in high school.  Though you would think an RA or someone would tell them about buying books. (This observation comes from seeing dozens of hysterical comments in the freshman facebook page.)
  • Freshman still buy a lot, maybe even most, of their textbooks from the bookstore. They pretty quickly figure out that it's less expensive to buy them online.  But initially they think they MUST have the textbook for the first day of class. Of course that's not true, and there are many classes where the textbook is rarely used.  By sophomore year, they mostly seem to buy them online.
  • Anecdotally  we seemed to have lots more inquiries at the circulation desk from students asking if we have their textbooks.  Is it because of the downturn in the economy?  Are tour guides telling them we have textbooks?  WE have some, especially in the Carlson Science and Engineering Library, but certainly not all of them.  I wonder if we should pursue them more aggressively?
  • I have one freshman who is renting an online textbook. Who knew???