Monday, January 23, 2012


It amazes me how often people are ashamed of things over which they have no control. Like bodily function. I thought about it today in the bathroom at work. You know how, when you're in a public bathroom, you don't want anyone to hear a single noise. Here in Japan, they'll go as far as flushing the toilet while they use it, so you can't hear. Or in some cases, Japan's complicated toilets, there are buttons which make a flushing noise, or better yet, play music.

This particular toilet unfortunately doesn't sing. It just has the most complicated bidet system known to man.

This shame doesn't just stay in the restroom. It's all around.

When your legs stick to the plastic of your chair and make a funny noise when you get up
When a girl first gets her monthly visitor
Diarrhea (Gastroenteritis is interesting in that people will freely talk about food coming back up one end, but not about it running out the other)
The first time you let one rip (belch or fart) in front of a new friend or significant other
One time, a coworker was ashamed about how little urine he put in the urine container for the medical

These things are all natural and happen to everybody or a majority of people. But it's not even just in the physical. We're ashamed of many other things that we can't change.

People are often ashamed of they best they can be because it's less than what someone else can do. Some people are ashamed of getting a B grade, even when they try their hardest. Some people are ashamed when by the efforts they make at something creative or technical or academic. I was ashamed today at the gym, when a senior citizen "ran laps around me" on the treadmill.

I think the most common thing that people are ashamed of is failure. When your effort isn't good enough, or it doesn't measure up to someone else's. But it's just like it was with the physical, everybody goes through these things. Everybody has something they wish they were better at. Additionally, many of the people you compare yourself to, are good now, because they were once bad and pressed through it. They once failed in the most epic of ways, but knew that success lies on the sunny side of Mt. Failure.

There's no shame in being human. The only shame is in not trying to be a good one.

It's Monday, that's what's on my mind. (And yes, I did think through the bones of this post over a Japanese squatty potty.  Brings new meaning to "brain in the toilet.")

 I took this picture in a bathroom at the 8th station on Mt Fuji. (Seriously!) Apparently, Elvis drops his pink, frilly shorts to use a squatty potty and a cat cheers him on. The air is pretty rare on Fuji.


Jolene Perry said...

GREAT post.

There's no shame in being human. The only shame is in not trying to be a good one

LOVE this.

Marsha Sigman said...

LOL. I love that pic of the first potty. I wants it bad. I'm a multiple flusher from wayyy back.ha

Shari Green said...

Ha! That drawing does look like Elvis (the hairdo, anyway -- not so sure about the, um... bottom end). LOL

Love your comment about "the only shame is in not trying to be a good one".

Alice Starr said...

Funny in reality! Nice blog


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