Insider's Guide to High School The Tattoo

Flush away your bathroom fear

BRISTOL, Connecticut, U.S.A. — Okay, let’s be honest here. The bathroom is something that we all need to use once in a while.

Hey, it’s a bodily function. And yes, the schools do have them. Maybe only because they’re required to by law, but they have them.

The bathrooms in high school are suitable enough for their purpose. They have all of the needed facilities to carry out your business.

However, taking a trip to one of the local bathrooms placed strategically near your class is more of a production than you think.

First, you have to get permission to go.

This involves finding the appropriate time in class to ask. Teachers may get a little, well, upset if you were to ask to use the facilities in the middle of an extensive lecture on the importance of Hannibal in the history of the world.

Once you’ve found the right time to ask, there’s always the possibility of a negative response.

Teachers enjoy torturing a student’s bladder more than you think.

Once you’ve cleared all of those obstacles, you’ve got to physically get to the bathroom.

This seems simple enough, but it’s more difficult than most realize.

First of all, there’s the pass issue.

Teachers and administrators are a real bear about having a pass at all times when you’re in the hallway during a class.

Since the idea of being found in the hall without one is not too pleasant, teachers are usually willing to give out passes.

However, when they’re in the middle of a class, filling out the little sheet of paper with detailed information is a hassle that most don’t want to deal with.

The solution? You may get sent down to the lav with a pre-made pass, handed down from person to person.

Or, if your teacher is a little less prepared, you may end up carrying whatever they can grab. In the recent history of Bristol Eastern High School, people have arrived at the bathroom carrying anything from a clock to a metal pipe to a 3,000 page dictionary.

A former Italian teacher used to hand out a little Italian flag as a bathroom pass, but gave up the practice when it kept coming back wet.

Once you get permission and a pass, there’s always the trial of finding a real, live, working bathroom.

With the constant construction going on, you may end up traveling to the very opposite end of the school on a different floor just to find a working restroom.

This is why it is always good not to wait until the last minute to ask. It doesn’t matter how fast you can run. If you gotta go, you gotta go.

Once you find a bathroom, you’re greeted with the lovely faces of one of the bathroom attendants. Their job is to, well, attend the bathrooms.

You have to give them your pass and sign in with your name, the date and the time you arrived before you can go in, and do the same when you’re through with your business.

These are nice people. They’re there to help you.

Unfortunately, I was not as lucky as some, and no one told me that and I didn’t use the bathrooms in school all my first year. Hey, I felt intimidated.

Who wants to interrupt a guy reading the paper just because you decided now was a good time to release some of your bodily fluids?

So if you can overcome all the obstacles, you’re free to take a small vacation to the restrooms.

Unless, of course, it’s after school.

For some reason, the bathrooms are always locked after the
bell rings.

So if you plan on sticking around after the school day comes to a close, you should be sure to enroll in the most popular class available — Holding It 101.

Jen Rajotte is a Reporter for Youth Journalism International.

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