Reclaiming Rest Area Rest Rooms . . .

MORE REST ROOM SCENES . . .

"FUTURE HUBBER REST ROOM." AND THE PHOTO SAYS IT ALL.
"FUTURE HUBBER REST ROOM." AND THE PHOTO SAYS IT ALL.
SEE THIS MACHINE? HAND TOWELS ARE INSIDE. BY FAR, BROWN HAND TOWELS ARE MORE POPULAR THAN A HOT AIR DRYER BY A RATIO OF 3 TO 1.
SEE THIS MACHINE? HAND TOWELS ARE INSIDE. BY FAR, BROWN HAND TOWELS ARE MORE POPULAR THAN A HOT AIR DRYER BY A RATIO OF 3 TO 1.
THIS HAS TO BE THE SCARIEST MOMENT OF ANYONE'S EXISTENCE. USE THE REST ROOM AND FIND THAT THERE IS NO TISSUE. AND NO ONE TO CALL.
THIS HAS TO BE THE SCARIEST MOMENT OF ANYONE'S EXISTENCE. USE THE REST ROOM AND FIND THAT THERE IS NO TISSUE. AND NO ONE TO CALL.
THE HOT AIR HAND DRYER. WHAT A NOVEL INVENTION. FACT IS, IT'S SLOWER THAN THE CONVENTIONAL HAND TOWELS.
THE HOT AIR HAND DRYER. WHAT A NOVEL INVENTION. FACT IS, IT'S SLOWER THAN THE CONVENTIONAL HAND TOWELS.
A "HUBBER'S REST ROOM," I THREW THIS ONE IN FOR RESPECT TO ALL OF OUR HUBBERS.
A "HUBBER'S REST ROOM," I THREW THIS ONE IN FOR RESPECT TO ALL OF OUR HUBBERS.
NICE. CLEAN. SPOTLESS. THIS CANNOT BE AN INTERSTATE REST ROOM.
NICE. CLEAN. SPOTLESS. THIS CANNOT BE AN INTERSTATE REST ROOM.
THIS IS A GARDEN-VARIETY REST ROOM. WITH DOORS THAT GO ONLY HALFWAY TO THE FLOOR. MY IDEA WOULD HAVE THEM GO ALL THE WAY DOWN. AND WITH DEAD-BOLT LOCKS.
THIS IS A GARDEN-VARIETY REST ROOM. WITH DOORS THAT GO ONLY HALFWAY TO THE FLOOR. MY IDEA WOULD HAVE THEM GO ALL THE WAY DOWN. AND WITH DEAD-BOLT LOCKS.
SKIMPY URINALS FOR GUYS IN THEIR REST ROOMS. NO WONDER GUYS ARE DEPRESSED WHEN THEY 'DO THEIR BUSINESS' AND GET BACK IN THE CAR.
SKIMPY URINALS FOR GUYS IN THEIR REST ROOMS. NO WONDER GUYS ARE DEPRESSED WHEN THEY 'DO THEIR BUSINESS' AND GET BACK IN THE CAR.
A TYPICAL REST ROOM. BUT WITH A LOVING ADDITION: A BATHTUB. WHAT A REFRESHING DEPARTURE FOR INTERSTATE TRAVELERS.
A TYPICAL REST ROOM. BUT WITH A LOVING ADDITION: A BATHTUB. WHAT A REFRESHING DEPARTURE FOR INTERSTATE TRAVELERS.
THIS IS A NICE REST ROOM. LOOK AT THE NICE FIXTURES. WHY CAN'T OUR FIFTY STATES HAVE REST AREA REST ROOMS SUCH AS THIS ONE?
THIS IS A NICE REST ROOM. LOOK AT THE NICE FIXTURES. WHY CAN'T OUR FIFTY STATES HAVE REST AREA REST ROOMS SUCH AS THIS ONE?
THE AFTER-PARTY REST ROOM GIVING ALMS TO "THE MORNING AFTER."
THE AFTER-PARTY REST ROOM GIVING ALMS TO "THE MORNING AFTER."
THIS IS A 'HORROR' REST ROOM. AND IVE SEEN MANY IN MY TRAVELS ON INTERSTATES IN THE USA THAT LOOKED MUCH LIKE THIS ONE.
THIS IS A 'HORROR' REST ROOM. AND IVE SEEN MANY IN MY TRAVELS ON INTERSTATES IN THE USA THAT LOOKED MUCH LIKE THIS ONE.
UNREACHABLE REST ROOM. TRULY A HEART-STOPPING SIGHT.
UNREACHABLE REST ROOM. TRULY A HEART-STOPPING SIGHT.

There you are. Travelling down the interstate. In the picturesque state of Arizona. In your Mercedes convertible. Yeah, you are having one 'whale of a time'--listening to your favorite rock and roll oldies FM station. You are waiting for "Take It Easy," by the Eagles. Your all-time favorite song. You are laid-back. RayBan's in place. Hair looking good. Blowing in the wind. One hand on the wheel. Single. Almost living in a euphoric state. To you, Mr. Average Citizen, life is sweet.

. . .please let me expound . You have a girl in Tucson, your hometown. But you also have a hottie in San Diego, where you are going. Her name is "Muffy." Your girl's name in Tucson is "Jan." Jan likes Country Rock music. Beer. And shrimp. Muffy likes Jack Daniels #7 shots. Van Halen. And skimpy salads. You're almost buzzed with happiness bubbling up inside you like a can of Seven-Up, that's been shaken vigorously. Could your life get any better?

Then, without a calling card. Phone call. Or friendly 'heads up,' it hits you. 'That' time. Those seven Miller Lite's, and three large iced teas you had way at that off-ramp restaurant, Gary's Gulp-O-Rama, are 'demanding payment.' Yeah, Mother Nature is never late. Didn't you learn this in your remedial health class in grade school? Or were you too carried away with Mary Louise Decker, who was, as we will say for decency's sake, 'advanced in her development,' for her age. Either way. You are going to have to stop at the nearest rest room. Or be faced with a 'redneck solution,' of parking your car off the side of the highway, running into the thick, wooded area. And 'doing your business'--while fearing that some trucker. Biker. Or church bus filled with impressionable teens will see you and ask "Bro. Samuel," the driver, "what was that man doing in the woods? He had a scary look on his face and his Docker slacks were unzipped." Funny how sharp teen's eyes are.

Isn't it strange. Like a car that runs great when you are going to trade it in. That rest rooms are never close when you travel our magnificent interstate highway system? But when you are relaxed. Not a care in the world. Rest rooms are in abundance. Too many to use. This is not one of those times.

Now, all you see on billboards along the interstate are ads about swimming in the clear waterfalls of Bermuda. Drinking the pure water of Arkansas, that make you want to relieve yourself even worse. But until you find a roadside, rest area rest room, you are forced to stall for time. Trying desperately to fool your body into believing that your kidneys do not need to act. And this works. For a little while. Your mental game of "Oriental Mental Discipline," you happened to see on The Learning Channel last week almost paid off. Your bladder is now burning like molten lava. Your hands shake. Sweat pops out on your head. Neck. Face. You are not that religious, but you pray harder than any priest for God to magically place a rest room. Or even a port-a-potty (abandoned by state workers) in the next quarter mile.

Then, like a prayer answered, there she sits. An interstate rest area. With a sign that to you is more valuable than the Mona Lisa, for it reads: Clean Rest Rooms Inside. You let out a sigh of relief. And thank God that you didn't wet your brand-new Docker slacks that your mom gave you on your birthday last week. What great timing you have. You could have been a great poker player. Now you are 'all in.' Ready to use this interstate rest room that you are glad wasn't an 'interstate mirage.'

After parking your car, you walk inside the rest area building where you see various pamphlets on why you should "See Rock City," "Billy Goat Caverns," or why you should "Visit Hillbilly Mountain," in the state-approved pamphlet table. And road maps by the score. But these attractions can wait. Now, main goal is finding the men's room. Now. Ahhh. Pay dirt. You push the steel door open that's bent from someone's fist in a drug-induced rage. Walk inside. And then bombarded with an aroma that would equal the high-tech weapon of World War II, Mustard Gas. Actually it's the combination of ammonia, bleach, and those round plastic, hockey-puck look alike's the rest area employees place in the urinals. But you do not complain. You are grateful to find this rest room. Or are you?

As you are 'doing your business,' you cannot help but notice just how under-funded this state is in relation to their rest area rest rooms. Deplorable. Awful. And drab. Down-right depressing. Female dogs have given birth to their babies here. Vulgar graffiti. Gang symbols everywhere. Phone numbers of 'friendly' girls, that you do jot down for you never know when loneliness will strike. And enough profanities to make even the roughest Marine blush with embarrassment. Something has to be done, you think to yourself as you zip up your Dockers. Something good. And something needful to save one of our national treasures: our interstate rest rooms.

You make your trip to see "Muffy," your other girlfriend in San Diego, short. She gets in a snit at you leaving. She had planned on you meeting her parents, two retired professors from UCLA, but this was a 'marital warning sign' to you, so you vamoosed. (That means left quickly). You can't waste your time on martial things. Meeting "Tom" and "Judith," the retired prof's from UCLA. You got a mission to accomplish. A mission that may take its toll on your health. Public image. And mental state.

You just have to get to Washington, D.C., to meet with President Barack Obama to bring this urgent matter to his attention. The condition of interstate rest area restrooms. An area that our presidents, their administrations and the numerous elected and reelected congressmen and senators have blatantly forgotten.

This is sad, the terrible conditions of interstate rest area rest rooms, you think to yourself as you get on the turnpike that runs parallel to Muffy's front yard. A tear slowly makes it way down your cheek. Somehow you will miss Muffy. But not her parents. And certainly not being her husband. 'civil crusaders,' like you, cannot afford to be tied down. Settled. And tamed.

You need your freedom to right this wrong. Muffy, as attractive as she is, will meet another guy, you rationalize. Then continue your trip back to your hometown, Tucson, Arizona, where Jan, your steady girl waits for you. Jan will realize something has changed about you since he saw you last. Something has turned you from being laid-back. Cool. Suave. To a fiery-eyed. Man who cares for the needs of others. She is so happy that she dare not ask you to explain.

And you know, "I" can agree with our 'civil crusader." The interstate rest area rest rooms I've ever used are like the ones that our hero used. Deplorable. Less-than-adequate. Far-below average. Not even close to being the clean. Shiny symbols of pride that made visitors to their states feel a sense of comfort. Ease. And security.

I think I can explain this guy's concern. And it's really very simple. If you have ever watched those Federal Government Budget Reports shown on CNN, Fox News, and other news networks, you never hear Barack Obama, or any president discuss funding for our fifty-states' interstate rest area rest rooms, do you? I've never heard anything from our president, current or past, about how our interstate rest area rest rooms can be upgraded to facilities that dedicated travelers can be proud of.

Instead, you see (and hear) bickering about what to cut. What not to cut from our Federal Budget. And how states will have to 'suck it up,' as some Washington legislators say under their breath. But what about our interstate rest area rest rooms? Aren't they as important as "some" of the "pork barrel legislation," that gets funded by our government? "Important" projects such as a "Study of The Sex Life of Elderly Alligators," to the tune of $560,000; "Why Birds Fly South," costing $500,767. And a grant of $1.5 million dollars to find out "Why Sand is Heavier When Wet," you know. Projects that will surely impact our lives in America. It's happening. And happens all the time in Washington. Why do these "enlightened" legislators start cutting the budget with these asinine studies?

I could easily make the argument for upgrading every one of the fifty states interstate rest area rest rooms on the following points alone. Mind you, I am not talking about any changes to your household bathrooms. Just the ones in our rest areas off interstate highways in our country.


Upgrading Interstate Rest Area Rest Rooms Would Produce . . .



  • Happier people - When road-weary travelers see how nice. Clean. And good-smelling the newly-upraded rest area rest rooms are, they leave happier. Drive more carefully. Fact is, a happier person pays more attention to the road. Thus, a drastic fall in auto accidents on the interstate highways.
  • Less Violence - interstate rest area's are sometimes used for gang violence. Drug deals. And more shady activities. With a huge upgrade, new security lights could be installed along with giving our glorious fifty states cleaner. Nicer rest rooms. No gang member wants to be seen in a well-lighted rest area. And certainly not be in a clean-smelling rest room. His gang buddies would laugh at him for having that "nice" aroma on him and ultimately tell him to leave the gang. You see? Another problem solved. Gangs and the drugs they peddle at rest areas.
  • More Jobs - in this new federal government Interstate Rest Room Upgrade Budget, I would ask for additional monies to hire more personnel for rest areas. The employees I've actually seen at the rest areas I've visited, are all minimum-wage earners. Not happy at their work. Depressed at wearing some shabby. Outdated state unform. Give these employees a nice uniform. A uniform that makes the wearer proud of his job as a Rest Area Custodian and Rest Room Observer. And with a good raise to boot. Better working conditions. Better pay. Equals less stress. Tension. And domestic violence.

Real Rest Room Comfort - "my" ideas for interstate rest area rest rooms would be:

a nicer. More-comfortable color than the drab color of gray that is used in today's rest area rest rooms. Bring on the green. Light brown. Something that's easy on the eyes. Maybe a painting of a meadow with prancing deer. Birds flying. Yeah, that sounds great.

soft music, maybe some soothing sounds of nature, flooding your senses when you visit a rest area rest room. Soft music makes one relax. Eases tension. No telling at the "family feuds" this would stop. The ladies' rest rooms would be in a soft pastel color and have huge, gold-framed mirrors--both full-length and regular. And complimentary make-up on the counters.

safer stalls make for safer rest room times . No one really wants to "do their business," in a rest area rest room when they are in fear of someone smashing down the door and mugging them for whatever money and credit cards they have. Rest room time is a personal time. Designed to be relaxing. Restful. I suggest a heavier door that goes all the way to the floor, not halfway like they are now. And install dead-bolt locks on the inside, and then you have the near-perfect rest area rest room.

reading materials for men and women. In each stall, there would be a current selection of Sports Illustrated, Field and Stream and Mechanics Illustrated, for the guys. And for the ladies, Cosmo, Red book, and Chicken Soup for The Soul, to read in total-comfort. And relaxation. This idea would further relax the rest room user giving him or her a safer ride down the road.

complimentary air freshener and breath spray for rest room users to take with them down the road. It's the little niceties that would make "my" rest area rest rooms a lot better than they are now.

a place to relax , namely a soft-but-sturdy cot with a comfy mattress to lounge on if you need that extra nap and rest before continuing down the interstate to your Aunt Jessie or Grandma Katherine's house. This inexpensive addition would be in a secure room to the side of both men's and women's restrooms.

to make the ladies feel special , I'd have the rest area attendants place a bouquet of red roses in the ladies' rest rooms to make them feel extra special. This idea can't lose.

free cold drinks in an automated cooler outside the rest rooms with the latest drinks, non-alcoholic of course, to refresh. Uplift. And recharge our road-weary travelers before they 'hit the highway' again.

My final item would be to re-educate, or educate, the rest area manager and attendants, to enable them to answer most every question conceivable by any tourist visiting their state. This would eliminate frustration. And confusion one-hundred percent. Remember the old saying, "an educated traveler is a happy traveler," and soon, word-of-mouth talk would spread from the satisfied. Happy travelers about great the rest rooms are. How educated the rest area employees at knowing 'their stuff,' about that state, and before you know it, more people with spending money would travel to that state. Thus helping that state's economy.

You see, Mr. President. Okay, you told me to call you Barack. How much better our country would be with this one simple step. To upgrade, to the finest level possible, every rest area rest room in the United States.

And just look at the new jobs this one bill would create. Both Democrats and Republicans would agree on this part of my revolutionary rest area rest room reclaimation act.

People would be so grateful that they would be visiting other states just to use their rest rooms.

OKAY. SO THIS HUB

IS ABOUT REST AREA REST ROOMS

one of the needed-places that we all have to visit when we travel our beautiful United States. But have you taken the time to really look at how deplorable some of our rest area rest rooms are, by way of looks. Condition. And overall image? Horrible.

If visitors to our country judge us Americans by the condition of our rest area rest rooms, then we are in deep trouble. I personally think that "image is everything," and cleaner. Nicer rest area rest rooms would lead to more-friendly relations with those countries who aren't so friendly with us now in 2012.

Think about it.

To learn more about rest areas . . .

An Oasis For The Interstate Traveler . . .

MY IDEA OF THE PERFECT REST ROOM. RELAXING WALL COLORS. CLEAN WINDOWS. CLEAN FIXTURES. FLOORS. A NICE PLACE TO VISIT ON THE WINDING INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS OF THE USA.
MY IDEA OF THE PERFECT REST ROOM. RELAXING WALL COLORS. CLEAN WINDOWS. CLEAN FIXTURES. FLOORS. A NICE PLACE TO VISIT ON THE WINDING INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS OF THE USA.

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Comments 18 comments

Deborah Brooks profile image

Deborah Brooks 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

Kenneth, I so agree.. so many times I look for a restroom and they are so dirty or need a key or no toilet paper.. UGH!!! LOL.. Oh to have a soft and cuddly place..to go rest.. Love your HUB as usual.

I voted up

Debbie


tamron profile image

tamron 4 years ago

Great illustration of photos! I remember years ago. On the turnpike the restrooms were pretty nasty.

Now they keep the restrooms clean. I have seen some pretty nasty restrooms in my life time. Vote up


EclecticFusion profile image

EclecticFusion 4 years ago from Tennessee

I remember traveling with my family back in the late 70s and rest area restrooms were pretty dirty then. The last time I was in one was in 2000 and they were clean and updated. A step in the right direction!

Thanks for this very funny hub! I think we've all experienced that dread of having to go and trying to find a clean place to do it in!


catgypsy profile image

catgypsy 4 years ago from the South

Another funny Hub! Public restrooms are a nightmare!


Storytellersrus profile image

Storytellersrus 4 years ago from Stepping past clutter

Kenneth, I remember driving to Minnesota back in the 1990s when we were warned away from these due to gangs and drug trafficking that occurred there. Since that time, I stop at towns. Sure, fire a highway patrolman and hire a custodian! What the heck. Less revenue from speeders trying to drive... Drunk? Voted up and funny.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Thank you, kindly, Deborah for your comments. I agree. Public rest rooms is similar to playing "Russian Roulette," when you need to answer nature's call. But nowadays, (SOME) are better kept than of a few years ago. Thanks for the input, Debbie.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Tamron,

Thanks so very much for the compliments on photos. I never dreamed that there were so many rest room photos. And these are just a SAMPLE...I could have made a Rest Room Part 1, 2, 3 and maybe 4 LOL. But better so say a lot by saying a little. Thanks DEAR friend, for always having my back.

Kenneth


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Hello, EclecticFusion, I have to agree with you. In the 70's, I dreaded to even stop at the REST AREA, but from the 80's throughout the 90's, states have, and I dont understand how, upgraded what they could of bad rest rooms. I still say MORE rest room funding.

Thanks for stopping by.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Hello, Dear catgypsy . . ."You made my night. Thanks so much. I hope I can be as good of a friend/follower to you and YOU have been to me."

Kenneth


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Hello, Storytellersrus, been a long time. How have you been faring? Good, I hope. Still publishing those fantastic hubs of yours I know. Thank YOU for your lovely comments and the votes...I cant thank you enough. Custodian? Ive been in rest areas where there WERE NO custodians, employees....just the occasional drive-by from whatever law enforcment drew the short straw to keep watch on the rest areas in that region.

Keep up YOUR great work, Storytellers.

I appreciate you.

KENNETH


Sueswan 4 years ago

Hi Kenneth,

Had to catch my breath because this one really cracked me up!!! LMAO

You have made great suggestions.

Only one I don't agree with and that is having the door right down to the floor. I understand why, but I once was locked in the woman's washroom at the airport. Entered the stall, locked the door, but I couldn't unlock it. Thank God, the door was not to the floor.

Once the government goes along with your recommendations, they could continue with restrooms in bus stations and even planes.

Voted up up and away!

Have a good weekend.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Dearest Susan . . .THANK YOU FOR your lovely comment. And the votes. I never thought of that aspect...an escape from a rest room stall. Okay. Doors halfway down. Case closed. I appreciate, so VERY MUCH, YOUR friendship, following and needed-comments. I cannot see any way of ever repaying all of your kindnesses.

YOU have a Happy and (CAREFUL) Weekend, Susan . . .

Your Lifetime Friend, KENNETH


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 4 years ago from Central Texas

Hey Kenneth -- for those of us in the music business and on the road a whole lot -- this is not only funny but gospel. I've actually turned around and walked out rather than use some of the "rest area" facilities -- wow -- gross! Thanks for bringing a truly dastardly situation to the attention of the reading public (the travelling public already knows about it!) An absolutely wonderful Hub -- Voted Up. Good work, my friend. Best, Sis


LadyFiddler profile image

LadyFiddler 4 years ago from Somewhere in the West

HMMMM its really hard to find a good clean restroom. Makes me wonder what kind of human sometimes use them. I see #2 on the walls perhaps spelling someone's name. Sanitary napkin on the floor with mess and most of all piss all over the seat. Could you imagine that? it makes your #1 or #2 goes right back where it came from.

I think people are just plain nasty what's so hard in using a dustbin or wipping the seat when you are finished?

Thanks for sharing Ken


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Angela . . .YOU are welcome and I thank you for (all) of your supportive words and thoughts. Ive nearly walked away from some RR's . . .but the urge was too great to leave....I held my breath, if you know what I mean. And in some...closed my eyes...when telling the "manager," I only got a shrug of the shoulders and that was my answer, "dont care," and I just left.

Kenneth

PS: Visit again soon.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Hello, LadyFiddler . . .I agree with you also, and thank you for your comment. I hope that our president Obama's people read this hub and now telling him to include 50 billion, 1 billion for each of the 50 states to clean and upgrade their RR's...and this is rest rooms, not railroads. I enjoyed your visit, Lady. Come back again. Kenneth


janshares profile image

janshares 2 years ago from Washington, DC

I agree! Rest area rest rooms could use upgrades. My hub about women's restrooms puts the blame on the users though. Your points are well-taken, written with humor. Hilarious!


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 2 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Oh, dear Jan,

Do you know how old this hub really is? I had forgotten this one and that is due to the med's I have to take at morning and night. I have, and I am not playing "Woe is me," but I have Fibromyalgia and it was diagnosed in 2003, the doc's were right. It gets worse in time. Plus Neurothopy and now, Thromboscloriris, a disease in my vascular/respitory system that in time will lead to congestive heart failure.

One of the symptoms is memory loss. I appreciate YOU for commenting on this one. I am honest.

And I appreciate your sweet (but true) comment and maybe someone who knows someone wit the state governments will get some senator's ear and lobby for more funds for better rest rooms.

Thanks again, DEAR Jan.

Peace.

Kenneth

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