America's Worst Public Toilets, Ranked

Time for your weekly edition of the Deadspin Funbag. Got something on your mind? Email the Funbag. Today, we’re covering turkeys, Bueller, blast chillers, and more.

Your letters...

Ewan:

What public bathroom has the combo of worst/most shitting? I say airport. Large numbers of people, they can't leave the area. Plus there are folks from all over the country/world with varying diets.

Yeah, but airport bathrooms tend to be cleaned on a regular basis, and you have many toilets to choose from. You have many BATHROOMS to choose from, in fact. Plus, if you've cleared security, you've essentially filtered out the homeless factor.

It's nowhere near as bad as a port-a-potty at your local playground. That's ONE toilet, and it's being used by children (whose bowel movements are notoriously erratic), by homeless people, and by runners and cyclists who HAVE to use the bathroom right now because their rectums are packed to the rafters with future sewage. The result is a toxic slurry so foul, so awful, that merely opening the door makes you want to vomit.

I've seen shit EVERYWHERE in these biffs. Shit on the walls. Shit on the seat. Shit on the ledge next to the hole. And they never empty it. The pile of shit in the hole has already come up well above the blue disinfecting liquid. It's HELL. It's the worst fucking place on Earth. I won't go near those things anymore. I'd rather shit in the woods. I NEVER take my kids to piss in them. I just let them go in a bush. One time I took my kid into one and he started crying the second I opened the door. I don't blame him at all.

Here is how I would rank the worst public bathrooms in America (I'm not gonna factor in the rest of the world, because obviously there are certain villages in the Third World forced to share a single Dixie Cup for their collective waste):

1. Standalone port-a-potty

2. Row of port-a-potties

3. Dog-racing track

4. Bus

5. Bus station

6. Ballpark (NOTE: One time I took my kid to a Nationals game and she had to go to the restroom, so we went into the Family Bathroom* and there was a full turd sitting right on the back of the toilet. My kid was scared to death at the sight of it. It looked as if it could move on its own.)

7. Arby's

8. Single-occupancy dive-bar bathroom

9. Single-occupancy Chinese-restaurant bathroom

10. Public school

11. Train

12. Train station

13. Airplane

14. Airport

(*I should note here that, apart from the above example, family bathrooms are pretty much the greatest thing ever. There's room for all your shit. There's a toilet that's two inches off the ground for your kid to whizz in. Paper towels are more plentiful. There's always a changing table. And when you and your family go into one, everyone else knows that you'll all be in there for at least half an hour. I'm ready to unpack whenever I walk into one, it feels so homey. Seriously, when another family gets to the family bathroom before me, I mutter voodoo curses at them.)

Adam:

Don't you think Ferris Bueller just got really lucky that Abe Froman never showed up for his reservation?

Of course, but that's part of the joke. The whole premise of the movie is that Ferris Bueller has the most charmed life imaginable. Abe Froman never shows up. When Ferris goes to the Cubs game, the foul ball gets hit right to him. And no one arrests him for commandeering a fucking parade float. In fact, the float seems to have been set up just for him—with sound and hired dancers and meticulous choreography—well in advance. It's meant to be a teenage fever dream.

I remember watching that movie when I was a kid and praying that, one day, I would be that popular. I mean, I used to try to will that fever dream to life. I would buy some new Def Leppard shirt or something and I'd be like, This is it. This is my ticket to Ferris Bueller's life. Nothing but hot chicks and zany pranks for the rest of my days. And then I'd go to school and everyone would notice the piss stain on my jeans and my hopes would be dashed. That movie has built up more unrealistic expectations than perhaps any other movie in history.

The 1980s were a big time for selling the importance of popularity. They used to sell school locker answering machines on TV. Watch this ad if you don't believe me:

ERIN! LUNCH, PIZZA: BE THERE. I wanted one of those things so, so badly. Thank God I never got one, because the messages I would have gotten on it would have been terrifying. "Hey FAGARY, I'm gonna rip your fucking dick off." Stuff like that.

Patrick:

"Why yes, my son DOES play lacrosse at Harvard! We're so proud of him ... he's CRUSHING so much Cambridge pussy!"

America's Worst Public Toilets, Ranked

Oh, God no. That's just the worst thing ever. Give him ALL the speeding tickets.

Jake:

What's the best meat to get in pad thai? I have to go with shrimp, but I was talking to a friend the other day who argued that since you need to eat the shrimp separately from the rest of the ingredients because of the tail, you don't get to enjoy all of the flavors at once and duck is clearly better. But shrimp is clearly the better food overall.

Whoa hey, who says shrimp is CLEARLY better than duck? Duck is chicken for fat people. One bite of duck has roughly 30,000 calories and 50 kilograms of fat. It's delicious. The thai joint I order from doesn't even OFFER duck pad thai. If they did, I'd ask for double duck.

Anyway, the meat is almost beside the point with pad thai. My only goal while eating pad thai is to stuff as many noodles into my mouth as I can fit as quickly as possible. If there happens to be meat in there—shrimp, duck, a human toe—so be it. I'm not picky. I find that most people order chicken pad thai so that no one eating it complains. It's the boringest thing you could possibly order from a Thai restaurant. I bet the chef spits in it with contempt for your lack of imagination. Still pretty tasty, though.

Jonathan:

Would you rather give up alcohol or the internet?

Booze. And you would, too. What are you gonna do otherwise? Give up the Internet and just go drinking for the rest of your life? No more emailing? No more Twitter? Just you bumming around from bar to bar, talking to real people instead of texting friends? Reading real books? Unplugging from the news and enjoying a bottle of fine tequila? What the hell kind of life is that?

(Seriously though, you'd still give up booze. You'd just turn to crack instead.)

Andrew:

Every morning I make oatmeal for my 14-month-old son and immediately after I take it out of the microwav, he wants to eat. To speed the cooling process I toss an ice cube in bowl and then put it in the freezer for a few minutes. However, that never cools it off fast enough and I'm stuck blowing on hot oatmeal like an asshole while he screams for breakfast.

This could all be avoided if I had a blast chiller like they have on Chopped. That's the coolest kitchen tool that is used on Chopped that a person could have for their house, right?

Oh, hell yes. I didn't know that blast chillers existed before I watched that show. I saw some tattooed motherfucker toss a frozen whipped pea semifreddo into the blast chiller and I was like OH MY GOD WHAT IS THAT I MUST HAVE IT. That thing needs to be standard in all homes immediately. We've had microwaves for decades now. We've desperately needed its counterpart: Something to put food in after we've put it in the microwave for wayyyyyy too long, then it can get too cold and we can nuke it again. I want it in my life so very badly.

Feeding kids is a horrible process, and temperature gauging is part of the reason why. Every new parent has served up a bottle of just-a-bit-too-warm formula to a baby by accident and then watched the baby scream in horror after being scalded by it, as if you just poured boiling oil down their throat. You feel like a monster.

And they only get pickier about food temperature after that. My son will tear off pieces of the chicken nugget that he thinks are too crunchy. GODDAMN PRIMA DONNA. There is a perfect temperature for children's food and it takes 70 minutes of trial and error using a microwave and excessive blowing to achieve it. We need blast chillers. There's a countertop one available on Amazon right now for $5,731. This is unacceptable. Surely, quick-freezing technology can be made more affordable to the masses. WHAT IS OBAMA DOING ABOUT THIS?!

Mark:

If I am on an elevator alone, I stand right in the middle of the car so I appear as the doors open. As the elevator opens, I stand there with my head down and raise it after the doors open, ala The Undertaker, and secretly hope a pack of ninjas (or a troupe of mimes) will attack me so I can go all Jackie Chan on them with my backpack... is this weird?

No. Also, if you ride a subway, make sure to grasp the pole TIGHTLY, so that you can execute a perfect swinging roundhouse kick on any terrorist trying to commandeer the train. IF YOU SEE SOMETHING FIGHT SOMETHING.

Bryan:

Which would you choose if you could never have the other for the rest of your life: steak or lobster? I choose steak. That seems like the practical choice.

You have to go with steak because it's usually cheaper, it's easier to prepare, and you can prepare it an endless number of ways. How often do you really get to eat lobster if you aren't some asshole investment banker? Once a year, if you're lucky? Lobster is awesome, but you can't sacrifice your whole relationship with steak for it. Now if it's between steak and the INTERNET ...

Spenser:

I recently got a random Craigslist roommate for the last two months of my lease. She mentioned she "lifted weights," but turns out she is a former bodybuilder sponsored by Muscle Week. I have been debating with my co workers on who would win in a fist fight. Below is a picture of her and a picture of me. I am an average (fat) male who stands 5'10 on a good day weighing in at 230 lbs. She's 5'2" and 150 lbs. My co-workers think because she is huge and can probably squat me 10 times that she would murder me. However, I think if I hit her once in the face that she is done.

America's Worst Public Toilets, Ranked

You have the height and weight advantage on her. But she has the "in shape" advantage over you by a significant margin. She also has the lip stud, which suggests she isn't afraid of pain. Also, you're fighting a girl here. So you'd probably be like, "Christ, I can't hit a girl." And while you're hemming and hawing about the ethics of punching a woman in the face, she'd probably catch you with an uppercut right to the scrotum. And then you'd get all mad and pin her down and then you'd be like, "God, this is kind of an erotic moment. Is this gonna make being roommates weird? Does liking muscley women make me gay, bro?" BOOM. Another scrotal punch. Then it's a knee to the face and you're out for good.

Then again, just because she lifts weights doesn't mean she's automatically a great fighter. Perhaps you could overpower her right from the start before fatigue sets in five seconds later. It's possible, particularly given your size advantage. But with your slovenly appearance and overreliance on the big play, I deem you a GLORY BOY who would eventually wilt under the undrafted scrappitude of your roommate. She would WANT it more.

HALFTIME!

Daniel:

How many degrees of sexual separation do you think the average person is from a porn star? I mean they probably go out and bang a lot of people in the real world too, right? Probably no more than five degrees, I think. I doubt your boyfriend or girlfriend would tell you if they once fucked a porn star considering the stigma, so it may be closer than you think. Also, how cool would it be if there was an all-knowing, all-powerful computer that could tell you the degrees of sexual separation between you and any movie star you chose? Probably painfully disappointing.

The theory is that you're only six degrees separated for EVERY other person on the globe. But those are not sexual degrees, obviously. How close you are to a porn star depends a lot on how many people YOU'VE slept with (obviously, the more you've slept with, the better your odds) and other factors such as location. If you grew up living in LA, you're probably a lot closer than someone who lives in Moosejaw. Also, this is actual sex here. It doesn't count if your girlfriend's ex-boyfriend faps to a live feed of Savanna Samson on her website or something.

The porn world can be a fairly insular one, if you believe this profile of James Deen that ran in GQ a while back:

Deen's boyfriend-girlfriend-type arrangements, therefore, have generally been with other sex-industry professionals... Lately, having sex off-camera has been sort of fraught. "Personal private sex is almost too intimate now," he says, citing a recent threesome when he was "like almost hyperemotional, because it was personal sex without any cameras."

Hey, that's not strange at all! So there are performers like Deen, who don't stray far from the business. And then there are the THOUSANDS of drug-addled porn stars who gladly perform escort services on the side to help make ends meet. I think that five degrees is likely a safe guess, because that allows you to sleep with a girl who has slept with a guy who has slept with a girl who has slept with some real shitbag of a guy who paid $2,000 to have Austin Kincaid visit his hotel room in Vegas for 20 minutes. Is that five degrees? Do you count as one of the degrees? I suck at this game.

DJ:

Besides match fixing, what would a player in the 4 major sports have to do on the field/court/rink to get banned for life? It would have to be pretty awful, AMIRITE? I mean, Ron Artest basically only got one season for beating up a fan in the middle of a game.

Murder? I think murder would do the trick. The Ginger Hammer says you tarnished the shield when you shot Clay Matthews in the face while he was breaking down to tackle you. Pulling a Billy Cole on the field (minus the end zone suicide) will get you banned for life. On the bright side, ESPN would run a very sober three-minute segment the following year about how bad you felt about it. Stephen A. would conduct the interview!

Anyway, short of murder, here are a few more things that would probably get you a lifetime ban:

• Serious assault of an official or another player. Like, enough to render him crippled for life. A simple punch isn't enough. Even Kermit Washington was allowed to come back after destroying Rudy T's face

• Pulling down your pants and sexually assaulting a player/official/cheerleader/Billy Crystal. Just whipping your dick out isn't enough. You have to go USE it.

• Pulling down your pants, grabbing the ref's whistle, and sticking it in your asshole.

• Grabbing the PA microphone and announcing that you hate blacks/Jews/gays, and then firing off a Nazi salute. Anything Hitler-related will get you banned.

• Staging a sit-in. Like, if the game started and you just sat down to protest unfair wages or gay rights or something and you straight up refused to play, or maybe you left the field altogether. Imagine how pissed off Colin Cowherd would be. YOU'RE NO TEAM PLAYER, YOU'RE A ME GUY. Gambling aside, it really does take a lot to get to get you knocked out of your sport forever.

There's an army of Players Association lawyers ready to whittle down your lifetime ban to an eight-game suspension at a moment's notice. Only a murder or a HEIL HITLER! would be enough to get them to ease up. And we like it when players come back from doing something shitty. It's the cliched narrative everyone falls for time and time again. Even Artest got some love after he came back, which is funny because nothing about Ron Artest has REALLY changed. He's still a complete idiot. We shape the story the way we want it shaped. It doesn't have much to do with reality.

Daniel:

Why do we dress our secret service in the absolute worst clothing to protect VIP's like the president? If I were protecting someone in a shootout, I think the last thing in the world I'd want to be wearing is a tight suit, a tie and a dress shirt. Is it even possible to lift your hands over your head while wearing a suit? Or is the thinking that it's probably more important to look the part?

I think looking the part helps. The Secret Service are meant to both protect the president AND act as a visible deterrent to all would-be snipers and crazy people with plastic guns printed on a 3D printer. The stern men in suits acts a big PLEASE DO NOT TRY ANYTHING sign.

And, God forbid, should the Secret Service be forced to act on a threat, you're talking about a chain of events that occurs within the span of about four seconds. Someone has a gun, and then he is shot or disarmed. It's not an action movie. They don't go chasing after the assassin for 26 miles before finally having an ax fight in an empty warehouse, even though that would be AWESOME.

Besides, you don't know what kind of fancy suits the Secret Service has given to these guys. Maybe they're made from a space-age polymer that can stop bullets and reduce scrotal perspiration by 90 percent. It only looks like a common suit. But get to close to the Prez and BLAMMO! Wolverine claws.

I do agree with you about physical exertion while wearing a suit, though. Raising your hands while wearing a suit is like asking for it to tear in half.

PC:

I'm having a baby in the next week or so. I see all these men walking around with those baby carriers like the one in that Taco Bell commercial where they guy drips burrito shit onto his kid's head. It looks stupid. Should I sacrifice my arms or my cool factor? I liken it to carrying all the groceries in one trip. I could make a few trips but I wouldn't look like such a boss.

Most guys eventually opt to use the Bjorn because A) you have both arms free to eat and drink and B) you need to keep the baby as close to your body as possible while carrying it. That helps reduce the strain on your back, your knees, and your shoulders. Carrying a baby around in one arm makes you feel like the strongman at the county fair, but after seven seconds you feel like you're being tortured in a POW camp.

Having children means spending the majority of your time in stress positions: bent over, holding things for long stretches of time, or sitting cross-legged on a gym floor. Kids do not prize your comfort, or the health of your spine. So use the Bjorn freely, if you can figure out how to put it on. It took me about nine years to sort it out.

Edward:

I found this restaurant in a small town five hours outside of Moscow, Russia. They sold a variety of food including Pizza.

America's Worst Public Toilets, Ranked

THASS RAYCESS!

Ed:

As the father of young kids, is there anything more exhilarating than pulling into your driveway and realizing your wife's car is not there, meaning she and the children are somewhere else and you unexpectedly have the house to yourself? The possibilities are endless.

I always make sure they aren't dead first. Like, I call my wife to make sure she's at the store and that no one kidnapped my family and threw them into a meat locker. After that's confirmed, I can relax and figure out my first move. I drink seltzer straight from the bottle and eat pistachios without putting them in a dish first! TELL ME I'M NOT A REBEL.

Email of the week time:

Mike:

In 2004, my girlfriend and I decided that it would be fun to rent a cabin on a lake for a weekend, a real secluded spot. When we got to the cabin we unloaded our stuff and I brought in some bundled firewood for the fireplace. She begged and pleaded me to start the fire, but being as it was about 4pm I refused and suggested that we go fishing instead, promising that not only would I build a fire later, but we could make smores inside. She agreed, but made me unbundle the wood and set up the fireplace so when it was time all I had to do was light it. Fine.

In the process of unbundling the wood, a freaking milk snake (google it…terrifying, but not venomous [neither of us knew this]) slithered out of the bundle, onto the floor and into a corner of the living room. We both run screaming out of the cabin to the dock, and I called the rental people and left a “OMFG THERE’S A GODDAMN KILLER SNAKE TRYING TO KILL US” message on the machine. My girl was a mess, so I suggested we go out on the boat for a bit to calm down.

We went out on the boat for about an hour, and when we came back I saw that the screen door had been shut. I assumed the maintenance man had gotten the snake. I built the fire as promised, and we sat in front of it telling each other how much more we loved each other than the other. All of a sudden I heard a strange noise coming from the direction of the bathroom. It sounded like the raptors from Jurassic Park walking. I immediately figured that demon snake grew legs and was waiting to kill me, but I had enough of that bastard so I grabbed a blanket and a fire-poker. Gameplan: throw blanket on snake-beast, beat it to death with pointy piece of iron.

As I walked down the hallway I saw a very large animal (demon???) being illuminated only by the flickering flames in the other room. Before I could do anything this demon-beast SHOT out of the bathroom and charged towards me. I ran into the living room, and as I turned around I noticed it was not a demon, but a giant male turkey, all puffed out and shit. He was charging around the room, making fucked-up noises and scaring the shit out of me and the lady. I started swinging for the fences with that iron stabber and hit it a few times in the body, which did not make it too happy. It charged me again and I swung that iron like my life depended on it, because hey, it did. The pointy part on the side CRUSHED that turkey’s skull.

I threw the turkey in the bed of my truck, got in, and drove to the rental office. When I got there I told them the story, and thanked them for getting rid of the snake, which the people there seemed confused about. I gave them the turkey, and went on my way. The next day they called me and let me know that he had just heard my message, and that no one took care of the snake, but his brother had found the snake in the turkey’s belly while cleaning it. So turkeys eat snakes, and now you know.

But who got to eat the turkey? You gotta eat the thing.

Drew Magary writes for Deadspin and Gawker. He's also a correspondent for GQ. Follow him on Twitter @drewmagary and email him at drew@deadspin.com. You can also order Drew's new book, "Someone Could Get Hurt," through his homepage.