Saturday, March 12, 2005

Plumbing part 2

a couple of months ago I wrote about American plumbing, using Korean plumbing as the hook. It's here[^] if you haven't read it already.

The first time I experienced American plumbing was about 4 hours after landing on American soil for the first time. I'd driven from San Francisco Airport to Santa Rosa and checked into my hotel. By this time I was busting for a leak! So I got to my room, dumped my baggage and made a beeline for the dunny.

'Oh man' I thought. 'Of all the hotel rooms in all the world I had to get this one!'. The toilet bowl was full of water; obviously a blockage. But sometimes nature is stronger than nurture; I needed that leak badly. A couple of minutes later and the venal side of my nature took over; a flush was needed and if it overflowed it was the hotels problem, not mine. Imagine my surprise when the water level fell and a few seconds later a swirl took place.

Both sides of the Pacific Ocean are scratching their heads. What the hell is he talking about this time? Surely we now have evidence of insanity?


Just a difference in how the toilets work. Not that much of a difference; I'm not talking those holes in the floor one sees in Asia; merely that Australian toilet bowls are a somewhat different kettle of fish! Aussie dunnies have just enough water at the bottom to provide the necessary air seal against the sewer beneath whereas American toilet bowls are usually full of water. The flush cycle is completely different! The Aussie dunny, at flush time, fills up with water and then drains; the American dunny is full of water that is drained and replaced.

To accomodate the Australian style and prevent unsightly skid marks the bowls are somewhat differently shaped but let's not explore further. I've given enough information.

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