Eco… eco…… eco…………

Eco… eco…… eco…………

Okay, so the log of the American trip fell through, but that was largely because I failed to stay regular, and then just lost momentum. Henceforth, I shall aim to make one deposit here a week. Largely because I’m putting in a serious effort to get rid of these Knight’s Atari t-shirts, and I want there to be something relatively recent on the site. Would you like a tshirt? Write us an article or do us a doodle or something.

Anyway, this weekend just gone, I stayed in a small ecovillage in Tipperary. It takes four trains to get there from Galway, where I live, so it’s not somewhere you’d just pop by. My reason for being there was that Knight’s Atari’s very own Jorge, of “Cooking with Jorge” infamy, was getting married to a lovely lass, from whom Jorge is probably keen to hide Knight’s Atari’s existence. The wedding was lovely, went with only one major hitch, etc. More importantly, there was a compost toilet in the ecovillage. I didn’t use it, because I had a perfectly satisfactory loo in my room, which had this amusing poster on the door:

However, I thought that you, dear reader, might be interested in the composting toilet. It was located far away from any dwelling, probably with good reason. There were a stack of black bags behind the shed – presumably full of “compost”, but I did not venture close enough to confirm that. The idea behind composting toilets is, for those of you with little imagination, to indirectly recycle your poop into food. Humus, specifically. So if you think that stuff people dip their carrots in tastes like crap, you could be right. Composting toilets generally use very little water, which is important in places where water is scarce, like Ireland. An average toilet flush uses about six litres of water, and involves passing along an intricate system of sewers and pipes like Super Mario, before finally being flung out into the sea. So there is certainly some logic to instead storing your poop in a bag and using it to fertilize your lawn.
                                                                                                  
This particular composting toilet was of the sawdust variety – where you add sawdust to your deposit to help aerate the store, increase the carbon to nitrogen ratio, and reduce potential odor. There was, indeed, no smell in the loo, though I suspect this was more through a lack of use than anything else. I would imagine the novelty of a composting toilet wears off fairly rapidly, and then you end up using it just to make a point. And personally, whenever I try to bring a political agenda into my defecation, I find it detracts from the relaxation of mind and sphincter that should generally be associated with pooping. Some people seem to persevere though.

                                                                                       
So the floor is dusty and covered in sawdust, but the facility seems relatively hygienic apart from the lack of soap and a sink, and apparently an occasional lack of toilet paper. They have also helpfully nailed the toilet seat shut, because we’ve all had those days, when you’re genuinely concerned about whatever you’ve just dropped down the toilet trying to crawl back out.
                                                                                                
Just as I was exiting the facility, I decided to take a peek behind the door, and what did I see?

Another toilet!
Sitting directly facing the other one. While there is a small chance that they only have one toilet available for use at a time, to allow the compost room to breathe, or that the two toilets can perhaps be used simultaneously as urinals, it is far more entertaining to imagine two dedicated ecovillagers sitting there, staring into each other’s eyes as they did their bit for the environment. That requires true devotion. I have given it some thought, and I cannot think of one person with whom I would wish to be in that situation – not even ScarJo* or Stevie Wonder**. Who would you sit and shit with?

Someone I mentioned it to speculated that the second toilet was for use in emergencies, but I can’t imagine being ensconced on the throne and hearing someone yell “I’M COMING IN – I’VE GOT AN EMERGENCY!!”, or the succeeding events, would endear me to anyone.

I have not rated a toilet in a while, but…

Lighting: Natural light only.
Ergonomics: Poor
Aesthetics: Excellent
Capacity: 1 or 2.
Privacy: That depends.
Cleanliness: 36
Phone signal: Okay, considering it was Tipperary.
Post-use feeling of righteous superiority: Excellent.

In conclusion, would not recommend except as a potential date with that really hot smelly vegan chick from your yoga class.

*Scarlett Johansson – 21st century actress of unspeakable beauty. Famed for such roles as Natasha Romanoff in the Avengers series of movies, Molly Pruit in the third and worst of the seventy-six “Home Alone” movies,  and most notably, kicking off the career of co-star Bill Murray, with the opening shot of her arse in the otherwise unremarkable “Lost in Translation”.

**21st century musician – famous for his odourless flatulence.
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