Few things in life can cause as much self-inflicted trauma as the porta potty. We take for granted the concept of running water and its magical abilities to take our bodily effluent and aroma… away. We view the porta potty with trepidation. Our body feels the urgency that only relief can diminish. Our brain thinks “Hold on there! There’s a cauldron of crap and piss in there and you wanna go inside?!” Quite the dilemma. It usually gets worse because the thoughtful folks who put the units in place invariably place them on top of sloppy mud. The mud, although benign, becomes a symbol of actual human excrement in the mind’s eye, thus creating even more mental trauma. That it gets tracked into each of the porta potties makes it even worse.
There are various approaches. I’ve watched otherwise dignified men declare that they will just hold it for the next few hours until they can get to a “real” toilet. Pained walk, wincing, and moaning become the order of the day. Others seek to minimize the sensory assault by stuffing their mouths with strong mints and getting in and out as quickly as possible. I suppose that works to a degree. While nothing can truly make up for the modern equivalent of a stagnant hole in the ground, I do have a method. At some point in my life I realized that women are a bit more fastidious in their toilet maneuvers than their male counterparts. Women grip about men for good reason. We don’t aim carefully and we are always of the mindset that somebody will clean up after us (gross as that may be). Women, OTOH, have standards with regard to what must be done before they will exercise their bodily functions. Cleanliness is right up there. Sure, there may be a “hover” involved, but that crapper is gonna be as clean as possible before she uses it. That means a woman is going to spend a little time in choosing which crapper is the best candidate, even if it means a delay in relief. She’s then going to spend a little time at least wiping things down and tidying up. Some even have a bottle of hand sanitizer in their purses and will actually apply the stuff liberally in an attempt to make the potty somewhat tolerable. I watch for this.
I wait until the fastidious female makes her selection. I wait until she completes her toilet. And then I use the one she just vacated (Lord help the deluded fool who tries to cut in front of me). I figure it’s my absolute best shot at the least amount of ick.