Comment: Robin written by Robin Garrison Leach

It’s National Bathroom Reading Week. The first full week of June is dedicated to commemorating the educational value of bathroom “literature”.

I don’t know about your family, but “War and Peace” never graced the top of our tank. No encyclopedias. Not a single book with an index.

And while we learned a lot of interesting things from sitting there, most families would agree that reading in the bathroom is not an educational endeavor.

Reading material for the bathroom is individually tailored to each visitor. I could leave an issue of Birds and Blooms magazine there for years to come, and I can guarantee John wouldn’t flip through it. Even in case of urgent need.


Its must-read list is as predictable as the seasons: If a magazine has a wild animal on its front and a man in hunting gear grinning awkwardly next to that animal, I know I’ll see its shiny carcass in the bathroom. .

We share the Reader’s Digest. This is the definitive text of the bathroom. Stories short enough to end. Jokes that can be told later, in other rooms. And this nifty Word Power quiz with answers on the next page (my favorite section).

What more could you ask for in bathroom reading? Works for us.

If you’re one of the over 40% of Americans who read in the bathroom and you wear reading glasses, you know how big a production “experience” in the bathroom can be:

You make your way to the bathroom, favorite magazine in hand and near the throne. As you enter your sanctuary, you realize that you forgot to take your glasses on entering.

I was here. I danced to the tune of “the call of the wild”, looking for my bifocals. But there were times when I had to give up research. Then I’m forced to squint at the cover of my magazine, looking at a photo of a blobby object and wondering what the caption says below.

I stretch out my arms and tilt the page like a holographic card, hoping another angle helps. Nope.

There are also those occasions when, out of necessity or inattention, a bathroom visitor ends up in the bathroom without reading. In the event of such emergencies, any printed surface in the room is fair play. Instructions on air freshener cans. Figures on the scale. Words stamped on the inside of the shoes.

But these emergencies gave me and others a fond memory of the Crest toothpaste motto: “Crest has proven to be an effective toothpaste in preventing cavities. “

Admit it… you know it too, don’t you?

I also learned the main ingredients of most antiperspirants and that I should never puncture or incinerate spray cans.

Reading in the bathroom is a family tradition with us. All of our children, when they were new to the bathroom process, were encouraged to look at picture books while sitting. I think Dr Seuss must have been the doctor of regularity. His books were the favorite companions of my aspiring babysitters.

I could hear little voices every now and then, mutter a few memorized words as they sat, “I don’t like green eggs and ham…” I knew they were okay.

Unfortunately, a little reader cannot take the right Dr. Seuss with her wherever she goes. My youngest daughter first faced this situation when she was 3 years old.

As I waited outside her stall at McDonalds, hoping her little butt didn’t fall into the big hole beneath her, I heard her rear up. Tiny sneakers, tangled inside, grouped together, flowery bloomers, slammed to the floor behind the stall door.

I heard Andrea come closer. A stocky little arm reached out to me from under the door and a handful of chubby fingers waving frantically:

“Quick mom, give me a dollar bill.”

Bathroom reading week. Grab a magazine and celebrate.

Robin Garrison Leach can be contacted at [email protected]


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