The Legend of Cecilio Guante
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Time to say no to public pooping, mkkayyy?

nopoopsign

nopoopsign Welcome to a new feature on LCG entitled “WTF.” In today’s edition, we say WTF to the child (notice I don’t say BABY) dropping a deuce in the middle of my neighborhood playground this past Sunday. Moreso, a special WTF to his parents.

OK, so I like to make it a habit of NOT being a judgmental person. This personality trait extends particularly to parenting. It’s actually quite a difficult little job. And, hell, I know I’m not the perfect parent. So who am I to judge…for the most part. Which takes me back to this edition of WTF. Let me set the stage. It’s Sunday. I’m in a busy playground a few blocks from my apartment in Manhattan. The playground is located on a fairly busy corner, meaning passerbys can look into goings-on in said area from multiple sidewalk vantage points.

It’s a lovely little facility. About 25 yards x 25 yards at most, probably less. Meaning you can pretty much catch everything that’s going on by just keeping your head on a swivel — which is what I typically have to do with my active three year-old. It’s not as difficult to keep watch if your five year-old (a guess only) is situated in one place for twenty minutes. Like say, on the can. Seated at the epicenter of said playground.

So, I ask you parents. W. T. F.

Really, I get it. Kids have all sorts of “issues” as they grow up with going to the bathroom. I can even understand the whole travel-with-your-potty thing for car rides or even a long trip to say CENTRAL PARK, where you might be situated in a locale that is literally acres away from the nearest facility. This, my friends, was far from the case.

You see, there is a public restroom at my little neighborhood playground. Two of them actually. One marked “men’s” and another marked “women’s.” They even boast toilets and sinks and usually toilet paper too. Speaking of which, they are situated in plain sight in a large green building probably a quarter toilet paper roll’s distance for this child’s sitting place. I know…because I’ve used the playground restroom (italicized only to indicate that it is the bathroom designated to be used by individuals in the playground) with my three-year old daughter on multiple occasions.

And, yes, public restrooms can be nasty. These ones are not the pinnacle of cleanliness, I can surely attest. Perhaps you’re also a germaphobe. I get it. I sincerely do. If you’re like me, you can use one of those neat little toilet covers. Or line the seat with toilet paper. Or literally hold your child suspended in the air lingering above the potty like a hovercraft. I can speak to all three strategies from experience. ALL can be effective if executed properly. As opposed to this…which i refuse to accept as reasonable behavior.

– Trotting out your port-a-potty and parking it in the middle of an active playground
– Giving your kindergarten-aged child a good twenty minutes to do his deed
– Providing him with a copy of SI for Kids, an iPad and a GoGo Squeez applesauce pouch to tide him over while he “does his business” (OK, maybe not wholly accurate but certainly the spirit of it all)
– Wiping said child’s arse following successful expulsion with dramatic zeal and unabashed satisfaction
– Removing the grocery store bag that was lining your portable toilet, tying it up like a dog’s doo and casually strutting across past the slides and dumping it with the coffee cups and discarded raisin boxes

NOT. COOL. PEOPLE.

At least PRETEND to give a sh*t and that you have any sense of discretion. There are plenty of corners you could tuck into. Maybe even use the Land Rover-sized stroller affixed with the equivalent of a month’s worth of soldier’s rucksacks and supplies as a bit of a visual blockade. Nah? OK, no. I held my tongue, because it truly wasn’t my place. However, I do have this blog. And if I can’t rant here against the proliferation of public poopers, then what can I do. Amirite?

C’mon, people. Give bathrooms a chance. Maybe the kid might develop me more self-esteem when he’s able to do it in a restroom. Perhaps he doesn’t want his ass on display for the residents, playground-goers, parents and kids of the Upper West Side. Just a thought.

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