Potty Talk

by Scott McAllister

A quick Google search revealed that the average person spends around three to five years of their life sitting on the toilet.

A second Google search revealed that Ethiopia has the least amount of toilets per capita than any other country on Earth.

Why do I make mention of such ridiculous facts, you ask?

Bear with me…We’re going to do some math…

If you take the number of years I’ll be living in Ethiopia (2 years) and divide it by the average American’s life expectancy (78.2 years according to Wikipedia),  the resultant quotient (.02558) represents the percent of my life that will be spent living here in Ethiopia.

Still following? Good.

If you multiply that quotient (.02558) by the aforementioned average amount of time that someone spends sitting on a toilet (4 years), then the resultant product (.10232 years) represents the amount of time that I’ll spend on the toilet whilst living here in Ethiopia.

(Did you like how I inserted that ‘whilst’ into that last sentence? British English makes anything, no matter how crass, seem more proper, cleaner even.)

If you do some more math that figure above works out to roughly 1.25  months. Theoretically – and let me remind you, this is all mere speculation – that’s how long I’ll be taking care of business here.

But wait. Oh yea, that’s right, we don’t have a toilet.

We have what’s called a shint bet:


By the end of service I’ll have spent approximately one-and-a-quarter knee-buckling months squatting over the obsidian abyss you see above.

And living here, what with all the exotic foods and questionable water, we get the screaming squirts – by which I mean that military-grade high-explosive diarrhea – much more often than you folks back home.

So, if you may, and if you can forgive my potty talk, let that picture up above melt into your mind for a moment.


OK. Thanks for your time. I mean it. And now, dear reader, time for your reward.

Appreciate for a moment the glory and splendor of your porcelain toilet. How glad are you to have a toilet – a shitter with a seat! – an actual place, sometimes comfy, sometimes not, to sit and lounge and, hell, read a book if you wanted to!

Now ain’t that the shit.