If you’ve been to China, you probably have firsthand experience of the dirty toilets. So dirty you can’t wait go back home and use your local public restrooms. So dirty you can’t breathe. So dirty you wonder what chaos you’ve entered into. Beijing has recently announced some new standards regarding maintenance of its public restrooms. The standards themselves are attracting attention, and there’s also skepticism that probably has to do with their overall track record in this area. The new standards apply to restrooms that see heavy use, such as parks, tourist spots, stations, and stations – which one would imagine is all throughout Beijing, and begs the question, how heavy is “heavy use”?
The one standard that’s been getting the most attention is the two-fly rule: no more than two flies allowed per toilet. Who exactly is going to be counting? What happens if someone sees three flies? There are doubts about how and whether these new regulations are going to get enforced. Other regulations include no more than two pieces of “discarded items” – aka trash? – in the restroom (on the floor?) for any longer than 30 minutes. Beijing residents have themselves been expressing wariness and disbelief. Hopefully the actual cleaning staff will clean and improve the whole restroom rather than engage in a fly-killing campaign.