I am writing you to discuss the technology of Harleston toilets.
Toilets are more intelligent and advanced than any of us realise. In the case of Harelston’s new, self-flushing toilets, technologically advanced toilets have also become a symbol of the divide between those who can pay to use toilets and those who cannot. Or, at least, it’s become a symbol of those who did not think to bring 20p with them when they decided to “drop some friends off at the lake”, as my mother likes to say. The toilets themselves are price tagged somewhere between £80,000 and £100,000, subject to final payment, for this great city of Harleston. They are better than the old toilets because they can flush themselves, and send councillor’s text messages when toilet roll is running on empty. These are the first self-flushing toilets in all of South Norfolk, and will surely bring many visitors and tourists to my beloved Harleston, which I love and adore. Shout out to Maggie at the Harleston Post Office!
But, in spite of their technological advances, these toilets have also become less public. They might be more functional, but is it really more functional if less people can use them due to the hefty fee of 20p?
Now, Gaming editor, is this the kind of world we want to live in? I remember arriving in London for the first time from Ecuador, and having to use the restroom. Now, on this occasion, I thought, “Great! I’ve just arrived in an airport, and they have toilets in airports! Right?” Then I realized that it would cost money to use the toilets at Heathrow Airport, and so I decided to wait until I arrived in Norwich. Norwich and London are not next-door-neighbors, much to my dismay. Dare I say I need not describe how this story ended!
This is not to say I am against all technologically advanced toilets.
I like toilets that turn human waste into fuel, such as developed by researchers at Caltech. The Delft University of Technology has made a proof-of-concept system that turned dried feces into hydrogen gas. I think this is very nice!
There is a new toilet app called Airpnp, where toilet owners advertise their toilets to those who might need a toilet. Those who use the app can browse for bathrooms when they need them. Yet, those who use the app will discover that there are few public bathrooms actually available for us.
Again technology fails to solve the problem of making toilets public. And so, Gaming Editor, I ask: How can we in Harleston blend technologically advanced toilets with the public’s basic desire to pee?


A local toilet user