I am not a complicated man. I have a schedule and I like to stick to it. I understand when it’s time to complain and I know when its time to suck it up and press on. Like a good little boy, I pick my lower lip off the floor and get over it.

This is why it has been so hard for me to get use to sharing my bathroom with girls.

According to Roy, a guy I met on Chapel Street last night who wanted to bum a cig, guys and girls don’t have many things in common. This is why they are separated in prisons. Once he showed me his release form, I was sure he knew what he was talking about. However, as much as I agree with Roy, I feel that men and women do have certain inherent similarities. This is also why I don’t understand many of the problems girls have in sharing a bathroom with me.

Sure, it’s awkward when there is only one stall for four men and four women. There is no feeling worse than using the one-stall bathroom while someone waits for you to finish making noises to let you know they are there. If I wanted an audience, I’d install a Web cam or go on FOOT. But I get over it.

Deep down I know that the good Lord made men and women with basically the same plumbing. The bathroom was explicitly designed to accommodate this part of anatomy. After that, I don’t care what you do as long as I don’t have to watch. But to be so sensitive as to make me change my routine so you can shower, go potty, or shave is absolutely ridiculous.

Early in the year, it became clear to me that many of the girls I shared a bathroom with found it an unbearably embarrassing to go to the bathroom while someone else, particularly a boy, was in the room. Maybe it would be the end of the world if a fart somehow managed to slip out while makin’ a good ol’ number two or number one, who knows? But seriously, it happens to the best of us!

OK, I will be the first to admit walking out of a stall with a cloud of fumes that could kill a puppy is awkward when someone is waiting to use it. I think that this is easily overcome. Simply put a smile on your face and be proud of what you have just created. At least be satisfied that everything’s still working.

To put it into more constructive terms, I believe in “functional privacy.” What happens in the bathroom stays in the bathroom. It’s kind of like “Fight Club” in that way. Only there’s no fighting, it’s not homoerotic, and it’s not really a club — but you know what I mean. So there’s no need to worry. Girls, I won’t tell anyone that you shave your chest as long as you won’t tell anyone that I bleach my upper lip — I mean if I did, because I don’t. It’s that simple. As long as you always flush (NO EXCEPTIONS), pick up after yourself (that includes hairballs) and leave certain personals out of bathroom conversation, I think men and women will get along just fine in the poor man’s throne room.

Consider co-ed bathrooms practice for married life. In college, I would rather be eaten alive by Gary Coleman than have to wake up two hours before class simply to fight my way into the shower. You would never think to inconvenience your loved ones in this way! Mrs. Cleaver would have bathed in a sink rather than inconvenience her husband.

While it may not be 1950, and I am not married to the girls next door, I think the concept is the same. You should just do your best to make it a livable situation for everyone. Have fun while you pee. Talk to people while you shower. Make the bathroom that special room in a nightclub that people go to forget their worries. Everyone will be a lot happier that way.

I actually think the bathroom is a sacred place. Everyone has to go there no matter who you are and it’s not pretty for anyone. If you can’t see that, then you’re just plain out of luck, my friend.

Like a good little boy or girl, just suck it up, press on and get over it.

Steve Abramowitz likes to pee with the stall door open. Oh, and his mom calls him Beave.