Thursday, April 19, 2007

Is the bidet making a comeback?

"I don't care how dirty that area is, that's one place I don't want a tornado of water"
Stephanie Miller discussing why she has never used the bidet in her home's bathroom

The bidet. It's standard issue in many European countries but it's almost a taboo fixture in American bathrooms where a whirlpool for relaxation takes precedence over the need for a clean, um, area.

I, being an American, am unfamiliar with the workings of a bidet but I have some assumptions I will put forth before I break into full-on geeky research mode. I assume that a bidet is, at least in looks, similar to a toilet. My wife assumes it's sort of a reverse-action toilet, something along the lines of a drinking fountain device for your, um, area.

Her interpretation led me to ask even more questions? How does one dry off after using a bidet? Is there a "splash factor" involved if it is in fact a drinking fountain for your, um, area? What do you use to dry off your, um, area after using the bidet? Is there a lid on it to keep family pets out of it? Should it be cordoned off from the rest of the typical bathroom fixtures or should it be placed in tandem with the toilet?

To someone unfamiliar with bidets, the mind races with all the wondrous possibilities of such an odd device. I know, vaguely, what it does but the specifics are what I am interested in.

That's when I went to the informational repository that is always accurate. That's right, Wikipedia.

After reading the Wikipedia entry on bidets, I found out that a bidet is essentially a toilet-shaped drinking fountain for your, um, area (my wife's extensive college education is paying off). I also found out that they are especially handy for those suffering with hemorrhoids and the elderly. The most disgusting tidbits were that in other countries they are used as basins to bathe one's feet or even infants. Then came the hygiene portion... a towel typically hangs next to the bidet for, um, drying off the area and it is changed daily. With that aspect, I would feel far more comfortable having my own personal bidet towel but, hey, what you don't know...

So, there you have it. I, and those reading, now know about bidets and hopefully fires occurring in them isn't a widespread problem like it has been recently in Japan. I still think I'll steer clear of them but we do have that bathroom remodel coming up...


Hammer said...

usually the bidet has an adjustable jet positioned on the bottom of the bowl that squirts directly on your bum with sink controls to the rear. It can be set to a really high pressure.

When on vacation I turned the knob while looking into the bowl and got a high pressure jet to the face.

I got severe diarrea and food poisoning that vacation so the bidet was helpful form my raw chapped ass.

mist1 said...

I recommend His and Hers towels.

Diesel said...

I have a better method of keeping my bum sanitary. It consists of NOT USING THE SAME ASS-WIPING TOWELS AS OTHER PEOPLE.

Friggin' Europeans.

Beth said...

ya, so EVERYONE uses the same towel to dry off on? eewwww!

I'll take my plain 'ole toilet paper, thank you very much.

Tanya Kristine said...

you know, i've used one and i have to feels pretty weird water squirting in your area when you're not pee' you're "slipping".

not a fan.

C-dell said...

I am glad you told me. I had no idea what it was for.

Jodie said...

well, there's actually another kind of bidet, which is the spray-type. That's what I got at home right now, and unfortunately, you can't wash your feet or infants there since it's attached to the toilet :P It's the one used in japan, although theirs are more high-tech (probably why bidets there are catching fire or something).