Welcome to Los Angeles

June 28th, 2012 · 52 comments

Writes Lesley in Los Angeles: “My friend owns a store in Downtown L.A., and he constantly gets people (mostly tourists) coming in to ask him where they can find a public restroom. I guess he finally got fed up.”

All bathroom info requests must be done in iambic pentameter. (Also, we don't know where any public restrooms are. Welcome to downtown Los Angeles.)

related: The town recommends you hold it.

FILED UNDER: Los Angeles · most popular notes of 2012 · retail hell · toilet · tourists

52 responses so far ↓

  • #1   maaxah

    Starbucks is the bathroom to the world!

    Jun 28, 2012 at 8:32 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #1.1   The Elf

      Yeah, not always! I needed to go while waiting for my ride to pick me up at the Metro station (DC suburbs). My ride had called and said traffic was horrible, so I knew I had at least 15 minutes and the Starbucks was *right there*. It was locked. Paying customers only. Okay, make me a tea and give me the key. And that is when I saw that the bathroom was beyond bad. I’m not usually a hoverer, but I sure was that day. If it hadn’t been an emergency, I would have bailed. I’ve had cleaner toilets in port-o-potties!

      Jun 29, 2012 at 7:45 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #2   chrys

    Most Starbucks lock their restrooms in LA. If you get lucky though, there will be a line and the people coming out will hold the door.

    Jun 28, 2012 at 8:37 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #2.1   maaxah

      ah I see. They are not so in NYC! We’re just lucky I guess. Well, not so much, since the homeless tend to use them to bathe and drunk people use them for drunk things… still, if you need to go really bad, there’s one on nearly every corner!

      Jun 28, 2012 at 8:42 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #3   denise

    ha ha ha!
    do you by chance know where i can go pee?
    i fear i may explode right now on thee!

    Jun 28, 2012 at 8:40 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #3.1   ace

      Was that Iambic? My recollection from school says nay, but it has been some time.

      Jul 2, 2012 at 9:27 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #4   shwo! bang

    Done: “I HAVE to PEE so WHERE’S the FUCKing LOO?”

    Jun 28, 2012 at 8:40 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #5   JK

    To pee or not to pee, that is the question…

    Jun 28, 2012 at 8:41 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #5.1   The Elf

      Whether ’tis Nobler in the mind to suffer
      The cramps and pains of outrageous pressure…..

      Jun 29, 2012 at 8:04 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #6   WRPrintz

    When bowels must strive some rock’s vast weight to throw,
    The line at door, labors and the world move slow.
    Not so when swift Barrista scours the bowl,
    From Flies and critter corn, and skims along the goal.

    Jun 28, 2012 at 8:43 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #6.1   girl_with_all_the_yarn

      You, sir, have won the internet today.

      Jun 29, 2012 at 11:15 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #7   Molly Musaka

    NYC’s the same way. Which is how I ended up contorting myself in the car to pee into a coffee cup and dump it out the window while riding shotgun through the Lincoln Tunnel. Don’t like the smell of pee, New York? Open the damn bathroom!

    Jun 28, 2012 at 8:43 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #8   joshua

    The world is my urinal.

    Jun 28, 2012 at 8:44 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #9   chiieddy

    Find a hotel. Walk in like you belong. Restrooms are in the conference area or near the bar.

    Jun 28, 2012 at 9:45 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #9.1   nikki

      Walk in any way you like, actually. Feel free to ask a reception clerk where the bathroom is. Hotels in the US are required by law to have public bathrooms.

      Jun 30, 2012 at 9:31 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #9.2   wondering

      Really? Citation?

      Jul 3, 2012 at 8:17 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #9.3   Redheadwglasses

      nikki, completely wrong.

      Jul 9, 2012 at 12:53 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #10   Lessa

    Starbucks @ 9th and Santee has a clean, unlocked bathroom. Also, the International food court has a clean, attended bathroom for 50 cents.

    Jun 28, 2012 at 9:53 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #11   Blinkie

    There’s a shady one near Pershing Square. Much less shady ones inside the library.

    Jun 28, 2012 at 10:00 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #12   paul

    I wonder can I ask where is the loo?

    Jun 28, 2012 at 11:18 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #13   IP freely

    My bathroom is where my pee hits the ground.

    Jun 29, 2012 at 12:43 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #14   makfan bang

    In San Francisco for gay pride, a friend and I went into 3 different places, prepared to buy something, so we could use the bathroom and they were all barricaded off. I understand the frustration with trashed bathrooms, but what are people supposed to do?

    Jun 29, 2012 at 1:37 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #15   Elmo

    Where can I find a restroom you asshole?

    Jun 29, 2012 at 4:34 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #16   jUStPunkin

    OK, now that I know where all the public restrooms are in LA and NYC, let’s address the douchy-ness of the note writer. Yea, I know, frustrated because everyone asks the same question. Still, the world will be a nicer place if you are nicer to people.
    While in Chicago one day, I asked a young lady hostess at a restaurant (she was outside, they had outdoor seating) where I could find a public restroom, and she directed me to the back of the restaurant where I could use theirs.
    Note-writer is a douche.

    Jun 29, 2012 at 6:20 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #16.1   :)

      People in Chicago are generally friendly and awesome. I love Chicago! I totally agree with the you about the douchy-ness of this note though. I would definitely ask to use their bathroom and about other bathrooms in the area, even if I didn’t have to use the bathroom.

      Jul 1, 2012 at 6:56 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #17   annoyed mama

    at a memorial day parade in a small town several years back, my then 2-year-old needed a restroom. we had just bought about $50 worth of stuff from the corner store, but their bathroom was locked. i explained my little one’s urgent need to the worker, but was refused. so, i let her pee on the ground outside their front door.

    Jun 29, 2012 at 6:34 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #17.1   Jami

      Some stores have to store their stock in their bathrooms. They can’t let people in for fear they’ll steal it. What you did was STFUParents-snark worthy.

      While I can sympathize with urgent need, you should’ve found someplace else she could go potty instead of teaching her to act like vindictive white trash.

      Jun 29, 2012 at 4:25 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #17.2   Omnivore

      You must not have children. When they have to use the bathroom they really have to go!

      Jun 29, 2012 at 5:19 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #17.3   Jfc

      Having your child pee /directly in front of the door/ is not a simple case of a young one having to go urgently. Using a kid for your revenge strategy is pretty petty.

      Ive found the “you must not have kids” is frequently an excuse for bad behaviour. The employee was being awful here, but you don’t know what the store rules are, or if s/he stood to lose a crappy minimum wage job if s/he broke them.

      Jun 29, 2012 at 10:07 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #17.4   childFREE

      ‘Ive found the “you must not have kids” is frequently an excuse for bad behaviour’

      Dito snd so so very true. The inconsiderateness of people with children is bejond belief at times.
      No, your gift to mankind does not have more worth and does not have more rights than all the adults in a 5 mile radius.

      Jun 30, 2012 at 8:40 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #17.5   H for Toy

      Omnivore, I have children, and there have been plenty of times that they’ve asked to go to the bathroom, simply because they want to see what it looks like. They’ve learned that not every place of business has a bathroom, and sometimes you just have to wait. They know that if they really do have to go, I will find them an accessible bathroom as soon as possible.

      Jul 1, 2012 at 7:07 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #17.6   Kes

      You are disgusting.

      If your child hasn’t learned to tell you before her needs become urgent, don’t let her eat or drink while you’re out and make her go to the bathroom before you leave. It’s that simple. A kid can go a couple of hours without eating, it’s not the end of the world.

      Jul 3, 2012 at 12:48 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #18   The Elf

    Would a partial sonnet be acceptable?

    My need is as a fever, longing still
    For that which longer nurseth the need;
    Feeding on that which doth preserve the ill,
    The uncertain sick appetite to have pee’d.

    Jun 29, 2012 at 8:10 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #19   pxmidnight

    While shopping in a local super market I needed to urinate. When I asked at the service desk where the restroom was, I was told they had no public toilet, and I should go to the McDonald’s across the road. I explained to the smug little witch that that wouldn’t work for me – and gave her two choices, tell me where the bathroom is, or I’ll piss on the floor. Strange how a full bladder can make a normally polite middle-aged woman resort to threats!

    Jun 29, 2012 at 9:53 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #19.1   Pixy

      How was she being smug? It’s not a legal requirement for businesses to have public bathrooms. I work somewhere where we have stock in our bathroom (not to mention having to walk through our standard stock room to get to the bathroom) – therefore, cannot allow customers back there. I hold their purchases at the counter, have them walk the less than 2 minute walk to the closest bathroom, and ring them up when they get back. Nobody has ever complained or thought that this was unreasonable, and I’ve been working there close to a decade.

      Jun 30, 2012 at 9:34 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #20   Jamesy Pantz

    i WANT to FIND a BATHroom FOR my PEE


    Jun 29, 2012 at 9:56 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #21   Lita


    Alas! My bladder clamors with its need
    The legs crossed tight as steel bar my advance
    Yet still the call of nature I must heed
    If I’m to keep my dignity – and pants!
    So now, to your establishment I’ve come
    The strain of waiting clear upon my brow
    Can you please tell me where to find the loo?
    You can’t? – well then, I piss on you, you cow!

    Jun 29, 2012 at 11:44 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #22   csmithy

    This must be why LA smells like pee.

    Jun 29, 2012 at 2:24 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #23   DaveGI

    “In olden days when knights were bold
    and toilets were not yet invented,
    they dumped their loads along the roads
    and walked away contented.”

    Sounds like we may be heading back to those days!

    Jun 29, 2012 at 3:42 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #24   rtuko

    fyi, the downtown LA bathroom issue has a lot to do (or all to do) with the sheer numbers of homeless in the area. You’re probably better off driving outside the area (downtown area is really not that big) to find a bathroom. I can’t imagine that any other major city doesn’t have the same issues re: locked bathrooms & homeless.

    Jun 29, 2012 at 4:41 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #25   Charlie

    If the shopkeeper keeps getting asked this question over and over, it seems to me a good public relations tool would be to find one so he/she wouldl have the answer available. “There’s a McDonald’s around the corner. When you’re done, come back for our 20% off sale.”

    Jun 29, 2012 at 4:58 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #26   Naomi Maunu

    I must inform you that your bathroom sucked,
    In fact it was so bad I almost chucked,
    And yet so desperate was I to poo,
    I plugged my nose and loudly cried boohoo!
    And then it was I realized the stall,
    Had absolutely no paper at all!
    I wept until I had no tears to shed,
    The sound it still rings loud within my head,
    So there I sat alone, depantsed, until,
    The janitor dispensed a new refill.

    Jun 29, 2012 at 5:22 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #27   Penny

    Do you have a public restroom?

    Sir, may I use your restroom, please?

    Do you know of a restroom I can use?

    This sign would be clever if Shakespeare hadn’t intentionally chosen to write so much in iambic pentameter because it is the way most native English speakers already speak. As it is, it’s a good example of derpiness making Shakespeare seem a lot harder than it is.

    Jun 30, 2012 at 2:10 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #28   kat

    Part 1

    I work in a box office of a theatre in a very touristy neighborhood. the bathroom question is one of the most common questions I get asked by passersby. Our restrooms are not open to the public only ticket holders but all staff members who interact with the public are informed as to where the closest public restrooms are located. Its even on an employee handout along with other common questions ie: where is the nearest atm, partking, etc. I do not understand why this question gets people’s panties in a twist. Its good customer service to be helpful. People remember that kind of thing.

    It is a bylaw in this city that businesses of a certain size must have a public washroom.

    I have always found that in most cases explaining that you have to pee people seem willing to help and if the dont, they are jerks I just don’t shopthere.

    Jun 30, 2012 at 5:31 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #28.1   The Elf

      Where’s Part 2? I must know!

      Jul 2, 2012 at 7:24 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #28.2   SilentPsycho

      I agree. I work in a museum that’s set in the middle of the park, and we normally get multiple people per day coming in just to use the toilet. I don’t mind, happily point the way, and wish them a nice day on the way out. It doesn’t cost anything more than the air it took to speak, and the public are happy and more likely to either come back after they’ve enjoyed the park, or come in another day. It’s just good customer service.

      Plus, I’d much rather they use our toilet than the public ones in the park. They’re just horrific, for various reasons that I’m not going to type here.

      Jul 2, 2012 at 8:50 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

    • #28.3   kat

      Part 2 is on the loo wall.

      Jul 2, 2012 at 12:48 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #29   Merry HooHoo

    Some roses are red
    Most violets are blue
    I do have to pee…
    So where is the loo?

    Jul 2, 2012 at 9:54 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #30   WALLS

    Some enterprising person should lurk outside selling verses that would fit this request. :)

    Jul 7, 2012 at 5:30 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #31   MerriD bang

    Wow, we’re so lucky in Australia – our government has even created a website to locate all the public loos across the country!

    Jul 18, 2012 at 11:06 pm   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #32   JayAre

    I took a bus tour of LA & Hollywood, with several stops for people to look around & stretch our legs. The driver was really good about pointing out where the prime public restrooms were (and which ones were a bit suspect). Some cities even have (official or unofficial) restroom guides or Visitor Restroom Programs, e.g. http://www.cityofsantacruz.com/index.aspx?page=462

    Jul 25, 2012 at 10:45 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up

  • #33   ursula8

    Being partner to someone who has chronic inflammatory bowel disease and frequently needs to use the restroom urgently with little warning, signs like this proper boil my piss. I can totally understand businesses not letting people use their restroom if they have a problem with it getting trashed, or needing to walk through stockroom to get to it, but being nice and pointing out the nearest public restroom costs nothing. Do most people really think that the desperate-looking person hopping from foot to foot and looking pained is purely looking for a chance to crap on their restroom floor?

    Aug 10, 2012 at 10:20 am   rating: 90  small thumbs up


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