Lost in Translation

Because I'm currently in Japan, I'm used to seeing strange contraptions that are intended to simplify your life by making everything in it more complicated. In the bathroom, this means toilets with bidets and sprays and heated seats, and probably motorized seats too (so you and your boy/girlfriend can finally stop fighting over that classic issue. But this was new.

I stepped into the bathroom of my hotel room, and sitting on the wall right next to the toilet was a remote control. Quietly and happily sitting in its bracket, it brandished three big buttons:


Okay. "Bidet", I know. I avoid it, and suggest you do too, unless you enjoy a spray of warm water that feels it's trying to give you an enema. And "stop", that's obvious. But "shower"?? I mean, these silly Japanese designed a freaking remote control to start the shower before you even got in?? I suppose I could see the point: you could start the water from the taps without worrying about getting sprayed from the showerhead, or you could turn on the water before you got in so that it could have time to warm up to the right temperature.

Huh. Clever.

So let's see. I turned the showerhead away (towards the wall) and pressed it. There I was, standing in the bathroom, intently watching the bath tap fixture and showerhead, ready for the adventure ahead. Nothing happened. Instead, I saw a little tiny hose in the toilet move out, point at me, and spray me in the face. (From my yelp, you could tell that I was evidently not ready for the adventure ahead.)

This is why accurate translations and icons/buttons are so very important. Don't say "shower" if it's not about the shower; instead, write "intrusive gush of water where you'd least expect it". Geez, imagine the surprise I would have gotten if I had actually been seated on the throne.


Anonymous said...

I almost 'wet' myself, reading this entry!!! Thanks for the intense laugh, albeit at your expense.

Rich and Angel said...

Hahahahahahaha! OK. What's the difference between shower and bidet then? Both give you a nasty spray apparently.

Ben said...

Funny you should ask. Let me put it this way: shower is to bidet, as posterior is to anterior. Both would be uncomfortable to the uninitiated, but I suppose after the initial shock, a small sinful grin would creep across your face, and suddenly, you realize you've wasted upwards of an hour in your own little blissful world.

Don't ask how I obtained this new-found knowledge.