You can tell a lot about a person by the way they handle the restroom door in a public place. 

Not the multi-unit kind, but the SOLO public bathroom.

Solo public bathrooms are the best. 

I’ll gladly wait for one to open up so I can be alone in there, rather than wedge in next to a belching (or worse, chatty) stranger at the urinal. 

Stadium men’s rooms are the worst. 

Often utilizing a trough scenario where a line of guys stand shoulder-to-shoulder and wizz into a metal box with dozens of rowdy dudes behind them shouting, “C’mon, man. I’m gonna piss my pants!”

I’m not sure what it’s like in the women’s stadium bathroom, but from all reports, “disgusting” seems to be the top rating. 

Anyway, the way in which people approach a solo restroom door is revealing behavior. 

You’ve got three types:

  1. The Knob Rattler, who charges straight for a closed bathroom door and yanks the handle with zero assumption that it might be occupied. 

They even like to give it a second, bolder twist because it still hasn’t registered that there’s a fucking system here and they are not alone in the world. 

This is the same person who takes up two parking spots at the mall during Christmas, selfies at concerts during the guitar solo, and sends back their burger because there’s a tomato next to it and they “specifically said, ‘no tomato’.” 

  1. The Knocker, who gives a polite knuckle tap and actually waits for a beat for the “One minute!” response. 

This is an evolved human being who isn’t afraid to take action but is conscious of social construct and their responsibility to it. 

  1. The Loiterer, who sees a closed bathroom door and just assumes it’s occupied without ever checking. 

Forcing you to stand behind them for a full minute before idiotically asking, “Someone’s in there, I assume?” Only to be met with a shrug and a tough decision to make.

Do you bypass this phone-scrolling pacifist and knock yourself? 

Or remain trapped in their mindless purgatory, knowing damn well a Knob Rattler is about to walk up and steal the bathroom?  

This person is either a mindless rule follower or so Xanaxed out that their friends will spend the better portion of the night asking, “Where’d Alex go?”

Loiterers are the ones who walk slowly in the wrong direction at airports, take up a four-top at the coffee shop, and get beeped at when the light turns green.

As annoying as Knob Rattlers can be, they are, at least, engaged in life.

As a Knocker, I’d rather step out of the way of a Rattler, than be impeded by a Loiterer. 

How ‘bout you?

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