|What one is missing out on in the bathroom|
בדידי הוה עובדא - It happened to me.
I was at a simcha about two years ago and I had to go to the bathroom [known affectionately as the "בית הכבוד"]. It happens. I am the proud host of a VERY VERY complex, built in plumbing system that removes anything my body doesn't need from strategically placed parts of my body. הודו לה' כי טוב. מה רבו מעשיך השם!! It is truly a wonder. ומפליא לעשות!! If it wouldn't work - oy vi-avoi!!
Back to our story.....
I was taking care of my needs and all of the sudden there was almost violent banging on the door and a demand that I get out [I had not been in there for so long]. I was thinking "You know sweet friend, I really don't WANT to be here but I am sort of forced by the powerful forces of nature. I can't learn Torah in the bathroom so all I want to do is get out and return to my sefarim. But I can't right now. So why are you banging the door down??" I didn't say anything but felt very uncomfortable and did my best to exit quickly before the "Gestapo" broke the door down.
I come out and see that the person was a mechanech, a Rebbi in a post high school yeshiva program in Yerushalayim. He wears a big kippah sruga. He is serious about his learning and teaching. But where is the DERECH ERETZ that is "kadma la-torah"?? It was also odd that he didn't even look at me when I came out. He just look in the other direction as I passed by [maybe because he felt uncomfortable? Or maybe because I wasn't even a person in his eyes? I don't know].
My son, who is not the biggest talmid chochom in the world [he is but 13 - hopefully he will blossom into one], shares a bathroom with me. When he needs to decide if he will use that bathroom or a different one and I am in there, he asks me when I am planning to get out. When I assure him that I will be out very soon he quickly assures me that it is fine if I stay in as long as I want. I assure him that I was really planning to get out soon. He was REALLY planning to use a different bathroom if it meant inconveniencing me. [It actually just happened again right before I sat down to write this post]. THAT is derech eretz. Not only for a father - for any human being.
I am sharing this because we ALL have to wait for bathroom use from time to time. PLEASE don't pressure the person inside. Of course, some people just hang out in there and have no right to hog it up. But usually, if someone is in there it is because they need to be.
So please be respectful. And patient. Eventually, everybody comes out....