Toilet Tranquility

I hope you’ve had the chance to try this app. Feel free to let me know of any issues or insights with it at

Why this? Neurosis and environmental sustainability. Well, maybe not so much a fear that others are hearing my adventure on the toilet, perhaps just a need for outside sound to achieve inside silence. I guess the neurosis is the need to frame it within the confines of expected sounds emanating from a bathroom (a sink/faucet), rather than letting music or some other sound effect take center stage.

But more importantly, a microcosmic test of individual decision making. The consequences of our wasteful consumption simply aren’t explicit enough to alter our behavior. My personal daily water usage isn’t a significant contributor to the planet’s scarcity, so why should I care?

But perhaps when confronted with real metrics as a result of individual decision making, perspectives can change. Whether internalized simply as awareness or taken to a point of competitiveness (which numbers often cause), it becomes harder to ignore the consequences of unsustainable practices. A future reliant on cooperation to achieve sustainability may need to focus less on the threat of our collective inaction, and more on the individual’s accountability to his or herself. The more accurately and more aggressively individuals must witness the specific results of each of their decisions, the more of a price they pay internally for not conforming with what they know to be better. As stated succinctly in an episode of The Wire, “Conscience do cost”.