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In this time of pandemic and revolution, do you find yourself frustrated at high levels of corruption and inequality, at our inability to get basic things done at the persistence of systemic racism? You're not alone.


I'm Baratunde Thurston, author, activist and comedian. Our democratic experiment is at a tipping point, but which way we tip is up to us. Listen to how it is in the Baratunde on the I Heart radio app, Apple podcast or wherever you listen to podcast.


My name is Langston Karmin and I'm a black man who loves conspiracy theories.


That's why I, along with the beautiful oppressor's that I heart radio and big money players, have a brand new podcast called My Mama Told Me where each week me and a special guest will explore all the twisted conspiracies that the white man is keeping secret. So listen to my mama told me available on the radio app, Apple podcast or anywhere else that pods are cast. Happy weekend, folks, in old podcast time, it is December 15th, 2016, and modern podcast time two thousand twenty one thing that has not changed between 2016 and 2020 is how porta potties work.


It's an interesting topic, believe it or not. I remember really enjoying this episode. I don't really enjoy porta potties, but it's, uh, it's kind of a neat thing to research, believe it or not.


So give it a listen. Why don't you. How porta potties work. Welcome to Stuff You Should Know. A production of Pirate Radio's HowStuffWorks. Hey, and welcome to the podcast, I'm Josh Clark. There's Charles to be Chuck Bright, cheery master Ace Rolling. Uh, and this is stuff you should know. Yeah. Pupi Edition. This one's going to get disgusting.


Yeah. I mean, I don't think you need trigger warnings when the title of the episode is got porta potty in it, but we'll just throw it out there. We're going to be talking about poop and pee, you know. And so if you're having lunch, maybe just. Put that chili dog down, you gag easily. Yeah, sure, yeah. OK, well, I don't think we can pull it off any longer, you know, that kind of petered out.


I kind of like how this article actually starts, though, by Dave. He talks about the taste of Chicago. Oh, was this a ruse jam?


Yes, it is good. So he talks about how if you go to the taste of Chicago, right. Every every July, they hold it at the Grant Park alongside the like. When was our show there, by the way?


It was that July. You know, it was chillier than that. I think it was October, OK?


They had something had happened in Grant Park because I remember seeing hundreds and hundreds of porta potties on the drive in. Oh, really? Yeah. So somebody they just always have them there. No, I don't think so.


OK, well, for the taste of Chicago, they definitely have porta potties, in fact, for 2014. And we should say there's like a million people that come through this thing over the course of the week.


Yeah, it's a lot of folks. It really is.


Have you ever been to Atlanta's taste of anything?


Uh, no, I haven't either. I don't think it's I don't think a million people show up for it now. It makes me want to go to Chicago. Me too.


But so you got a million people and Service Sanitation Inc, which is the company that landed the porta potty contract, crunched the numbers, looked at the food that was going to be there and said, you're going to have some beer.


Yeah, yeah. OK, they carried the one and they came up with 380 regular porta potties. Yeah. Twenty eight wheelchair accessible porta potties and eighty handwashing stations. They have soap and fresh running water.


Not bad, right? So here's the thing. That's great. They delivered all those things but had they just walked away and said, see, at the end of Taste of Chicago, it would have been a living nightmare.


Yeah. For everyone involved.


Yeah, that would be it would be more than the taste of Chicago. It be the sickening smell of Chicago. Yeah, that would have been bad because, well, we'll get into it. But porta potties, sometimes you can leave them, come back a week later and just take them away if it's a temporary work site or something. But sometimes when you're selling beer in Chile, you need to come at the end of every day and clean those suckers out.


Yes, and that's what they did. They came at night when everyone was sleeping. Yeah. Well, I guess if you went to bed at nine p.m., that's when I'm sleeping.


But they would come every night from nine p.m. to three a.m. and they would work. And here's the thing, like porta potties. It turns out I was overthinking them. I thought there was maybe a little more going on.


No, they are they are self. I don't I really don't know what I thought. It escaped me as far as the reality of porta potty sunk in my my delusions about my illusions, about some kind of escape me trickle away. And now I can't remember what they were. You've used a porta potty, right?


Sure I have. Okay. But I was like holding my breath and like, I just barely had my eyes open because I didn't want any germs to get on my eyeballs. So I wasn't paying that much attention in and out kind of thing.


Yeah, it turns out that, like, when you service support a party, what you're doing is you're showing up with the trunk or truck as a tank with a vacuum on it, a pressurized tank. And you are sucking the contents out of that porta potty.


Yep. And then you put it in the truck, you drive off and you dump it off at the waste treatment plant of your local city or town.


Yep. It's like a gigantic wet vac. Yes, it is. For poo poo MPB. Yes. And a very dangerous one.


I saw at least one story in a porta potty trade magazine that somebody who I read a bunch of those in the magazine called it's called the Portable Restroom Operator Krot. It's a it's a good mag man. I actually found this one issue online going all the way back to 2009 that I was looking for. So they're legit. Yeah, but they could have been a little more fun with the name profile.


I think they're they're saying like, hey man, take all the fun you want, but we're saving your behind.


Hey, see that. That sounds like a slogan. I'm sure it is.


Well, they do point out a couple of the slogans because porta potty companies or porta johns, Geoff Johns, portaloo if you're in England. Toy toy fair in Malaysia. Yeah, uh, they're very famous for having pretty fun, punny slogans like we're number one in the number two business.


No, not bad. No, it's not bad. And no, there's no one takes care of our business like Mr. John. Sure. I saw that, too. Yeah. There's also one called Got to Go. But it's spelled really impressively. Um, it's g it's all one word and it's lowercase. So it's super mod g o t u with an m.. Out she o. Love it. Hmm. You like that one? Yeah, I just I thought you were going in a different direction.


I thought it was going to be a little more like a U x.


No, that's like if I were in Louisiana, maybe. Yeah, that's what I thought should know this is decided. Um, well, that's what got me well.


And I mean, that's why you love Motley Crue so much. Sure. All right.


So, um, should we talk a little bit about the history? I think so. All right.


Well, we need to go back to World War Two in this case. And, um. Because World War Two is going on, there was there was a need for more Hoopers. Essentially, right, because they had, like manufacturing plants popping up, they had temporary manufacturing plants going up, they had places where they didn't want to build full service, permanent bathrooms. Right all over the place. All of a sudden, these people needed to go potty.


What I saw, I saw a few different origin stories, but the one I saw the most frequently was that the shipbuilding docks at Long Beach during World War Two, sure, they were building warships for the U.S. The guys working the docks would have to be working, building the ships would have to get on a rowboat and go back to the dock to use the bathroom. And that's no good. And they were like, this is a terrible waste of time.


Can we just get something on the ship? So they started building temporary what amounted to the first port a potties there on the ships for them to use. Yeah.


And these first ones, you can look up a picture of the Andy Gump. That's what it's called. I didn't see I got it looked at.


I think it's the Andy Gump, like one of the just type in like 1940s porta potty. And there will be a picture and it's basically this big heavy metal square. Sometimes they were wood, but they were super heavy and they weren't easily transported. They you know, this is pre using like chemicals which will get into to help break these the pooh-pooh down and stuff. So it was just a disgusting affair.


And we're having trouble right now. See the ending. You see it. Wow.


It looks like it looks safe to be in. You know what it looks like. It looks like what they used on Masche.


Yeah. Like the latrine. Mm hmm. Yeah. Same idea basically. Yeah. There's just a latrine. You could take places, get you. Uh, but I came across this really cool little thing on a website about World War Two fighter pilots and with World War Two came along, planes that could stay and these bombers that could stay in the air for a lot longer. And they started to think like, hey, these these dudes are up there for like, you know, 10 to 14 hours.


We have to come up with ways for them to go to the bathroom. Right, yeah, I mean, like you don't think about that, like when we know the frostbite episode, I certainly didn't think that they were up there getting frostbite because it was so, you know, cold. I also didn't think that they were up there so long that they couldn't use the bathroom. Yeah, they had to hold it right.


So, yeah. And the earliest ones were, well, here's the funnel and it's attached to a tube and it leads out of the plane. So go ahead and pee. Yeah.


And that's basically just for like the the pilot and co-pilot. Right. This relief tube after that, they're like, well, what do we have to poop now? They said, can you get your hands on a produce crate?


And the crew would say, like, well, yeah, sure, we have produced creative cause for the economies and the people in charge to say, well, poop in that, take that up in the plane and just poop in that body and maybe wash it out when you get down here and put it back in for later use. Yeah. Or maybe just get a new crate, I guess if you're not thrifty, eventually they came up with something called the Ellson GLSEN.


It's a chemical toilet. And it was really kind of one of the first little porta potties. But if you look up, Ellson and on the images on Google, you will find that it's it looks like nothing more than a metal oilcan that you sit on. It's basically what it was pretty much. Yeah. And you're all they're exposed.


I mean, there's no room that this is in. You're just doing this in front of you know, you're all your buddies on the plane, right. Like prison. You're. And I mean, that Ellson toilet was still I mean, as primitive as it was, it was an advancement, but it had certain problems, right? Like if you were flying through turbulence. Yeah. The ELLSON would spill its contents out into the plane. Yeah. Uh, there's a few quotes here.


I'd like to read a couple of these from some of these fighter pilots. Um. Here's one, and this is from a British pilot, while we were flying in rough air, this devil's convenience often shared its contents with the floor of the aircraft, the walls and ceiling, and sometimes a bit remained in the container itself. It doesn't take much imagination to picture what it was like trying to combat fear and air sickness while struggling to remove enough gear in cramped quarters and at the same time trying to use the bloody Ellson.


If it wasn't an invention of the devil, it certainly might have been one foisted on us by the enemy. When seated in frigid cold, amid the cacophony of roaring engines and whistling air away from what should have been one of life's peaceful moments, the occupant had a chance to fully ponder the miserable condition of his life. This loathsome creation invariably overflowed on long trips and in turbulence, was always prone to bathe the nether regions of the user. So it was one of the true reminders to me that war is hell.


So you don't think about this stuff.


You hear about all the glory of being like a bomber pilot. You don't think about sitting on a can and having your your friends poop and piece up on your fanny. Sorry. To those in the UK, it doesn't even make sense in that context. That means something different here in the US. Right. But right.


So yeah, that's the the first I guess, chemical toilet, which is a designation of a porta potty. Right. Like a porta potty is a chemical toilet, but not all chemical toilets are porta potties. That's right. But a chemical toilet is any kind of toilet where you have something in there that's intended to break down waste. And actually, I don't know that in Ellson toilet, I guess it was a chemical toilet. I see now. But that's gross because in addition to getting the rest of the cruise poop slopped up against your rear end.


So to where you getting very, very hazardous chemicals back then for sure as well.


Yeah. So that's a good man. That guy may have had his buttocks removed after the war.


One of the uses of the toilet, they said this is supposedly very true is that some members of the Royal Air Force actually jettisoned the Ellson toilets with their bomb payload on the German targets so they would drop these toilets full of poo on the Germans. And that was an American who had a great quote about peeing through the little hose.


He said as the urine ran through the tube, it turned to ice and dropped like topaze colored hail to the ground.


I like to imagine every time I urinated over Germany, my my assiduous projectile would plink on some Nazi Bergers Aryan nose poetry.


Yeah, there's some more good stories in here. You should I mean, I don't know which website it was. Oh yeah. Yeah. I'll have to post that later on Facebook. Yeah. For sure. Yeah. And I'll tweet it. Right. So that's the the war effort that eventually ultimately led to the creation of the porta potty, right? Yes. And again, like there were already latrines that had already been outhouses. And the difference between an outhouse and a porta potty is that now houses basically some sort of rigid structure that's intended to be permanent or semi-permanent, permanent, that's dug over a hole in the ground.


Yeah, that's it. A porta potty is a self-contained unit that has a place where the waste goes and is held inside that unit rather than like put into the ground, which is extremely dangerous.


We learned a very long time ago pooping in holes in the ground is not a good way to go as far as public health is concerned. No, it's not. And that's one of the legitimate marks in the favor of porta potties is Grosz's is most people who've ever used one thinks they are. They're actually quite beneficial to the public health.


Yeah. And they're green to save a lot of water.


Yeah, I saw one hundred and seventy billion litres a year, about one hundred and twenty five million gallons a day in the US alone. Crazy. Yeah. So you want to take a break for a second.


Yeah. Well we'll break and we'll talk a little bit more about the evolution of the port a John right after this.


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All right, Chuckers, so we're talking about the evolution of the reportage. And you got the Andy Gump. Mm hmm. You've got the Ellson toilet. And then finally in actually the 60s, you have what is the what we think of as a porta potty. A patent was developed by a guy named George Harding, and he called it for a portable toilet cabana. And it was made from plastic. And although he had the patent for it, the guy who actually gets credit for actually creating the first real modern Porta John report a potty was a guy named Harvey Heather.


Yeah. And he created what's called the strongbox. It's a great name. Did you see have you seen the strongbox? Oh, yeah. Oh, you did, huh?


That's what I went and found the December 2009 issue of Pro magazine to find because I saw a reference that they had published a picture of it and I couldn't find it anywhere else.


Oh yeah. Those things are ugly.


Yeah. It wasn't it wasn't a great looking it's not like the fantastic porta johns they have today. Yeah. It's so gorgeous to look at right now. This thing was ugly.


Yeah. It had no alibi. Yeah. And these were made of fiberglass which was good.


It was lightweight but and it was sturdy. It was a sturdy is metal or wood and it was a lot easier to clean. But the problem with the strongbox and the fiberglass is it was a big kind of one piece mold.


It was dark inside, which was not good.


That's a big drawback. They weren't stackable as far as transporting them. And so that just made it really expensive to get them where they needed to go and back again.


It did in the fact that, like, it was completely opaque and there was no light they could get in. That's that's an issue.


Plus, I also get the impression that the floors could get pretty slick and you could fall and die of positional asphyxiation in a heartbeat.


Yeah. And they were also fiberglass is pretty fragile. So they would break a lot. Fiberglass absorbs odors, which was not good. No. And so shortly after the fiberglass came along, someone said, you know what, how about polyethylene? This is what we will use. And George Harding, who you mentioned, co-founded the Poly John Corporation, and he started building the polyethylene portable toilets that were much better because they lasted longer. They would last like a decade.


Oh, yeah. Although I would not want to use a nine year old port of Jihan.


Well, that picture of the strongbox that was published in Pro magazine apparently had been out in service. It was still in service and it had been built like 30 years before. Well, yeah, you would know that your company could not have cared less about you if you show up to your job site and there's a strong box there. Yeah.


That's what you're expected to use with all of the all of the possible choices that your company could choose from. And they went with the strongbox. They don't care about you or your happiness.


Now, the polyethylene, other good thing about them or they were assembled into different parts and pieces. So it made them a lot easier to transport, lot cheaper. And if a part broke, you might be able to replace it.


Oh, yeah, that is kind of good. Yeah, makes sense.


So hooray for polyethylene toilets. But one of the things that George Harding created in his patent that I noticed was a ventilation system. Yes. This a big improvement, right. For sure, because when you're just piling human waste upon human waste into a hole, that it's going to create gases, noxious gases, because bacteria is going to start decomposing that waste.


And as a byproduct of the decomposition they're going to produce, what we see, what we experience is rotting fecal material, right?


Yes, not just that. It's stinky, it's dangerous. It is dangerous.


And as that gas tries to find a way to escape upward, if the only hole available to it is the toilet that you're pooping or peeing into, those gases are going to come out of it and you're going to vomit while you poop repeat as well. So George Harding, had I told you this was going to be with George Harding, figured out was that if you could just basically create a pipe venting off that gas upward and out of the porta potty, people would be willing to use porta potties a lot more.


And that was a huge improvement.


Yeah. He also said, how about we make this rooftop? Translucent white. So we can let in some natural light at least. Why don't we improve the flooring so it's not a slippy and maybe even further down the line, we'll have porta potties that have a little urinal that separate so you don't even have to sit your butt down on that most horrid of places, right? Yep. What about the roll around toilet? Did you see these. Yeah, those.


I mean, they make sense of basically if you were on like a job site, right. Where there are, uh, like different multiple stories being built and you're up on one of the higher stories. It's the same thing as when you're working in the shipyards, building a ship. You don't want to have to come all the way down to use the bathroom. Yeah. So they created porta potties that were a lot more mobile that could be hoisted by cranes.


Yeah, just a different, uh, different levels. Yeah.


If you look up, roll around toilet, it basically looks like one of those. Coolers that has the two wheels and the handle, and you could pull the cooler around, except it's larger and sitting above the wheels is a it's a urinal, right? I don't see how you go poopy in those. So maybe maybe that's when you go downstairs. Uh, yeah, I don't know either, because it's not enclosed or anything.


I mean, this is wide open, just like prison. Yeah. And there's actually a great a great scene from, I think the first police academy starring our friend in Twitter followers, Steve Guttenberg Gates. And I think it's Mouser who uses a porta potty.


And Steve Guttenberg goes over and gets some crane operator to send him the crane. And now it's Mauser's, his right hand man. I don't remember that guy's name, but they lift the porta potty up while he's inside using it.


It's hilarious, wacky, wacky stuff ensues. Yeah. And then if you really are living the good life or you have a maybe a really nice upscale wedding that's out in a remote area, you don't want to bring in just even the nicest polyethylene Porta John won't do. You will bring in what we call in the movie business, a honey wagon. Um, that is a restroom trailer. And these are actually nice. They are have running water, they have stalls, they have porcelain toilets.


It's all partitioned. They have sinks and running water and mirrors, hand towels.


It's like a rolling trailer full of toilets.


Yeah. Like you can breathe through your nose in these things. You can lay down on the floor if you wanted. Yeah.


And apparently these first started in nineteen eighty four. Polly John in Columbus, Ohio. Go by. Yes. Yeah.


And the original trailer was eight stalls or as we said in the movie business an eight banger uh had three girls and it was thirty two feet long.


Wow. And now there are nineteen companies manufacturing luxury restroom trailers around the world today.


Yeah. I saw one like that. They market for like outdoor weddings and stuff like that. I said all you need are like I think six outlets, maybe six hundred and twenty volt outlets. Yeah. And like a standard garden hose connection and you got yourself a luxury porta potty trailer.


Yeah. For your next remote black tie event. Right.


Which I mean even people in black tie got a P. Yeah, sure. So you might as well take it easy on them with the nice looks trailer. That's right. So speaking of Chuck, you want to take a break. Yeah, I'm going to go to a real bathroom and hug it and I'm going to get a crane operator to probably a prank on you.


All right. We'll be right back.


I'm Holly Frying and I'm Maria Markets. And together we're exploring the margins of history and specifically at the intersection of history and true crime.


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That's why I ask you know, why ask she right or wrong?


OK, Chuck. Yep. We can't put it off any longer.


We've got to go inside. We're going to go inside a deep dive into the bowels of the Florida pot.


How? My gosh. OK. OK, you ready? Yeah. Get your snorkel. Yep. OK, so when you look into a porta potty, you may notice that the, the stuff that's inside the bowl or inside the holding tank is blue.


Yeah. And brown. Sure. Yeah. But it's more blue than brown and that's no accident. That's right.


Any porta potty is going to use a deep blue dye in the entire purpose from beginning to end. The blue dye is to visually mask the presence of human feces. Yeah, they don't they don't want you looking down there and seeing if it was just, like, clear. Mm hmm. Like, it's already disgusting.


You're getting the full experience from the smell alone. You don't need the visual.


Yeah. And you don't poop in these things, do you? Oh, no. Okay. No, I, I think I would just put my pants and walk around instead.


I don't I don't think I would I certainly don't remember ever pooping it.


It's possible I blacked out that memory, but I don't think I ever have it like the first Lollapalooza.




I the only time I pooped in these. I'm sure there's been like some extreme emergency, but the only time I can really recall is when Emily and I were getting our master bath built at our house. Oh, no, we had our own we had another little bathroom, kind of a little small guest bathroom, and we shared that. And then we had a construction toilet on site because they were doing construction. Right. And so I would get up in the mornings because I didn't want to.


I want to be a good husband, you know. Yeah. And not ruin Emily's Day and morning by getting in there first. So I would I would get my newspaper and I would walk outside in my slippers and use the portage on in my driveway every morning. But I mean, I guess I was pretty clean. It was yours, right? It's great.


It was me and like, you know, two or three dudes, they go, that's that is doable. Festival. Oh, no taste of Chicago. No, like, yes, there's there are like of course. But surely if you're sharing a porta potty with a couple of other people that you have to look in the eye here, there. You going to take care of it. Right. But if it's a random drunk strangers or people on drugs or something like that, yeah.


It's going to get messy awfully fast. Yeah. And and again, as more and more people use it, that blue dye becomes more and more important. Yeah, right. Yes, it does. There's also going to be a fragrance that they're going to add to hopefully mask the odor and apparently makes it worse.


Well, I was reading in some some trade magazines and I haven't experienced it myself, but I did get the impression that they have come a long way as far as fragrance goes.


Yeah, like I saw, you can get bubblegum fragrance that.


God, this doesn't sound good.


Vanilla, uh, uh, Watsonia. That comes from just standard use of the taste of Chicago.


Yeah. I mean, you know me with fragrances period. I'm with you. It's even worse to me.


Everything, bagel. No, but like I came across this site and there's like a Jaguar brand porta potty fragrance additive and they have like any fragrance you can imagine, new car.


Wow. And then the finally final thing you're going to see down there or that it's going to be down, there are biocides to kill the bacteria and microbes. And it used to be that they would use formaldehyde to take care of that. But more and more wastewater treatment plants started saying, hey, we can't properly dispose of that stuff. Now it's a carcinogen and we don't feel good about it. So they've been phasing that out over the years, going a little greener.


And now, um, they actually use enzymes like beneficial enzymes and microbes that feed on this stuff. Right.


They feed they they help break down the poop and they also feed on the bacteria that causes the smells. Right. So they're making the poop inert, but they're also naturally cutting down on smells, which I just find fascinating. Yeah, they also since it's capable of breaking down bacteria, it's also capable of breaking down any organic material so that if you use the right kind of toilet paper, they'll break down the toilet paper as well. Yeah, it's just basically magic in a porta potty.


Yeah. And they the other benefit there is they don't need to be emptied as often if it's doing the job like it should. Yeah. Weather has an effect obviously. If you're in Georgia in the hot summer, things are going to get even worse, I imagine Chicago in July is probably no picnic either. And the taste of Chicago, no one's going to go to the streets of Chicago anymore, like attendance dropped by 20 percent this year. You don't know what's going on.


But when temperatures go up, bacteria go to work even harder and things are just going to smell even worse. So they might actually use more chemicals in the summer or more chemicals, especially if it's the summer festival. Right.


And then conversely, I saw this, I guess it was a blog post by a porta potty worker that was published on Cracked. And they they basically just went over most of the stuff you can imagine, but just crazy stuff that they found. But one of the things that they made reference to is that the worst thing that they can encounter is a frozen waste. Yeah, because they said once that happens, you have to break it up by hand.


How so to protect to defend their people from having to do this, they will typically in colder, colder areas during the winter, they'll create a briny mixture. Yeah, that will have a lower freezing temperature like the Minnesota Ice Fishing Festival.


Right. But eventually you're going to reach a point where it's cold enough that it's freezing no matter how much salt you add to it.


Yeah, and I did see one of their little tricks of the trade is they put a piece of cake of this rock salt in the urinal. So you go pee on it. And as you pee on it, it just adds a little more salt slowly throughout the day. Right.


The only issue with those is that you have to keep the deer away because they love salt licks.


You like that? Yeah.


So I'm ashamed of basically every joke I've made this whole episode. I don't feel good about myself right now.


All right. So let's finish up by talking about the really the worst part of this.


If you're one of, like eight people still listening.


Right? If you're still listening, then we'll finish up with the worst part, which is servicing these things. And we talked about it. It's like a wet vac. Suck it out, drive it to a wastewater plant. But you have to add new water. You have to add new blue junk and some more dry solution.


And so I saw like a ratio of one to one fresh water to solution. We don't want to mess that up. No. Uh, and you think like. All right, so that's pretty gross and everything, but, um, especially like a music festival or something, there's stuff everywhere, like you've been in these there's there's urine everywhere. There's poop and places where you think like what in the world is someone doing in there? And they have to be cleaned out by somebody.


It's an awful job. Yeah. There's stuff that people drop down there, like if you use the sock to wipe your bottom with and you just deposit the sock into the porta potty, that's going to as you come up the the tank or the pump. So they have to get that kind of stuff out first. What about your cell phone? Cell phone? Yeah. Apparently they find all sorts of stuff, especially things like phones, wallets full of cash, jewelry, drugs again.


Yeah, guns. I that correct guy said that he had a friend who showed up at a porta potty where they just found a body.


Oh my God. Yeah. And the thing now in the porta potty, not in the actual hole.


OK, that's just cool. Yeah. But yeah, they find all sorts of stuff because almost everybody would say, well that's gone. I'll just have to get a new identity because I dropped my whole wallet in the porta potty. Actually I saw a stat where five percent of people that go into porta potties don't come out at all. So the dead body scenario makes sense. They end up in that other dimension from Phantasm.


And then our article says the worst case scenario, if you're a port a potty service person, is that the porta potty? Well, there's two worst case, one worse than one way worse. One is if it just gets knocked over either by a car hitting it or the wind or some jerk who thinks it's funny, it's not cool, knocks it not cool. It all knocks it over on purpose. But the ultimate ultimate worst is if it tips over on its door, that's its Achilles heel.


Any port a potties, Achilles heel. Yeah, because what happens, all of the stuff that's in the holding tank gets dumped out when it's facing on its front, on the door. All of the stuff is liable to come out. And it does, especially when they pick it back up. It just sloshes around everywhere. And poor port a potty service operator has to wash this thing out. And those are the worst. Like like somebody can put poop, like on the ceiling or on the walls or something.


That's pretty bad. Yeah. But when it falls on its front on the door and everything sloshes out, it gets everywhere. So you have to get inside to clean the whole thing. And at the very least, it takes them a lot more time and screws up their entire day's schedule. At the worst, they're in there cleaning a filthy porta potties, nooks and crannies from the inside.


Yeah, I would just say it fell off the truck, boss. Right.


Sorry, it's in that phantasm dimension. Boss, didn't the guys from Jackass do one of these, like, put one of them in there and tip it over something? I'm sure I think they did that when they were like four. Yeah, I think they did like had a crane lift it and turn it over something. I don't know. No.


You're thinking police academy and also police academy geeks. You don't have to write in. It was Police Academy three. Yeah.


I was about to say I didn't. I don't remember that. And 63, you didn't see what? No, I think I petered out after two, even three might have been the best of all of them, which is that what was the full name of it? Uh, citizens on patrol. OK, that's the one we're Bob Goldthwaite like goes over from his life of crime to being a junior police academy guy. Yeah, I love Bob Goldthwait, but good.


He's great. Can we stop? Sure, man.


OK, we have to say. You got anything else? No. OK, Chuck.


Well, actually, I do know if you see these porta potty service people. Oh, yeah. In your neighborhood, if there's construction going on, you see them bring in the truck, just flash a nice smile, give them a tip of the cap. It's a really gnarly job. And like they say, somebody's got to do it. They're making a living like they've got a job. They went out and got that job to make money and provide for their family.


And don't forget, they're defending public health and they're saving a significant amount of water.


Yeah. So there you go. Nice, Chuck. All right.


Good way to finish. If you want to know more about porta potties, you can type those that hyphenated word on the search bar at HowStuffWorks dot com. And since I said hi, Fin, it's time for listening.


Now, I'm going to call this quick John Cleese correction or John Cleese.


Exactly. Congratulations on an absolutely marvelous episode concerning Monty Python. Guys, it's great to hear so much of the history of the group. Well done. One bit of information. I happened to see John Cleese present a one man show a few years ago in Carmel, California. He just stood on stage and talked for about 75 minutes. Boy, that's a good gig. He discussed his life in general, Python in particular, and lots of things. Other things he noticed noted that his name is pronounced to rhyme with cheese rather than fleece.


In fact, his surname was originally cheese, but his father changed it to cles. So this was a good thing for the son being named John because he did not want to go by Jack Cheese. Yeah, I guess not. So it's John Cleese. Never knew that. That's from David Hewitt. Yeah.


And I also want to say, Chuck, somebody called us out for not mentioning Carroll Cleveland. She was, for all intents and purposes, the seventh member of Monty Python.


Yeah, we felt terrible because she was in our notes and we mentioned her and lavished praise on her and our run through that we did in the studio. And it was just one of those live show things that it got by us. Yeah. So sorry, Carole Cleveland. Yeah. We hats off to you. We appreciate your work and we're sorry we left you out. Agreed. If you want to get in touch with me or Chuck, you can tweet to us I at Josh Clark and there's also Skyscape podcast Choux at Charles W, Chuck Bryant on Facebook and stuff.


You should know on Facebook you can send the both of us and Jerry in email to Stuff podcast at HowStuffWorks dot com. And as always, hang out with us at our home on the web stuff. You should know Dotcom. Stuff you should know is a production of radios HowStuffWorks for more podcasts, my radio is the radio app, Apple podcasts or wherever you listen to your favorite shows. Hi, I'm Kristen Holmes. I've covered campaigns, Capitol Hill, the White House and everything Washington for CNN.


But nothing tops the importance of this upcoming election and my job is to help you make sense of it all. Welcome to election one or one. For the next 10 weeks, we'll figure out the electoral process together. I'll talk to experts, historians and some of you will address the safety of mail voting, inform you of deadlines and make sure you know all your options. You'll learn why voter registration is different from state to state and even from person to person.


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