The other day my fellow blogger Jake Redman from Modhop (one of my favorite blogs here on BA) posted a photo on twitter of the very nice soap and lotion in the LGA Centurion Lounge that I happen to have reviewed. I responded, as you can see, that as a blogger it is a little bit creepy getting your camera out and snapping shots in a men’s bathroom.
I have to tell you there are many circumstances that taking photos as a blogger is a little bit weird. I have posted and reviewed all 10 of the Delta Sky Clubs in Atlanta so that you yourself can see which one you would most like to visit if you have a long layover in Atlanta. But in one of the clubs the agent checking me in all but FORCED me to delete a photo of the front desk that included her in it (I could have taken it from outside the club btw). In all the other Sky Clubs I had no issues but it does bring up the point of the semiprivate nature of Sky Clubs and whether or not photos should be taken. Right now there is a heated debate on FlyerTalk whether or not you should have the right to privacy and not be photographed in Sky Clubs. Personally, I feel if you are in public you have given up the right to not be in photographs.
Even on airplanes I feel you have to expect to be photographed. I had one unique situation where I was in first class and a very young person was plopped down next to me and I naturally took the photo you see above. The mother made it very clear to me that she did not want her child in a photograph to be posted on the Internet. As you can see I blurred child’s face as I always do whenever I can when I notice that a child was in one of my photographs as you may have noticed from my post yesterday from the PIMA Air & Space museum.
However this gets back to the question I started this post with, that is, what about situations that are really awkward. For example, is there any way to properly photograph a men’s bathroom without it being really weird (and frankly uber creepy)? I will tell you even with Club attendants when I tell them I want to take photos of the showers in the clubs but I don’t want to use the shower it results in a look.
When it comes to photographing airplane seats I often try to board first to be able to get seat shots when no one is sitting in them yet. But one time when I boarded first as a diamond, and then was scurrying around the coach cabin and taking some photos including exit row photos, a flight attendant rushed up to me and with some degree of understandable concern asked me what I was doing. Thankfully I had flown with this flight attendant before and she recognized me and said “Oh, you’re that blogger, that’s fine we just wanted to know what you were doing.”
Let’s jump back to the bathroom shots one more time. As a male there is sort of an unwritten rule of bathroom etiquette. Especially so when you are in the act of using the facilities, then you do not make eye contact with your fellow bathroom passengers (nor ever let your eyes wander around). You definitely do not , when in a lavatory stall, make any attempt to contact the gentleman next to you for any reason.
However, my wife informed me that there are times when ladies will use a lavatory, before they realize there is no toilet paper available, and then I am told in such situations a hand will appear under the wall accompanied by a voice requesting paper. Now as a gentleman I cannot imagine ever doing that. First off, I would have checked but beyond that I would never, ever request of the gentleman next to me to hand me toilet paper no matter how dire the situation was. I have been told that all girls know this etiquette (do “boys” know this and I am just clueless)?
You know even discussing this topic is kinda creeping me out. I guess my question to you this weekend is are there social lines that are simply inappropriate when it comes to travel? Are there times that photography in the bathroom is just fine or in other places like clubs or aircraft? Have you ever even thought about issues like this. Let me know but please keep it clean. 😉 – Rene