A letter regarding the ‘Epic Flush’


photo illustration: timing the epic flush

Sarah Valverde, Assistant Editor

The 3000 building bathrooms aren’t a pretty picture. However, they’re conveniently located and the mirror is away from the sinks, so I don’t have to shove through preening girls when I need to wash my hands. A great many people use these bathrooms and for good reason.

That’s not my problem. My problem is the awkward feeling I get when I come across an ‘epic flush.’

An ‘epic flush’ (as I have fondly dubbed it) is the toilet that is still flushing after you’ve washed your hands, dried them by waving your hands around like noodles and fixed your hair/make-up/face in the mirror. It’s like Jersey Shore; it never ends. I know for sure that there are two in the female bathroom.

For obvious reasons I have no clue about anything male restroom related. That needed to be said.

To refute any and all claims that I’m exaggerating, I actually stood in the middle of the bathroom with a stopwatch (an experience I hope never to repeat). A normal toilet takes seven seconds to flush. The epic flush takes two and a half minutes.

Now, fixing them would cost money, and if our lack of English textbooks isn’t a big enough clue as to how we’re faring in that department…well, I digress. However, let’s do some simple math.

A normal toilet takes seven seconds to flush 3.4 gallons of water. Now, the epic flush will use 21 times that amount of water (71.4 gallons). Remember, this is every single use.

Taking into consideration the high amount of traffic between classes and the convenient location of the restroom, it’s safe to assume that one epic flush will be used about 15 times a day. We are now up to roughly 1071 gallons a day.

1071 gallons five times a week = about 5,355 gallons a week. Allow me to remind you this is one toilet.

There are four weeks in a month (roughly), and assuming the school pays their utilities once a month like the rest of us, the grand total used by one epic flush would be 21,420 gallons a month, give or take.

Now, the cost of that water would be 33 dollars.

It’s kind of anticlimactic, right?

This is one toilet in one month, and this doesn’t include all the other sources of water in the entire school, nor does it take sewage rates into consideration.

Now, when you destroy a textbook and need to replace it, you’re charged about 60 dollars. If the epic flushes were fixed, Carlsbad High would save enough money every month to get a brand new textbook. In an economy where every penny counts, 66 dollars a month is a pretty good deal—and that’s not even including whatever other tiny changes you’re repairing at the current moment.

So please, spend the money and save some money. Seriously, I want an English textbook.