Since the dawn of pooing, people have craved some kind of distraction. It wasn’t that long ago that a rack of unhygienic magazines and newspapers was a common sight next to a bowl. But the iPhone changed that forever. Now, from the comfort of toilet seats everywhere, people can enjoy the infinite baby scroll that is Instagram, or can organise hot dates via Bumble. And all the while they can be distracted from what they're actually doing.
In fact, when was the last time you took a crap without using social media? To find out, we asked around Melbourne.
VICE: Hey man, how often do you shit without using Instagram?
Jared: Shit without using Instagram? Man, fuck. Never. I seriously always use Instagram every time I shit.
I don’t know. I just have to keep myself occupied while I’m shitting, you know. It kind of distracts myself from it I suppose.
What do you like to look at instead?
Skating clips usually.
Is Instagram your only distraction of choice?
It’s usually just Instagram. I don’t use Facebook very often anymore. I use Facebook just to reply to texts.
Haley, 25 and Cambria, 26, both from the US
How often do you shit and not look at Instagram?
C: Really! Seriously, all the time. I never take my phone in bathroom.
H: Yeah, I don’t sit on it, I go when I need to go and then I’m done.
C: Yeah! You either hurry up or you can go to Instagram.
So, you guys are all about getting it done quick?
C: I think it’s different for girls, we’re just quick with everything.
H: Yeah, all girls I know, when they gotta go they go and its done.
Isn’t it boring to shit without Instagram?
C: You don’t want to sit there, that’s just as boring. Plus, you can’t get stuff done on the toilet! See that’s the difference between men and women.
H: Yeah, I don’t think you can talk to people while shitting. It’s weird.
Is there a reason why Instagram isn’t allowed?
H: There’s a high risk of dropping it in the toilet, which I’ve done multiple times.
C: For me, I just hate taking my phone in the bathroom.
How often do you shit without using Instagram?
That’s good question. I don’t know maybe 30 percent of the time. 70 percent of the time I use Instagram. It’s just a way to relax me.
What do you get up to in this time?
Usually get in touch with myself spiritually and just embrace the moment on toilet.
Do you consider yourself a spiritual person?
Only on the toilet. I really like the solitude when I take a shit.
Is Instagram the only way for you to reach spiritual enlightenment?
No, no, its all social media. I don’t discriminate.
Ever swipe away on tinder or slide into someone’s DMs while on the shitter?
No, I’ve got a girlfriend. But I message her while I’m on the toilet. She doesn’t like it though. But, I send a selfie every now then. Not of the produce, just of me. My face, getting it out.
How often do you take a shit without using Instagram?
It’s quite rare that I take a shit without using Instagram, because I have issues with my stomach, so it takes a while for me to go.
So, does Insta help you go?
It doesn’t help me, it’s just something to do while passing the time. It’s just a bit of down time.
What makes a good Instagram distraction?
Nothing too specific. Just the feed really. I also really like Pinterest. I like to be inspired by home ideas and think about home redecorating while on the toilet.
How often do you shit without using Instagram?
I’d say relatively often. I do my best writing on the toilet. I wouldn’t say I’m the biggest Instagram shitter. I know people that are religiously Instagram shitters.
What do you mean by best writing on the toilet?
I write lyrics and sometimes I’ll have some of my best breakthroughs there. It’s very personal. My brain is just kinda off I guess.
If your brains turned off couldn’t that be dangerous for your phone?
Good point. I don’t put my phone in my back pocket when I’m going to the toilet, because I know it could fall out. I’m not about that life.
Ever thought about how dirty it is to use your phone on the toilet?
Who touches their shit while on the phone? And how often do you miss and touch shit? I don’t think about it and it doesn’t bother me.
Ellen, 24 from Ireland
How often do you shit while using Instagram?
I don’t have it on a scale, or anything. I don’t know when I’m going for a poo so I don’t have to have my phone on me when go into the bathroom.
Sounds like you don’t think about it?
Definitely not. I’m not that desperate for human connection. I’ve got enough of it around me. But I’d say what’s the likelihood me having my phone on me it’s probably 50/50.
Now that you’ve thought about it do you have reason why you don’t take it in?
No. I don’t have reason why for either. I’ve never monitored my internet actions while on the toilet. If it’s in my hand it’s coming with me, if not it doesn’t. And I probably won’t ponder it that much after.
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