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Dated 25/03/07

Blogs can be a personal moan or an informative presentation of straight, technical informative. Ours is neither – it is our assessment of what is true.

The philosophical definition of truth, in the minimalist sense, says that there is no such thing as a 'definition of truth' and the only thing you can say about truth is that a sentence like ‘there is a 'camera' there’ is only true because 'there is a 'camera' and it is 'there'. This is a trivial thing to say but it is the only thing to say according to 'minimalist truth'. 'Absolute truth' however, as an 'absolute' is even more difficult to render or to comprehend, so let's not bother...

  Blog Boy


If you're not a customer, piss off!

"Charming", you're thinking, but without a doubt, the worst thing about running a cafe is the fact that we have to provide a toilet facility. Most customers treat it ok, some don't, but the sheer volume makes it very difficult and costly to maintain and many people just don't realise this.

Imagine if your toilet at home was in constant use, one person after another trooping through – it's a real pain. Particularly when you consider that there has been an increase in venues providing food and drink in Matlock Bath lately and some of them do not even provide a toilet facility. This leaves us with the problem of lazy people who can't be bothered to go and find the public toilets at each end of the village thinking it is their right to pee in our teashop – even though they've had food and drink elsewhere – we call these people toileteers.

'Toileteers', our word for ignorant buggers who enter cafes just to go to the loo, preferably without supporting them in anyway if they can get away with it. We spent a lot of time and money producing The Victorian Teashop in Matlock Bath and most people appreciate what we've done here – we even have a museum upstairs and the decor and atmosphere is second to non, but some people seem to think that cafes, ours and others, are some sort of public toilet facility.

The Victorian Teashop is a private venue and our customers are invited onto the premises to enjoy what we offer in the nice surroudings. They can even go to the toilet if they wish. Some people, however, just wander in like they own the place and head straight for the loo. When we tell them the public toilet facilities are outside and nearby, they get stroppy with us – as though their need for the toilet outweighs our need to maintain our sanity and the cleanliness of our facilities for use by real customers. We get thousands of people through it every year, therefore the phrase, "we don't need anymore shit from you", really does come into it's own.

Many thousands of people come to Matlock Bath every year and we just can't be expected to provide a public toilet service – the flushing alone uses an enourmous amount of water (which we are metered for) and if you've ever heard someone flushing three or four times trying to get rid of the mess they've made when they haven't 'spent a penny' with us, you'll understand what I mean.

Just providing for the customers we have is a real down side to running this sort of venue, but some people just don't care particularly and you can imagine what that means in a heavily used toilet – it even brings our own presentation into question, which is not fair – one of our staff has to go in and out of the toilet all the time just to make sure no one has left it in a state – it is time consuming and undesirable.

It can also be embarrasing. Recently, we were reasonably full with a good atmosphere going and four stupid looking people walked in and all made their way to the toilet door and formed their own queue. What a set of tossers! I cannot descibe the frustration of trying to run a decent venue in an already awkward place like Matlock Bath when people just treat you and what you have created like shit. One of the most annoying tricks is when people want to go themselves, but shove their kids in through the door in front of them and expect us to take extra pity on their needs: "Can my little boy just use your loo, he only has one kidney." We call this technique 'the human shield' and we usually call in the terrorist branch of the local police to deal with them.

Of course, we don't allow toileteers to get away with it and usually challange them, but that just spoils the atmosphere, especially when they call you a "miserable fucking twat" or threaten to kill you, which also tends to add to our own disappointment, discomfort and disillusionment. As I said before, most of these people are completely selfish and do not understand that our own well-being and the well-being of our business is disruppted, so if you're a 'toileteer', try to understand that your toilet needs cannot be addressed in isolation in a busy venue like Matlock Bath, so be a little less cheeky, more thoughtful, more courteous – and perhaps even a customer – failing that, Piss Off!

Peter Hague, 25th March, 2007


Busy Cafe, Busy Toilet:
"Please wait to be seated"
This weblog and others by the same author may be upsetting to some people and we apologise if that is the case. Some of the thoughts, words and ideas expressed may be considered inappropriate for the owner of a museum and teashop – but that's creativity, for you – you can't have both. All the comments above were the opinions and thoughts or probable opinions and thoughts of the author at the time they were written and may not be the opinions or thoughts of the same author now. Nor do they concur with the general philosophy behind The Victorian Teashop or Life in a Lens Museum – even though the author of this site is the creator of both – but hey, that's what insanity does for you. We also apologise if any of the material in this web log is in any way offensive, it's just that we have strong competition from Aunt Agony on The Victorian Teashop site and sometimes things get a little out of hand.  
The 'Life in a Lens' The Victorian House Museum of Photography & Old Times – & the 'The Victorian Teashop'
114-118, North Parade, Matlock Bath, Derbyshire DE4 3NS Tel: 01629 583325

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