Hot coffee and cold lavs

The bathrooms here are always freezing. But you forget.

At the back of the room, or down the creaking stairs and labyrinth of hallways, the doorway seems acceptable. There is usually a piece of art or an ornate mirror outside, advertising a destination similar to the warm, wood-floored, gently-lit cocoon of hot beverage drinkers you just left.

And then you enter, warmed to brimming with coffee or tea, skin flushed with the cosy expanse of heat. Unknowingly vulnerable. Because then it hits: the sadistic slap of cold. The freezing back-hander of the Toronto coffee shop bog. Smacks the happily caffeinated grin right off your face. And then blinking and gasping in the damp aftermath, the chill spreads over your skin. Cold and creeping, and you can barely think anything other than Get me out of here. And those few minutes freezes into forever. It makes your eyes water. Finally you leave, hands still numb from the gush of glacial tap water. Arctic cold and miserable.

This is their plan, you see: chilly customers need more hot coffee.

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