Japan: Perfecting Everyday Details & Reverse Culture Shock: Toto Shower-Toilets

Toto shower-toilet: The Japanese are quite inspiring at perfecting everyday details which may be why they have such an enviable high quality of life.  This collective effort shows in their high levels of public safety, their social etiquette, courtesy, pleasant customer service and efficient public transport. And one of the everyday details that they have not overlooked is their bathroom hygiene. One of the understated rich-world technologies of the decade right now has to be the Japanese electronic toilet made by the Toto company.   Its quite a transformational product, like the difference between using a black & white or color TV.  If you were in prison and you only had the option to watch black & white you probably would.  But if you sat down on your couch and binged on back-to-back Will Ferrell comedies in color would you ever go back to watching black & white again? My first Japanese toilet-shower experience and how it works: My first few days in Tokyo I was hesitant to fiddle with the electronic panel of the Toto toilet.  It’s tucked to the side like those hard-to-reach TV remote controls on your airplane seat.  My fear was that if I pressed the ‘water-spray button’ too long a fire-truck-pressure jet-stream would eject me off my seat and I’d have to run out of the bathroom of the Tsutaya café, with my drenched pants around my ankles in a disheveled panic and cry to the hip-Japanese baristas that something had gone terribly wrong in the bathroom. The jetlag and initial Tokyo culture shock had worn off by Day 4 and I decided it was time to...