The good news is, reading a printed paperback or hardback book while you pinch a loaf isn't going to kill anyone and could possibly make you a better person. A disgusting, filthy, better person.
According to the Guardian, contemplating the Meaning of Life while dropping a deuce is an enviable position in which to find oneself and that others should aspire towards, noting that, "the toilet of the middle ages, high up in a castle turret, offered the perfect solitude for "uninterrupted reading"; Lord Chesterfield too saluted the benefits, recounting the tale of a man who used his time wisely in the "necessary house" to work his way through Horace."
And we know how sanitary the Middle Ages were. But I think those old dudes were simply masturbating. They'd take a book to pretend they were reading, but they were really just diddling themselves. "How was your Horace? Wink, wink."
The danger, they add, is, "your poo can get on your hands, [and] be transferred to your reading material." Ah, public libraries: Aiding poo migration since 1600.
"Microbes don't fare too well on absorbent surfaces, and might survive only minutes on newspaper. But plastic book covers and those shiny, smooth surfaces of Kindles, iPhones and iPads are more accommodating, and it's likely bugs can live on those for hours. A recent study by Curtis suggests that in Britain one in six mobile phones is contaminated with faecal matter, largely because people fail to wash their hands after going to the toilet."So the conclusion, the disgusting conclusion, is that reading while on the toilet is a widespread practice, which is mostly harmless so long as you view spreading feces on the objects you touch as mostly harmless.
Personally, I don't read "whilst" (the King's English) upon the "crapper" (the Earl's English). I don't tweet or play Angry Birds or do anything else with my hands. Except floss. And knit. And write checks. And compose commercial jingles on my Casio keyboard. And blog. Because I'm on the toilet now.
And The Mouthy Housewives, when asked by a mom if her son's new toilet reading habit is gross, reply, "WHO THE HELL CARES WHERE YOUR SON READS AS LONG AS HE’S READING!?!?"
Point taken. Reading trumps poo hands.
But getting back to "those shiny, smooth surfaces of Kindles, iPhones and iPads" where germs can live "for hours"... [GAG!!!!!!!!]
Someone has got to start a campaign against the reading of Kindles and iPads while on the toilet. This is fucking gross. It's like when I hear a cell phone conversation coming from the stall in a public restroom and all I can think is that the is no level of cleanliness that exists in that tiny space that allows for zero transfer of crap to every surface including the dude's face. Hand. Ass. Hand. Phone. Ear. Cheek. Mouth. I don't care if your shit came out in a neatly wrapped gift box with a bow: you're dipping you hand into the no-fly zone of the toilet. There's a perimeter level with the seat that should not be broken with the same hand you're using to hold your toothbrush.
So let's get this started now. Here is the "Don't READ" campaign. And yes, these are terrible slogans. You try coming up with authors whose names rhyme with "toilet" or "crapper" or "shit." How about, "Don't leave a turd, holding the written word"?
"Don't READ Shakespeare on the Shitter."
"Don't READ Tolstoy on the Toidy."
"Put Down That Gertrude Stein Before You Wipe Your Behind."
"Don't Wipe Your Ass While Reading 'Leaves of Grass.'"
"Don't READ Stephen King on The Throne."
You don't want to hear what I came up with for Honoré de Balzac.
Or maybe these should just be simple posters of celebrities sitting on the toilet under the banner, DON'T READ.
"The hand that swipes is not the hand that wipes."
"Leave your ebook in the hall, when you answer Nature's Call."
And the worst one of all,