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Electric Toliet
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The next time you hear someone mention a Japanese-style toilet, they probably won't be talking about the squat-type...
(click here to learn more about them)

When Kae asked me if I'd tried out the toilet, I must admit I was a bit non-plussed. As far as I knew there had been no change in our "toire", it had been functioning just fine doing everything that toilets are supposed to do (i.e. flush). However, what I hadn't realised was that earlier that day the great Beginning of Winter Plugging in Ceremony had been performed. Intruiged, I took my seat to find it pleasently warm - but this came as no great surprise as most modern toilets in Japan are heated.

My attention then turned to the 10-buttoned remote control nestled in its cradle on the wall above the loo roll. Although of course I'd spent many hours with my eyes upon it, I had never had the opportunity to experience the delights behind the buttons.

Initially, I thought that the remote batteries must be flat as there was no reaction when the buttons were prodded.

However, further inspection of the toilet seat revealed that it is had a pressure switch to prevent accidental flooding of the bathroom. With a foot on the seat and camera in hand, I tried again. A motor rapidly kicked in causing a pipe to shoot out of the back of the bowl - warm water was then squirted all over my trousers as I attempted to simoultaneously capture the above action shot AND press the all-important STOP button.

I have since discovered the use for the other buttons: there's the water pressure up/down selectors, the temperature control, and more intruigingly, a "Massage" setting. This does exactly what it suggests: massages your bottom - you can even select your favourite rythmn from the various types on offer.

The miricles of modern technoloy... what will they come up with next?

The toilet in action
The remote control
in the shops
The toilet in action...
...and its vital sidekick
In the shops (about £200)

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