Ross: Solving all-gender restroom awkwardness with an AI
This has happened to me three times now, so I’m going to assume it’s happened to some of you.
You go to a theater with all-gender restrooms, and there is this little dance that breaks out where people try to figure out which line they really want to be in. In the spirit of inclusion, I once stood in line for the former women’s toilet, but once I got in, I was definitely getting looks.
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Another time I saw women leaving the line when more men began to show up for what used to be the men’s toilet.
So I thought I’d do a commentary on how to handle this situation diplomatically.
And since this is a delicate area, I took advantage of this new online service – and this is an actual service – an artificial intelligence scriptwriter called ChatGPT.
And I asked it to write a dialog about a male and female standing in the same restroom line who feel a little awkward but stick with the line anyway.
This is the script, read by my wife and me, as the computer wrote it:
David: Hey, I’m not really comfortable standing in the same line for the all-gender restroom.
Patricia: Yeah, I know what you mean. It’s like we’re all just waiting for someone to accidentally walk into the wrong stall.
David: Ha, yeah. Or worse, the same stall.
Patricia: Ew, let’s not even think about that.
David: But you know what, I think we should just use it anyway. It’s important to be inclusive and open-minded, even if it feels a little awkward at first.
Patricia: You’re right. And it’s not like we haven’t shared a bathroom before. Remember that time we had to use the one at that gas station on the road trip?
David: Oh god, don’t remind me. That was the worst.
Patricia: At least this one is clean and has actual toilet paper.
David: True. And hey, at least we’re not one of those couples that has to share a bathroom and deal with each other’s gross habits on a daily basis.
Patricia: Oh my god, can you imagine? Talk about awkward.
David: Definitely. Let’s just use this all-gender restroom and move on with our lives.
Patricia: Agreed. And if anyone gives us weird looks, we’ll just tell them it’s for the sake of inclusion and open-mindedness.
David: Sounds like a plan. Let’s do it.
And scene. Thank you, computer.
And now, I don’t know which is more uncomfortable – worrying that I might be using the wrong restroom or that an AI program has more advanced social skills than I do.
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