7th November 2013 Ravi Ruparel

The amplification of toilet humour – a poemy song thing


It used to be a Victorian toilet and it is now a place where Gillian and Leiah had a mother and daughter date (2013). It is a place where Will was waiting for his wild rose, someone else declared their love for Stalin and another thought that James is a cock. Nice.

Welcome to the attendant, the most amazing underground coffee shop in the world. It really used to be a toilet and has been lovingly transformed, serves great coffee, has a graffiti door and free wifi.

I remember watching the uber cool barista when he was hanging up the pens on the plain white door to encourage people to write down their thoughts. I remember thinking to myself that this will be interesting to read and sure enough, it is.

The study of social conversation, emotional engagement and online/offline experience are at the core of my current business interests. I really want to know how to best engage with people and naturally encourage them to share their feelings for a variety of marketing and business purposes. I want marketing to really mean something, to really move people and to be highly effective, encouraging positive word of mouth to travel across facebook and twitter. Technology and innovation offer a huge opportunity for brands. I believe it can be very powerful when combined with something of meaning, something that touches emotion.

 What a gift then it is to be able read and analyze the free thoughts of visitors to a central London coffee shop that used to be a toilet. A toilet is, after all, a place that people have always felt comfortable writing on the walls, in private. I believe that the insight is an understanding of what is really on people’s minds, what needs to be tapped into if you want to engage with the feelings that matter most.

From the picture you will see many words and thoughts. There is a complete lack of hashtags, only two twitter addresses, no web addresses and no phone numbers – just a glimpse of what people are thinking, right there at that point in time.

A quick analysis suggests the top 6 things people think about are:

  1. Love
  2. Humour, feeling happy, smiling
  3. Saying something, having opinion, being seen
  4. Gratitude
  5. Politics
  6. Giving abuse

The team that work at the attendant are the nicest and most genuine that I have met in a very long time, the coffee is brilliant and the toilet humour needs to be shared, amplified. Most important, this is a place where you can be understood.

I would like to take this moment to cross off another item from my very long bucket list. Here are some words directly from the door of the attendant, compiled loosely into a poemy/song thing.

I like Cheese

Here from Berlin

“Wot” – no toilet!

2 cool 4 school

First time I’ve drunk coffee in the loo

Shit Hot! Coffee!

You can’t sit with us

Sarah loved it! Hahaha!

Booby Boob Boob

 Go and pay a visit … http://www.the-attendant.com/

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