Chinese flies looking to build a beautiful life for themselves in the public toilets of Beijing were dealt a crushing blow earlier this week, after government officials rolled out a new set of sanitation guidelines including a "two fly-maximum" rule for restrooms.
The updated policy, which according to The Beijing Times also includes more standard commandments like "have soap" and "clean the floor," is intended to bring some sparkle and shine (or, anyway, general sanitation) to the city's notoriously foul public toilets.
According to an opinion piece published in The Beijing News (cited by The BBC), a similar two-fly rule was implemented in one of Beijing's central district during the 2008 Summer Olympics, though "sanitation and hygiene still varied from toilet to toilet."
One the one hand, a two-fly maximum seems like a great policy—one we should enforce for all public toilets. But, then, isn't it also a little generous?
It's one thing if both of the flies happen to be of the same sex. They probably won't do too much damage and would even enjoy breaking out of their podunk public bathroom in search of the cosmopolitan excitement their alternative lifestyle demands. But what if one of the flies is female and the other male? In a 3-4 day period, a female fly can lay up to 500 eggs, which hatch to larvae within a day, and mature to full-grown flies in about a week.
That means, in the span of just a few days, your two flies: A-OK clause has ballooned to a five hundred two flies: WTF kind of situation.
It might just be safer to institute a 1 fly-maximum rule.
Or even a 0 fly-maximum rule.
Incidentally, The BBC notes it's not clear if and how public restrooms that violate these new rules will be punished.
So I guess, really, the message to flies is "Stop doing you (but secretly keep doing you, whatever)."