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U.S. Census Bureau Wants To Know About Your Bathing Habits

Ken Herman
Austin American Statesman [1]
Oct 17, 2012


After basic questions about race and ethnicity, the ACS form gets a bit too personal for my tastes at question 18c, which queries about a topic that engenders episodic dissension between Persons 1 and 2 at my residence.

“Does this person have difficulty dressing or bathing?” it says.

I’m good on bathing and, despite being color-challenged, I do not believe I have difficulty dressing. Person 2 at my residence disagrees on the dressing part, sometimes offering helpful, though unsolicited, dressing input, usually post-dressing. (Random notion: Should nudists answer the dressing question with “NA?”)

Then there are a bunch of questions about whether I work, where I work, how I get to work, when I leave for work, how long it takes it get to work and how much I make at work. (This is where you can ruminate on whether what I do technically qualifies as “work.”)

Question 43 asks: “What kind of business (is) this?” The handy guide sent with the form lists several words that should not be used in answering Question 43. The first is “newspaper.” Hmm. (I later noted that “newspaper publishing” is an acceptable response.)

The feds also want to know my monthly mortgage payment, monthly utility bills (I’m not sure that answer box is large enough), annual insurance costs and annual real estate taxes (I’m sure that box isn’t large enough).

Full article here [1]