In one episode of Beavis and Butt-head from the 1990s, they are out back at a gas station. There is a vending machine with a bathroom door on each side of it marked "MEN" and "WOMEN".
A woman comes walking (supposedly from the gas station's store area) carrying a key which has a huge, clunky, metallic thing hanging from it. She stops at the door marked "WOMEN", unlocks it with the key and leaves the huge thing hanging in the door on the outside as she enters the bathroom.
I understand that the bathrooms are probably locked in order to discourage homeless people from sheltering in there, and to require some sort of "permission" to use them, meaning the key, but my questions are:
- Why does the key have such a large thing hanging from it?
- If the customer/bathroom user leaves it like that on the outside, doesn't that mean that somebody else can just open the door while she is in there? Or does it separately lock from the inside? Is this how it was/is actually done in reality?
I'm making the assumption that this "background detail" is based on reality, which is usually the case in this animated show's universe. Typically, it's just the main guys who are stupid, but anything that happens around them tends to be "how it really is".