Friday, 7 March 2008

Basic Toilet Etiquette

Surely the vary basic tenets of toilet etiquette have been driven into every grown man by now and yet I see basic failings and unconventional behaviour at every turn.

Urinals tend to come in threes or fives. I don't know why - I don't make the rules. Those are the basic urinal denominations. It’s probably an EU directive or health and safety of something, but anyway that tends to be the number of piss receptacles. Ok, so it’s very simple. If you enter the toilet and if no one is in there, use a urinal at one of the extremes, either far left or far right. So if someone else enters, they can use the opposite extreme urinal, providing the basic comforts of space and security we all relish. If there's someone already at the urinals, and they're playing by the rules, then as specified, stand at the urinal furthest from them. If there are two people at the urinals, at either end, then you use the cubicle. Only if both urinals are busy AND the cubicle is taken, do you squeeze between your fellow pissers and use the middle urinal.

The middle urinal is not really an active urinal. It is merely for emergencies and possibly decoration. To use that urinal voluntarily is in visible breach of basic etiquette and makes a bold and unsavoury comment about you and your personality. You’re obviously one of those types that rollerblades to work, or juggles at parties or has hair that doesn’t make sense. You are all hated.

Cubicles are easier to tackle. Choose your favourite. If your favourite is occupied, go to the other one. If both are busy, leave and find alternative arrangements. You don't stand there. Who stands in a toilet, waiting? It's unnatural. It's like gardening at night. Certainly it could be done, but for God's sake don't do it.

I raise this because at a recent visit to the office bogs, there was a man alone in the facilities, not only occupying the middle urinal but apparently waving his arms around in the process. I don't really know if he was exercising, or trying to adjust some errant part of his dress, or having a little game, but it was unnerving and a flagrant discrediting of the beliefs we all hold dear. In these turbulent times, there are some things we need to support and rely on. Standing like a dick at the middle urinal and gesticulating wildly is unhelpful at best. At worst, treason.


mikel garmendia said...
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wreck said...

Move over and let me take one yeah? Too creative with those urinal cakes.