Toilet etiquette – it’s something that people don’t talk about much. In fact, do we talk about it at all? Is there even such a thing? Well, we all have to deal with the same ablutions, whether a quick sprinkle or the morning constitutional. So let’s just be honest about it, eh? Today I’m going to focus on the Gents as I’m not usually allowed in the other one.
The urinal: a source of both fear and amusement. Standing next to a stranger, or worse a colleague, with your old chaps dangling out, making wee-wee can feel strange. Are there rules of how to do it properly? Who knows. Do you talk to your neighbour? Hard to say. Depends on the situation but I will tell you this, some people don’t like to chat – so speak if you’re spoken to and keep it to a minimum.
Farting at the urinal. I think it’s ok. I mean when and where else can you do this freely except under your bed-covers at home (to the dismay or delight or syncope of any partner)? And what about commenting or chuckling at a particularly noteworthy fart? Again, I’d say go for it but not everyone is with me on that.
Now we’ve covered trumping, this leads us nicely on to that heady bathroom aroma.
Never complain about the smell in a toilet. It’s the equivalent of saying ‘look at this rain’.It is a toilet, it’s where human waste goes, what do you expect? You don’t have to stay in there all day. Attempting to mask it with a chemical spray doesn’t work for me. It’s like putting cologne on a corpse. Just accept the smell. Long ago, my granddad taught me to light a match and the technique has always worked better than any air freshener. Could be a fire risk at work, though, so best for home use.
Next is a bit of a bugbear of mine – weeing in the toilet when the urinal is free. You waste up to a gallon of water when you flush (you do flush, right?). Face your urinal fear, avoiding it compounds it further. No one is looking at your piss pipe. And if they are, then that’s their problem. The only way to get over stage fright is to get on stage again and again until the boos and hisses don’t faze you any longer (plus if there is someone standing next to you in the bogs actually booing and hissing at your ‘performance’, then perhaps it’s time call the police).
Anyway, using a cubicle when you only need a slash is irritating. Guys either splash on the seat or leave the seat up making the next person have to touch it to put it down. Then they still splash on the brush and any spare rolls of paper by the side. Face your fears, no one cares about your pecker.
Right, so to the cubicle. Leaving a mess; we’ve all done it; Damon Hill skid marks, Lebron James denial round the rim. Sort it out mate. What do you think the brush is for? If there’s no brush, lay down some toilet paper. I’m not saying that’s the best thing to do but the point is you need to do SOMETHING about it.
If you actually have to wipe the bowl with some paper then so be it. If you think that’s rank then a) you will be washing your hands afterwards (won’t you?) and b) that’s your shit; imagine how fucking disgusting it is for someone else.
Last but not least.
Wash your hands. As if I need to tell you this. Do it for yourself (where are those fingers going later?). Do it for us, because if you don’t there’s hardly any point in anyone doing it, as we all have to touch the same door handle you just put your shitty, cocky fingers on. Don’t make me come and swab my knob on your keyboard.
If you want more toilet humour Will Conway’s story ‘Potty Mouth’ from his Lazy Gramophone collection ‘Tastes of Ink’ can be read for free HERE. If you like it, maybe you can buy a copy…