Monday, May 11, 2015

Etiquette, man style

Every male knows that there are unwritten rules with respect to using public toilets.

We're not talking Ten Commandments stuff here, but some pretty basic assumptions are implied when one enters a communal bathroom. It's not a 'gay' thing I assure you, it's just...a thing.

This afternoon, all those rules were broken.

Let me set the scene.

I left the office at 12:53pm for a lunch appointment with my friend at Chadstone, the fashion capital. Not being a fashionable lad, in fact I was delivering a Star Wars hoodie, I headed straight for the food court and bypassed anything remotely clothing related.

A bracing wind caught me and reminded me that I probably should have used the facilities before I left the office.
No, nothing is wrong, why do you ask?
Anyway, with the sound of rain in my ears and a gusty wind against my...well, against ME, I hastily entered the shopping centre and located my friend and informed her that I needed to visit the "little boys room" and I would be right back.

Pushing some people aside (yes, I was that keen to get there), I made my way to the end of the food court and entered the battleground.

Unwritten rule #1 - Avoid eye contact. This is important.

I walked in the room, and locked in unwritten rule #1.
Then, I was faced with a dilemma...
I don't want anyone near me!
Captain Dopey here was in the wrong spot. He was participating in a move that was not beneficial to his fellow urinal user.

Had he been a considerate soul, he'd have opted for the following.
Buffer intact, room for a second user
I waited, because the Code of Man prevented me from venturing close to the urinals. Of course, I turned to approach the arsenals, but they were all in use, so I waited patiently. Observing Rule #1, and facing the opposite direction.

He left.

Taking advantage of an empty row of urinals, I took pole position, as seen above.

Things were good.

As I prepared myself, I heard footsteps.

Another man entered the bathrooms.

Unfortunately, he seemed to misinterpret the rules and went straight for the lower urinal at the end. The one designed for children or Tyrion Lannister. It seemed foolish, there was room, the buffer was there! He only needed the single buffer, but he opted for the double, and then seemingly adding insult to his injury, he semi-squatted, because that little one is a fair bit further down the wall.

So there we stood, me at one end, and crouching tiger at the other, apparently straining his medial ligaments from the noises he was making.

Then, more footsteps.
Two more guys walked in, and they were about to break both rules #1 and #2, as well as rule #3.

The were talking, they were looking and then this!
They stood next to me AND Tyrion and they continued talking.
6 degrees of separation buddy!
But, and I kid you not, the worst was yet to come.
Outside the "pissing room" a third member of this jolly party was, I don't know, tending to his hair or checking himself out in the mirror or whatever, but he was about to break a rule not even invented, and which I will call Rule #4.
What the HELL is going on!?

Now I understand that buds can be buds, but in the name of everything that anyone has ever held dear, don't cross the streams!!! Certainly not next to me!

Captain Comfy sidled up to his bud and began to do his business in the same urinal!!!

Ronnie Corbett must have had a sudden change of heart as he exited stage left, knees akimbo.

I was beginning to wonder what was going on, not to mention wonder why I'd been peeing for so long, so I tried to hurry things along. But you try not to make sudden movements at a trough or urinal, lest you draw attention to yourself, and it's not eye contact that's the problem at that point.

It was done.

I'd finished, and so had the guy at the other end, leaving dillholes 1 and 2 to share their urinal and leave themselves in the awkward position of not only duelling their banjos, but blocking anyone else from happily entering the bathroom and feeling comfortable in selecting a position.

Toilet etiquette for men is not hard. 

Don't talk, don't look, leave a buffer and for the love of God, don't share your spot!

Of course, most of these rules are irrelevant if you're drunk, at the football or drunk at the football.

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