A wise man, Benjamin Franklin, once said "in this world nothing is certain but death and taxes." He missed one. The call of Mother Nature is just as certain. And she doesn't always call when you're at home, with the comfort and luxury of your own bathroom at your disposal. No no, she's got to call in the middle of the big game, at dinner with friends, in the backseat of a car two hours away from the nearest gas station or rest top, just as you are about to deliver the pick-up line of the century to the hot blonde across the room, etc, Mother Nature calls when she damn well wants to.
Anyway, my point is that sometimes you have to...go...and sometimes...a lot of the times actually...you're going to have to go in public. Get your mind out of the gutter silly, I mean in public restrooms. And some genius, some absolute, frickin genius, decided that when guys have to...relieve...themselves...it would somehow be better and more convenient to use a toilet that has been, literally, stuck on the wall. Oh, and while we're at it, let's line them up in adjacent rows! Won't that be fun!
Ladies and Gentlemen (Gentlemen, mostly), welcome to the world of the urinal.
That having been said, there are some rules to the urinal that must, absolutely must, be addressed.
"The Every Other Rule" - For some really, really odd reason, these charming little urinals always come in odd numbers. There will be three, five, or seven lined up against a wall (why is that anyway? What happens if we put them in even numbers? Does that open up a secret gateway to hell or something? Just curious…). Therefore, theoretically, you should be able to do your stuff in solitude. Theoretically. Sadly, it doesn't always work out that way.
Let's use the 3-urinal model as an example. If you approach the, uh, area, and no one is there, you go to the right one, or the left one (and no you psychology majors, your choice here doesn't reveal your political stance or your sexual preference). Anyway, you go right or left, and if someone else happens to come in, they pick the direction opposite you, and you both relieve yourselves in nice, distanced peace. Easy enough. Yet, there are some, truly troubled individuals, who will go to the center urinal (sick freaks), even when there is a guy on the right or left. Why on God's green earth would you possibly want to go to the center urinal? Do you really feed the need to be surrounded by pee? What the hell! That's just not right. Seek help now. Sick freak.
Even if there are guys at both the right and left…you wait. I don't care, you stand there, dance left to right, jump up and down like a little Belgium schoolgirl if you must, but dammit, you wait. It's just common courtesy.
"The Full Thrust" - When approaching a set of urinals without divider walls (oh! More on that in a sec!), you get your whole pelvis in there. I don't care how secure you are in your manhood, this isn't for your sake. It's for mine. Because some of us are blessed (cursed) with peripheral vision. So…yeah. Full immersion. This isn't middle school, and we're not doing distance contests anymore (and for the record, I won with against the back wall for 15 seconds). I'm doing it for you, and I expect no less.
And now, what's up with the urinals without divider walls? Find me the engineer who said "If we leave out these nifty little dividers, we can save money!" I got somethin' special for him. You don't build stalls with a missing wall, do you? So, what's the difference? I like the dividers. I love the dividers. Denying me, and men across the world those dividers is just wrong.
And for the guys, have you ever been to a sports arena where you don't even get individual urinals? You just get that pig-troth like basin that runs along the wall? Yeah, hell no.
For the ladies reading (all two of you), can you possibly imagine our pain? Next time you are in a public restroom, and you're sitting (ha!) on the throne, and you hear someone else enter the stall next to you, imagine what it would be like without that wall between you two. Yes, this is what we have to deal with. It's like the dark ages. We might as well be going in chamber pots, and flinging that shit out the window (on the other hand, I'm thinking if this actually happened, people would stay indoors a whole lot more).
"Eyes Forward" - This rule is very simple. While you are standing there, you keep your eyes forward. Maybe you look down. That's it. You do not look up, all around, and, this is most important, you do not look at me. Oh, if I even catch your eyes wandering in my general direction, that's an automatic elbow to the face. Not that I'm going to enjoy knocking you out (actually, I will enjoy it immensely), it's just that I'll be obligated to. It's like a reflex; you look, I elbow. Pretty simple, actually.
"Urinal Chat" - This one is the absolute worst. If you engage in urinal chat, you can take it to the bank that you're going to hell. I don't care if you rescue sick orphans on the weekends, you engage in urinal chat, that's it, you're going to hell. There's a seat reserved for you on the express train to hell. Torture chamber number 8 is waiting for you. You do not want torture chamber number 8. It made Stalin cry like a little bitch.
What is Urinal Chat? It's so foul, so disgusting, it's taken me a whole paragraph to actually get to the description of urinal chat. Maybe more. Okay, maybe a third of a paragraph. There we go. Urinal chat is when some guy, some foul wretch, demon spawned mutant, and above all else, sick freak, turns to talk to you…while you both are standing at the urinals relieving yourselves!
Shameful, I tell you.
Words alone cannot describe just how…wrong…this is! I'll be standing there doing my thing, some guy will just stroll up to the urinal as if he owned it, look over to me and be like "Hey man, how's it going?" Sweet baby Jesus! Do you not know what I'm doing? Does it look like I actually want to talk to you! Now of all times?!
Oh, it gets better. Most of these twisted individuals won't just leave it at a simple greeting. No no, they'll try to hold actual fuckin' conversations with you at the urinal!
Guy (while relieving himself): So, I just got in town the other day, and me and my girl have been looking for fun things to do but we haven't found anything yet. Do you have any suggestions?
Me (while relieving myself): Do you know how close I am to killing you right now?
Shit, there are times when a man must be left alone. Taking a whiz is one of those times.
That's not asking too much, is it? Just a little privacy, that's all I ask. Pissing is not a group activity. But no, we gotta take away dividers, flash our glory for all to see, be right next to each other and talk to each other. What the hell is that shit? Next thing you know, they will be taking out the walls for the stalls. We'll all be one big happy bathroom family. And when that happens, mark that day, because I will be bringing a very large shotgun to the bathroom with me. The next sick freak to come strolling up next to me, take a long look, and say "Wow, not bad", the next time he has to go he will be going in the bathrooms that do not and will never have urinals, but may have nifty tampon dispensers, if you catch my drift.
And, honestly…would you really blame me?