By John Steinberger
You’ve heard it all before: feminazis and the social-intellectual elite banging at your bathroom door, clamoring for you to sit down before you pee, lest you make a godawful mess again. But you can’t be bothered, and you’ll be damned if the PC (or WC?) police tell you what to do in the confines of your own home. So, you stand tall, square your shoulders, and shrug the controversy away as you peacefully let loose from up high, enjoying your moment of détente with the glowing pleasure of a nonconformist. What a Zen moment!
Then again, as the house bathroom is shared with other people (even guests!), you are not unwilling to take some reasonable measures. You aim well (better than the average guy, ha!), and if there’s a visible splash on the rim you’ll be so gentlemanly as to reach for that piece of tissue and wipe it off. Indeed, you might just combine the very best of free-thinking macho-ness and of modern, sanitary ways. You diamond in the rough, you!
Well, think as you may. As for me, I’m not quite so macho. I’ve been a meek convert of the “let’s pee sitting down” camp ever since someone pointed out to me the undeniable fact that standing causes droplets to splash right out of the toilet bowl and onto the bathroom floor by sheer virtue of the velocity at which the stream hits the water surface when it comes from that high up. It’s physics: piss *will* end up on the floor. (Forget about the rim.)
Now, having a fully functioning immune system (yes, I know urine is sterile, but what about after it’s been lying around for a couple of days, hm?) I am actually not as dismayed by the sanitary aspect of this problem as by the simpler issue of manners. Really, I don’t want to have to walk on your piss when I visit your home, if that would be just as well with you. How so? You insist? Ah, well…
Alas, indeed, this pet peeve of mine does not seem to be a top concern for many of my fellow “bros”. And sometimes, on bad days, I even harbor the heretic suspicion that the ladies of the house are secretly glad to see a little pee spread around their bathrooms as well, it being a welcome reminder of their partners’ (or sons’, etc.) healthy masculinity.
Would you not believe me? Consider that, in Germany, a man who is perceived as being a sissy is called a sitzpinkler—which literally means, “pees sitting down”. (Ouch. That’s me!)
In other corners of the internet, I have found men argue that even when men sit down they cannot but help get pee all over the place, anyway. Why? Because of the ritual known as “shaking the last drop out.” (Apparently, other men don’t reach for a tissue to dry off the last drop, as I do. They stand up—had they been sitting down—and proceed to wildly shake their thing around in all directions.) What *I* think is that men are making excuses in order to keep on doing something they like to do mainly because women cannot do it. Or maybe—even more probable, to be truthful—these men are just out for a good troll.
Coming to a close, I will relate another topical story from Germany. In this 2015 true event, a tenant spread so much pee around that the uric acid ate into the marble of the bathroom floor, necessitating a $2200 repair. In the ensuing tug-of-war between landlord and tenant, taken to court, a judge not only ruled in favor of the tenant but effectively gave him the right to spread his stuff all over the place forever more by noting that “urinating while standing up is still common practice”. Which, to me, sounded a bit like: “This country wasn’t built by sitzpinklers, ja?”
Ah, men… and to think that I am one of them!