Urinals. What the actual fuck are they all about?

(47 Posts)
Reality Wed 07-Aug-13 11:36:12

Just been reading on FB about my local shopping centre, it's grim. You step out of the lifts into the miasmic stench from the loos.

I hadn't really given it much thought, but apparently (and DH has just confirmed this), the mens urinal is a fucking grate to stand on and then a gutter to piss in.

What the hell? That is barbaric! No wonder it stinks to high heaven. Apparently that's normal for public loos? I thought urinals were individual flushable things.

I am really properly dicusted of tunbridge wells about this and tempted to not let DS1 go in there ever again, he can go in the ladies where it smells of air freshener and soap. Except he's nearly 11 and people woudl freak.

Why on earth, in the developed world and the twenty first century, do men have to piss down a gutter in the floor? I might start a campaign.

AnnabelleLee Wed 07-Aug-13 11:38:57

is your local shopping centre located in the 18th century? thats no what urinals look like everywhere else out in the civilised world

You don't live in Blackpool do you?

Northernexile Wed 07-Aug-13 11:41:19

A urinal is more like a long trough that they stand in a row to piss in normally. no miss-spent youth nipping into the mens bogs to avoid the quere here

ThisWayForCrazy Wed 07-Aug-13 11:45:12

In most modern toilets they are individual.

Reality Wed 07-Aug-13 11:47:12

Right, DH has just clarified that you stand on the grate and piss into the trough.

That is fucking vile. All that piss just sloshes about. And that's without the animals who just piss down the grate shock. Why on that earth is that even a thing? vommy vom vom.

chesterberry Wed 07-Aug-13 11:47:47

A grate and a gutter? The only time I saw urinals like that has been in India where they have outdoors in little alleys just off the pavements - they really do stink!

Most urinals I have seen are either a long trough that they all stand in or individual porcelain urinal-shaped urinals (not sure how else to describe them!). Never seen or heard of a urinal that flushed, although I am female so haven't seen that many (am also a person who will nip into men's toilet to avoid cues!).

chesterberry Wed 07-Aug-13 11:48:00


The advantage of the gutter version I suppose is that you don't have to worry about diffreent heights, but individual ones are more usual I am sure.

If I was you I'd be complaining about the stench, rather than the details of how their urinals are set up.

ViviPru Wed 07-Aug-13 11:49:25

I have just found a New Favourite Word.

MIASMIC. Miasmic miasmic miasmic. Miasmic.

Thanks Reality thanks

Reality Wed 07-Aug-13 11:50:21

I honestly had never given this a thought before but I am really freaking out at the thought of DS using them.

The more I think about it, the idea of men standing at a trough with their dicks out, pissing communally, has really given me the massive wiggins.


The Romans used to poo communally. HTH grin

CoffeeandScones Wed 07-Aug-13 11:54:08

I'm a man, and can confirm the range of such services is very very wide. At the lower end, yeah it can pretty much be a room with a piss trough. Nice, eh?

Also (sorry if TMI) but the proportion of men that wash their hands afterwards is lower than you might think or hope. That's assuming there is a working sink to use - or that you are confident you won't catch more germs from using it than are already on your hands.

Men's loos are not the most glamorous aspect of life.

AnnabelleLee Wed 07-Aug-13 11:55:41

not just the romans, much more recently than that. The 19th century french court, in fact.

filee777 Wed 07-Aug-13 11:56:10

Men like pissing up a wall, they are designed for it. I seriously wouldn't worry about it too much.

Chopsypie Wed 07-Aug-13 11:56:27

You can get urinals that flush, but most rely on gravity and a good cleaning regime. (I deal with toilets and things for work, so many an hour has been spent in the gents)

Reality Wed 07-Aug-13 11:57:04

IT really does pong.

And it's right by the lifts, so visitors to our fair town are greeted by the miasma.

I love that word, along with effluvia and stench. Very evocative. I wish there was a word like onomatopoeia to describe words that sound like they smell. Also coruscate. It's a word that sounds like it looks.

SalaciousBCrumb Wed 07-Aug-13 11:58:09

I remember going on holiday to France. At the park needed to use we the loo. Signs pointed to the toilets, led to a typical public loo block with frosted high up windows and just one door in the middle visible, marked ladies (well, in French obviously). Gents arrow pointed round the side for what we assumed was the entrance. Turned out in fact the arrow led round the back of the building and invited the men to piss against the wall, in full view of all park users (no pissoir type screens going on).

Reality Wed 07-Aug-13 11:58:58

I actually gagged at 'poo communally'. And I am a happy shower pisser. i am not squeamish in the slightest about bodily functions, usually. I clearly have a thing about mass evacuations.

Oldraver Wed 07-Aug-13 12:01:22

I think all mens loos used to be like this. My Mum had a pub and club and they were nearly always of this type and did stink, even though they were cleaned regulary.

One club I went to (Brixton Academy) you stepped up when you went in the mens loos and it was a large room with 'urinals' on three sides. the walls were totally porcelain though. On the third side were cubicals

ImNotBloody14 Wed 07-Aug-13 12:01:24

i'm a cleaner.

i have decided (tongue in cheek for those that need it spelt out) that all men's toilets should be fitted with individual tubes or pipes, maybe with a supply of disposable bits to stick in the end that your penis touches, just big enough to fit a penis in to pee into and that should be connected to the urinal and be the only option for peeing unless they use an actual toilet. i swear i think some men must try and write their names on the walls. it's disgusting

I once confessed to my colleagues that I like cleaning the urinals at work (we take it in turns to do the toilets) because I like to stand in front of each one and do a manly hip thrust to make it flush. blush grin

They all know I'm mad already though.

CoffeeandScones Wed 07-Aug-13 12:18:09

In Holland (I think?) they solved the "men pissing all over" problem by etching a small bumblebee on the urinal, at the best spot to avoid splashback.

Men then aimed at the thing because, well, it's almost like a sport. Hence minimal splash.

Simple, but then so are we.

CoffeeandScones Wed 07-Aug-13 12:19:48

(Btw blue loo blocks are a terrible idea, because we aim at them to make them move about in the urinal - sad but true

I feel like I'm giving away trade secrets here :-) )

wanderings Wed 07-Aug-13 12:21:49

"Oh pull yourself together, it's only a bit of poo."

(Johnny English, crawling up the waste pipe while a communal pooing session is in place further up)

wanderings Wed 07-Aug-13 12:23:03

Also the blue "toss blocks" (I kid you not!) are not good for the plumbing, because they dissolve and re-solidify in the waste pipes.

ImNotBloody14 Wed 07-Aug-13 12:43:31

those urinal blocks are vile! all they do is collect urine and stop it all getting flushed away.

When I was about 4, my brother was 2, and we were at Sunday school. My brother needed to go for a pee, so he asked me to take him, as he wasn't strong enough to open the bathroom door.
We got there, and I was going to just take him to the ladies, but he insisted he had to use the men's room, so I took him in. He went to use the urinal, and I freaked out! I thought he was peeing in a sink, and I started threatening to tell on him. blush grin
As I was hollering at him, a man walked in, and shooed me out, while reassuring my brother that he fine.
I went and told my mum, who just about died laughing!

CoffeeandScones I'm in Holland and the above mentioned urinals that I like to clean do indeed have bees on them. grin

TheFuzz Thu 08-Aug-13 12:31:29

Mens toilets are disgusting in the main. All down to a few folk that pee all over. The floors are usually swimming ! You can judge an establishment by the quality of it's loos. If you get a nice urinal that's clean, the place is dry, then you are lucky. Troughs or gutters are still very common.

GetStuffezd Thu 08-Aug-13 12:37:24

I have seen a pic on a friend's phone of a delightful urinal in France shaped like a woman's open mouth, complete with red lipstick. Lovely, non?

And I would happily stab the wankers who used to shit in urinals where I used to work. (Pub)

jamdonut Thu 08-Aug-13 12:49:11

The urinals in the boys loos at school (primary) are like a stainless steel ''wall'' with a "gutter" at the bottom. The boys are terrors when peeing (if not at each other hmm,and the urinal regularly gets blocked by little darlings who think it is funny to block it with paper towels. YUK!

And of course, the cleaners are not allowed to use bleach, these days, only some ineffectual cleaning stuff that just doesn't get rid of the smell. I think it is ridiculous!

Whothefuckfarted Thu 08-Aug-13 13:48:26


A bit like this? Haha...

TabithaStephens Thu 08-Aug-13 14:52:01
lola88 Thu 08-Aug-13 15:34:06

My part time job is cleaning in a pub when i do the mens loo's (eww) i often pity my poor son than one day he will be expected to pee in there! I've actually stood wondering how long i can possibly take him to the ladies for... though in all honestly the ladies are actually dirtier than the mens in general believe it or not

Dd2 has a bladder like a leaky sieve so is an expert in assessing both male and female toilets, and assures me that the girls are almost always better. The ones in France though are equally grim, unless you pay - and even that is no guarantee. Have our shewee this year so hoping will get us out of a few tricky ones.

OnIlkelyMoorBahtat Thu 08-Aug-13 16:06:49

Re the bumblebees on the urinal as a target in Holland. They also put them on toilets and chamberpots in Victorian England. And do you know why they chose a bumblebee?

Because the latin for bee is "apis" [beams with pleasure at finally being able to put this piece of trivia to use!]

magimedi Thu 08-Aug-13 16:19:33


That is the best piece of trivia I have ever read!

flowers (Wish I could put a bee in the bunch grin )

OnIlkelyMoorBahtat Thu 08-Aug-13 16:26:22

Thank you magimedi, it really pleased me when I found it out!

SwedishEdith Thu 08-Aug-13 16:45:05

I viewed a house once that had a proper urinal in the bathroom. The owner seemed surprised that I was surrpised

I like that story about the bee grin

TabithaStephens Thu 08-Aug-13 16:49:05

Why would you have an urinal in the bathroom if presumably there was a proper toilet in there as well? Or was the toilet in a seperate rroom?

SwedishEdith Thu 08-Aug-13 16:54:32

No, just a normal bathroom with a urinal as well. Just on the wall. The ownere had 2 sons - maybe she was pissed off (hur hur) with them missing the toiler bowl or something?

Morestheshame Thu 08-Aug-13 17:00:09

I think all men should sit down to piss. Standing up, they seem to get it everywhere. What's the big deal with men not sitting down to wee?

missrlr Thu 08-Aug-13 17:09:22

I think all men should sit down to piss. Standing up, they seem to get it everywhere. What's the big deal with men not sitting down to wee?


celticclan Thu 08-Aug-13 19:20:58

I was concerned that at 8 years ds still preferred to pee sitting down then dh reassured me that he sometimes pees sitting down too.

Urinals are grim. Why can't they use individual toilets like women. Who wants to do it alongside other people?

CelticPromise Thu 08-Aug-13 19:29:08

I went to China when I was younger and I mastered the art of communal evacuation over a hole in the ground. I remember being in a shed with about six pits and a woman came in, squatted down and started reading the newspaper grin It wasn't like that everywhere, just the really backstreet places in the cities.

MinnieBar Thu 08-Aug-13 19:39:05

I once viewed a house that had a toilet in the bedroom - an in-suite rather than en-suite, if you will.

And they'd actually removed the dividing wall - it used to be separate confused hmm

(We didn't buy it)

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