Monday, February 11, 2008

We're Number One!

Lest I be accused of being tasteful...

We have a bathroom in our office where I work, with two urinals that have no barrier wall-ette between them. There are three toilet stalls along the wall. Now, men's rooms are profoundly unnatural environments when you consider the realities for any period of time. We stand around, exchanging bits of conversation if we know people, or completely ignoring them if we don't, all the while just vigorously blocking out the reality that we all have our cocks out, in what is at least a semi-public place (quite accurately "semi" actually, as it is half public, off limits to half of the world by gender at least) with sightlines to dudes who are total strangers (or at least they are invariably someone we wouldn't generally just stand around with, shooting the breeze or not, with penises in hand and all that, not to be too vulgar about it.)*

We block it out. We carry on! There's work to be done here!

What is even stranger than the fundamental fact of it is the people who come in and go directly to the stalls, and stand in their little box urinating. It just feels tremendously odd, and even leaves you feeling like they suspect you're just loitering around in the bathroom waiting to get a good ogle at their tackle.

We arent, okay? Really, really, really, really not at all. I'd wager that even gay or bisexual guys don't really (except for folks with some very specific fixations) have any desire to peruse the goods on display, so you can come on down and join the rest of us in our Heterosexual Hootenanny of Awkwardness and Denial. It's totally okay! It's SO TOTALLY NORMAL!

I'd rather not be sharing the moment with anyone, but it's just one of those things you have to deal with... weird, but so normal that the weirdness seems to fade in about a couple thirty years. It's not that hard. There are tribes with customs that seem normal to them (something recently about Amazon tribes that need to have their hands stung for ten minute stretches by gloves full of ants with the most painful neurotoxic sting in the world, and they have to do it twenty or thirty times. I don't remember the exact total, but if they can get used to that, we can all get used to our nerf padded American life in all its peculiarities.

*Ladies, complain to your heart's content about the quality of women's restrooms, and endlessly about the endless lines that block the way to them, but at least you get a private suite once you get inside. Yes, there may be no roof, but imagine a lack of walls... aaaaaand just let that settle in, for a moment.

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