Not wholly sure this works mechanically

German officials are planning to tackle one of the multiple remaining inequalities between the sexes: the queue for the loo.

A scheme has been proposed by Berlin authorities to develop urinals for women at public lavatories across the city.

A 99-page document titled ‘The Toilet Concept for Berlin’ has been produced by the city’s environmental council in collaboration with the private sector.

It concludes that “pissoirs” (urinals) should only be offered in future in combination with unisex lavatories and that female urinals should be developed.

“In the future urinals which can be used by all genders should be offered,” the report states.

I’m just wondering why such an obvious thing has not already been developed? Could there be some mechanical reason why it doesn’t work very well?

There is also a slight wonder, how does this interact with the rules further north, in Sweden, where there is that agitation to make it illegal for a man to piss standing up?

54 comments on “Not wholly sure this works mechanically

  1. “A 99-page document titled ‘The Toilet Concept for Berlin’ has been produced by the city’s environmental council in collaboration with the private sector.”

    I’m assuming if I visit Berlin the streets will be totally litter free, sparkling like a new penny?

  2. This pronlem was solved about 40 years ago. A company designed a simple plastic device that a woman could use to channel the urine into a directed stream so she could use a conventional urinal.
    It was called the Stand-Up Penny Spender.
    And yes, it was promoted as an equality thing.
    Didn’t catch on, did it? Perhaps the target market wasn’t interested? It was a non-problem??

  3. How will the toilet identify the sex of the user?
    And why only urinals? Defecation id banned?
    etc.

  4. Just putting this out there …

    I cannot pee effectively sitting down. If I lived in Sweden (which, thank God, I do not) I would either be a criminal or develop some problem with my waterworks.

  5. Men and women pee differently because of anatomy. Women need to sit or squat in order to direct their urine stream into a receptacle. Thereafter they dry any adjacent parts which may have been splashed. All devices that aim to replace these stances require close contact with the pubic area and make drying impossible: so a big no on hygiene and practicality. Of course preop transgendered trannies would not experience the same problem: is this a ruse to get them into the women’s loo?

  6. “…and make drying impossible”

    What?! Why? Would tissues not work?

    “Of course preop transgendered trannies would not experience the same problem: is this a ruse to get them into the women’s loo?”

    They would probably be even less willing to use them than the other women.

    And they’re already in the women’s loo.

  7. The problem with women’s bogs is simple: almost always there aren’t enough of them. This has been obvious all my life, and it once led me to wonder why feminists hadn’t latched on to the problem more.

    My wondering led to the conclusion that it’s not a problem that interests feminists because it is a problem that admits of a simple, complete, conclusive solution. It’s therefore no bloody use to a careerist feminist. Is there another sort?

  8. NiV: you’re a bloke unaware that women of how women get at the parts requiring wiping ie by sitting or, if they have trained quads, squatting.

  9. Unisex toilets – just what you need in a country suffering a spate of recent mass sex attacks by ‘refugees’. They probably can’t believe their luck. Such a welcoming country!

  10. NiV–Piss off— literally. A very small number of ladyboy types might be successful in using the Ladies so long as they behave and comport themselves as women. The Desperate Dan crowd aren’t getting in despite the bullshit of you and your agitator pals. Or scumbag coppers–which is another reason they are now surplus to requirements.

    Some years ago in central Amsterdam there appeared a bizarre set of public bogs shaped like large diamonds ( the pack of cards diamond shape not gemstones).

    They were set into the ground on their point and had holes at each of the side points on the diamond. The idea seemed to be that you whipped your knob out and stood there in full public glare pissing into the holes. There was no accommodation for women it seemed.

    This public humiliation was too much even for the Dutch and all the holes had been stuffed with rubbish and rendered unusable as a gesture of public contempt for the boss class planners.

    Amsterdam had plenty of one-man mini-pissoirs in the French design that seemed to be fairly old. There looked to be no on-street provision for females in need of a pee.

  11. “The problem with women’s bogs is simple: almost always there aren’t enough of them. This has been obvious all my life, and it once led me to wonder why feminists hadn’t latched on to the problem more.”

    Maybe there are too few because when they were built men were obviously pissheads who would need to urinate more often than women, but now that gap has closed. Also men get the job done quicker with no closing and locking the door, undressing etc.

    But yes, there are too few of them.

  12. “NiV: you’re a bloke unaware that women of how women get at the parts requiring wiping ie by sitting or, if they have trained quads, squatting.”

    I agree it’s probably not a practical proposition, I was just querying the explanation.

    I would have thought the big problem was clothing. The time difference between standing or squatting is trivial; the reason for the delay is all the business of rearranging skirts/tights/etc. for access and cleaning up afterwards.

    Drying isn’t made impossible by the device, but devices don’t solve the clothing problem.

  13. Perhaps all wimmin need is to be permanently catheterized … with bottle attached you don’t even need toilets. Or thick Tenalady pads?

  14. NiV: Drying isn’t made impossible by the device, but devices don’t solve the clothing problem.

    What about the device itself? Do you just pop it into your handbag as is?

  15. “What?! Why? Would tissues not work?”

    They’d work fine for drying, but would not be helpful at a urinal unless you want blockages or a bucket of piss soaked wipes.

    More bogs for da wimins.

    And we all need all the friggin doors to open outwards, ‘cos tosspots of all genders don’t wash their hands.

  16. “What about the device itself? Do you just pop it into your handbag as is?”

    Obviously not. I believe they provide plastic boxes with them. (Or if not, plastic boxes and bags are easily obtained.) Just rinse it under the tap first when you wash your hands.

  17. “They’d work fine for drying, but would not be helpful at a urinal unless you want blockages or a bucket of piss soaked wipes.”

    Or a receptacle that will flush them into the sewer. It’s just a matter of plumbing.

    “More bogs for da wimins.”

    Agreed.

    Or just do cubicles for everyone, like they do on trains, planes, or in private houses. If men have to join the same queue, they might do something about it…

  18. “urinals which can be used by all genders”

    Peeing is a biological function, so it’s a function of your sex not your gender.

  19. NiV: I believe they provide plastic boxes with them. (Or if not, plastic boxes and bags are easily obtained.) Just rinse it under the tap first when you wash your hands.

    What a palaver – all in all sounds rather more complicated than the current arrangements.

    NiV: If men have to join the same queue, they might do something about it.

    You actually mean that, don’t you?

  20. Having occasionally seen women do it, there doesn’t actually seem to be a mechanical reason why women can’t piss standing up.

  21. “What a palaver – all in all sounds rather more complicated than the current arrangements.”

    That depends. Try going to the toilet in a playsuit!

    But yes, that’s why the devices never took off. They might be useful for an emergency, but it’s usually going to be easier to do it the conventional way.

    “You actually mean that, don’t you?”

    Personally, I’d have said the problem was that there isn’t a direct market for toilet access, which is the usual way we deal with making supply match demand. If people who provide enough toilets made more money, the extra money pays for the extra toilets. The problem is caused by offering them for free.

    But yes, I expect that if everyone had to queue together, the issue would become rather more important to the owners of the premises, because the men would be rather less shy about complaining, or about peeing up the walls in the corridor, if supply was insufficient.

    Why wouldn’t I mean it?

  22. I seem to recall reading somewhere that women accepted into US Marine / Special Forces training are taught to wee standing up; they manipulate (womanipulate?!) the urethral opening so as to increase the pressure by reduction of the opening to make the flow directable. It may have been joke, I suppose.

    But having to dump backpack, equipment belt, sidearm and a load of other kit so that kecks can be dropped does seem a faff.

  23. “I seem to recall reading somewhere that women accepted into US Marine / Special Forces training are taught to wee standing up; they manipulate (womanipulate?!) the urethral opening so as to increase the pressure by reduction of the opening to make the flow directable. It may have been joke, I suppose.”

    It may have been.

    https://www.quora.com/How-do-female-soldiers-manage-about-going-to-the-loo-on-the-frontline-with-male-soldiers-there

    PS. The “man” in “manipulate” comes from the Latin “manus” meaning “hand”.

  24. The “man” in “manipulate” comes from the Latin “manus” meaning “hand”

    Er, yes. It was just a feeble attempt at humour, in these gender-sensitive days. Hence the “!”

  25. Fair enough. It was obviously a joke, but it’s sometimes hard to tell which joke. 🙂

    I recall one lady who objected rather strongly to being called a “chairwoman” or even “chairperson” on the basis that “chairman” was actually short for “chair manager”. It was an example of ignorant and unnecessary political correctness of a sort that did women no favours, she said.

  26. “Or just do cubicles for everyone, like they do on trains, planes, or in private houses.”

    On trains and planes and in homes, each unit has (i) a hand basin, (ii) soap (iii) hand-drying facilities and (iv) a mirror. Providing (i) to (iv) in every public toilet would be expensive – in both capital and revenue terms. The alternative is toilet cubicles and shared (i)-(iv) – which means that, for example, a teenage girl with a menstrual leak has to finish cleaning herself up and rinse her soiled underwear in front of men, that women will have to adjust their make-up or attend to a broken bra strap in front of men…and so on and on.

    To you, I imagine, these costs and inconveniences are worth it so that a handful of deviants – mere simulacra of women – can experience equality in gender-neutral. Yet all that trannies can reasonably expect is tolerance: they cannot expect equal rights at significant cost and inconvenience to the majority population.

  27. Don’t see the problem with getting rid of urinals. Make them all unisex and then wimmin will be whining about men pissing all over the seat and they will then queue for the one remaining clean toilet seat. Hell, we can’t solve this problem in a single household without physical threats.

    The only real cure is for all mens toilets to be converted to women only.

  28. “The alternative is toilet cubicles and shared (i)-(iv) – which means that, for example, a teenage girl with a menstrual leak has to finish cleaning herself up and rinse her soiled underwear in front of men, that women will have to adjust their make-up or attend to a broken bra strap in front of men…and so on and on.”

    Umm. And what happens when a trans woman wants to do any of those things? They don’t like fixing their make-up or broken bra straps in front of men, either.

    In any case, there are easy solutions to all that. Conventional toilets are a problem for the disabled, people in wheelchairs, etc, but to make every toilet cubicle suitable for disabled people would be very expensive. So we ought to tell all the disabled to fuck off, right? They only have a right to bare tolerance, not equal rights at the expense of the majority, right?

    Human rights are rights for all humans. When people start saying some people don’t have the same rights as other people, you know there’s something going seriously wrong there…

    Your bigotry and hatred is showing. Just thought you’d like to know.


    By the way, my suggestion that everyone queue together had nothing to do with TG rights – it was simply a more efficient way to allocate scarce resources and to apply more pressure to get the shortage dealt with.

  29. Ljh

    “Women need to sit or squat in order to direct their urine stream into a receptacle.”

    I thought that, too, until I had a daughter, who would pee standing up when naked (beflre getting into her bath) until the age of four, though when clothed she would always pee sitting down.

    I imagine that women with large labia might find it difficult to pee standing up, but the essential point here is that clothing of any kind makes it difficult for women to urinate standing up.

  30. NiV – can’t speak for Theo but I would think it’s quite possible for one to give not one solitary fuck either way about transfolks – ie not hating them, nor being bigoted against them – while absolutely hating the busybody cunts who insist on their right to dictate to one how one should feel about transfolks?

  31. NiV

    “And what happens when a trans woman wants to do any of those things? They don’t like fixing their make-up or broken bra straps in front of men, either.”

    But you said: “…they’re already in the women’s loo.” So they don’t have to do so in front of men as things stand. And if they’d be embarrassed do so in a gender-neutral toilet with shared (i) to (iv), then that’s another reason for not having such toilets. Moreover, given that wide provision of individual cubicles each with (i) to (iv) would be costly – and the costs would be borne mainly by the non-deviant population as taxpayers and consumers, the sensible thing is to retain the status quo.

  32. Interested,

    Yes, agreed. But if you only hate one set of busybody cunts trying to dictate what we’re allowed to think and do, and not the other, because you happen to sympathise with the latter – what’s to stop anyone who sympathises with the other side doing the same?

    One side dictates that trans-people can use their chosen loos everywhere, the other side dictate to everyone that they can’t. What’s the difference?

    And more to the point, what happens when you let one set of busybody cunts win on an issue you don’t give one solitary fuck about, but then they switch to a target that you *do* give a fuck about, like you? Why should anyone else care about *you*, when you didn’t care about the other poor buggers?

    The only justification for society to abridge individual human freedom is to prevent actual harm being done to others. Trans people just going to the toilet aren’t doing anyone any harm, but there are plenty of busybody cunts who want to harm *them* if they try. Whose freedom should we be abridging, here? Who should we hate?

  33. NiV

    “Conventional toilets are a problem for the disabled, people in wheelchairs, etc, but to make every toilet cubicle suitable for disabled people would be very expensive. So we ought to tell all the disabled to fuck off, right?”

    But we don’t make every cubicle suitable for disabled people
    (some 3% of the population?), and I haven’t heard of any disabled people insisting that we should, so why should we make major changes to the public lavatorial infrastructure to accommodate a tiny minority of trannies?

    Moreover, since trannies are are arguably disabled — being mentally ill and often mutilated by ‘consent’ – they can use disabled toilets, and so don’t need any extra provision.

  34. NiV

    “Human rights are rights for all humans. When people start saying some people don’t have the same rights as other people, you know there’s something going seriously wrong there…Your bigotry and hatred is showing. Just thought you’d like to know.”

    I don’t deny that trannies have the basic human rights that apply to all people – but as humans, not as trannies. Y’know, freedom under the law, no arbitrary imprisonment, right to own property, …There is no human right to gender-neutral toilets, afaik.

    I don’t hate trannies at all, though I do think they are sad, pitiable and self-deluding creatures. What I do loathe are free-loading groups — asylum-seekers, migrants, muslims, feminists, gender-benders, etc, etc — who want special provision on the back of the taxpayer or consumer.

    The UK is one of the most tolerant societies ever to have existed. Here, you can be want you want to be more easily than almost anywhere else on earth. Don’t expect to be subsidised, endorsed or applauded if you pursue a deviant lifestyle, but you can expect to be tolerated, amiably ignored and to be able to live peacefully doing your own thing. But, for you, that’s not enough…

  35. “But we don’t make every cubicle suitable for disabled people (some 3% of the population?), and I haven’t heard of any disabled people insisting that we should”

    Exactly my point. Women with broken bra straps are probably less than 3% of the toilet-using public, too, but it didn’t stop you using them as an excuse for making a general rule to allow for them.

    The analogous approach would be to have a single separate cubicle with mirror and washbasin for doing those things that need to be done in private, and shared ones for everyone else. In fact, since there’s already a disabled loo with a washbasin and mirror, the problem is already solved.

    If you was genuinely concerned about broken bra straps as a problem, the many alternative solutions would have occurred to you just as immediately. But since you was just looking for an excuse to exclude trans people, like a problem that excluding them would solve, alternative solutions are irrelevant.

    “so why should we make major changes to the public lavatorial infrastructure to accommodate a tiny minority of trannies?”

    As far as the TGs are concerned, you don’t have to make any changes to the infrastructure at all. Trans-women simply use the ladies, like anyone else. It’s only the bigots who have a problem with sharing toilets – so why shouldn’t it be the bigots who pay the extra costs of accommodating themselves?

    “Moreover, since trannies are are arguably disabled — being mentally ill and often mutilated by ‘consent’”

    According to the conventional definitions, they’re not mentally ill – just different. It’s like homosexuality. Although there is a case to be made that transphobic bigots *are*. Would you change your mind if society so classified you?

  36. Theophrastus: did your daughter get her feet wet? Any woman who has had to lower her naked vulnerable regions behind a bush while doing the great outdoors would stand to pee if it were anatomically practicable.

  37. “There is no human right to gender-neutral toilets, afaik.”

    Article 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights is the one usually cited.

    Anyway, TGs aren’t asking for gender-neutral toilets. They’re asking to go in the toilets appropriate to their gender. The gender-neutral concept is a solution being offered to try to accommodate both the TGs and the bigots peaceably. If there’s no segregation, nobody can be going into the “wrong” toilet, right?

    “I don’t hate trannies at all, though I do think they are sad, pitiable and self-deluding creatures.”

    Fair enough. That’s your right. Of course, other people have the corresponding right to think the same about you.

    “The UK is one of the most tolerant societies ever to have existed.”

    I agree. That doesn’t mean there isn’t lots of room for improvement.

  38. “Exactly my point. Women with broken bra straps are probably less than 3% of the toilet-using public, too, but it didn’t stop you using them as an excuse for making a general rule to allow for them.”

    Eh? You are either very stupid or very dishonest to advance such an argument. Daily, the majority of women wish to make clothing or make-up adjustments – never mind matters menstrual – without men being present. We are not talking merely about broken bra straps.

  39. A college(So mid-90’s) girlfriend happened across a female urinal. Her opinion was that it was interesting to use but didn’t have any real advantage over a conventional toilet. Once the female urinal was enclosed in privacy screen it took up the same amount of floor space but offered less utility. Because the devise was designed so that it could handle sanitary pads she didn’t think there was any meaningful water savings.

    The design change she thought would make the devise desirable was adjustable height. She was short and had to stand on tiptoes to use the thing. We did not come up with a cost effective idea to give the urinal adjustment ability, while remaining durable enough for use in a public loo.

    The point is female urinals have been designed but no one has found a successful design.

  40. Ljh:

    She parted her labia and pointed her urethral opening at the loo: her aim was perfect. She looked like a putto in some Italianate fountain.

    She’s 31 now, and asking her how she urinates when hiking would be indelicate, to say the least.

    All I can say is that some women can clearly urinate accurately when standing up. I imagine that large labia could well make that more difficult.

  41. “Eh? You are either very stupid or very dishonest to advance such an argument”

    ?!

    It was your argument. I was just quoting it.

    “Daily, the majority of women wish to make clothing or make-up adjustments…”

    99% of clothing adjustments can be made inside the cubicle, without mirrors or washbasins required. Likewise with most menstrual matters. I’ve never noticed any reticence about make-up adjustments being made in public. A big, well-lit mirror is certainly more convenient than a pocket one, but it’s not a particularly private act.

    And as I just said, trans-women have exactly the same requirements.

    “…without men being present”

    They’re not men. That’s the point.

    And there are lots of people who want to do things with other people not present. Some people don’t like sharing space with black people. Other’s don’t like sharing space with people with tattoos. Or working class people. Or skinheads in punk gear. Or smokers. Or drunk people. Or the mentally disabled. Or right-wing conservatives.

    And it’s not just toilets, but also lifts, railway carriages, taxis, bus seats, offices, …

    Once you start accepting people’s ‘right’ not-to-share-a-space-with any other category they care to define, we’re going to have a lot of duplication in society!

    The usual rule on discrimination is that you can only exclude certain people from services everybody else enjoys to prevent them doing harm. Merely being black, or having scary tattoos, or male isn’t enough.

    If ways can be found to accommodate people’s hang-ups without discriminating, that’s good. But once you set the precedent of allowing discrimination, that allows people who don’t like you to discriminate against *you*, and we end up with conservative-free zones, as with the American “safe spaces”.

    Those are justified in exactly the same way – that some people don’t feel comfortable or safe sharing a space with a conservative right-winger. Is that an argument you want to support?

  42. Theophrastus: so what you suggest requires a woman to strip first. I think I prefer to keep my knickers dry about my ankles while squatting the better to whip them up should man or beast surprise me. And keep my hands clean and dry.

  43. Ljh: clothing is a problem, yes. I’m not advocating that adult women urinate standing up – just pointing out that it’s not impossible.

  44. @NiV

    Women with broken bra straps need to replace their foundation garments rather than have special public toilets.

    People who have lopped off their todgers should pee before they leave home to avoid embarassing themselves and everyone else.

  45. “People who have lopped off their todgers should pee before they leave home to avoid embarassing themselves and everyone else.”

    They do. A lot of them suffer kidney damage from being too scared to use public toilets, for fear of being harassed or attacked by random members of the public.

    You could say the same about those “safe spaces” in American universities. If conservatives want to express their opinions, then they ought to do so in private, at home, rather than embarrassing themselves and everyone else by expressing them in public, (and getting harassed or beaten up for it). That’s OK, is it?

  46. By the way, our local Waitrose doesn’t have enough loos for either sex.

    Waaah! I denounce you as Sexist!

    Surely you meant “any sex”? Or perhaps to avoid confusion between description and activity, “any gender”? 🙂

    (My Waitrose too).

  47. I’m not sure whether incipient renal failure can debilitate one’s powers of reasoning but it seems worth pointing out that the cohort of conservative opion has occasionally been the majority view in elections in western democracies whereas the population of the disentodgered is vanishingly small and its requirements particularly niche.

  48. Debilitated powers of reasoning are pretty universal, judging from people’s failure to realise that *everyone* is a member of *some* minority. The union of minorities is the majority.

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