Today, the Yale Wall brings us a fun story of Yalies intellectualizing the etiquette of… picking a urinal to pee in.
In fairness, urinal etiquette is an important issue. It’s just that most guys kind of figure it out on their own.
But at Yale Law, there are no stupid questions. And it’s a very liberal, gender-neutral place. We know that because not only are urinal questions being asked on the listserv, the guy asking the question is seeking advice from a girl….
In fairness, peeing at Yale Law School is a pretty big issue. In the past, students haven’t been able to figure out precisely where to do it. Since Yale Law women have had problems peeing properly in the past, maybe it’s not weird for a Yale Law man to ask a woman on proper bathroom procedure. From the Wall:
Dear [Person With Lady Parts],
I was just getting comfortable in my new surroundings at Yale Law School, starting to find my way around, forcing myself to volunteer in Guido’s Torts, but then I ran into a problem that I feel inadequate to address. Please help: Yesterday, I walked into the second-floor men’s bathroom. Another dude was using the far-left urinal, leaving either the uncomfortably close middle urinal or the far-right urinal. The far-right urinal is tiny-sized. I am normal-sized. I hate that there are only three urinals in there, but that’s the way it is. What should I have done when I went Number One?
– To pee or not to pee
I’m not sure how this guy is old enough to go to law school, yet doesn’t know the answer to this question. I blame his father. But let’s see what the girl has to say:
Dear To Pee,
I asked around, and apparently part of the problem is that the men’s room has eight stalls but only three badly positioned urinals. (Seriously?) And part of the problem with the “tiny-sized” urinal is that if you are tall-ish and you use it there can be “sprayage.” Anyway, what’s done is done and now you have this problem. I’m with you, it sounds really awkward.
I think the answer to your question depends on how comfortable you are with your fellow bathroom users. If I were you–granted, not understanding all the nuance–I would just use the middle urinal. Life’s too short to fret about inches.
I do, however, think it would be totally fine to use one of the stalls. Surely there are almost always several free. Just be sure to always lift the seat.
Are you ready to man up?
–[Person with Lady Parts]
Look, the right answer is never to use the closest urinal to somebody already peeing if there is any other option. I’m not saying that out of the reflexive homophobia that was undoubtedly the basis of this social norm. I’m saying that because it’s a social norm. Different cultures have different norms when it comes to public bathrooms, and in ours, it’s standard to leave a urinal in between.
Unless everything else is full, and then you slot in there and do your business like an adult, because who cares. It’s like holding the door open for a lady: it’s social norm that starts from a place of patronizing sexism, but now it’s just a nice thing to do. So you do it if you can, you don’t if it would require a big production, and you move on with your life.
And I shouldn’t have to explain this to a Yale Law student. You know, if we’re dealing with a [I think we all know what school I'm thinking of] student, maybe you have to tell them which basin is for peeing and which basin is for washing your hands — since we know not everybody can tell the difference between pee and rain.
But at Yale? I mean, this isn’t the only bathroom problem they’re having there. Click ahead to the next page to see the problems in the women’s bathroom….