I’m guessing none of my readers from the female persuasion will be able to relate to the following annoyance. You have many of your own which are undoubtedly far more irritating. So, please allow me a moment to vent from the male side of things.
I don’t know if the rest of you guy-types have noticed the trend in urinals the past few years, but I am finding that the urinal situation in Men’s Rooms is becoming peeving (no pun intended). Have you observed the height of these things lately?
“Aside from the ocassional splashing…”
In the old days, a urinal would extend from the floor to an elevation of four feet or so. In today’s parlance, one size fits all in that scenario. Aside from the occasional splashing of one’s shoes, everyone was happy (or, at least, satisfied). Not so these days.
In the modern restroom, urinals are only a couple of feet in length. That, in itself, is not a huge problem. The problem lies in the fact that, in order to accommodate differences in the height of individuals, they are arranged in varying altitudes on bathroom walls. If you encounter this arrangement in, say, a large airport, it poses no real problem. There are so many of them, finding one that fits your body type is rather easily done.
It’s when you enter the Men’s Room of a smaller establishment that you run into a dilemma. Let’s say there is only enough space for two urinals. Dollars to donuts, you’re going to find that the two urinals are placed in the extreme. In other words, one will be situated very low to accommodate the little boys. The other will be high enough that only a giant can comfortably reach it.
The Good Old Days
Not to give out too much personal information, but I’m five feet, seven inches tall. The later arrangement leaves me out. I can make due, but not without a little consternation. Usually, I despise one-size-fits-all products. Urinals are a major exception to my rule, however. I yearn for the good old days when I didn’t have to size up a urinal before I made my choice.
I don’t know if these things bother anyone else, but it’s evoked a major discontentment in me. I realize it probably takes twice as much porcelain to produce the old-style urinals, but can’t we err on the side of the ceramic manufacturers? I haven’t heard that there is a porcelain shortage in America. Please correct me if I’m wrong.
I realize the difficulty I’ve just outlined is a minor one. It’s what we like to refer to as a “first world problem.” The displeasure I’ve experienced over these bathroom fixtures is, I realize, quite superfluous. This is particularly true in light of Jesus’ injunction to not sweat the small stuff. You know…things like food and clothing (Matthew 6:25)… I guess I’d be better off making an adjustment in my attitude rather than lobbying for a change in the amount of porcelain in Men’s Rooms.
[Dave Zuchelli is a graduate of Pittsburgh Theological Seminary and currently resides in Aldie, VA.]