Tuesday, October 1, 2019

If Ever a Whizz of a Wiz There Was

Urinals banned from newly remodeled Portland Building,” reports KGW8-TV in Portland, Oregon. While graciously allowing “gender-specific (male and female) multi-stall restrooms” to remain, the City of Portland has decreed that the men’s rooms will no longer have urinals. Because shutup.

First, the eco-zealots pushed for waterless urinals, but the units were so badly designed (and smelly) that many of them were removed. Now the gender warriors are taking aim (so to speak) at urinals qua urinals.

Amid the madness, I offer this mini photo-essay on my favorite examples of the art form.

First, from the Shin-Marunouchi Building in Tokyo, a pair of tall urinals positioned in front of fifth-floor windows. At night, they provide a magnificent view of Tokyo Station as one recycles a couple of oversize bottles worth of Kirin Ichiban.



Next, from a recent visit to Manhattan, magnificent porcelain urinals with the craquelure of antiquity, found in McSorley’s Old Ale House just a couple of blocks from Cooper Union. Their massive, full-body design allows one, no matter how drunk or clumsy, to deliver the goods well inside the designated drainage area, and not on the shoes of adjacent guests. A design for the ages; sadly, we shall never see the likes of it again.