Thursday, 10 November 2011

A public inconvenience

I'm a big fan of bogs. Aka latrines. Aka 'the Kaiser'. Aka the WC. Indeed partaking in a gentleman's wee is one of life's largest pleasures. Mounting the porcelain is perhaps the best way to get a bit of space in which to strain, enjoy a read and think about what the fuck's going on out beyond the immediate confines of your four walled palace. Like Andrew Weatherall and Sean Johnston's club night, A Love From Outer Space, it's "an oasis of stillness in a world of ever increasing velocity". Or as the Stone Roses may or may not have said: "Stop the world. I'm getting on."

Public toilets are a wilder beast - there's summat much more feral about doing one's business in a room where the only thing separating oneself and other strangers is a few strip of chipboard. Plus there are other associated condiments. The glory holes. Will there be any paper on which to wipe? Then there's the potential threat of being on the wrong (or right) end of a 'cottaging'. Almost anything could happen.

Worries aside, a Friday evening just t'other week was hung around the opening of a toilet in the George and Dragon boozer on Hackney Road. Those chumps behind Sheffield fanzine Go had retiled the ladies as a lament/celebration to the plight of the public toilet. They'd done a fantastic job on the grouting in what must be one of the busiest and sweatiest pubs in the world. Not only was this a glorious load of arty lardy de dar but it was pretty adept at holding a tinkle. I took a leak in there and can confirm that as a toilet, it worked wonderfully. So it manages to both functional and art at the same time. Nuts innit? You can go and take a leak in there until Dec 14th.

This graffiti was on the toilet's wall - it wasn't me