Home > Bathroom Etiquette, Business Crap, Topic Discussion > Sit Down and Shut Up – The Bathroom Code of Silence

Sit Down and Shut Up – The Bathroom Code of Silence

I’ve always claimed that the bathroom is a world that exists in and of itself. The second you walk through those sacred doors, the laws of human nature instantly change and you are subject to new laws – ones that don’t always make sense but somehow are obeyed without question. One of those laws is the laws of silence. Before I go in to this, let me first clarify that I am speaking from the subjectivity of a male. I have always heard that women’s bathrooms are another story. Apparently you go with your girls and TALK! This is never the case in the men’s bathroom, particularly in the office setting.

Just recently I found myself in a very engaging conversation with my coworkers as we walked from a conference room to our cubicle maze. The discussion revolved around a recent coworker’s love life and the ridiculous standards he held for a future spouse. This coworker is 40+ and still single…I wonder why? Regardless, it was an engaging conversation and as we turned the corner by the elevator shaft, one coworker made note that they needed to “hit the head.” We all agreed that it was wise counsel, and we continued towards the bathroom. Our conversation continued and was far from resolved at the point that we arrived to the bathroom door. The second we entered the sacred space our conversation instantly stopped. Its as if we had entered some hollowed ground – an ancient temple or burial site. We stood there as if almost in prayer. But the position was not prayer. We stood there holding our dongs, allowing urine to flow freely in complete and udder silence.  Not a word was said, only the occasional clearling of the throat or cough. 

This pattern continued through the action of drying our hands and collecing our things – all the way until we walked out the doors.  The SECOND we were outside of the bathroom, the conversation started righ back up where it left of.

WHY?  Why do we do that?  I consider these coworkers my friends.  There is no reason that we can’t urinate and converse at the same time.  No one else was in there to disturb, just us.  But for some reason we have been trained to keep our traps shut.  I don’t remember being taught that from any teacher or parent.  I guess it is just something we observe over a lifetime of quiet trips to the toilet. 

I propose a breaking of the silence.  I have decided to be “that guy,” the one who keeps talking awkwardly in the bathroom.  I don’t care anymore.  There is no reason why this ridiculousness needs to continue.  Am I wrong?

  1. July 26, 2011 at 2:24 pm

    Women do talk in the restroom and not only that you’ll go to the restroom and there will be women in the stalls on their cell phones! I say do it. Talk your heart out.

  2. August 1, 2011 at 2:36 am

    Interesting. I guess it is what divides the sexes.

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