Friday, August 20, 2010

Emasculation Accomplished?

Yesterday I had to speak harshly to poor little Butterbean.  The resulting cryfest pretty much melted the crusty old lump of coal in my chest cavity.

The reason for the stern tone from the old man?  Butterbean and her sister were in real danger of being urinated on.  By yours truly.

It was mid-morning, long before the twins' first nap, and shortly after my first half-gallon of coffee.  I thought I would discreetly pop into the bathroom, leaving the door open so I could keep an eye on the girls.  But the toddlers have been fascinated by toilets lately, and they raced in to investigate.

I was able to block Cobra with one leg, and in any case she got distracted by something shiny in the bathtub.  But Butterbean would not be dissuaded.  I shifted side to side to thwart her approach, but she proved quite deft at slipping around my leg and grabbing for the rim of the bowl.  Meanwhile, I was trying to maintain my aim and pressure control, with limited success.  Finally, I hissed something like "BACK OFF" at her, which spurred abject anguish on her part and corresponding waves of guilt on mine.

In a world in which gender roles have become less and less relevant, men have always felt that we could count on our one inalienable birthright--standing up while peeing.

That's why when my wife, upon hearing of yesterday's traumatic events, suggested that I pee sitting down, thereby leaving my hands free and eliminating the dangerous freefall zone that so entices the children, I sputtered.  I have known European guys who sit while peeing, but that hardly make it any less effeminate.  I might as well wear clogs and manpris.

As unsanitary and dangerous as it can be, upright bi-pedal urination is a hallmark of masculinity celebrated by American boys and men from the moment we acquire the necessary skills.  Unlike our female counterparts, we can pee virtually anywhere, unencumbered by the need for facilities or even camouflage.  Being on our feet, we are less vulnerable than sitters, ready for immediate fight or flight if necessary.

Every visit to a public urinal (the horror of doing so in flip-flops notwithstanding) is a tribute to our rough-and-ready forefathers: the soldiers, frontiersmen, cowboys, and farmers that made this country the superpower it still is today.  Not by daintily lounging on a cushy commode, but by boldly inscribing the letters U-S-A into the snowbanks of history.

Nonetheless, for the sake of my children, I am considering compromising my values.  If the situation arises again, where the levees, as it were, are crumbling against the force of the rising riverbank, I will assume the position of shame.  But as an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, I have embarked on a regimen of mind-over-matter willpower exercises, and daily kegling, to obviate the complete surrender of my masculinity.

Check this out.  I'm playing a game called "Blog Hop," sponsored by Brian H at Dad at the Chalkboard.  You should click below and try it too.


  1. Pee sitting down. My masculine, construction guy son-in-law does and is teaching his son to as well. Never mind that he's from Germany.

  2. Hahahaha!!! OMG, that is hilarious. Not that you yelled at Butterbean (poor sweetie pie), but the situation itself. Have you thought about putting a gate at the bathroom door? That way you can see them and they can see you but not be in any danger of being pee'd on and you can keep a little bit of your masculine pride.
    BTW, I find it funny that you discuss European men sitting, because man, they pee everywhere. Over here (at least where we are in Germany), it's legal to pee in public as long as you're not facing the street. James Bond and Indy love this. Me...well, it's doesn't really do me any good. Gah.

  3. While I usually side with Dr. Mom, I'm firmly Team Beta on this one. From a practical standpoint, I'd imagine you would want to maintain a position as ambulatory as possible in case you need to move/dodge twins on the loose. In this case it might have been a bit of a disadvantage, BUT imagine the fallout if one of the kids decided to, say, wander into Stella's mighty pee-stream whilst your pants are around your ankles. I shudder at the thought.

    If anything, a little unintentional pee on your part is payback for the times they saturated your couch/clothing/person in the first few weeks with a host of bodily fluids. Not that I'm speaking from experience or anything ::wringing out bottom of shirt::

  4. I always feel like shit whenever I yell at my kids.

    But, its better for me to be pissed off, then them to be pissed on.

  5. Glad that she didn't grab the stream!

  6. Clogs and Manpris! Oh god! That is just too funny! May I add the Murse to that mental image?

  7. Haha, don't be hard on yourself, even the best dad's have to snap once in awhile! And peeing sitting down is not such a bad thing.

    Single Dad Laughing

  8. Listen. Which do you want your kids to tell a future therapist someday?

    1) Daddy yelled at me when I was a baby.
    2) Daddy liked to pee on me for fun.

    I say #1.

    (Heh. #1. Get it?)

  9. when you pee sitting down they try to climb in your lap.

    keep standing.

  10. Oh, the joys of daddy-hood.

    And, while your kids are too young for this to be an issue (yet), here's a somewhat-related cautionary story.

    When my daughters were young we were very proud that they knew the 'real' names for all the bodily parts and functions... until one of them announced to my parents that "Daddy has a really big penis." Which may or may not be true, but was nonetheless quite horrifying to hear a toddler telling her grandparents. Luckily it wasn't the in-laws.

  11. It will only be a temporary compromise. Mothers have had zero dignity for centuries. The other day my toddler boy tried to wipe my butt for me.

  12. @Anon--I don't know. I'm a pretty old dog to be learning new tricks like that.

    @High Heels--Yeah, I should have gates all over the house. Pretty soon they're going to be way too fast and slippery for me.

    @L-sq--So I should be not only standing when I pee, but actually on my toes?

    @Swarthy J--She was so close though...

    @Robin--I was even thinking about mentioning the murse. Michael Chabon wrote a hilarious essay about how, after getting used to the convenience offered by diaper bags, he finally transitioned to a murse.

    @SDL--I've already gotten over it. The kid probably has too. Right?

    @DiPi--heheh. #1.

    @Jenni--Oh! I just thought of an even better solution. The "Stadium Buddy" that allows you to pee into a bag strapped to your leg!

    @Anon--Oy. That's when I would be like,*beckons to imaginary waiter* "Check, please..."

    @Keely--At least he's being helpful!

  13. LMAO...Been there done that 6 times over. Pee sitting is the way to go and I DEFINITELY don't want to hear your daughter coming to me saying you peed on her for sport!

  14. Use a baby gate. Stand proud, stand strong.

    And as for clogs, I felt the same way when my Swedish grandfather suggested them. No way, guys say that's for chicks, my teen self said. He, a man who worked in a sawmill his whole life, said back, "hit him with your wooden shoe."

    I never looked at clogs the same again.

  15. "In a world in which gender roles have become less and less relevant..." Aw, that's cute.

    Maybe yelling at BB was the right thing to do. If she learns that bathroom is alone time and when you barge in on daddy he gets yelly, then maybe she'll leave you alone. This is an important life lesson!


  16. Just sit down. Then if it makes you feel better, you can always build a fire in the back yard and pee on it to put it out. That should help you reclaim some macho cred.

  17. I am very impressed that you could stand, block, aim and be alert of your surroundings. Sounds like some Green Beret training there! ;~)

  18. Just pee on her! Maybe it's one of those "only has to happen once" kind of things.

    How bout cue up a Megadeth track turned all the way up on the stereo, and as soon as the urine hits her skin, hit play with the remote and turn the bathroom lights off. Do you have a fog machine?

    "Creative contrived consequences." Patent pending.

  19. Don't worry about it. At a certain age, many men find sitting convenient because the time and strain is too great for standing. Then you can worry.

  20. This made me laugh out loud. The visual was hysterical. As for the whole peeing-sitting-down thing, it is just temporary and could be a good instructional tool for your daughters come potty training time...

  21. You explained peeing etiquette for men very well--hilarious!
    During high school my buddies and I (drunk) thought it was hilarious to try to pee over our shoulders.
    However, at home, I always sit. It's what my Mom taught me. And what my wife taught my son.

  22. I nearly always sit. Gives me time to read stuff, and I have "shy kidneys." No shame there.

  23. i can't decide which is worse: sitting while peeing or manpris. ok manpris, at least with sitting there will be less cleanup from a piss poor aim.

  24. Ha ha! Not to be too graphic but us women have a certain time of month when it is MOST inconvenient to have kids in the bathroom with us in which case the door is closing, tears or not. Give the cryer a snack, she'll bounce right back.

  25. They make toilets that are cushy? Is that why I've never mastered the dainty lounge on a toilet seat? Mine's just been to hard and crusty? DAMNIT!

  26. Before kids, I tried to learn how to pee standing up. After pushing out 2 babies, my nethers have never been the same, putting a kibosh on any standing-up peeing situation.
    I envy you. Keep standing.

  27. back when my triplets i can't tell you how many times i held one in either arm, yet still had to block another one w/ my leg so that he or she would avoid the, um, line of fire.

  28. Don't do it, there are other ways of distracting the kids. Hold firm. First it's sitting, then what. How far are you willing to fall before enough is enough?

    I have to sneak away to use the bathroom for the same reason, being a parent means never peeing alone again


Don't hold back.


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