Monday, August 20, 2007

Poetry Not Suiting the Occasion


This is my 1300th post for this blog. That sure was a lot about nothing! So, to continue the tradition:

Sometimes a poem has good intentions but misses the point.

Back when I was at Waterman Street Grammar School in the late 1940s I remember the kids restrooms were in the dark huge scary basement. The boys were on one side and the girls were on the other side. In between were scary dark corridors.

In the boys’ restroom was a long trough that the boys would urinate onto a cement wall which the pee would flow down into a trough. The more talented boys would have pissing contests to see how high up on the wall they could go. Archie was the leader. Archie was the shy type that when called upon to read something aloud, his face would turn red. But he didn’t mind whipping it out and pissing up the side of a cement wall.

There was also a row of stalls for bowel movements. The doors were removed. I remember in one stall, I think the 2nd one from the urinal trough, was a little handwritten plagiarized poem:

Here I sit broken hearted,
I paid a nickel,
And only farted.

That poem tells a lot. For instance it tells the price of things those days. A nickel for the use of a stall. I don’t think you have to pay anything now, I think charging was ruled unconstitutional. But before it was declared unconstitutional I think you had to fork over a quarter or maybe even more.

And the fact the little boy, grammar school age, probably thought the same neat poem was witty and fitted the occasion for any bathroom stall, even ones that don’t have doors.

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6 Comments:

Blogger Jean said...

Potty Humor, good for a Monday morning. In the girls' lavatory, the poetry was more practical: "if you sprinkle when you tinkle, please be neat and wipe the seat."

Somewhere on the net there's a great story about how a vice-principal put an end to little girls' practice of applying lipstick and kissing the mirror by having them assemble to watch how much extra work they caused the janitor. He dipped his squeegee into the nearest receptacle that constantly held water and laboriously wiped away the marks on the mirror. Ewwwwww!

8:00 AM  
Blogger ET said...

Jean,
Ewwwww!
I saw that too! Well, I think I did, because I remember the story-line.

8:08 AM  
Blogger kenju said...

I saw that poem before somewhere - but it was not in your school...LOL

4:28 PM  
Blogger ET said...

Judy,
Are you sure you were not in the boys' bathroom at our grammar school?
Just joking. Yeah, I either seen it before in a public restroom or really I think I read it in a book called something like, "Graffiti on the Bathroom Walls".

4:55 PM  
Anonymous Anna said...

The poem I heard was, "if you sprinkle when you tinkle, be a sweetie and wipe the seatie." We put a note on the inside of the stalls at my former workplace in 1975 and it was still there just 2 years ago. Now the building is being torn down. That makes me feel older than dirt.

10:06 AM  
Blogger ET said...

If you feel older than dirt, than where does that put me?

10:35 AM  

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