We all have codes for and traditions around poo time. For me, it is typically a Wilson Phillips moment.
Unlike many people, I am not poo shy. If I’ve got to go, I find the necessarium (a term used back in the day to describe the room necessary for doing one’s business) and put it to good use.
Others, however, aren’t so fortunate. Live Longer is one of the ‘others.’ She has what she refers to as a ‘poo time continuum.’ Each morning, she brews a pot of coffee, has a cup or two, then uses the loo.
As soon as she relieves herself she stops drinking coffee – for her, it serves only one purpose: to brew a poo. When the need strikes again, sans the assistance of coffee, it is usually later in the day and, if she is at work, she goes home. The poo time continuum constantly rules her world.
“I can’t poo just anywhere,” she told Opal, Sleepless and I. “Once, in France, I didn’t poo for two weeks.”
Such a shame. The French actually coined the phrase “gardez l’eau,” which means “watch out for water.” Prior to throwing the water and other matter out of their chamber pots (hence the phrases, “piss poor” and “he doesn’t have a pot to piss in”) out the window, people would yell, “gardez l’eau.” This phrase alerted others that a shit storm was a brewing (big thanks to Jim Lahey of Trailer Park Boys for coining that phrase). It is believed that this French phrase resulted in the use of the common British word “loo,” which rhymes with what we all do: poo.
Opal shares Live Longer’s struggles.
“It took me two weeks to prepare to poo at Burning Man,” Opal advised us and shared the psychological and physical training that ensued.
Sleepless and I found this mesmerizing. We’ll pluck a rose pretty much anywhere. “Plucking a rose” was a polite term used by British women in the late 1700s, early 1800s, who were heading to the garden to have a poo (note: “I’m having a poo,” is the phrase YumYummy coined when wanting to be left alone in the loo). That’s Not Chinese would have loved to live in this rosy era – she is a big fan of taking time to both pluck and smell the roses.
One who loves to travel, I have to be able to go anywhere and anytime. Beaner understands this need and recently gave both Live Longer and I a modern day bourdalue, aka, travel urinal. Wealthy British women used to take these devices with them everywhere to avoid having to remove themselves from any current activity in which they were engaged. At a meeting you don’t want to leave? Grab your bourdalue. Having too good of a time dancing to leave the floor? Grab your bourdalue. Too cold and tired to get up? Grab your bourdalue. The main difference between our bourdalue and their bourdalue is that ours is a flexible silicone device which we must empty on our own while theirs was a narrow china bowl that the servants emptied. Being a British socialite in Jane Austen’s time definitely had its perks.
That said, regardless of the material or the era, if one doesn’t want to miss out, one must have something to piss in. And, if one lacks a pot, hopefully one has the courage to pluck a rose.