It may be a surprise to some, women in particular, but in the world of men in public bathrooms that urinal etiquette comes into play. This you will not find written down in any books on manners because it just isn't polite to talk about such things.
At its most basic the rule is that you never use a urinal exactly next to one which is already occupied. You put some space between you and the other person. Ideally this would be at least one or more unoccupied urinals. Although a very simple rule it becomes a touch complicated when many are occupied...as when people are coming out of a cinema. At times of crowding, even when there are unoccupied urinals it is totally acceptable to use one of the WC's instead.
The next most important rule is that you do not look at the person occupying the urinal next to you. A brief cursorary glance at the face and a nod of acknowledgement is acceptable.
It is unacceptable to talk to the person next to you.
It is highly impolite to sing, whistle or use your mobile phone.
Never, ever touch a person using a urinal.
A normal man instinctively knows the rules of urinal etiquette. It is not something which is taught or passed on from father to son. Although the rules are not written down you might like to see how you score in the urinal etiquette stakes.
Well, how did you score?
Anything below 60 would be unacceptable. Your instinctive etiquette needs working on.
The Urinal of the Future
In many public bathrooms today you will find that the urinals have divisions between them allowing the user to pee in relative privacy. This is ideal as then the number of urinal etiquette rules are cut right down.
Why the 'open' urinal system is still in operation anywhere or even included in new constructions is somewhat of a puzzle. It could lead one to presume that bathroom design has been carried out by a woman.
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