I was making my way home on Saturday night (quickly, to the strains of ‘Funky Town’ by Pseudo Echo), and, despite fully expecting the streets to be swaying with drunken idiots, and peppered with discarded snack boxes and copious pools of chunky semi-digestion that operate as sole-mines all over Temple Barf, I still found myself being absolutely repulsed by the sight of grown men urinating up against walls. Not even the slightest pretence of hiding behind something (normally something really clever, like a lamppost), but right there in full, streetlit view of everyone. Apart from vomit-dodging, there’s little in life more exhilarating than skipping over a flowing stream of alcoholic piss. I was delighted to see that a party of well-dressed European tourists got to witness for themselves this entertaining display of Jedi-like liquid-sabre wielding. I’d love to know what they’ll write on their postcards home: “Loving Olde Dublin – interesting and quaint pre-Roman sewer network, which criss-crosses the footpath-cum-litter-bins, which is both fun to negotiate and aromatic to inhale, like German wine.” Possibly.
Anyway, the sight of these ambassadors for Dublin tourism reminded me of the product you see above: the ‘Pocketoilet’, which is a ‘glove box necessity’, apparently. It’s only for drivers? They’re taking the piss, aren’t they? Why not for drunks? I’m not sure how easy it is to open for staggering buffoons who are suddenly caught short despite being in a pub with a toilet for the previous six hours, and it doesn’t seem to include an antibacterial wipe either (not that it would worry those men, who probably carried on scoffing kebabs and mauling their girlfriends once they’d zipped up), but it’s still a nice idea for those of us who haven’t quite got fully used to the culture of al fresco bladder relief.
With all the talk of a tax on chewing gum manufacturers to help clean up discarded gum, perhaps publicans might be open to a tax to help rid the street of post-pub piss and puke. I know they’re already so desperate for money, they’re currently plaguing the airwaves with those overlong, mirthless ads about the ‘joys’ of going to the pub (which must be putting people off going to the pub, surely?) but it’s only fair they take at least partial responsibility for the culture of binge-excretion. You’ve got to love the scent of street disinfectant, after all. God help the grim sweepers of Dublin town.