Saturday, January 17, 2009

A job I do not want...and more.


Ran across this article at boingboing.net...

In his most recent Scientific American column, Jesse Bering writes about psychology research experiments from the 70s that could have been harmful to the researchers because they made unwitting subjects uncomfortable.

One very brave investigator set up shop in the toilet stall of a busy university restroom with a stopwatch and a periscope and used the latter to observe men at the urinals. “This provided a view,” the authors explained in the 1976 paper, “of the user's lower torso and made possible direct visual sightings of the stream of urine.”

If you processed that last sentence, you’re probably asking yourself why anyone would want such a good view of a stranger’s micturating penis. In fact, the researchers were trying to gain a better understanding of paruresis, otherwise known as “shy bladder syndrome” (or “pee-shy,” “bashful bladder” and a variety of other monikers). In extreme cases, someone with a shy bladder cannot urinate in public facilities such as airports, restaurants, or their place of employment. The idea behind this study was that invasion of personal space underlies paruresis—the closer another person is in proximity, the more trouble the pee-shy individual will have urinating. The restroom was therefore rigged so that, in addition to the observer in the toilet stall, another research assistant (called a “confederate” in social psychological parlance) stationed himself either at the urinal next to the unwitting participant or used the urinal farthest away from the participant.

OK, a minor, amusing post...maybe. To go with the post, I went agoogling for a photo. And guess what I found...take a look below:

Supposedly, this thing moves it's mouth up and down. I have enough difficulty not peeing on my foot as it is!

and...
The Georgia O'Keefe model?


OUCH!


In your dreams...maybe.

Om Pah Pah, Om Pah Pah



And lastly...because I found so many of these, I could have spent the entire afternoon posting them. You want to see more, google, urinals. From Victorian Britain, we have:

21 comments:

becomingkate said...

The floral urinals are interesting, lol.

fragilewisdom said...

As a friend of mine would say "well, alrighty then!" those are just wierd. lol

jadedj said...

becoming---kinda girlie, don't you think? I'm thinking they would cause me "shy bladder syndrome."

fragile---yeah, the shark one caused me great trepidation.

hsack said...

Nice! :-) But you'd think the experimenters would have heard of the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, i.e., observation changes the object and therefore invalidate their findings.

jadedj said...

hsack---But, the perceived observation of strangers is exactly what causes the syndrome in the first place...right? Therefore, simply by being there, with or without instruments (no pun intended), the experimenters were influencing the outcome. They certainly would have kept me from peeing.

theredhead said...

I can't help but wonder if some of the urinal "art" was an expression of castration anxiety. I mean, Freud would have had a feild day with them.

jadedj said...

redhead---are you referring to my fear of the shark? OK, yep, anxious.

Doug said...

I wonder is anyone makes addons for standard toilets...

jadedj said...

Doug---a sort of Loo After Market, like automobiles? I'm thinking you've identified a market here. Now if we could just get some bailout money.

yankeedog said...

That last urinal reminds me of the TARDIS from 'Doctor Who'. Interesting pics there!

jadedj said...

yankee---you think it's bigger inside maybe?...Enough urinals for the Queen's Guard.

paulboylan said...

I absolutely adored this post. It is the sort of thing I would like to have written.

jadedj said...

Paul---Damn! Now I have to go over to your blog and say something nice. Is it because you collect urinal factoids?

Paul Nicholas Boylan said...

Yes. So?

jadedj said...

Nevermind.

Chimpplanet said...

This was an education. I just use the tree on my sidewalk.

You may find this in the same genre:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WZ4WXbtXJ_I

jadedj said...

Chimp---you have sidewalks?

I guess in that situation aesthetics are secondary.

Steve said...

I wonder if those models were told where their likenesses would be used.

"Miss, please hold this tape measure and pretend you're measuring the largest.....ummm.....banana you've ever seen."

jadedj said...

Steve---Yes, the poor dears...I understand one said, "What bananas? I thought this was an ad for cucumbers!"

Rich Presta said...

Believe it or not, paruresis is a fairly common condition and can be very debilitating, although you're correct, it overwhelmingly effects men and not women. It was cool seeing all the urinals pics, I hadn't seen that before!

Check out more info on paruresis here:
http://www.ParuresisTreatment.com

jadedj said...

Rich Presta---I wrote this so long ago, I thought you had me mixed up with someone else.

I wasn't meaning to make light of the condition, just the job of recording the condition. I suffer from this affliction myself to a small degree.

Also, I appreciate you comments, really, I do. Come back another time and read some of my non-applicance posts :-)