Monday, 29 April 2013

Those French People Are Crazy

Due to unresolved technical difficulties, the awesome post we've been trying to publish for the last few days isn't going to happen. We need to retreat, drink some rum and mull the matter over before launching a new offensive. However, we received a tip of a marvellous article on something called a uritonnoir! Is this a modern-day relative of the lavoire, you wonder? No, it is a type of compostable urinal! Our favourite smug newspaper, the Guardian, writes,
"'Are you used to going for a number one in the back of your garden?' asks French design studio Faltazi. 'Do not waste this valuable golden fluid by sprinkling on inappropriate surfaces!'
Their solution to the problem of peeing al fresco is l'Uritonnoir, a hybrid of a urinal ('urinoir' in French) and a funnel ('entonnoir') that plugs into a straw bale to make your very own urine upcycling factory.
As the bale is filled with your 'liquid gold', the nitrogen in the urine reacts with the carbon in the straw to begin the process of decomposition - forming a rich mound of composted humus within 6-12 months."

This gender bias is ridiculous. Ladies, get your shewees out!!
Image from the Guardian.

We enjoy this beer-to-urine-to-beer diagram.
Image from the Guardian.
The entire corps of Privy Counsel staff salivates at the thought of such an eco-friendly excuse to indulge in bacchanalia! We'd go so far as to encourage our readers to get one of these and do their duty for Mother Earth! This of course goes hand in hand with our previous exhortation for our female readers to use a Shewee while drunk.

Bacchanalia. Image from Wikipedia.

Related Reading
Sisters Standing Up for Themselves
Ladies, Don't Take Life Sitting Down
Far From the Madding Crowds: A Walker's Dilemma
Lavoire of Love
Dirty Little Secret: Toilets in Liberia as Reported by the Guardian

Saturday, 20 April 2013

A Lovely Cavalcade of Photos

Ho-hum. Here we were, trying primarily to a) relax and CTFD, but getting increasingly anxious and resorting to b) getting some sodding work done, when we were, predictably, side-tracked by people sending us lovely photos. (We're not complaining!)
So, since it is, after all, Saturday night, let's get a little bit festive! Behold, a lovely cavalcade of photos!

German Friend offered this glimpse of things to come:
"A little preamble to the still missing existentialist toilet...
That theme seems to be all the rage in Deutschland!"
We caper with joy at the thought of the forthcoming existentialist toilet,
and are simultaneously reminded of the large amount of
Uzbek material still lurking in the Privy Counsel archives!
Readers are advised to hold on to their hats, as there
is severe fabulousness coming!

(For a similar amusing image, see A Festive Update.)
Image from StreetArtGermany.

This lovely bamboo bath comes from Tudor Friend, and rather reminds
us of another spiffing tub that came our way once!
Image from Guadua Bamboo.

This beaut was sent to us by Czech Mate, and introduced to us with the words,
"Behold, the from-within-illuminated wash basin from a Leeds buffet place"!
Are you feeling the warm and friendly karma emanating
from  the motion-sensor mixer tap? We are! Woof!
Finally, lest we get above ourselves: a simple but functional
bog from the Guild 45 Cinema in Seattle.
Loving the rough cement floor  and Tork bog-roll holder!
Image by Bogsley Hansson Friend.
Having enjoyed the crap out of this festive cavalcade, it is now time to sigh wistfully and get on with some rather high-falutin' and morally rigid Anglo-Saxon poetry. Wæs hæl!

Related Reading:
A Festive Update


Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Remembering to Breathe

Gaaah. It's so easy to get stressed beyond all reason, sense and comprehension. Things have been rather hectic at Privy Counsel HQ lately and, finding ourselves gabbling breathlessly on about dirty Indo-European poetry, we suddenly realised that we had allowed ourselves to get into what psychologists call "a state". It was time, we realised, to remember to breathe. What better place to do it in than an alpine glade or, if you're that way inclined, peak? Luckily a friend of ours, a keen dragon-hunter from the remote, mountainous parts of Europe, sent us a link to this lovely site just the other day. It's got pictures of toilets! In the Alps! Hurrah!

A bog with a fabulous view!
Image from Farm1.

If you, like us, aren't likely to get to an Alpine glade
any time soon, you can get one of these instead
to bring a fresh, yodelly breeze to your bathroom.
Image from Farm7.

Related Reading
On Her Majesty's Privy Service 
The Best Urinal View in the World?
Dizzying Heights of Toilet Perfection

A Black Run: The Best Wallpaper Ever
Alpine Escapism

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Mood Stockholm: Flabbergasting Plushness

Sometimes one finds oneself with an inordinately large pile of non-toilet-related work that just won't go away no matter how much one ignores it. Watching trashy tv may bring temporary oblivion, and waving bottles of tequila around may also divert one for the moment, but eventually one finds oneself in the unpleasant position of not being able to procrastinate any longer. How extraordinarily lucky, then, that one's friends kindly provide one with distractions in the form of toilet pictures!!! Tally-ho, here we go:
A friend of ours chose, for unknown reasons, to go to Stockholm. While there, he happened to stroll into the Mood mall, and, while he was it, happened perchance to stroll right into the toilets. And extremely lovely they were! Behold, a vision of lusciousness and finesse to rival the very decadence of Babylon!

Well, we never! The sumptuousness of this lizard-skin-esque
sink fairly takes our breath away! We suspect that the soap smells seriously nice.

It gets even more opulent: these bombastic mirrors are truly
the crowning glory of these magnificent facilities!

Don't despair if the ritzy opulence of these facilities leave you feeling exhausted:
a swanky sofa is thoughtfully provided for those in need of a moment's rest and reflection.

The choice of colour is perhaps unfortunate,
but one can't help but mentally applaud it.

 Should you wish to visit these positively palatial toilets, there are clear directions for how to get to the mall on the website, and, best of all, there is a floorplan that tells you how to get to the toilets!

Mood Stockholm

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Not a Picture of a Toilet, Not Even a Medieval One

There are ever so many lovely pictures of toilets lurking in the depths of the Privy Counsel archive, but we thought that, since we mentioned medieval toilets the other day, we'd show you a picture of one, or what we thought was a picture of one until we looked again. We came across this beauty COMPLETELY BY ACCIDENT, believe it or not. Actually, it's not a picture of a toilet at all, as our non-barbarian readers can no doubt tell at first glance, but to our sewer-trained mind it turned into one, the same way that songs that are completely not about toilets turn into Toilet Songs. (Maybe we need to start a new category? "Pictures that we deludedly believe are of toilets"?)

Totally not a 15th-century toilet. The weather, at least, appears topical: supposed
to represent February, it seems to us to correspond to that of April 2013.
Although this is probably not a picture of people sitting on the bog, but an illustration of people drying their clothes in front of a fire, as one is wont to do in February (or even April), it is still worth looking at. This lovely illustration is from a book called Moyen Age: Les Grands Auteurs Français du Programme (Lagarde, André and Laurent Michard, eds. Paris: Bordas, 1968).

Here's what the book looks like. It is colourful and agreeable in many ways.

Right. We're off to look for a picture of an actual medieval toilet now.

Related Reading:
Þorsteins Þáttr Skelks: Medieval Toilet Anecdote 
We Ponder Sewers and Medieval French
Danger, Danger: Medieval Toilets
Taking Our Baths and Our Women

Monday, 8 April 2013

Worcester Cathedral: Revisiting Sacred Ground

Alert readers will remember us mentioning the toilet-twinned toilet of Worcester Cathedral on a previous occasion. Well, count yourselves lucky - Tudor Friend has delivered on the promise to contribute more pictures! Tudor Friend says:
As promised, here is the Cathedral bog in all of its glory!
Getting to them is very strange, because you step out of the obviously very medieval cathedral into a hallway that the 1990s threw up - it actually feels sort of like you're going down the hall to a spa, all frosted glass and wood panelling, and it's a bit hard to figure out when you're actually going to find the ladies' (or gents'). (Not that I'm entirely complaining about leaving the middle ages - their toilets are one thing to which even my reenacting-loving soul does not aspire. On which note - god, I really need to give up on the parentheticals - I also have to send you photos/info from Beaumaris Castle, which is basically a castle entirely made up of toilets.)
The bathroom itself is pretty normal. Absolutely nothing fancy... the most memorable thing is that, in addition to a skylight there are vertical transom windows that were cracked open, I'm sure for ventilation, the problem being that this spring is bloody cold and the bathroom, usually the one surely warm place in a cathedral, was draughty and cold. At least they have a nice Dyson airblade hand-drier (I do like those things!), so one does not immediately fetch up with chilblains (at least not on one's hands... no air driers for one's bum...).

Whoosh, this looks perfectly respectable! We love the hygienically covered bog-roll holder,
although the disability-hostile and non-water-saving flush handle
sends shivers down our spine.

The worst kind of heresy: A spanking new bathroom with non-integrated taps!
Hygeia sinks to the ground, wringing her hands and weeping openly.
(Get sane and balanced information on the importance of mixer taps
for maintaining hand hygiene here, here and/or here.)

As we believe we have mentioned more than once, we give thanks every day for not having to encounter medieval plumbing! We thank Tudor Friend for this entertaining and informative peek at the Worcester Cathedral toilets, which are so laudably linked to Hygeia-approved sanitation projects via Toilet Twinning, and look forward to future contributions!

Related Reading
Handwashing Extravaganza
Everything you Always Wanted to Know about Toilet-Roll Holders (But Were Afraid to Ask)
A Semi-Intellectual Treat
Toilet-Twinning - Worcester Cathedral
Medieval Plumbing

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Crowne Plaza Hotel, Copenhagen

As regular readers may remember, we spent some time in Copenhagen last year, with Australian Friend. In fact, Australian Friend, a keen patron of art and science, funded our stay in a luxurious hotel! We seem to remember doing all kinds of fun things, like going to a kick-arse concert, ogling naked Greeks [in the shape of statues], eating burgers, and accidentally brutally getting into the Tivoli gardens for free! (Like the name and address of our lovely mystery celebrity, information on how to accidentally brutally get into the Tivoli gardens for free is available to the highest bidder.)

Lovely red toiletries - what's not to like!

Exemplary clean and stylish sink

We love black tiles! And water-saving toilets!
(Did you know that the water-saving flush is an Australian invention?)

We are pleased to note that the toilet roll lives up
to the Olivia Joules Hotel Criteria (not that we personally give a damn).

Shower with mixer tap - we couldn't agree more!

The Crowne Plaza hotel has, apparently, some serious green credentials ("That's environmentally green, Bridget," said Richard Finch, "not green coloured"), to which one can only say hurrah!

Crowne Plaza Hotel
Ørestads Boulevard 114-118
2300 Copenhagen

Related Reading
Literary Hotel Musings
Reminiscences of Nice
Blogging Something Rotten
Waltzing around Amalienborg
Sing If You're Glad to Be a Dane

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Joy in the Morning, Afternoon, and Well into the Night: Caitlin Moran in a Bathroom

We have had occasion to quote, in a previous post, P. G. Wodehouse's Bible paraphrase "Joy, joy, joy in the morning and joy, joy, joy in the afternoon". Well, prepare to clap your hands in unbridled joy again, 'cause we're up to our eyeballs in fabulousness!
We are thrilled to have discovered, probably by accident (our memory being overloaded, we honestly can't remember what the hell we were googling when we found it), a video with Caitlin Moran IN A BATHROOM! Oh, joy of joyous joys, spring must finally be on its way if fabulous things are allowed to happen in this unrestrained manner! We are extra pleased to have figured out the video function on this blog interface thingummajig, since it allows us to encase Caitlin Moran in a possessive, we-knew-about-her-first, hands-off-she's-ours kind of way. Anyway, enough verbal diarrhoea, here's the video of Caitlin Moran IN A BATHROOM:

God, wasn't that just fabulous? Well, quite! And guess what? THERE'S MORE:

Since the above videos feature a celebrity in a bathroom, we're taking the liberty of putting the label "Privy-Counsel Pin-Up" on this post, the current definition of a Privy Counsel Pin-Up being, as regular readers will be aware, "a picture of a celebrity in the bath. Any celebrity, any bath. We're not picky". Also, we reckon our Pin-Ups boast a fair amount of gender equality, and gender equality and fabulousness are what Caitlin Moran is all about!

Oh, joy! Caitlin Moran being a kick-arse feminist - in a bathroom!
Image from

Related Reading
Sisters Standing up for Themselves
Celebrity Toilet Premiere
Toilet Song: Hitting the Bathtub Gin with Amy
Taking a Gander at Greatness

Taps, Wine and Elvis

Monday, 1 April 2013

Parts of the Privy Counsel Go to a Party

Parts of the Privy Counsel have been out gallivanting again, twisting the night away and generally imbibing unhealthy amounts of alcohol. In the process we came across a simply spiffing bathroom! We'd like to take this opportunity of apologising to the girls who desperately needed the loo and couldn't get in because we were taking our sweet time admirin' and photographin'. Get your priorities right, babes!

Hygiene instructions from somebody calling themselves Drätselkammaren,
an indication that the bathroom we're in is in an old-school Swedish block of flats.
Our favourite instruction is Iakttag största renlighet - "observe strict cleanliness". Right-ho, guv.

Twee toilet paper quote in Danish.

Twee toilet paper quote in Swedish.

Twee toilet paper quote in Danish, part II.

Amazing toilet paper roll holder with lion's head!

Very clean sink with (of course) mixer tap.

The toilet was black and white - how stylish!

We love stripy towels!

This mirror reminds us of our celebrity friend's bathroom.

We seem to remember that the lock on the toilet door broke, and that the toilet acted as receptacle for superfluous stomach contents at least once! In other words, it was an excellent party, and a spiffing time was had by all!

Related Reading
Memorable Toilets: One Whitehall Place
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