On a connection in Seattle on the way home from Victoria, I dropped by the restroom for a quick pit stop, and I noticed on the wall of the urinal something that looked like a little sticker, sort of a crudely drawn spiral shape roughly the size of a quarter in diameter. It struck me after my initial puzzlement that this was a target designed for gentlemen to aim at, probably in hopes of keeping them from peeing all over the floor (which is really bad for floor finish over time). I’ve read of this trick before, though I think the example I had been exposed to in print was a fly.

Although I was conscious of the intention and had a contrarian urge to break with expectations and pee anywhere but on the target, I found myself unable to resist the temptation. Even while considering things like the possibility that I was part of some filmic sociological experiment the privacy ramifications of which would be hairy to say the least, I trained my stream almost proudly on the little spiral, striving never to miss the mark (quite literally).

Needless to say, the trick was effective and my aim impeccable.

When I visited the urinal in Chicago, I found myself a little disappointed to have no particular target to aim for.

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