How to keep male students looking and feeling great:
Men have a problem at public urinals, fact. It’s a self-image thing, the cause of undue worry, stress and insecurity amongst large numbers of males. Such insecurity in any body of students can be severely detrimental to performance and I believe, through simple measures, this problem can be avoided.
Now I know what you think I am getting at, but it may come as a shock to hear that this is nothing to do with the urinary experience at all. Men are generally pretty comfortable schlopping their penises out in close proximity to other men, confident in the unspoken promise that, whatever their orientation or curiosity, our neighbor will keep their eyes front even come shaking time, when really they should look down but won’t.
However the problem I wish to address arises at hand washing time and is what I would like to call ‘The Mirror Conundrum’. It stems from the problem that men have with being seen to be looking at themselves in the mirror in front of other men. Looking in the mirror in front of other guys is like masturbating for us, we know that everyone does it in their room at home, but in front of each other, in a public toilet, it’s a no-no.
There are exceptions to the mirror conundrum of course, occasionally you will catch a guy shamelessly standing for an obscene number of seconds, fixing his fringe and adjusting his jacket so that it falls perfectly over his crisp shirt. But I am not going to talk about this guy, people do masturbate in public toilets, but they are the minority and not a problem for most student bodies. No I am going to focus on the other guys, the men amongst us who, irrespective of their masturbating practices, will examine their reflection for as long as they can realistically claim to be washing their hands and not a second longer.
The problem arises with the fact that we all really want to look in the mirror, (here I am going to formally discontinue the masturbating analogy to be sure not to appear desperate for a public w**k).
When a man goes to the barber he is desperate to articulate to the hairdresser just how he wants his hair to look, hell he wants to bring in a photograph of whatever celebrity he secretly wants to look like and point out the most appealing features of their ‘do’. But none of us do this, the most we can manage is a series of numbers which we assign to the sides, back and top, a sort of code we’ve all learnt to disguise the fact that we are talking to another man, in front of even more men, about our appearance.
In the toilet we all want to see that our hair is still looking fresh and that our jacket still falls perfectly over our crisp shirt, but it goes further than that. When we know we look good we want to take a moment, to look into our own eyes and assure ourselves, ‘you’ve still got it’. This is a self-esteem problem specifically for the male contingent of our student body and here is the answer:
Put Mirrors Above the Urinal.
Simple, but brilliant, like Instagram or the Spork (spoon fork). This will solve the problem in an instant; the man will have to look at himself due to the strict eyes front policy and will secretly be loving it. Necessary hair and garment adjustments can be made post shake and you will have a happier, better groomed student coming out of that toilet than the one who went in.
“What about the guy who’s had to use a cubicle?”
“Put mirrors on the inside doors, simple. Next question please.”
“Will it stop students washing their hands?”
“On the contrary. Adjustments having been made, the student will need just that momentary glance whilst lathering his palms, that second validation, the moment to mentally point his finger at himself as if it were a pistol and say to himself, ‘you’re looking sharp, now go out there and show them what you’ve got.’
“Any other questions?… Thought not.”