Pee-Gate 2011: Vancouver washroom sign makes global headlines

Well, for at least the second time in a month, Vancouver is making the rounds on the international blogosphere.  And it’s not exactly the most flattering commentary (but it is funny).

First came our distinction as third-worst-dressed city in the world.   Now, bloggers are up in arms about a sign posted in the co-ed bathroom of a Granville Island restaurant.  The sign consists of a male figure peeing, with a line through it.   In other words: No peeing standing up.

Now, the Vancouver Sun did a great job today demystifying the sign and the story around it.  It seems that the whole thing was nothing more than a kind of inside joke.  The sign was actually just a sticker, posted in a tongue-in-cheek way by the restaurant owner.  “We saw the stickers, [and] we figured it would be something fun and different . . . . a conversation piece,” the owner is quoted as saying.

Joke or no joke, the sticker has elicited some pretty funny reactions from big-time blogs in the U.S. and beyond.  Take the site Gawker.com, which had this to say about the whole (non)controversy:

“And of course this is happening in Canada, America’s gun-hating, granola-crunching, figure-skating, annoying younger brother to the north. Daddy blogger (was there ever a more sissified profession?) Chad Skelton went with his family to Edible Canada and when he went the unisex toilet he discovered that there was a sign placed over the commode instructing men to not pee standing up.”

I’m not sure which is funnier: the way the sticker is blown out of proportion or the really cliched Canadian stereotypes that the blogger uses.

In any case, sticker aside, I think Vancouver has a lot to be proud of in terms of its washrooms.  In fact, last year a Cactus Club in Burnaby won an award for having Canada’s Finest Restroom. It’s time we stood up and were proud of our washrooms.

Do you think Pee-gate 2011 has been blown out of proportion?  Is it time to defend Vancouver washrooms?  Weigh in below.

 

 

 

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