I've been writing this post in my head for some time, trying to figure out how to spin what I have to say in a way that feels light, breezy, and suitably G-rated. But sometimes there's just no beating around the bush. So, I ask, what is it with the men in Paris that so many feel perfectly comfortable whipping it out and peeing in public? I'm not just talking about panhandlers here. This seems to be generally accepted behavior. Two examples? The well-dressed gentleman of a certain age who was taking care of business just around the corner from the George V, one of Paris's ritziest hotels, and the little boy, pants around his ankles attending to nature's call outside our neighborhood bakery, while his mother, in line inside, gave him a big thumbs up through the window. Oh la la. Oy vey. Please.
Now it's true that toilets in Paris are not always easy to access. You really can't use those in cafés unless you're a paying customer or in museums until you've passed through the ticket line. Free toilet kiosks exist but these are few and far between. But still, since the women seem to be holding it, in a backwards version of potty parity, it seems only fair that men exercise the same self restraint.