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parks + recreation

This NYC Park Bathroom Is Not For Cruising. Or Privacy


While Florida locals battle over whether transgender folks can use the bathroom they prefer, Manhattanites are left wondering why the men’s bathrooms of the renovated Washington Square Park don’t have any stall doors between the toilets.

As anyone who’s been to WSP can attest, it might have a little something to do with cruising. As in: cutting down on it. Curbed snapped a photo of the situation and learned from a parks staffer cleaning the bathroom: “They took the stalls out before the renovations. There were too many gays together in there. You know, this is Washington Square Park. You’d look and see four legs when there should be two in a stall! Crazy! Now there’s none of that. Can’t do that out in the open.”

What you can do in the open? Uncomfortably relieve yourself in front of others after ingesting street meat.

On:           Jul 27, 2009
Tagged: , ,
    • Miss Understood

      Ummm, I would find it way less offensive to see four legs under a stall than to see someone wiping their butt.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 12:28 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ...

      Bruno? Seriously?

      Jul 27, 2009 at 1:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam

      Um, that would have to be the biggest bathroom emergency ever to use those!

      Jul 27, 2009 at 1:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • z

      Yeah, really. I don’t know anyone who would shit in a NYC Park bathroom unless it was a major scatalogical emergency, and personally, if I did have a need that urgent, I’d sooner go into a restaurant and beg for mercy than run into a public park bathroom. Blech.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 2:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • wayne

      Bryant Park in midtown has the finest public restrooms in the city!

      Jul 27, 2009 at 2:06 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TANK

      How roman. Do you share a sponge, too? You couldn’t get me to use a public facility like that at gunpoint. And who has sex in public restrooms anymore? And seriously, who ever did? Trash.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 2:15 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Tom

      Besides, you most certainly can “do that” out in the open. Just take a walk through the Meatrack on Fire Island.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 3:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ioni

      Ha ha!
      Welcom to Belarus, you silly heads!

      Every public lavatory is like that – no… you can only stach that much privacy!

      Jul 27, 2009 at 3:47 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mr. Cox

      Yet another example of how NYC shoots itself in the foot with over-the-top moronic policies. You know… like how they banned trans-fats, tried to tax sugar and everything else they do. Its such an authoritarian city-state.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 4:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Z reveals

      I would rather shit in may pants. I could never use a public bathroom for poop

      Jul 27, 2009 at 5:20 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Dave

      That is what we had to use in some military bases. You’d be surprised how many interesting conversations can take place in a stall-less head. AND how you know who to go after when you can see all their cocks…LOL Ah memeories.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 5:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • photog

      they did the same thing in the Catholic school I went to (for other reasons, I think), and invariably some dude would just lock the bathroom door and no one could get in to take a piss.

      why can’t they do what the Seattle Public Library does? The stall doors are super low (like, 4 feet high). It’s private enough to crap, but not so private that guys fuck in the stall.

      Really though? When you’re downtown, just duck into the nearest gallery and be polite. Never fails.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 7:27 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jason

      Many of the guys who have sex in toilets aren’t gay. They’re bisexual, and often have wives and girlfriends.

      As for the act of having sex in toilets, disgusting. If you’re so desperate to have an orgasm, you’re selfish.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 7:35 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TANK


      That’s a hot association, isn’t it? Shitting and sex…hmmmmmmmmmm, nope…still not into it. Go fig.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 7:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Phil

      @jason: Just because they “often have wives and girlfriends” doesn’t meant they’re not gay. It just means they’re closeted NASTY gay men.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 8:16 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Helga von ornstein

      I didn’t know people still did that. I went to a video arcade a few years back around 2am and I was the only one there. On a Friday night at that.

      Hats off to whoever scored in it. I just no longer have the nerve nor patience to cruise publicly anymore. Especially in NYC.

      Jul 27, 2009 at 10:53 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • theworld

      Apparently NYC doesn’t know about those 5-foot-tall walls that are in other public bathrooms around the world.

      Jul 28, 2009 at 12:10 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • hyhybt

      @Miss Understood: No need to worry about *that*, either. Look at the picture again: not only are there no dividing walls and no doors, but there’s no toilet paper.

      Jul 28, 2009 at 2:29 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TheBigDumper

      I used this bathroom yesterday afternoon. My wife, my brother and his wife spent the day in the village, coming from NJ. we were ready to head back to Joisey, and having already eaten breakfast and lunch, weren’t planning any restroom stops since we parked only 3 blocks away. The gals went into their side, and we ducked into the guys room. It was 5:00 and the toilets were amazingly clean. Kudos to the cleaning staff, 2 gents, one was mopping, the other was refreshing the two toilet tissue holders. All 5 toilets were in use, by average looking guys just needing to shit. The 5 (automatic self-flushing toilets) are all side-by-side, with no privacy dividers whatsover, but it was not a major issue, everybody was laughing about it. My brother and I finally got 2 toilets next to each other and sat down and pissed and farted and pooped our brains out. after you finish shitting, you have to get off the throne and yank off toilet tissue from the wall directly in front of the toilets. 2 rolls for all 5 men. I imagine they refresh them every 20 minutes, judging from the shitting going on in there. So when you squat foward you have all the guys shitty cracks in your face. We wiped, hiked, washed and left. We met the gals and drove back to Joisey. Would I like to use this restroom on a regular basis? or at work? DEFINATLY NOT !!!! but for a park restroom it was clean, and it did the job. Thanks park staff.

      Aug 9, 2009 at 10:49 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Not straight

      Big dumper – who has a bigger cock you or your brother?

      Aug 10, 2009 at 6:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • NewYorkness

      Why do they think “there were too many gays” in there? Do straight boyfriends and husbands count as gays too?

      Aug 17, 2009 at 11:48 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JD237

      I am a straight guy. I once had no choice but to take a dump in the Washington Square mens room, and that was before it was renovated with such luxuries as seats on the toilets. I was walking in the area and was having serious bowel discomfort and decided to brave the public toilets. I had never been in the WS mens room before. I was shocked and dismayed to see that the toilets had no stalls, no seats and it at first appeared there was a single roll of toilet paper hanging from a chain for everyone to share. I thought about holding it, but I knew there was no way I’d make it to the closest Starbucks. The three toilets furthest from view were all either clogged or had feces splattered on the rim. I reluctantly chose the second toilet in, which made me partially visible to the rest of the room. I rolled paper off the communal roll and plastered the rim with it, then pulled my jeans down just far enough and sat, hoping to God I’d get a few moments of privacy (amazingly, I was alone in the bathroom at the time). Of course, just as I started having explosive diarrhea, some guy washed his hands in the sink that was barely five feet away from me and looked astonished to see someone actually using one of the toilets. I just lowered my eyes and tried to push my bowels along. Next thing I knew, a bike rider came in and was momentarily surprised to see me on the toilet. He looked disgusted at having to choose between sitting directly next to me and in full view of the rest of the room or one of the clogged/splattered toilets. He chose a splattered toilet. He pulled down his spandex shorts and SQUATTED OVER THE TOILET. I didn’t stick around for the show. I leaped off the toilet without wiping my ass, yanking my pants up as I rushed out of the restroom. Bad enough having to take a dump in full view of each other, but to have the guy’s load actually in the open air was too much for me to handle. I made it to the closest Starbucks and wiped my ass. That was the first and last time I have taken a shit in Washington Square.

      Oct 8, 2009 at 11:38 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Rick

      JD237. Sounds like you had a bad experience at WSP. Trust me, it maintained much better nowadays. Seats on every toilet and there is usually a ample supply of toilet paper (shared, of course) It’s a park bathroom, so I don’t expect any privacy, but it is kept pretty clean for the bicycle riders. PS. If you look straight ahead at the wall with the toilet paper, you wont see any of the guys, even if they are 10″ away on the neighboring bowl …

      Oct 8, 2009 at 7:34 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Bob

      Nasty. They might as well just install a dog run style area of the park where everyone is allowed to go #2 wherever they want… just remember to pick it up after you are done unless you want to pay the fine.

      Nov 9, 2009 at 10:35 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Joey

      So let me get this ‘straight,’ people rather watch each other shit and shove their messy cracks in each other’s faces than to risk knowing a few people are grabbing some ass in the stall next door to them? Am I crazy, or is this absolutely insane? You’d rather shit out in the open and have other shitting around you just so you don’t have to deal with the possibility that man on man love exists in your vicinity?

      Wow, people, grow up.

      Nov 21, 2009 at 8:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • sdfdf

      looks alright to me. I wouldnt mind wipeing, in fact i would spread my legs out far and wipe slowly. this is a cool bathroom

      Dec 9, 2009 at 6:01 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jason

      I think sleazy men who have sex with other men have lowered the tone of these public toilets. Toilets are for excretory bodily functions, not getting your rocks off.

      And what does it say about these men? It says they’re desperate and animalistic. It also says they lack moral standards. As a gay man, I find these toilet lurkers offensive to my sense of our community.

      Dec 9, 2009 at 6:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • scott ny'er

      LOL. Man, this was one of the funniest threads on Queerty. Toilet humour. Literally. So good.

      I can’t match the stories or the comments. But, thanks guys.

      Dec 9, 2009 at 6:33 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JD237

      Again, as a straight guy, I don’t have a problem necessarily with people having sex in public restrooms, whether gay or straight. Whatever floats your boat. But, as Jason said, there are plenty of gay men who are grossed out at the idea of people screwing in a public toilet, so that’s by no means an exclusively hetero hangup.

      Regarding my nightmarish experience, my eye to eye contact with the other restroom users was fleeting, I just caught a glimpse of their looks of astonishment. As far as the guy squatting and crapping over the toilet, that too was caught out of the corner of my eye. Hard to not notice a guy four feet away from you is squatting as opposed to sitting.

      I am not overly bashful about public restrooms. I can use a toilet in a stall with no door if necessary. I can take a crap in a porta-potty while a hundred people wait outside. But a public toilet with no stall at all is a slightly rougher situation. It’s less to do with my discomfort at being seen on the toilet than knowing that others are uncomfortable seeing me on the toilet. Does that make sense?

      Dec 10, 2009 at 9:52 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Superman

      @JD237. Explosive diarrhea. Squatted bikers. Hahahahaha! Almost fell off the chair with all of that imagery clogging my brain. Too funny, dude!

      Dec 10, 2009 at 10:55 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • NotShy

      If you have to sit down and go to work, then sit down and go to work. It’s just men in there, so MAN UP, you guys!

      Mar 7, 2010 at 12:44 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • NotShy

      @TheBigDumper: I’m with you, dude. I was wondering if anybody in NYC wasn’t a pussy.

      Mar 7, 2010 at 12:46 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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