Sit Down To Piss

This world’s full of challenges
Some are big and some are small
War, greed, pollution
Might take some time to solve ’em all
But if a long march starts with just one step
There’s one I’d like to mention
If you live with your nostrils open
Perhaps it’s come to your attention

You may be fighting for freedom
All the night and day
But when you come back home
Someone’s bound to say
“You wanna change the world, man
Believe me, I do, too
But in the meantime is it required
That we live in a fucking zoo”

If the revolution starts at home
Then let me tell you this
Stand up for your rights, boys
But sit down to piss

If you’ve ever lived with other people
You may know what I mean
Who’s gonna wash the dishes
And get the bathtub clean
As we scrub the tear gas from our eyes
The issue may seem so little
But what might make or break the movement
Is exactly how you piddle


If you just love to clean the toilet
I say that is really neat
But you could still save yourself some effort
By pulling up a seat
However if you claim your aim is true
And you don’t have to sit
All I’ve got to say, son
Is you are full of shit


Yes if you really like to clean the loo
That’s all well and good
But if you’re like most guys
You don’t do it like you should
So just make this tiny move
Towards gender equity
Try it for a couple months
And I’m sure you’ll agree


Well I don’t want to cramp your style
Or keep you from doing your thing
In your own apartment
You can surely be the king
But if you’re indoors, sharing space
I hope by now you see
That the respectful thing to do
Is to sit down when you pee


Sheet music for this song may be found in Songbook Vol I (1997-2004).

“Sit Down to Piss” appears on the 2002 CD, Hang a Flag in the Window.

When I first started hanging out in Germany in the late 1990’s, I quickly learned of the importance of sitting down to piss.  On the left, especially in the more autonomous/anarchist/squat scene, it’s mandatory.  It is also, I discovered, far more sanitary and sensible than standing up.  Especially if you’re not using a urinal, and the stream of pee might have to travel any distance and thus gain speed, in which case splashing is an absolute inevitability.  Despite that indisputable fact, most men do a lot less cleaning of the bathroom than women, on average, including on the left.  So the least the lazy guys could do is sit down when they pee.  The chorus to the song was taken from signs you can find in lots of toilets in Germany which are often some variation of the phrase, and at least as often are just a picture of a guy peeing standing up, circled, with a diagonal red line across it, next to another picture of a man sitting down on the toilet, which is circled but not crossed out.