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February 27, 2014 8:12 PM   Subscribe

Going to Mardi Gras in New Orleans and finding yourself worried about bathroom options? Try AirPnP. Like Airbnb, but for bathrooms.

(this is real)
posted by ColdChef (33 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

Another instance of an acronym having a totally different meaning in the gay community...
posted by msbutah at 8:32 PM on February 27 [12 favorites]

If I recall my Mardi Gras experience from 25 years ago not many people took the time to use an actual bathroom.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 8:34 PM on February 27

Is it cloudy in here?
posted by bashos_frog at 8:34 PM on February 27

It wouldn't let me add the dumpster in the alley behind Pat O'Briens...
posted by jim in austin at 8:36 PM on February 27 [9 favorites]

The Cafe du Monde was known in the tribal idiom as Cafe let you Pee. When I google on (cafe let you pee orleans) it fetches this which omits Cafe du Monde.

Have they stopped letting you pee?
posted by bukvich at 8:40 PM on February 27 [1 favorite]

Silly rabbit, there are no public restrooms in the French Quarter. Just buy a damn drink. I mean, this is a place where you get charged a sitting fee even though you tipped the house band for playing four Cars covers in a row when they didn't even practice any Cars songs.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 8:41 PM on February 27

I've been avoiding clicking that AirPnP link for days now, thinking to myself, "I have no use for this" but finally I did, since it's reached MetaFilter.

One of the first things I noticed is a nice, clean, $1-per-use bathroom about a block from where I'm going to be lining up to march tomorrow night. I now know who I'm going to be calling if something comes up.
posted by komara at 8:44 PM on February 27 [1 favorite]

we should really have another meetup.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:45 PM on February 27 [3 favorites]

George Costanza's iToilet app is now a reality

posted by JimSchu at 8:51 PM on February 27 [6 favorites]


When MeFite RadioAmy still lived in New Orleans, she invited me and my little family down to watch the parades in front of her apartment. When we got there, she invited us in and began to show us where the bathrooms were.

"I know where they are," I told her. "I've peed in your apartment twice before."

Nearly ten years earlier, I'd been down at Mardi Gras with a girlfriend. We were walking along, looking for a bathroom and she saw a girl stumbling out of this same apartment, so she grabbed the door before it closed and we snuck in. The place was trashed and there were people sleeping all over the floors. We used the (filthy) bathrooms and then let ourselves out. No one asked us who we were.

A few years after that, I was down for Mardi Gras again and I mentioned to my friend that I'd once used the bathroom in that apartment. Just for fun (and because we were drubk and in need) we knocked on the door. An old lady answered and we blurted something about looking for a friend. "Would you like a drink?" She asked and we spent the next hour or so using her bathroom and drinking and playing with her puppy.

By total coincidence, I've peed in that same apartment three times, three different renters. Part of what makes New Orleans magic for me.
posted by ColdChef at 8:55 PM on February 27 [114 favorites]

Man, I grew up there and I remember the dark arts of trying to find a bathroom. We used to go to the McDonald's on St. Charles on parade day and have a chunk of the family hold a spot on the parade route while the rest of us hung out in the McDonald's, buying just enough food and drink to still be "customers" and use the bathroom until the last possible minute, when we'd scramble out to join the rest of the crew.

And woe betide you if you were one of the girls or had to do something other than pee against a wall. My sister had that happened once and my mom missed a parade and a half trying to find a spot where she could go and STILL complains about it.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 9:02 PM on February 27 [1 favorite]

Cold chef you warmed my heart
posted by wheelieman at 9:05 PM on February 27 [2 favorites]

Ain't No Place to Pee on Mardi Gras Day
posted by ColdChef at 9:07 PM on February 27 [4 favorites]

This is brilliant.

(Not just for NOLA; I would totally rent my bathroom to pee-ers for a small fee for the Mummer's Parade in Philly.)
posted by desuetude at 9:22 PM on February 27 [1 favorite]

Referee decision: ColdChef has quoted Benny Grunch and immediately wins the thread
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 9:30 PM on February 27 [1 favorite]

I like the Dutch solution to this problem.
posted by me & my monkey at 9:57 PM on February 27

I like the Dutch solution to this problem.

Those urinals are awesome and I'd happily use them -- but what do Dutch women do?
posted by Dip Flash at 10:12 PM on February 27 [1 favorite]

Just got back from Muses. I'm at 137 Carondelet [half a block from Canal and Bourbon] 504-274-9712 if you don't want to use the portas they have there on Canal.

Use of my bathroom comes with a complementary milk crate to stand on so you can actually see the parade.
posted by vapidave at 10:35 PM on February 27 [2 favorites]

what do Dutch women do?

Do as the rest of the world does: go into them three at a time and make everyone wonder who's selling the coke.
posted by item at 10:43 PM on February 27 [2 favorites]

Those urinals are awesome and I'd happily use them -- but what do Dutch women do?

We have similar pissoirs in Melbourne, although they conceal your entire body from passersby. They were not actually meant to make life more comfortable for people generally: they're meant to discourage men from urinating in the street. We also have public toilets which, like most public things, are dirty and insufficient, but which at least allow women to attend to their necessaries.
posted by Joe in Australia at 10:54 PM on February 27

Lack of peeing options is, very seriously, one of the main reasons I almost never go to parades or similar public events. The first thing I think of when I envision a festive event in a crowded urban area is that there will be nowhere to pee.
posted by treepour at 12:40 AM on February 28 [1 favorite]

I like the Dutch solution to this problem.

These things were produced in response to public urination, which the Dutch called Wild Pissing.

I love Amsterdam's old wrought iron urinals, but knowing that name just makes me less inclined to use those cheapo plastic jobs. Ain't nobody ever gonna tame my Wild Pissing!
posted by PeterMcDermott at 1:01 AM on February 28 [2 favorites]

Charmin have an app for that
posted by DanCall at 2:32 AM on February 28

me & my monkey: "I like the Dutch solution to this problem."

American local police would probably swoop down while you were peeing and arrest you for indecent exposure.
posted by octothorpe at 4:36 AM on February 28 [1 favorite]

With the Sneaky Leaker there's always a place to pee on Mardi Gras day!
posted by white_devil at 4:52 AM on February 28

Genius campaign strategy.
posted by Rock Steady at 6:16 AM on February 28 [1 favorite]

On NPR's How to do Everything Podcast, they used to feature a "toilet of the week." One week they featured the church on St. Charles Ave that rents a bunch of port-o-potties and charges per use. Smartest fundraiser ever!

Also I have very fond memories of coldchef's family coming to hang with us during Mardi Gras! I will never forget the look of relief on his wife's face when she walked into my apartment after spending the morning parading, with two little kids in tow, and realizing that she had a clean bathroom to use!

That said, I have peed in some really unsavory places during Mardi Gras.
posted by radioamy at 7:34 AM on February 28 [4 favorites]

Man this is bringing back a lot of memories!

When I lived on the parade route, I was *very* popular during Mardi Gras. It was really fun having tons of people over - friends, friends of friends, neighbors, etc. I was more than happy to offer up my place as a place to use the restroom, hang out, etc.

One time after a parade I was walking my dog and I saw these two girls with a familiar look of desperation on their faces. They nervously approached me and said "hey, um, do you live around here?" and I said "do you need to use the bathroom" and they both said "YES!" so I brought them inside. It's funny, I mean I am pretty cautious in general and I don't normally invite total strangers into my house, but, hey, it's Mardi Gras!
posted by radioamy at 9:53 AM on February 28 [1 favorite]

I'm surprised ColdChef didn't throw in this Hannibal Burress set from the Tonight Show where he talks about New Orleans.
posted by mullacc at 10:29 AM on February 28 [2 favorites]

On a recent visit to New Orleans, I was strolling about and needed a place to pee. I spied Harrah's Casino. Big ladies' room, clean, with a lounge area. To repay Harrah's for their facilities, I put $2 in a Day of the Dead themed slot machine which immediately gave me $12.

Thank you Harrah's for the profitable pee!
posted by pointystick at 11:23 AM on February 28 [2 favorites]

The two of my friends who live along the uptown parade route have already sent out mass texts to large interconnected groups making their restrooms available. I'm not planning on going to any parades this year, but that hasn't stopped the foreign multitudes from clogging all roads to, from, and in the city, complicating my normal routine.
posted by Corinth at 7:47 PM on February 28 [1 favorite]

I will be part of the problem on Tuesday. Mardi Gras with kids and no secured bathrooms. I'm some kind of idiot.
posted by ColdChef at 7:48 PM on February 28 [1 favorite]

Thank you Harrah's for the profitable pee!

Not just a pee, a golden shower!
posted by Joe in Australia at 3:00 AM on March 1 [1 favorite]

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