Tuesday, October 30, 2007




HENRY SAMUEL, TELGRAPH, UK - The mayor of Paris has launched one of his
toughest battles to date: weaning French men off their penchant for
urinating in public places. The tradition is one of the less picturesque
sights met by many Britons traveling to France, the land of the pissoir.

Lampposts and road signs often prove useful stopping off points, while
Paris metro users are subjected to appalling odors. But Bertrand
Delanoƫ, who has made environmental improvements a priority for the
city, has now set his sights on cleaning up the act of Parisians caught
short in public. . .

The symbolic last straw for Mr Delanoƫ was reportedly the sight of
dozens of men urinating on the walls of the Paris town hall during the
rugby World Cup, despite authorities erecting nearby 62 free Sanisettes
— self-cleaning booths that have replaced the iconic pissoirs.

His first revolutionary measure was to make all Sanisettes in streets
and parks free of charge in February last year. Usage shot up from 2.4
million to eight million in 12 months. . .

Authorities believe they may have come up with the answer: le mur
This brilliant, yet simple invention is an undulating wall that fires
urine back in the direction of the offender. "The jet of pee is rather
oblique. If it meets a sloping surface it is sent back to the trousers,"
said Etienne Vanderpooten, a municipal architect who has been working on
the problem for the past 25 years.



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