I don’t listen to the broadcast radio much but there are a few podcasts of radio programs I enjoy and listen to regularly. Like many listeners, I imagine, I don’t keep up with them. The content arrives continually but I tend toward ‘binge listening’. An interesting byproduct of binging on podcasts, I’ve discovered, is I find odd little synchronicities, or at least coincidences, in the discussions. I doubt I’d notice them if I listened on a ‘flow basis’ but, when listening in catch-up mode, they become apparent and form little threads of distraction, almost like earworms. I observed one recently on the subject of public urination. (You’re welcome!)
A few days later I was listening to a podcast of NPR’s Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me! One of the interesting factoids revealed in their News Quiz was that public authorities in Hamburg Germany are coating the exterior walls in the St. Pauli section of Hamburg with water-repellent paint. St. Pauli, home to many pubs and one of the world’s premier ‘Red Light’ districts, is a popular tourist attraction. Apparently many, presumably male, visitors are known to follow the Victorian man’s example by urinating on the walls. Engineered to repel water, the paint makes the output splashes back on pants and shoes of the offending source rather than streaming harmlessly down the wall.
Everything old is, indeed, new again and, if splash was an effective deterrent in 19th-century London there is no reason it won’t be equally successful in 21st-century Hamburg.
I made a mental note of the subject coincidence but probably would not have written about it were it not for an earworm offered up on Sirius satellite radio’s “80’s on 8” a few hours later. When I heard the J. Geil’s Band singing “Piss On The Wall” I knew the