Monday, September 7, 2015

On the origins of being "piss poor" Urine and it's confusion in politics

Jerry Bance the CPC candidate for Scarborough-Rouge Park, could be the role model for fiscal discipline: he is as you may recall this CPC candidate caught ON CAMERA peeing in a constituents coffee cup, though apparently not while the constituent was holding it at the door.

In days gone by when urine was used to tan leather, a family who had to collect and sell their urine to the tannery were called "piss poor" as nobody with money would admit to doing it.  It's still a fairly common practice in some places, mostly because it works and is environmentally benign so the concept itself is neither good nor bad and certainly no worse than selling a pint of blood, which also used to happen all the time.
Being in financial dire straights and trying to get out is never a bad thing, I do not however think this was the motivation of Jerry, I think he was lazy and just needed to take a leak.

His act of peeing in a coffee cup on national television will probably not impact his chances to get elected.  Left leaning Toronto, which even though it lacks so many basic services, people generally have access to toilets, or a least the privacy of dumpsters behind Walmart, and even in Toronto, peeing in a  coffee cup in someone's kitchen is kind of offensive.

There are certain upsides to the collection of urine other than tanning leather or losing elections: take for example birth control pills: imagine how many people who do not want to know what they are made of, thinking that PMU is an acronym for a chemical constituent when in reality its short for Pregnant Mares Urine, yup, horse pee, that people on PMU farms collect and sell to Pfizer, who make it into birth control pills.   Now while this point is not totally relevant to the Federal Election, but the ick factor is too good to pass up. At least that urine is collected for a purpose: to prevent unwanted pregnancies, whereas Jerry collected urine to prevent an  election victory.

Urine does not keep well, as anyone who has ever walked into a gas station bathroom can attest;  had Jerry used a mason jar and put it in the fridge he might have been able to argue that he was recycling and going to dump it on the compose pile, which as we all know is far better for the environment than wasting five gallons of treated water to dispose of 10 ounces of liquid. "If it's yellow let it mellow, if it's brown flush it down" was the rule in my youth.

In the name of complete disclosure I have to admit I too have peed in many cups over the years; pre-access drug testing involves such a step but  I have never had a collection technician hand me his coffee mug.

The real lesson here is: the more you try to control things the weirder are the things you can't control the other lesson is be careful when you buy dishes at garage sales.