Three of my teenage grandsons came to see me over Fall Break. We were at a stop sign in downtown San Diego when a couple crossed in front of us. Once headed down the street the man made an intentional move to walk along the street side and keep his wife tucked safely on the inside. I figured it was a great opportunity for a lesson in chivalry to these two 16 and one 17 year olds beginning to date. So….I pointed the couple out, what a gentleman he was stepping to the outside like that. (I wish she’d smiled up and him and taken his hand, but oh well.)
One of my grandsons said, “You know where the man walking on the outside originated, don’t you Gramma?”
I’d have guessed a valiant knight in King Arthur’s court, but fessed up. “I don’t, but it’s a nice thing for a man to do.”
“Well,” he began with a bit too much glee in his now deepening voice. “In medival towns there were no sewers. People used to pitch their chamber pots out the windows onto to the walkways, so the men moved the women to the inside.”
That’s just swell. My observation about chivalry went to…I’d like to say it went down the drain, but clearly it didn’t. So, it was time to discuss the virtues of rerouting the morning stroll, dashing for a hot bath, shampoo, dawning a clean dress…right after dumping the guy.
They make me laugh out loud. A fun learning experience for me, for sure. LOL
Below is a copy/paste just for fun and further education from: TodayIfoundout.com England evidently didn’t originate the practice. 🙁
The British word for the toilet, “loo”, derives from the French “guardez l’eau”, meaning “watch out for the water”. This comes from the fact that, in medieval Europe, people simply threw the contents of their chamber pots out the window onto the streets. Before throwing the waste out the window, they’d yell “Guardez l’eau!” The term “guardez l’eau” first came to English as “gardy-loo” and then shortened to “loo”, which eventually came to mean the toilet itself.