Let’s Talk Dirty

bathroom-1228427_1280by Karen J Mossman

How often do you nip to the toilet?

No, I don’t expect you to answer that. Just think about it for a moment. It’s normal. It’s part of your day and everyone around you. We all talk about it at some point and it’s as natural as talking about your next meal.

Has it ever occurred to you that your favourite TV characters rarely goes for that natural break? Generally, neither do the book characters either. Why?

I recently read a book where the hot male lead eventually finds the female he’d been searching for. Does he say something worthy of a hero? No, he says, “I gotta take a piss.” He then disappears into the bathroom. I loved him for that. Considering this man had travelled a long way, this was very likely outcome. Yet normally its a fact generally ignored.

In another book I read, the women escaping her lover’s bed went to sit on the toilet and contemplate for a while. That works. That’s normal, too

My mind tends to be a little overactive at times. (You’ve sussed that, right?) Even when I’d rather not go where it takes me. This was one of the scenarios my mind played out:

The beautiful girl lies across the bed in her bra and briefs. Her hair cascading over the side and flowing to the floor. She is waiting for her lover to return.

He opens the bathroom door, his hair falling slightly over his chiselled features. He’s wearing a white vest which is pulling taut over his ripped torso. Boxers show off his strong sturdy legs.

The toilet is still flushing behind him. He’s been in there at least five minutes. A smell follows him out…..

What? It’s natural. It’s what happens but it doesn’t really work does it? It’s not necessary. It’s what our partners do in real life and we want an escape, not normality!

So yes, it’s okay for our characters to nip to the toilet. It’s real.

Now, I’m gonna take it one step further. How many times do you or someone around you, fart? No, don’t answer that either.

I’ve read 100s of books and only in one did it happen – The girl lay under a tree with her boyfriend. They were talking and laughing together. Suddenly she let out a little lady fart (is there such a thing?)  And that was it. Never was it mentioned again.

Having read some short stories recently containing all the wet slapping sounds of erotica. I sometimes wonder what’s so different? Anything and everything goes these days, so it’s probably only a matter of time.

So let’s keep our writing real and know our own boundaries.  How far would you go to keep realism alive? How far does a reader expect an author to go?

On a footnote to this, I’ve also noticed that no one eats. Now I’ve drawn it to my attention (what?) I’ve begun noticing on the television that many of them don’t stop to eat regularly. They may grab something occasionally on the go, but they never sit and eat a meal . (Except Blue Bloods, where they sit around the table regularly.)

When you think about it, we need to eat to survive, eat and drink, its a necessary part of our lives. I like realism and sometimes you need to show that.


8 thoughts on “Let’s Talk Dirty”

  1. At times, an author needs to talk dirty in order to emphasize a point. For exampe in my memoir, My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds, I include a scene where I’m making oatmeal, and Bill is sitting at the kitchen table in his wheelchair, and he says, “Ooh, I gotta pee. Oh, it’s too late. I wet my pants.” I use this and other such scenes in order to show readers what I had to go through as a caregiver.

    I must admit I’ve never read a book in which someone farts, but I’ve read many in which someone eats. One I can think of off the top of my head is Prizzie’s Honor. There’s one scene where Charlie, the main character, a mafia crook, eats lunch with his boss. If I remember correctly, it’s a ten-course Italian meal. Charlie likes to cook when he’s not breaking people’s bones and/or killing them, so there are some scenes when he’s in his kitchen. These scenes are used to develop his character.

    Frankly though, I agree that in most cases, bodily functions can bog a story down. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to make a pit stop.


  2. Love this! Recently I’ve been watching original programming on Netflix and they do show women peeing on the toilet which shocked me. But you’re right, in books that doesn’t get mentioned. Loved your example about “the smell follows him out” thanks for a good post


    1. Thanks Jenna. I’ve been picking up lately of how we need to eat and yet it too is left out.
      Thanks for your comments, my humour is sometimes a bit warped! Lol!


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