back to article Sozzled Americans nagged by talking urinal cake

Michigan males intent on celebrating the Fourth of July holiday with a few liveners are advised that when the time comes to send the booze back to the brewers, it'll be the urinal, rather than the beer, that's doing the talking. The urinal communicator set for deployment in Michigan. Pic: Office of Highway Safety Planning The …


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  1. Crisp

    Whatever did Mankind do before we had automatons to recite the bleedin' obvious?

    Please remember to take all your personal belongs with you on your way out.

    1. dotdavid
      Thumb Up

      Re: Whatever did Mankind do before we had automatons to recite the bleedin' obvious?

      Exactly. And because the phrase "please remember to take all your personal belongings with you" has been repeated so much, it is now background noise that everyone subconsciously ignores - which renders it even more pointless.

    2. Charles Manning

      We were nagged by Womankind

      Exactly the reason I went to the pub in the first place!

      Now the urinal is nagging me...

      Where too now?

    3. Anonymous Coward

      Re: Whatever did Mankind do before we had automatons to recite the bleedin' obvious?

      Now demolished "Spencer Street" Victorian Railways men's toilet - with white tiles above the urinal.

      Message in large lettered tiles:

      "Please adjust your dress before leaving"

      Maybe it meant something different in 1887 than in 2003.

      I miss these iconic things...

  2. MJI Silver badge

    Is this where

    they get US Budweiser from?

    Won't the lack of normal blue urinal sweets change the flavour?

    1. My backside

      Re: Is this where

      No, it comes from St. Louis, Missouri. Just setting things straight.

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: And proper one comes from....

        České Budějovice, in the Czech Republic

        1. mhenriday

          Allow me to point out to prospective tourists

          that it's by no means an easy task to get to České Budějovice, even if one is a native speaker of the language and knows the region intimately, as described in the chapter entitled «Švejkova budějovicka anabaze» (Švejk's Budějovice anabasis) in Jaroslav Hašek's great work, «Osudy dobrého vojáka Švejka za světové války» (The adventures of the good soldier Švejk in the World War). But they may be encouraged to know that with the help of his friends in the Austro-Hungarian military, he finally does succeed in making it to the town....


  3. frank ly

    How long will they last ....

    before they are taken as souveniers? (Wear gloves and wash them in clean water.)

    1. Goldmember

      Re: How long will they last ....

      Uugh. Doesn't matter how many times it's been washed, bleached or even flamed. I wouldn't take one

      1. Wize

        Re: How long will they last ....

        I heard of one urinal where someone had taken all the yellow cakes out and sat them along the ledge above it.

        Not to mention those cheap enough to fish out that coin.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: How long will they last ....

        You've seen the women guys hook up with after 8 pints? What makes you think "washed or bleached" (the gadget, that is) will matter by then?

  4. dogged

    target acquired...

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sounds good.

    Sounds like a potentially good idea. Any data on the effectiveness of this approach?

  6. Pete 2 Silver badge

    Talking the piss?

    > Not only do we want to turn some heads and get people talking

    Hopefully the heads won't be turned while "in full stream". It could get messy.

    I'm just waiting for the first lawsuit claiming electrocution from a faulty unit.

  7. Evil Weevil

    If I was drunk and I heard this....

    ..... I'd be thinking it was the beer talking.

  8. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

    When I saw the word "safe" in the middle, I thought that it was going to have a built-in alcohol measuring device (pissalyzer?) in it. Lights up if you're safe to drive...

    1. dogged


      Genius. I'm bloody well inventing that.

      1. mhenriday


        Apple has been granted a patent....


    2. George Nacht

      I thought exactly the same

      Without built-in alcohol sensor (I would be satisfied with a simple sensor, no need to measure the actual alcohol level) it doesn´t make a sense at all. It will be pretty awkward, being pestered by female voice in men´s room, while sober.

      There is a joke in there somewhere.

      By the way, how much will the talking component cost above the price of regular cake? Will it also dissolve and be flushed down, or will some poor cleaner have to fish it out, when the cake itself is gone?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I thought exactly the same

        No need for a sophisticatd sensor.

        Any male who goes to take a piss in the pub has got past that first piss barrier(*) and has therefore drunk too much to drive safely.

        (*)You all know what it feels like and the consequences of having broken the seal.

        1. Asiren

          Re: I thought exactly the same

          Was thinking the same thing re. pisserlyser. And @Chris W, there are people out there who go to pubs and *don't drink alcohol*. Kids being told not to drink and drive when they aren't legally allowed to do either?

          Any enterprising cab firm would tack their number onto the end of the "Pub(l?)ic Service Announcement".

  9. JDX Gold badge

    It would be better if it detected you'd actually been drinking too much and warned you you were over the limit. Though does urine allow that?

    1. peyton?

      Not in realtime

      I shouldn't think.

      Also, your body breaks down alcohol and metabolizes it. I'm not sure there is stuff in your urine to be measured. Even if you get hauled in for DUI, at the station they take another breathalyzer for evidence, not a urine test.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Not in realtime @peyton

        What a load of twaddle. If you don't know then don't just think and talk about something you don't have any experience of. Urine can be tested.

        Back at the station you had the choice of giving a blood or urine sample. If you chose a urine sample you got to piss a bladder full away then they would take your next piss for testing. The police would keep a sample and you'd get one so you could pay for own analysis.

        I used had because that's what used to happen. Nowadays they might think the modern breathalyzers are accurate enough without the need for a any other kind of sample. Personally I'd try to insist on a sample of some sort being used.

    2. Bill Fresher

      As a first step it should sense if someone's pooped on it -- pooping in the urinal being a sure sign of excessive alcohol intake.

  10. Wize

    Just what we need

    Another method of forcing adverts on to us. Next it will be the cubical set to play you adverts on the back of the door while you are in your fortress of solitude. Sometimes they are nice places to sit quietly and think, now we will have constant media thrown at us.

    1. Code Monkey

      Re: Just what we need

      I'd be inclined to piss on the floor if the bog started playing adverts. Then I'd find another pub.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    needs bluetooth

    men love bluetooth.

  12. Martin Cleaver


    Does it also analyze the piss and only talk to drunken pee-ers?

  13. ukgnome

    Do they do one for falling turtles?

    "bzz, eep , eep - you require more fibre - bzz, eep, eep"

  14. TRT Silver badge
    IT Angle


    Brings a new meaning to stream playback.

  15. disgruntled yank

    Justified plumbingcide

    The brother-in-law of a fellow I know once shot a toilet to pieces. It is assumed that he aimed at it with a pistol he wrongly thought unloaded, though that was not quite his story. But he may have been ahead of the curve.

    1. Code Monkey

      Re: Justified plumbingcide

      Without wanting to turn this into another "Americans and guns" borefest, it could easily lead to shot urinals.

      Won't somebody think of the khazis?

  16. Paul Renault

    No, no, no, this is actually a good idea!

    'Cuz there's not enough e-waste in the world, eh.

  17. Kurt 5

    Must be fun for whoever gets to change the batteries.

  18. Matt Korth

    Hmm. I do wonder if New Holland Brewing Company (which is in Holland, Michigan, which is in Ottawa County) will have these.

    Beer, because there's only one way to find out...

  19. ItsNotMe

    And where are the ones for the Ladies Loo?

    Is it only men who drive knackered? Not likely.

    Come on now...let's be all "equal" and such, and make one for the fair sex.

  20. Charlie van Becelaere

    Am I the Only One

    who misread the headline as NABBED? I was expecting the pissalyzer as well, I fear.

    Is the urine the electrolyte for the dry cell pile powering the puck? Just asking ...

  21. lawndart


    The thing about electronics is they always hide or airbrush out the unsightly mains lead.

  22. Armando 123

    Well good

    I'm happy to see that every level of government in Michigan is no longer broke so that this can be done there.

    (I almost typed "flush with money", but couldn't bring myself to do it.)

  23. proto-robbie

    I expect

    ... we'll see these in next year's Darwin Awards.

  24. Stevie


    Why can't the damned things be really useful and sample for alcohol content before they nag? Nothing like being the designate driver and getting robonagged anyway.

    Another vision occurs:

    "Okay staff, the battery needs changing out in the urino-matic nagometric road-safety module"

    "Not it!" "Not it!" "Not it!" "Not on a bet!"

  25. Craig 28

    They still use cakes?

    Last I heard of urinal cakes pubs were moving away from them due to theft, apparently it's possible to get high from them or something. Obviously this has either abated (hopefully people saw sense) or the US hasn't had this issue.

    1. Euripides Pants

      Re: They still use cakes?

      Don't have that problem in the US -- the young people here do butthash.

  26. cortland

    POLITICAL Advertising!

    With LCD displays of our very FAVOURITE polticians speaking as they get sprayed.

    It's called "talking" the p*ss.

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