Laws of physics

Happened to see this bit of info on the Discovery Channel on Sunday which kind of got stuck in my head. The show was called “Time Warped” which consists of a crew going around different places to camera high-speed action using equally high-speed video cameras.

The last segment had a brief physics simulation of the male urination process, or simul-pee if you like…

The set-up consists of a filled water tank and a thin rubber tube which acts as the urinary tract. Now if the urinary tract is suspended in free space, once the, uhh, “tap” is opened, the flow as expected is consistent and on-target. Basically “the spot marked X” has a direct hit every time.

However, as if to play a joke on 50% of the world’s population by none other than God himself, our bodies are not hollow and there are internal organs/fluids, etc., which leads to pressure on the rubber tube which changes the shape of a perfectly round tube. The net result is that, without manual intervention to redirect, once the tap is open, the water will consistently overshoot the target at the beginning of the discharge, stay on target during the bulk of the flow, and then undershoots towards the end. This means that, at both extremes, the unfortunate toilet seat will be hit…

Moral of the story:

1) Don’t complain about the toilet seats being up. There are good reasons why they are there.
2) It’s a law of nature that toilets will occasionally get wet. There is no use fighting it.
3) Subscribe to cable. You will always learn something new from the Discovery Channel.

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