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View Full Version : Are there really bars with sawdust on the floors where people just pee on the floor?


astro
05-03-2003, 03:08 PM
My friend said that about 30 years ago, he had been to a uber-dive bar in Arkansas like this but I can't imagine anything this unsanitary? Are (or were) there ever really bars like this?

BobT
05-03-2003, 03:19 PM
Hey, if you're friend wants to say he went to a bar where he walked around in urine, let him have that memory.

Shagnasty
05-03-2003, 03:45 PM
I really, really doubt it. Sawdust holds in moisture so it would start to reak after about a day and be unbearable after two. I have cleaned out animal cages and barn stalls lined with sawdust and it is brutal.

However, I have been in a couple of bars with sawdust on the floor in which you could throw almost anything on it. Beer tops, peanut shells, cigarette butts etc. were all fine. I didn't see anyone dropping their pants though.

I have seen lots of bars in places like New Orleans in which the only men's toilet is a trough to pee in, no sink, no running water, no stalls, or place to sit. Sometimes people puke or take a dump in the trough if there is a real emergency.

Duck Duck Goose
05-03-2003, 03:58 PM
My understanding of the purpose of sawdust on the floor was that it's a relic of the days when men used to spit on the floor, with or without a "chaw" of "baccy". I never heard that it was "so you could pee on the floor".

cainxinth
05-03-2003, 04:16 PM
I haven't seen sawdust, but I do know guys that have pissed on the bar floor on more than one occasion. I always thought they were just braindead dunkards, I didn't realize they were steeped in a rich tradition of nastiness.

Fear Itself
05-03-2003, 05:27 PM
Originally posted by cainxinth
I haven't seen sawdust, but I do know guys that have pissed on the bar floor on more than one occasion. I'm sure that is happens, which is why there used to be "Men Only" taverns with unique accomodations: (http://john-corbett.com/interviews/1991-07-26entwkly.shtml)"It's the oldest bar in Washington," effuses Geary. "There's a trough of water running under the bar, and when it used to be a men's-only bar, men would just urinate in it." Somewhere I've seen pictures of such a bar, circa the late 19th or early 20th century, but I can't locate it right now.

t-keela
05-03-2003, 05:40 PM
There's still lots of bars with sawdust on the floors. It's to keep them dry(spills) and makes for smooth dancing.

BTW the sawdust is swept up and replaced regularly.

...and the only time I saw anyone piss the floor it was unintentional. I assure you they woud not be welcomed back otherwise.

t-keela
05-03-2003, 05:41 PM
that's DANCE floors BTW

yola
05-03-2003, 08:31 PM
The Melrose Tavern in Downtown Renton, Washington has the trough below going the length of the bar. When women were not allowed in the tavern the patrons used it to relieve themselves with out having to miss a lick. Its still there, but not used as such. Women were allowed sit at the bar, in 1971? I think, way behind the rest of the USA.

Years ago, Chilcoot Charlies in Anchorage, AK served peanuts free at every table and you were supposed to put the empty shells on the floor. There was also sawdust down there. Then, when the price of peanuts went up they switched to free popcorn instead. Sad, sad day.

Lorenzo
05-04-2003, 12:30 AM
Originally posted by yola
Years ago, Chilcoot Charlies in Anchorage, AK served peanuts free at every table and you were supposed to put the empty shells on the floor.

Back in the day, it was the same deal at a pizza/adult beverage establishment in Mundelein, IL called "Bill's" Not sure whether the practice persists.

engineer_comp_geek
05-04-2003, 02:51 AM
There used to be a place in Columbia MD that served peanuts and you just pushed the shells onto the floor. The health dept made them stop that practice about 4 or 5 years ago, claiming that someone could slip and fall on the shells and therefore it was a hazard.

The closest I've ever seen to the sawdust thing was a men's bathroom where the toilet was so disgusting that everyone just used the sink instead. From the looks of things, if the sink was busy or the person just couldn't aim, the floor was apparently an acceptable alternate. This was in a college town in about 1984. Most of the bars in that area died when the drinking age went from 18 to 21 (around 1986), so I doubt that it's still around.

astro
05-04-2003, 10:30 AM
Originally posted by yola
The Melrose Tavern in Downtown Renton, Washington has the trough below going the length of the bar. When women were not allowed in the tavern the patrons used it to relieve themselves with out having to miss a lick. Its still there, but not used as such. Women were allowed sit at the bar, in 1971? I think, way behind the rest of the USA.

Years ago, Chilcoot Charlies in Anchorage, AK served peanuts free at every table and you were supposed to put the empty shells on the floor. There was also sawdust down there. Then, when the price of peanuts went up they switched to free popcorn instead. Sad, sad day.

That may have been the kind of setup he was talking about . Thanks for the info.

Cat Fight
05-04-2003, 11:27 AM
I have seen this done frequently in horse barns.

cornflakes
05-04-2003, 04:16 PM
According to my 1990 edition of The Peoples Guide to Mexico (http://peoplesguide.com/), a lot of cantinas in Mexico either have a urinal on the wall or just let the customers pee on the wall.

Max Torque
05-04-2003, 04:33 PM
Originally posted by yola
Years ago, Chilcoot Charlies in Anchorage, AK served peanuts free at every table and you were supposed to put the empty shells on the floor. There was also sawdust down there. Then, when the price of peanuts went up they switched to free popcorn instead. Sad, sad day.

This is still the case at two restaurants here in town, Logan's Roadhouse and the Texas Roadhouse. Peanut shells everywhere. I often wonder how often they sweep 'em all out and replace them with fresh shells.

Bryan Ekers
05-04-2003, 04:46 PM
Originally posted by Max Torque
I often wonder how often they sweep 'em all out and replace them with fresh shells.

To make the job less tedious, they make a game out of it.








Get it?

t-keela
05-05-2003, 12:44 AM
When I lived in Huntsville,TX a few years back, there was a Catfish ?? Restaurant, it had peanut shells on the floor everywhere. I think it lasted about six months before it burned down.

racekarl
05-05-2003, 09:42 AM
The peanuts on the floor thing is still in action at the Riverside Cafe in Myrtle Brach, SC.

Also, I grew up in Hanover, NH, and there was a notorious Dartmouth fraternity with a trough running along one of the walls in the basement. During parties, it was commonly accepted that the men could relieve themselves on the wall. This wall was in the main room of the basement and ran perpendicular to the bar.

The Hanover police got wind of the situation and closed the house about 2 years ago.

plnnr
05-05-2003, 09:44 AM
IIRC, McSorley's in NYC had sawdust on the floor.

RM Mentock
05-05-2003, 09:53 AM
Peanut shells on the floor were a staple at Lone Star Steakhouses (http://lonestarsteakhouses.com), but this online review (http://epinions.com/rest-review-D1-F1823A-39C9519D-prod1) mentions that they've discontinued the practice because of lawsuits.

chula
05-05-2003, 10:02 AM
Originally posted by cornflakes
According to my 1990 edition of The Peoples Guide to Mexico (http://peoplesguide.com/), a lot of cantinas in Mexico either have a urinal on the wall or just let the customers pee on the wall. Pee on the wall?? I'm having a hard time buying that. I have been in a cantina where there was just a urinal in the corner. (I'm a woman and wasn't supposed to be there.)

Cluricaun
05-05-2003, 10:23 AM
Man, where I live there are still lots of "free peaunuts, toss 'em on the floor" joints. Nick's Pizza in Crystal Lake IL has to have a 2 or 3 inch deep layer of em around the bar, besides haveing one of the creepiest taxidermied animal collections in the world.

Jayrot
05-05-2003, 10:46 AM
You can find the peanuts all over the place still at The James Joyce (http://thejamesjoyce.com) in downtown Santa Barbara. One of my favorite haunts.

El Smasho
05-05-2003, 01:27 PM
I've been in lots of dirt-floor bars and small stores. Quite common in dry rustic (camping or just poor) areas. A little sawdust can clean up spills, just so the floor doesn't get soft, but it's usually swept up right after.

CrankyAsAnOldMan
05-05-2003, 02:20 PM
Heh. The Ground Round chain of restaurants had the "throw the peanut shells on the floor" policy in the 1980s. Some friends of mine went to a Ground Round in a different town and were merrily chowing down on the peanuts and shoving the shells over the edge of the table. They noticed some strange looks. Then the manager came over and told them that in this particular franchise, they did not throw shells on the floor. My friends looked around, noticed the clean floor (well, except for around their table) and felt a little sheepish.

Off-topic, but talking about peanut shells made me remember this tale.

micco
05-05-2003, 02:29 PM
Originally posted by astro
uber-dive bar in Arkansas Last time I was in an uber-dive bar in Arkansas (5-6 years ago), I played pool with a local who didn't have indoor plumbing in his house. He liked his outhouse because he just couldn't get used to defecating inside his home. He was as hillbilly as they come, but he'd probably be the last person in the world to pee on the floor of a bar.

There are certainly bars with sawdust on the floor, and I have no doubt that drunks have made inappropriate use of that, but I don't think this was ever the intended or approved use. There's an old Southern-ism that says "even a dog doesn't shit where it lives", and there are very few humans dumb enough to earn that comparison.

Blown & Injected
05-05-2003, 02:57 PM
RM Mentock,
engineer_comp_geek:

Yep that is the place. They now serve up the free peanuts but there are signs all over the place that say if you like the peanuts do not drop the shells on the floor!

The beer and peanuts are the best things at that place. -IMO

elmwood
05-05-2003, 07:31 PM
I've been to bars in Mexico with a trough running along the base of the bar.

In New Mexico, at least 10 years ago, there was a bar about 10 miles aouth of Las Cruces called Chope's. The men's bathroom had tile walls, a tile floor, a drain in the middle ... and that's it. The room was "flushed" every so often when the bartender would throw ice in it.

manhattan
05-05-2003, 08:19 PM
This is pretty much asked and answered, no?

occ
05-05-2003, 09:05 PM
It is, but it's turned into an interesting discussion on dive bars. Mightn't this get a move?

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