English folks, question about 'taking a wee'

For the most part I don’t think Americans either have or take a pee. We just pee. “I need to pee.” “I gotta pee.”

To an American, the “toilet” is the porcelain fixture you pee/poop into, while Brits use the word “toilet” to refer to the room in which such a fixture can be found.

Generally, I like British humor, so I was disappointed. I haven’t seen any of the ones you mentioned. Are they on Acorn? I’ll check them out if they are.

Yes, to an American, if you say ‘toilet’ they get an image of the toilet itself and all its connotations – not the room where the toilet is.

My father says he’s going to “take a whiz” or “drain the lizard”. If he says he’s heading to the reading room, it means he’ll be there longer.

Most of my coworkers learned British English, so they will say that someone is “on the toliet”. Not really how I want to picture my coworkers.

Think of them as enthroned in splendour.

I do. Even if I know where the toilet is, I’m not just going to walk away without explanation. And my choice of words will vary widely depending on who I’m talking to, how well I know them, and the formality of the situation.

Are you sure they are not saying “in the toilet”? That sounds more likely to me.

People don’t walk away without explanation while someone is speaking to them, but they just say something like “excuse me.” No explanation needed. And if no one is paying any particular attention to them at the time, they don’t say anything at all. Why would anyone want or need to know that particular fact?

I tend to announce with my friends. “I gotta hit the head” or even the straight forward “I gotta take a piss” if I’m in the bar with the boys. Pretty normal for me. For more genteel crowds, “I need to use the facilities” or something like that.

“I must just pay a call”.

Or, as rumour has it of the brave Evans on Scott’s tragic expedition, “I am just going outside - I may be some time”.

What about the old British euphemism: “to spend a penny” ?
Fifty years ago,(when pay toilets cost a penny) it was common. Is it still in use today?

Raises hand I say that. I like it; it’s a nice euphemism.

I’d say “I need a wee” is more familiar than vulgar. It’s something you say among friends, and yes, more often among women to distinguish your actual needs. Men just pee, women have a lot going on. You might say: “No no, don’t make me laugh, I need a wee already.” Or you might say: “Oops I think my cup is leaking.” It’s familiar and sometimes funny.

A bit more than 50 years ago I think. The coinage went metric 51 years ago.

Some older friends will still say “spend a penny” and even people who have never had to put a coin in a slot to get into a toilet will understand them. A common graffito in men’s toilets at the time was “Here I sit, broken-hearted. Spent a penny and only farted.”

There are many public conveniences that need a coin around Britain and the number seems to be increasing, but restaurants are legally obliged to provide them FOC.

This is French, but we have them here too:

Yes, among older folk. Some of whom may raise a wry smile at Beethoven’s Op. 129 (“Rage Over A Lost Penny”).

Yes, I’m sure. It is quite often that the preposition in German doesn’t match the one in English. In this case, the German expression is “auf die Toilette gehen”, which literally translates to “go on the toilet”.

Most likely the only time I would hear “go on the toilet” in English is if a parent was talking to their child who is in the process of potty training.

Sorry it’s taken me a minute to respond. I don’t know about Acorn - I watch clips on YouTube. Some full episodes, too.

On our first pontoon boat I’d had several beers (or whatever comes after several) and was planing on heading to shore to urinate in the bushes. My gf told me to “go over the side”.

What the hell, why not, I thought, and began sending an arcing stream over the rail. She was horrified. By “going over the side” she’d meant for me to jump in the river, as she’d done several times. I thought she’d jumped in to cool off. Apparently my behavior was uncouth, as there were fishermen on the bank.

FWIW, I would have interpreted the phrase as you did.

Oh, has “I gotta see a man about a horse?” been mentioned? I (and some friends of mine) would use that in a jocular, old-fogey kind of manner from time to time.

*And I have no idea why they say “poo” and we say “poop”.

I think of “poo” as a verb and “poop” as a noun.

For me, as an American, both are used in verb and noun forms. My tendency (and what I feel the tendency is) is that “poo” is a bit more toddler-talk than “poop.” On the other hand “poop” does sound a little more cutesy than “poo,” as well, so maybe it’s not just on that scale.

I can’t remember the last time I used the word “poo.” The dog poops in the yard, and afterward I have to scoop his poops. My go-to is “shit,” then “crap,” then “poop” (for both noun and verb forms) depending on what level of decorum is appropriate to the crowd.