The Science Of Shameful Shitting

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PART I

In many movies, from James Bond to Signs, we've seen our heroes lie in hiding, waiting endless hours while some known harm lurked about. We've all experienced something similar while playing hide-and-seek, or waiting for a practical joke to fall on our victim, or waiting for our parents to retreat into their bedroom so we know its safe to come home three hours past curfew.

But during these times of intense concentration, with our hearts pumping and our bodies on the edge, something happens to us that never happens to 007: we need to pee. Urinate. Micturate. Whatever you call it, one of the main functions of adrenaline is to expulse any excess urine from the urinary bladder, the major and minor calyx, and the ureters.

Why? Well, urine is 99.999% water, and water isn't exactly light; so when your body thinks it needs all its physical capabilities, it tries to lighten the load. And if you need your body to run its fastest, the next most important thing beyond weight reduction is getting oxygen to your muscles. The very first body system your sympathetic nervous system is going to steal blood from is your digestive tract.

So maybe you're frightened by a lurking assailant, or maybe you have to dash into your room before your parents decide to check your bed, or maybe a co-worker walking in on you while you're in the bathroom scares the hell out of you. Whatever causes it, when you experience an adrenaline rush, it means that a) you pee really well, but b) your body's resources will have been redirected, and you can't poop worth a damn.


PART II

But that leads to the next question: food and food by-products weigh a lot too -- so why don't they come out?

You don't poo yourself because, more significantly than being residual weight, the foodstuffs in your alimentary canal can be oxidized to provide energy that a frightened person might very well need.

A case study:

A 32-year-old male is confronted by an armed assailant. First impulse to the amygdala: Fight, Flight or Fright. From the physiological sense, the least expensive route for the body to take is Fright. Adrenal glands squeeze, releasing adrenaline and epinephrine into the common circulation, making the heart beat fast and the lungs breathe fast, and shutting down any non-essential functions -- including poo-poo processing. While urine is expelled, feces is kept in check -- the body needs the energy.

Poo is not quite poo until it is committed to the rectum. Since all the energy in the body is being harnessed to run, digestion is halted. Screw hematopoesis, screw spermato, screw oogenisis -- there will be time for blood production and reproduction down the road (hopefully). Right now, your amygdala is saying, "Get the HELL out of there!" Blood is redirected from the digestive tract, delivering much needed oxygen to the skeletal muscles. As such, digestion stops. No poop formation. But more: no poop expulsion. Your body has redirected the energy it takes to push out a poop.

But that's not all. Beyond saving energy, there is the fact that poo has a distinctive smell (in case you didn't know). If you poop yourself while running from a saber-toothed tiger, the beast will be able to smell your location that much easier. And while it's rare to be attacked by a saber-toothed tiger any more, we do have physical and psychological threats to deal with -- taxes, terrorists, and, for many of us, interruption in the bathroom.

So you think that there's something wrong with you because you're a Shameful Shitter? Here's some news for you: you're normal.

When you're on the toilet, you're vulnerable. If they had toilets in caveman times, that's where the saber-toothed tigers would hang out when they were hungry. So your Shameful Shitting is really just your evolutionary response to a threat. When you feel threatened, you revert back to your caveman instincts.

You don't poo when you scared, because the smell is distinctive -- you don't want a saber-toothed tiger following your poo smell back to your cave.

You don't poo when you're scared, because you might need that energy to run or to fight.

You don't poo when you're scared, because, well...

...because you're a pussy, and you don't want others to know you're there.

But that's good -- if it was a saber-toothed tiger entering the bathroom instead of your coworker, the Shameless Shitter who goes on with his business might as well hold up a sign saying "free lunch in stall #2."

The smell will lead anything with a nose right to you.

Different humans are scared of different things. Not everyone is threatened by the sound of another person entering the bathroom. But those that are aren't necessarily unenlightened slaves to archaic Victorian taboos. They are more in touch with their animal instincts -- and if there were a nuclear war and the survivors were hunted by zombies with hyperactive noses, the Shameful Shitter would be the ones more likely to survive.

-- Dave J


38 Comments on "The Science Of Shameful Shitting"

The Big Wiper's picture
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Dave J, I applaud your intellectual approach, but there's a part of your argument I'd like to discuss with you. You say: "You don't poo when you're scared because you might need that energy to run...or you don't want others to know you're there...or because the smell is distinctive and you don't want the saber-toothed tiger following your poo smell..."

I understand the point you are making, but isn't it well-documented that the opposite (people shitting and pissing their pants) often happens during trauma or great stress or under threat of violence? I remember my grandfather telling me about a friend of his who shit his pants when a mugger shot him. It's my impression that the opposite of your argument often happens involuntarily under such circumstances, and people frequently lose control of their bowels and bladders. Could you address this in the spirit of a healthy exchange on the subject from one who has advocated shameless shitting on this site for some time now?

P.S. Next time I use an open stall or take a crap in front of someone I'm comfortable with, I'll be sure and keep an eye out for saber-toothed tigers! LOL!

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

Dave J.'s picture
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Big Wiper: There's a number of well documented instances where the theory I proposed doesn't hold. However, as with all science, biology is particularly prone to "usually". By that I mean that nothing is ever guranteed. The loss of bowel control is frequently the result of trauma, as you said, but my article tried to stay away from trauma, and in fact dealt with the whole process of you, yourself staying away from trauma. Your question fits in very nicely into my theory: let's assume you're being chased by said Saber toothed tiger. You don't poop, because you've still got a chance. Now let's assume that you stoped having a chance, and were bitten (rather badly, I'm afraid). There's your trauma, and to spite your mother for always telling you to wear clean underwear just in case you were in an accident, your sphincter makes a big wide "O". Well, it's really not to spite your mother, it's more a function of shock (in this case Hypovolemia). Your body "fears" it doesn't have enough blood to keep the major systems going, so it completly redirects it (I used the term redirect above in the article, but the blood supply is NEVER fully shunted away from the GI tract...that'd be dangerous and quite messy) away from ALL nonessential functions. In the case of severe trauma, this includes most, if not all skeletal muscles (sphincters included, although the only sphincter with skeletal muscle components (the rest are smooth muscle) is the anus). Think about it this way: you're shot in the gut, blood is pouring out. If your brain or heart doesn't get enough oxygen due to blood loss, what's the point in running? Your body will kill everything else in your body just to save the brain and heart (completly removing blood supply will kill tissue in 3-8 minutes, depending on the tissue type; skin lasts longer than GI epithelium).

Survive at all costs, I guess.

Thanks for the question, and I hope I helped!

Rogue Turd's picture
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"Free lunch in stall #2..."

ehehe.

"but only if you're into cannibalism or brown salami."

Interesting read all jokes aside though.

Dave J's picture
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Also, I gotta come a little bit clean now...Dave (from PR) helped a LOT with the creative imagry...I had the skeleton in place, and he filled it with the meat.

Thanks Dave!

The Big Wiper's picture
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Hey, man, I think I am ready to pass my first-year medical exams. Could I ask another question then? What's your take on the following situation: competitive athletes often take squirts and squats and dumps and whatever before a big competition. They don't necessarily want to, but as the particular event approaches, I believe their adrenalin surges, and sometimes the result is that the athlete ends up on the toilet, relieving himself/herself. I remember my cousin, who was a competitive swimmer, always ended up taking a dump before his meets. Sometimes, more than one dump. A firm one. Then an additional, nervous, runny one.

I can also recall getting nervous and having to take a dump before some stage performances I had in high school and college.

Give us your take on these, if you would.

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

Dave J's picture
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TBW- Well, if you look at it this way: "stage fright" or more accurately in this case, performance anxiety, is a known entity; your mind knows what you're about to do, and it also knows that what you are about to do scares you (even if only a little). Now, compare that to walking down a dark alley, and having a thug jump out at you. Sure, you're scared in both instances, but in the first, your body has TIME to prepare for the fright. It (your body) knows that it will be shunting blood away from the GI tract (even more so if you're an athelete...and even if you're not scared). When blood is shunted away from digestion, a number of not very tasty things happen: first, as I said earlier, digestion stops. Imagine having partially digested food in your stomach sitting there, not moving on is it normally would; it starts to get pretty funky, especially in a nice, moist, 98.6' bag. If food isn't digested in a timely fasion, it simply decays...and that's not good. But again, it's all the lesser of two evils: with the thug situation, you have a choice of either taking the time to hurl so the food won't decay, or you can just run like hell, and worry about it later. As you can see, if you stayed to hork, there may not BE a later.

Secondly, all the mostly digested food in your colon behaves just like the food (chyme) in the stomach; if left alone too long, the microbes will have a field day. This is even more of a problem in the colon than the stomach; the stomach's acidity keeps the bacteria to a minimum. With time (and not even that long, depending on ambient temperatures), the food will rot and produce copious quantities of gas. Again, however, that is a much better alternative than BEING food, and BECOMING copious quantites of gas.

With performance anxiety, your body knows it's about to drop the curtain on the digestive fandango, and so it simply elects to have you drop trau. Saves a lot of trouble.

Matthew's picture
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I'd also like to know the answer to the Big Wiper's question above. I'm not into competitive anything, let along running, yet I also take a no. 2 (of varying types/consistencies) when I'm nervous - eg before interview, travelling etc.

OTOH, my wife (a Japanese shameful shitter as previously reported on PR) locks up completely when nervous and goes for days on end without a poo.

Hmmm. Any ideas?

Dave J's picture
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TO ALL: you have no idea how happy this whole discussion has made me: I've gotten really tired of reading, "I EAT POOP" on the 'boards, and now, we have an actual discussion going on! Ipso facto, discussion board finally fulfilled to it's original potential...

The Big Wiper's picture
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Very thorough response, Dave J. Now, since we're getting into a discourse rhythm here, I guess my next thought would be to do a little shameless shitting advocacy here. It seems to me that the body would undergo some really onerous digestive tract stress--upper and lower--when someone who is shameful postpones dumping because of psychological perceptions such as 'other people being in the room,' 'being afraid of being heard, smelled or seen in a closed stall,' or 'absolutely refusing under any circumstance to get rid of poop if the only alternative is an open stall.'

Some people have posted that they have gone all day holding gas and turds in until they got home to the ONE toilet they could use. Wouldn't these shameful circumstances also produce some of the counterproductive digestive symptoms you have previously described? In this instance, doesn't being shameful put the person in a non-survival, extreme stress, trauma mode? Wouldn't being more casual and shameless be an advantage for health purposes here?

Your turn, my friend.

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

Dave J's picture
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You bring up some good points, but first let me clarify my stance: I am a moderatly shameless shitter. The only time I'm embarassed is if it's a co-ed situation.

In a short response to your statement, yes, it is more healthful to let 'er go whenever the need arises. However, holding it in doesn't necessarily subject the GI tract to the same sort of circumstances as mentioned previously. For example, have you ever held your pee so long, that you lost the whole urge to go? The kidney's know that there is already too much urine in the bladder, so they reprocess much of it into a more concentrated formula. Likewise, the colon will "reprocess" the stool, but it's job is different. The colon really doesn't participate in digestion very much, it's main function is reabsorption of water; by absobring more water as the stool sits in the lumen, the matter takes up less room, thereby enabling more of it to pack in. It's not really nearly as bad as causing the food to rot, and in principle, if the process keeps occuring, drying the stool out more and more, theoretically it will never rot. Drawback to this is well known though (and often lamented): constipation. I'd like to do a survey of shamefull and shameless shitters and finally determine once and for all the rates of constipation in each group. My money's on the no-shitters...

The Big Wiper's picture
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Well, speaking for myself as a shameless shitter, I can vouch for the fact that I rarely experience constipation. Exceptions would occur when I get out of my normal eating habits, probably due to travel, which can upset anyone's applecart. Man, am I enjoying this exchange with you!

Your comments on having to pee so bad that the feeling goes away are interesting. I posted not too long ago

on the forums on the subject of 'piss shivers.' I wanted to know if women got them the way men do. From the reponses I got from our female posters, I gathered that not nearly as many women get them as men do. But when I have gotten them from going way too long between leaks, they really caused me to grit my teeth hard and shake my head. (Thus, the shivers.)

Worst experience I ever had with that, however, was on a very long bus trip from Frankfurt, Germany, to Paris.

They only gave us one rest stop about three-quarters of the way through the trip, and I thought I was going to grind my teeth down to the gums I had to go so bad.

On top of that, when I finally got off the bus and made my way to the bathroom (and walkin' kinda funny, BTW), I discovered that this French rest stop was co-ed. I was just about to lift the curtain on Rob, Jr. and The Twins, when this French chick comes in and zeroes in on my fly. Shameless as I ordinarily am, I was just too far gone with the impending shivers to not turn away from her. I would have let fly then and there with just guys, but, I guess I have my limits, too. (She finally walked away, and I got the distinct impression she had wandered in in the first place just to check out our dicks!)

Anyhoo, that was the worst piss I've ever had to take and was NOT an example of my body shutting down the need, either. I was hurting pretty bad when I limped into that strange facility.

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

Dave J's picture
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I can't say that I'd mind a french chick checking me out...but funny story none the less!

As I've said, this whole field is full of "usually"s...

you might be one of the few that don't play well with others... heh... kidding.

Cheers,

DJ

Gutbuster's picture
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God Damn boys, don't get so freaking serious!

The Big Wiper's picture
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Hey, Dave, about the French chick with the wandering eyes at the urinals. Not sure how thrilled she would have been to have seen me piss a good gallon while making my best piss shiver face. I was just too uncomfortable at the time to think of much else except relieving myself as quickly and completely as possible.

BTW, upon further review--I don't think that bathroom was supposed to be co-ed. It was an ordinary-looking men's room with a row of dingy urinals and open stalls facing them. And since the chick appeared out of nowhere (she wasn't on the bus), I have to believe now, that that bathroom was her cruising territory. Maybe she got lucky from time to time, but I can tell you that the other guys from the bus pissing beside me weren't in any more attentive mood than I was. We just all had to go BADDDDD! Over and out--TBW!

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

The Big Wiper's picture
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Hey, gutbuster, tell us one of your hilarious Alaskan-Squatting-In-The-Wilderness tales. Dave J and I have already written a medical encyclopedia further up the thread! Enough of the 'serious shit' for now. Tell us another 'cherry-pit diarrhea' or 'frozen turd to a chorus of air horns' tale. LOL, podnuh!

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

Dave J's picture
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GutBuster: It's cool, I think we're done now...sorry to ruin the "atmosphere" here (get it? heh...fart joke)

Big Dumper's picture
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Dave J's article is amusing, but I agree with the Big Wiper that it's easy to poke holes in the logic behind it. For instance, where does the common expression "Scared shitless" come from? With all the war news about, there are a lot of stories in news magazines about how young marines and soldiers crap their pants as they go into battle for the first time. If Dave J's argument were correct this just wouldn't happen. Also, it just ain't true that poop is not poop until it reaches the rectum. As Dave says the colon can only absorb water from the poop so it gets harder and more solid as it passes through the colon. The colon cannot, however, absorb energy-producing material from its poop content. So poop in most of the colon is useless to the body and the main function of the colon is to expel it. Also, being a shameful shitter and holding one's dump back until one gets home just causes constipation, irritable colon, anal fissures and possibly colon cancer since there is much longer exposure of the colon lining to toxic materials in the stool. So I think that shameless shitters like the Big Wiper are more healthy from this point of view. Still, I liked the article, even though I don't buy many of the arguments in it. Good try, Dave J. It's great and extremely unusual to see a poop-related article that raises interesting points!

Pooperscooper's picture
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This is fascinating. Intellectually I am a shameless shitter-why I love this website so much. But functionally, my colon is a shameful shitter.

When Ive been acutely frightened, I get the trots. One vivid example was when I read the paper and discovered that this guy I dated in college 20 years ago had become addicted to drugs, stalked and terrorized his wife and was busted by the Feds and found to be in possession of heroin, psychedelics and firearms. The instant the news impacted me, I had to run to the john and crap. I remember thinking, 'Only thing good about this is I got a really good shit out of it.' Because I tend to be constipated.

When I am chronically anxious and/or my routine is disrupted, I get constipated. Years back I went on a two week visit to my moms side of the family. It was a wonderful visit, but nevertheless I was away from home. I drank tons of water. I added fiber to my meals. I walked 4 to 6 miles a day. I did abdominal exercises, all to no avail--I could only achieve small hard poops for the whole time.

I stepped off the shuttlebus and went to my house. The instant I stuck the key in the front door and turned it, my guts wrenched and experienced an earthquake. My eyes crossed and my knees buckled.

I almost tore the door of the hinges and went blazing down the hallway. My roomie asked 'How was your visit'

'I gotta use the bathroom, NOWWWW!' I screamed. It was one of those times when I had to undo my belt and start dropping my pants while running. Barely made it to the toilet on time and when I did, I saw God.

When I described this to my stepmom, she told me (after she stopped laughing) that she had a male coworker who was unable to shit unless at home. 'He cant travel away from home for more than a week' she told me.

And in the forums, someone mentioned a friend of his who was an army medic. His pal told him that many of the guys were shit shy when out in the field and after a week, they would return to the base all bunged up. The medic spent a lot of time giving enemas.

When I heard that story I sympathized. Knew exactly what those men were going through.

In another forum thread about the war, I described reading a Vietnam veteran's memoir. The guy survived a 99 day seige. They were under artillery bombardment and never knew whether an incoming round would kill him. Under fire, he was unable to shit--perfect illustraton of Dave J.s thesis.

Last but not least, when I am away from home, I often need laxatives in order to crap. Last year I was a crew member on a 7 day AIDS fundraiser bicycle ride. I took a laxative the last day of the ride. Ordinarily when out on the road, it would give me a normal dump. That day I got to my stepmom's house where I feel safe and secure. That change in psychological context caused me to relax and the dose of laxative in my system kept me chained to my stepmom's toilet during my entire visit. Had I been on the road, there would've been no problem because I would have been tight assed.

The colon is amazing. Some gastroenterolist says the human gut has the second richest cluster of neurotransmitter receptors after the brain and central nervous system; he has called the gut 'the second brain.' I like that.

The Big Wiper's picture
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Poops & Scoops--over on the forums, and not all that long ago, I invited the person who had introduced the comment about the gut being 'the second brain' in a previous article to come forward and acknowledge their brilliance. So glad, but not really surprised, to hear that it was you.

Wow! I think we can all be very proud of today's thread. A job well-done by all who participated!

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

poopshipdestroyer, a.k.a. M. Cortez's picture
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But wait--there's more!

This thread has pretty thoroughly examined all of the various connections between anxiety and poo elimination (or lack thereof), but I find I have a couple more questions in regard to your theoretical account of the subject, Dave J. I was hoping you could shed some light.

According to your theory, one of the reasons we don't poo when in fright mode is because of our cavefolk ancestry. The distinctive smell of poo alerts a would-be predator to one's whereabouts; fear-induced poo-freeze is thus an evolutionary survival mechanism, which is one possible explanation for contemporary Shamefulness.

My question, however, has less to do with the poo *not* running down your legs as you flee in terror from said sabertoothed tiger, and more to do with the pee that *is*, according to your theory. In other words, why would poo be any more distinctively human-smelling than pee? Wouldn't pee advertise one's whereabouts to potential predators just as much as poo would?

Also, to say that contemporary Shamefulness is a product of evolutionary adaptations would seem to imply that we would be a totally free-peeing people--and yet many folks suffer from Shy Bladder Syndrome.

My overall question for you, then, is this: how might a sociobiological explanation of why we poo but not pee when scared also address the fact of odoriferous human pee, not to mention the fact of contemporary pee-shame?

Thanks, Dave J (as well as anyone else who cares to answer).

Pooperscooper's picture
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Friends, I didnt invent the concept. A gastroenterologist named Gershon rediscovered the anatomic and biochemical basis of 'the second brain.' and wrote a book by that name. This article is fascinating. The human gut has more neuroreceptors than the spinal cord and this 'second brain' in our guts may be involved in decision making processes that are unconscious.

We Poopreporters are not just into pooping. Whether we know it or not, we are intuitively exploring the frontiers of human consciousness. Tell that the next time someone accuses us of being freaks. We are not. We are scientists and philosophers--on and off the pot!

http://www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_105441.html

Gerson's book 'The Second Brain' can be ordered through Amazon.com

Got my tax refund and I think thats what I am gonna spend it on.

The Big Wiper's picture
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Thanks for heads up on 'second brain' source. I had an idea. Just very recently, Dave had put up a post on the forums about poop books and maybe having a PR book review section. Maybe you could review this one for us and send that in to Dave to get such a concept started?

I can't imagine that Gerson's thesis is not correct. Intuitively, I am sure it is. About nine months ago as part of a physical checkup, I was asked by my doctor to do one of those precautionary hemocult (sp.?) tests. For those who don't know, that's where you basically dip three emory board-like sticks down into three separate craps you've taken over a short period of time, put the sticks in a sealed plastic bag and give them to a lab to examine.

The technicians are looking for signs of blood in your stuff, which would be an indicator of possible bowel cancer. Mine came back completely negative, as expected, since I had been having no other symptoms and this more along the lines of preventative medicine, so it was good to know the ole chocolate highway is still handling all the traffic admirably with no new construction on the horizon.

But regarding the 'second brain' thesis, I had to stop eating a shitload (ha!) of certain food items for ten days leading up to these three particular craps. No beef, lamb, pork, bacon (although I am much more a chicken and fish guy), no raw/al dente fruits and veggies (I love those), and some other things I really count on to satisfy me. As a result, my 'second brain' was surely confused by this new regimen and all but shut down on me, allowing me to produce only soft, tiny poops partly because my fiber content had been altered somewhat. I definitely missed the tactile sensation of passing the man-turds I am used to processing. But it also became difficult to determine when these personality-less poops would be emerging from my brown-birth ring.

I did have enough poop to jab those little sticks into, but as soon as the test was over, I noted that my crap returned to normal. I am inclined to believe that my body was nervous over the test results more than anything else, and this was reflected in my scarce, wimpy poop. Voila! Confirmation of 'second brain' theory.

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

Dave's picture
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There's a tear in my eyes, ladies and gentlemen. When I started PoopReport, one of the explicit goals was to engender intelligent disucssion about poop. And while there have been plenty of great discussions in the past, this is one of the best we've had. Thanks, everyone. This is exactly what I wanted PoopReport to be.

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Two things, Dave: 1) thanks for giving us the forum to realize your vision and 2) good things are worth waiting for. You just needed the right cast of characters to show up. And...we're here!

Dave For Prez In 2004! Forget the Re-poop-licans and the Demo-craps!

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

Pooperscooper's picture
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Big Wiper, I bet that's precisely what happened to you: the 'second brain' in your gut was indeed anxious about the test results, and became tensed up. As soon as you got the all-clear from your doc, your second brain relaxed. Thats probably why your pooping rhythm returned to normal so rapidly. If your change in food intake had been the only variable, you might have needed an extra day or two for your dumps to resume their normal pattern.

I'm going to the forum to start a thread on 'Gut Feelings--How Did You Discover You Could Trust Your Gut?'

Dave J's picture
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BIG DUMPER: Sorry to poke holes in your intelligence, but think about it: what does "less" mean? As in "Brainless"...means no brains. Therefore, scared shitless = scared to the point of absence of shit. QED.

Dave J's picture
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I'm glad this "article" could generate such thought. Again, to BIG DUMPER, I appologize...I get a little brash when I feel insulted. It took a little while for my "second brain" to realize it was merely a question. Please don't take offense (but please take my answer literally).

To WEEN (AKA Poopshipdestroyer...great band, BTW)

Urine has such a thin viscosity (i.e. water) that it is readily absobred into the ground, and, when released en masse, as such is likely to happen in a Tiger incident, does not leave a trail. In addition, urine provides no "information" as to the diet of the individual that created it. The only things urine can show

Dave J's picture
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Sorry, cut myself off mid-stream. No pun intended.

Anyway, the only things urine can show (to a CHEMIST, not a wild cat) are: nitrates, salinity, pH, hormone leves, and maybe blood type (if you're suffering from hematuria). THe only thing a cat would know is that a) you're not another cat (pheremones = hormones) and b) that you've got bad bladder control. Crap, however, can indicate a plethora of eating habits to a predator. If you eat a lot of meat, your poo tends to be more rancid, and runny. Therefore, you'd be a good meal to the predator. In addition, poo is thick (usually), and so it lingers, both on the ground, on the legs (remember, you're running) and on any undergarments you may be wearing. Also, despite pee's fragrant "nose" (a nod to fellow wine enthusiasts), poo has a much stronger "head". In other words, sure, pee stinks...but not as much as poo, and not for as long.

Let's keep this going, I think this might be the longest intelligent thread on the site...

Dave J's picture
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TO BIG DUMPER: You've got a good point about poo not being poo until in the rectum, but I think you might be missing a big point in your argument. What are the three things the human body needs to survive?

Answer: Food, water and air.

True, once in the colon the only good thing to come out of poop is water, but, water is still important enough to hold on to, especially in survival situations. Sure, the poo can no longer be metabolized (i appologize if my article came off to imply that it could, which I'm pretty sure it did, so thanks for correcting me), but as the rule of 3's says:

One can survive:

3 weeks without food

3 days without water

3 minutes without air.

Sorry, and thanks!

The Big Wiper's picture
PoopReport of the Year AwardComment Quality Moderatori 2000+ points
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Well, Dave J, I think this thread is already a classic. Head Honcho Dave has said as much. I guess the points I was trying to make in my responses to you were that shameless shitting (at least in the civilized world in which you and I are living versus the African steppe where strategies for running from lions and such would be truly pertinent) was probably a lot less stressful to the body and the psyche that the many ruses and poses some shameful shitters adopt.

I think that will remain my position, but you have given all of us a lot of food (and poop) for thought, my friend.

Pulling My Pants Down For Peace, Plop and Posterity!

Dave J's picture
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Glad I could help!

Gutbuster's picture
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As far as animal instinct and the involuntary closing of sphincters is concerned, I will say that I ride a lot of horses and if you startle one or cause him to run in fright he will fart a symphony! A horse can shit whil walking and even at a trot, but he can't shit and run and can only piss while standing still and all stretched out. Just like me! No I can't shit and walk or trot and shit, I mean I have to stretch out to pee. And usually have to use both hands to keep my wank from dipping into the toilet water.

jt's picture
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I work on the 6th floor of an office building..We have nice clean restrooms up here compared to lower floors . I pretty much have the shitter to myself . However theres this one Guy from a foriegn floor I believe he comes from the 1st floor . Like clock work right after lunch he sneaks up to the 6th floor to take is shit...WEll this pisses me off quite severly...He is importing his shit from below just cause he doesnt want anyone on his floor seeing him shit. So i wrote a litte note on the bathroom stall wall that he always uses saying: " If you do not belong on the 6th floor then stop bring your shit up here" I think he got the message and now shits on the 5th floor........

Captain Feces's picture
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I've been following this string or some time and believe I might have some insightful contributions. Poop in the rectum is highly toxic as it contains a mixture of bacteria that are very harmful to the rest of the body. A tear or slight abrasion of the intestines or rectum can unleash these critters into the bloodstream where they will wreak some serious havoc. Considering this, it makes perfect sense that an organism (humans included)confronted by a serious threat would be designed to expel any excess poop to the point that if injured, ther would be that much less poop to potentially infect the body. The last thing a caveman needs after surviving an attack from a Saber-toothed tiger is to die of Sepsis a few days later. This happens paradoxically, even while tension in the body causes the muscles to tighten.

Pootastic's picture
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A bit late to the discussion. But you should know that in the Larry McMurtry book Dead Man's Walk, Indians were picking off members of the posse every time they would run behind a bush to take a dump. The posse would then find the mutilated corpse... became quite reluctant to relieve themselves as a result... hilarity ensued. Anyway, good book, if you like Westerns. And certainly credible that the act of defecating in private could expose one to attack by hostile animals and/or people (of course several movies feature scenes where someone is surprised and shot dead by gunmen while on the toilet - none come to mind right now - but our inherent vulnerability while performing one of life's most basic functions is rich fodder for intellectual reflection the next time you are at it yourself)

Ox Ramsey's picture
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Can someone tell me if there is a medical term for the pee shivers? If not, can someone point me in the right direction?

Tiger's picture
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I know exactly what you guys are talking about. When faced with fear or stress, I find it impossible to shit, sometimes for days at a time. I guess we would rather constipate ourselves and go later as opposed to making ourselves vulerable (as discussed above.)

As far as the "pee shivers," I get them too when I really have to pee. If I hold it long enough, the feeling comes and goes as it pleases. When I finally get the chance to piss, I have no problem draining myself of a gallon of pee around others, as long as no one is looking directly at it. As far as a medical term for this, looks like I'll have to use Google.

Double Flush's picture
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Wow, I've come so far... I was looking at "This Day in PR History" and came back to this post. I remember reading it when it was new, and finally I had the nerve to comment on it. In fact, the one directly above (by Tiger) is mine. It feels so good to be registered and throw in my two cents often!

_______
Practicing the ancient Chinese art of double flushing... because sometimes, a single flush just isn't enough.

[Insert witty banter here]