The Public Eye

printed 02/28/2020

In news of the world this week, it appears that Brazil could be contributing to sea level rise by virtue of inveterate, nonstop, unrepentant tinkling in public.

It’s a fact, according to reports that continue to trickle into national news outlets, which apparently are weary of splattering their pages with the same old, same old.

Brazilian authorities say this public relief effort, as it were, is especially prevalent during Carnival, which apparently makes Mardi Gras look like 4-H camp minus the beads, and that things have gotten so out of hand that it’s causing the infrastructure to crumble.

No kidding. Experts say the chemical composition of this personal liquidation effort is such that it dissolves concrete, an assertion that makes me think these people should reevaluate their drinking habits.

My dogs drink nothing but water, for instance, and I’ve yet to see the first pothole in the road out front, although this is not to say that, if they had a pre-existing pothole to — ahem — in, they wouldn’t make it worse.

Not so in Brazil during Carnival, when hundreds of thousands of drunken revelers routinely turn into urinary tract stars so they can party-on day and night.

Authorities also say most people do it out of convenience (and out everywhere else, I guess). But while that might work for them, and possibly shoe manufacturers, now that I think about it, it doesn’t do much for the person who has to maintain the lampposts and other targets in Rio (that’s Spanish and Portuguese for “river,” which I think is kind of ironic).

But this is all true, including the conclusion by engineers that the upper tier of a soccer stadium in the northern city of Salvador didn’t so much collapse because of weight in 2007, as it was wee-whacked to smithereens by stubborn spectators, who elected to go with the flow where they were rather than excuse themselves briefly and miss any of the game.

I will admit that I was unaware of the destructive nature of this sort of thing, but it does make me wonder why French novelist Alexandre Dumas made the Count of Monte Cristo wait six years to escape from his island prison in another inmate’s body bag, when he could have said, “Hey, mon ami, watch this!” and etched his way to freedom.

But that would be fiction, and this isn’t, including Rio de Janeiro’s creation of a police division specifically to patrol the city for wayward whizzers. The fine for a violation? $140 in U.S. dollars.

One supposes that repeat offenders would pay a wee bit more.

So be advised, if you intend to visit Rio, it would be wise to remember:

This Brazilian piggy went to market;

This Brazilian piggy stayed home;

This Brazilian piggy had roast beef;

This Brazilian piggy had none;

And this Brazilian piggy went … wee-wee-wee all the way home. And was arrested.

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