Home / AMERICAN NEWS / Why Do People Point To Their Wrists When They Want To Know What Time It Is But They Don’t Point To Their Pants When They Need To Ask Where The Restroom Is? — ‘The Why’

Why Do People Point To Their Wrists When They Want To Know What Time It Is But They Don’t Point To Their Pants When They Need To Ask Where The Restroom Is? — ‘The Why’

Welcome to the newest edition of The Why “Why do people point to their wrists when they want to know what time it is, but they don’t point to their pants when they need to ask where the restroom is?” you ask? Good question.  (Any question that keeps us from answering the question “Why do some men shave their coital coin purse?” is a good question, in fact.)

(Yes, anyone who has worked in a customer service position in California knows some Hispanic men actually do point to their crotches when they think the employees don’t know what “banyo” means. In fact, one online source indicates that “both Frenchmen and Italians use a ‘zip/unzip’ motion to indicate (the) need” but let’s not get distracted by sad exceptions to the rule.)

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Why do people point to their wrists when they want to know what time it is, but they don’t point to their pants when they need to ask where the restroom is?/Image: LifeHacker

First off, we know the question is a one-liner. Some credit it to George Carlin’s “Things That P*ss Me Off.”   He explains he gets p*ssed off by “people who point at their wrist while asking for the time. I know where my watch is buddy, where the f**k is yours? Do I point at my crotch when I ask where the bathroom is?”

Using that logic perhaps people think others are a little slow and they want to make sure they know where their watch is worn. On the other hand, they might assume that everyone knows where their naughty bits are located. Now let’s look at what some online posters think.

FlutherPoster “jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities” believes it could be confusing because in some “foreign countries they might just get directed to the local prostitute.”  “Hungryhungryhortence”, on the other hand, people don’t point at their crotches because it has another meaning.

She states: “Small children tug on the front of their pants to signal they want to go to the bathroom.Grown people tug on the front of their pants to signal they want you to follow them into the bathroom.” (That of course begs the question: “How does she know that?” but that’s a question for another series, mmmkay?)

Seriously though, it more than not is just a matter of manners. Grabbing one’s crotch is a universally rude gesture.   Certainly pointing to one’s crotch can’t be far behind. Besides, as “ratboy” pointed out: “In polite society, people indicate the need in question by performing ‘The Pee-Pee Dance’.”

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Why do people point to their wrists when they want to know what time it is, but they don’t point to their pants when they need to ask where the restroom is?/Image: Joomlatag

When one points to his wrist he is indicating the lack of a watch and simultaneously acknowledging the other person possesses one and is asking the person to share the information it provides. As poster “WhatTheFluther” points out: “Applying the same logic would therefore suggest that by pointing to one’s crotch, one is basically saying: ‘I don’t have one; I believe you do; will you share?’ No matter how you look at it, the latter gesture can be confusing, rude and not logical in comparison.

Why do people point to their wrists when they want to know what time it is, but they don’t point to their pants when they need to ask where the restroom is? Now you know.

You ask the questions.  We provide the answers.

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About Will Phoenix

W. Scott Phoenix, B.A., B.S. was born in Hawaii, raised in Pennsylvania and resides in California. He has been a published writer since 1978. His work has appeared (under various names) in numerous places in print and online including Examiner.com. He is a single parent of three children and has also worked as an actor, singer and teacher. He has been employed by such publications as the Daily Collegian and the Los Angeles Times.
  • Carmen gonzales

    Love the humor, Mr. Phoenix! Love George Carlin, too!

    • Will Phoenix

      I have read Carlin’s books and seen all his performances and heard some of his albums and I have to say that his fans who do not rea the books are not missing much.