Canadian Snowboarder Draws Attention to Bizarre Bathroom Rules at Sochi


A tweet from Canadian snowboarder Sebastien Toutant is drawing attention to some bizarre rules posted for the bathrooms at Sochi.

ToutantTweeted Toutant: "Well that's interesting… Sochi rules in the bathrooms!! #haha #olympics" 

Writes The Independent:

In one, a stick man can clearly be seen fishing, with a rod, in the toilet. The reasoning behind this remains unclear – with fishing not included as a sport at the winter games, athletes are unlikely to have brought equipment along with them.

It seems equally unlikely that the architects of the $51 billion (£300 billion) games would have cut costs by building toilets over frozen fishing lakes.

While it is a little more understandable, the sign instructing athletes not to do drugs in the toilets also seems a little gratuitous, given the games’ strict anti-doping policies and structures.

Of course, it's not the first weird news we've received about the bathrooms at Sochi.


  1. Bill says

    One sign seems to mean “don’t barf in the toilette. I guess they want you to use the sink instead. The guy standing on the toilette is probably directed at people from countries where the toilette is at floor level and you are supposed to squat.

    I don’t get the “fishing” one unless it means “don’t take too long.” The one on the bottom right doesn’t make sense at all – I must be missing something. Maybe both are based on some Russian idioms and you have to know those to get it.

  2. Narducci says

    My guess is that the assumption is that the people doing these bizarre actions on the toilet are drunk, so don’t look to hard for explanations for why they would stand on the toilet for example; I’ve seen similar jocular warnings on toilets in slavic countries before.

  3. Jmac says

    I’d say the fishing one is a joke that didn’t land, unless toilet fishing is a common practice in Russia.

  4. Jmac says

    I’d say the fishing one is a joke that didn’t land, unless toilet fishing is a common practice in Russia.

  5. Kevin says

    The one in the middle row on the right reminds me of my time on the Indian subcontinent where sit down toilets are not common. I remember seeing shoe prints on the toilet seat of a toilet in Kathmandu’s airport.

  6. anon says

    The Olympic committee probably has guidelines for this sort of thing owing to foreign cultural differences, though the winter games remain very whitebread.

  7. Lexis says

    @Bill – I think the one on the lower right is explained in the article: “No doing drugs in the toilet” (as the stick figure looks to be ‘shooting up’ with a syringe the size of a turkey baster).

  8. Steve Talbert says

    Standing on the toilet is what many Chinese do when they find western toilets. We had that problem with an employee of another office tenant on the same floor, and the woman said that it was worse to sit on the seat. Also you hear about it more because Chicago is trying to get more Chinese tourism.

    Some Middle Eastern toilets are the same way – “flush” with the floor – not a pun.

  9. Steve Talbert says

    The “do not stand while urinating” is probably so you don’t splash the guy sitting 3 inches away at the other toilet. (see other pics)

  10. Bill says

    @Lexis : the graphics didn’t register to me as something about drugs. It looked to me like someone trying to climb up the ‘X’ with two handholds, the right foot heel hooking, and the left one flagging – kind of a boulder problem with a “sit” start. But that’s a bit odd given the location.

  11. JR says

    I squat on the toilet… it doesn’t quite look like the fourth picture, but it’s a much cleaner way to take a poop.

  12. Jim in TO says

    This is NOT from Sochi, Sebastien is having it on. A quick Google image search found this in the May 11, 2010 NY Times.

  13. BrokebackBob says

    The one about fishing might be if you drop something in the can and use a fishing pole to get it? Now that’s probably widespread behavior in Russia.

  14. redball says

    D’oh! Seems like a lot of you have never used (or never heard of) the Squatty Potty and other similar brands.

    I got mine in 2013 and, maaaaaaaaaan, it’s so good for bowel health and for avoiding and relieving constipation. and it also expedites your “process” :-).

    When you gotta “go,” squatting is the way to do it. That’s how our GI tract was designed to work.

  15. Truth seeker says

    The bottom left is a take off on the phrase “fish or cut bait” that has morphed into the vernacular “$hit or get off the pot” (pot being slang for toilet) in the 1900s.