Looking back, I could well have been arrested. Phoning up the Swiss Embassy to ask if men are allowed to stand up to urinate after 10 pm could have gone disastrously wrong.
“That’s complete nonsense and one of the many perpetual myths spread about Switzerland,” said the spokeswoman patiently. Such a wonderful response. I think I might be in love.
Why the phone call? Well, visiting www.dumblaws.com had led me to believe that, unlikely though it seemed, a law still existed in Switzerland prohibiting men from doing so. There are a wealth of laws listed from around the globe, many of them presumably archaic or unenforceable, yet this does not detract from the joys of imagining otherwise.
For example, do not go to Texas if you intend to purchase more than six dildos. I was going to enquire further but I’ve been banned from the phone.
Mysteriously, if you’re travelling by railway in that particular state, the train driver cannot progress beyond a railway crossing should there be a train approaching from the opposite direction. Under Texan law, each train must come to a complete stop until the other has passed. Surely there’s an inherent flaw here.
For the remainder, let’s just stick closer to home where there are further examples of laws yet to be repealed. Having Welsh roots, I was a little shaken to learn that in Chester you may “only shoot a Welsh person with a bow and arrow inside the city walls and after midnight.” Such a relief to learn that further south in Hereford “you may not shoot a Welsh person on Sunday with a longbow in the Cathedral Close.”
These laws are at least understandable, given the proximity of the Welsh border and the bloody history between England and Wales.
Now make sense of the next one, enforced during the reign of Edward VI. Though the monarch was dead by the age of 16 with TB, surely even such a young monarch was a bit bonkers to decree that: Any person found breaking a boiled egg at the sharp end will be sentenced to 24 hours in the village stocks.
Anyway, let’s finish with more wee. Apparently, a male may urinate in public, as long as it is on the rear wheel of his car and his right hand is touching the vehicle.
Don’t even ask. I’m allowed to use the phone again.