Urinal Cakes Aren’t for Eating

peeanalyserIn my old age, it’s  been quite some time since I went to a club. However, I would bet that there are quite a few people who drive home after a night of clubbing when there’s no way they should be behind the wheel due to intoxication.

Thus a headline recently caught my eye involving a very clever way to alert the club if you’re too drunk to drive. In Singapore, there is a company that makes pee-analyzing urinal cakes that test your urine on the spot for alcohol levels.

But they don’t stop there. The urinal cake is linked to a microchip in a ticket you get from the valet after giving them your keys. So if you show up at the valet ready to drive home, they know if you should actually be driving or not and can call a cab for you if necessary.

I think this is pretty brilliant. I wonder how effective it would be if it were incentivized instead of enforced. For example, you pee into the urinal (or toilet for the ladies), the urinal cake tests your pee on the spot, and if you’re over the legal limit, a small printer at the top of the urinal dispatches a ticket with a $5 taxi discount and the phone number for that taxi. The taxi company wins, the club wins, the drunk person wins, and I win because there are fewer drunk drivers on the road.

Do you think that would work? Or could you see a majority of people disregarding the urinal cake and the ticket and just driving home anyway?


10 Responses to “Urinal Cakes Aren’t for Eating”

  1. Darcy says:

    I think that’s a great idea, but I bet a lot of people would dispose of the ticket – either because they are at that point where they think they are fine to drive and don’t need a taxi, or because their eyes are just too blurry to read what the ticket even says. I really like the sneaky way they do it in Singapore, where the drunk person doesn’t necessarily make the decision. NOT that I drink a lot, but I have been known to partake, and I could totally see myself getting this ticket from a toilet and thinking it’s hilarious, and not having any idea what it was for, or forgetting it or something!
    On a side note, how is Big Koala’s girlfriend Koala doing? 😉

    • Jamey Stegmaier says:

      Darcy–That’s a good point, having a toilet print a ticket for you might be more amusing than effective.

      Koala is doing well! How is Big Koala?

      • Darcy says:

        He still misses his eye, he says he would use it to gaze upon the countenance of Koala. I also meant to mention in my comment, I used to hate the phrase “urinal cake” (apparently I became used to it) because it comes something gross with delicious cake. One year for my birthday a friend baked a cake in the shape (sort of) of a urinal and I really did eat “urinal cake”!

  2. T-Mac says:

    Not a bad start to an idea….however, would the pee for discount idea encourage people to overdrink if they were planning to take cabs anyway?

  3. Ansley says:

    My questions about logically doing this:
    1) Would there need to be a new urinal cake for each person? That’s a lot of urinal cakes.
    2) If the same urinal cake is used for each person, is there a way to….rinse it? I don’t want to be flagged as drunk because Betsy Sue in front of me is sloshed.
    3) This seems expensive…how would you make it affordable for all?
    4) Women don’t pee on cakes….we pee in water (most women aren’t so good with the aiming, although those of us who have lived in Asia are pretty good!) and thus the urine would be diluted. How do we solve that problem?

    I’m probably thinking about this way too much.

    • Jamey Stegmaier says:

      Ansley–Urinal cakes last a while, so you would only need to change them once a week or so. I think it would reset after a flush.

      I actually don’t think it would be all that expensive. Receipt printers are pretty cheap, and if the technology is there for the urinal cakes, I don’t think it would be that bad. Maybe the price could be offset by a deal with the city and the taxi company.

      For women…that’s a good question. However, I know that many Japanese toilets are able to test your urine for diseases regardless of your gender. So I think there must be a way around that.

  4. Lindsay says:

    I think this is the start of a great idea, but I don’t know that it could actually work. For instance, if the urinal cake says you’re ok to drive, so you do, but then you get pulled over and blow over the limit, what would your excuse be? “But officer! The urinal cake at the bar said I was fine to drive!” Doesn’t seem like it would hold up in court. Haha. However, I’ve never taken a breathalyzer test after drinking, and I do think it would be a good thing to know roughly what your limit it is. Just not sure on how to implement a solution.

    • Jamey Stegmaier says:

      “But officer! The urinal cake at the bar said I was fine to drive!”

      That made me laugh out loud. I hope a cop someday gets to hear that line.

  5. Katie says:

    Stop using the phrase urinal cakes! It’s making me hungry yet disgusted and now my brain hurts.

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