For Your Convenience
Published in 1937 the author, ‘Paul Pry’, was actually Thomas Burke of Limehouse Nights fame. This small, vintage book takes the form of a conversation between some slightly snobby older man, Mr Mumble and the younger working class hottie at a gentlemen’s club over a magazine they are both apparently interested in. The Sanitary World and Drainage Observer. They then have an in-depth conversation about all the various public toilets in central London where you can get ‘full relief’ supposedly after excessive consumption of tea or lager. It’s tongue in cheek, suggestive, po-faced , geographically accurate and seemingly ‘wink wink’ knowingly insightful dialogue gives the clear impression that this is a guide to where men can meet men for ‘relief’ .
It reads like a Jane Austin guide to cottaging at a time when homosexuality was illegal but that’s part of its charm. Subversive whilst pretending to be upright and informative this is a smart reprint of perhaps the first queer city guide. This is a proper lavatory book ; and on the last page, the two men go off to the lavatory together (‘I’m coming that way too. Lead on, my boy.’)
For more info or to buy this curates egg of a book see the publishers website here: