This is How You Poop in Space, In Case You Ever Become an Astronaut

When you were a little kid, you probably wanted to be an astronaut, right? I mean, who wouldn't want to fly into space, float around in zero gravity, and eat dehydrated ice cream? But there are some not-so-glamorous aspects to the astronaut life, like for instance, pooping in space. The people at the European Space Agency created an instructional video on how to use the bathroom in space, and let's just say it's not something I'm itching to try, like, ever. It's a good thing that space freaks me out and I never had a desire to travel outside our planet, anyway.

After watching this video, I can say without hesitation that the definitive ranking of Places I Would Never Want to Go to the Bathroom are as follows: space; closely followed by the outdoors (going #1 in the woods isn't that bad, but #2 is pretty awful, and once I had my period while hiking through the desert and that was a scene out of a horror movie); followed by the car (something I hope to never have to try); with the bathrooms on the LIRR coming in last.

I am not sure how much the going rate is for astronauts these days, but you could not pay me to use this commode. Here's how it works:

First, you pee in this tube.

The tube utilizes suction to move your urine effectively down the tube, where it eventually gets recycled into potable water.

Also, do you see how small that little yellow funnel-type thing at the top is? How good does your aim have to be in order to not get everything all over your hand? I never knew astronauts had to have such superior hand-eye-bowel coordination. I guess you really do learn something new everyday.

Then, you go #2 on this tiny little toilet "seat."

The astronaut does explain that you don't really sit on the seat. I guess you use the powers of weightlessness and your great quad muscles to squat and aim perfectly? I don't even know.

And your stuff goes into this plastic bag, which looks like this:

When you're finished doing your business, you take the bag and push it into the solid waste container. With your own two hands.


Well, that was all my squeamish disposition could handle, but you can watch the whole video below.

European Space Agency, ESA on YouTube

I'm glad that we've got the whole "pooping in space" thing covered, but still, the greatest pooping-related question of our time remains unanswered: how did CatDog go to the bathroom? The world may never know.


Images: European Space Agency / Youtube; Giphy