I am a site engineer. Once, my project manager called me and yelled at me because I was not around when a delivery arrived. I told my manager I was in the toilet at the time, which is a true. Afterwards, the assistant of the project manager came to my work place and started teasing me with my immediate boss. They said that my boss had not taught me manners, because I told a project manager I was in the toilet.

My question is, is it really wrong to say what I did in that situation? If I didn't say that he would have assumed that I was roaming somewhere avoiding work.

  • (I appreciate English may not be your first language, which is perfectly OK) But could you try to clarify the sentence "you have not taught manus to your assistant he tells he was pissing, in front of a project manager.", as it's not clear what you are trying to say.
    – user81330
    Aug 28, 2018 at 15:02
  • @Bilkokuya might it be "manners"?
    – rath
    Aug 28, 2018 at 15:04
  • i mean they were telling that infront of a person like project manager is wrong.since i told i was in toilet. Aug 28, 2018 at 15:06
  • 1
    @vinayakumarJ I've done my best to edit this into clearer English, however - it is my best interpretation, and so if this does not reflect your intended meaning, please reject/rollback.
    – user81330
    Aug 28, 2018 at 15:13
  • 1
    I'm afraid this might be very localized. For example, in my country, saying "I took a piss" would be bad manners indeed (too much intimate detail), while "I was using the restroom" or even "I was using the toilet" is the polite way to put it. I have no idea about your region, culture and language of India, but it seems you might be the best person to answer your own question.
    – nvoigt
    Aug 28, 2018 at 18:58

2 Answers 2


There are always more appropriate ways to say unappropriate things. In many cultures "I was in the toilet" may seem somewhat crude or manner-lacking, so you could use widely used synonyms and euphemisms.

Some euphemisms I know of are

I was heeding the call of nature

I was in a private meeting

I had to excuse myself

I went to the bathroom

I was washing my hands

The problem with these is that the other party has to know exactly what you mean in order to prevent trouble. Someone could misinterpret them deliberately and accuse you of lazing around. So saying "I was in the toilet" might be better than "I was washing my hands" in this particular situation.

As Mister Positive already stated, you should make sure someone is available if and when you expect a delivery, phone call, visitor or things like that. It's enough to tell them "Please stay here in case the delivery arrives. I have to be away for a few minutes." No need for more details.

  • 2
    Those are euphemisms, not synonyms.
    – mob
    Aug 28, 2018 at 18:05

Telling the truth as you did was the right thing to do, lying serves no purpose. In this case, I would ignore the minor teasing and put it out of your mind.

The next time something is to be delivered, be sure someone is watching for it should you need to take a break of any kind. (Lunch, toilet, etc.)

  • 3
    Or, if there's no one else around, you can also put up a sign saying "Back in 5 minutes"
    – David K
    Aug 28, 2018 at 16:27
  • Euphemisms aren't lies, and it's often socially expected to use them (the same could be said about not oversharing). Although I don't see much of a problem with "in the toilet". Aug 28, 2018 at 17:09
  • @Dukeling The truth usually suffices in a case like this.
    – Neo
    Aug 28, 2018 at 17:13
  • yep, just ignore it or joke back 'yeah really I'm Batman and had to go out save some lives for a minute'
    – Kilisi
    Aug 28, 2018 at 20:24

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