Saturday, March 5, 2011

My Life in the Toilet


I think you can tell a lot about a person/s and their relationship based on one thing:

Send them out to agree on and buy toilet paper.

Now, this is not some task that will make or break a relationship, like choosing Skim or 2% milk, tucked or un-tucked covers, or even Pepsi vs. Coke – but it IS a very valuable gem of knowledge that can clue you in on a person.

Let’s be honest here – toilet paper can change your life. For those of you who are rolling your eyes, I would just like to share that at the place I work (and probably most large companys) they buy their supply of toilet paper from a wholesale office supply company who probably gets it from some other country. (why we can’t get our own “made in the USA” ass wiping mechanisms is beyond me, but anyway).

So regardless, wherever it comes from, it is made, I am guessing from the bark of the prickly pear tree, because the stuff that is in every corporate office I have ever been in, feels like using a cheese grater to wipe my ass – and the ironic part, is that it has the flimsiness of cotton candy. And so NATURALLY, we are going to put this cotton candy-like prickly pear ass-wiping bark onto a roll that is the size of a semi tire, and laugh in our offices hysterically when we visualize people in the stalls, trying to get the momentum of this “Price is Right” wheel of toilet paper spinning so you can attempt to break off more than just a ply, or a corner….I really don’t think I am alone in this when I say I find this to be a frustrating task. A public bathroom in general is not where you want to be for any extended period of time (refer to earlier “Poop Row” blog) and much less do I want to be sitting /squatting, ripping off tiny snips of paper to gather enough to clean up the crime scene!

Morale is lowered, people. When I get in to work in the morning and I realize I have drank too much coffee too early, and the first thing I have to do is make a visit…I know it is going to take some sort of “good” to improve my mood when I walk out of that ladies’ room.

But when I am home, with access to my own CHOSEN toilet paper, the bathroom visits, are pleasant, no bark, no cotton candy flimsiness…almost a joy, if you will.

So toilet paper IS a big deal.

You realize this more when you are the shotgun rider for someone who needs to buy toilet paper for. This was me, yesterday. I was the accompliss on a very daring, very informative toilet paper caper.

A good friend of mine realized he needed to buy some toilet paper for his business location, as the person actually RESPONSIBLE to buy the toilet paper, had not. So this was strike 1. He had to go do it – or else his customers would be unhappy. (the whole morale thing)
Strike 2, was actually having to go buy the toilet paper, with me present. Toilet paper is tricky business, much like if you realize you need to go buy tampons and you are with opposite sex. Not that it necessarily is bothersome, but just puts an odd, embarrassment in the air.

So myself, of course, I am all about it – its JUST toilet paper. We venture to the local grocer or drugstore, wherever was closest. On the way, I see a CVS and a Walgreens. Both of which have toilet paper for sale. So the decision is put to my friend, “CVS or Walgreens?”. And the answer I received was, “They don’t sell toilet paper.”



Sitting in the middle of the 3 lanes, almost slowed to a stop, while I try and convince this (college-educated) man, that yes! in fact, they DO carry toilet paper, along with many other products. He indicates there is a Marsh just north of us, and they have it there. I say, “Well, actually that’s a Kroger, but yes, they do have it there too. But they really do have toilet paper at CVS.”

He takes my suggestion, after an unconvincing, “Ok, whatever you say” and we head into CVS.

Of course, finding the toilet paper was easy enough, but then we get to the actual decision making. Granted, at a place like CVS, you are limited with options. I was already told, “I don’t buy CVS toilet paper.” So the generic was out. Ok fine. Charmin? Cottonelle? The Good Earth recycled kind?

We did not want ridges. The recycled kind looked scary. No patterns. I don’t want any that is too soft. Ohhhhh, that looks like it will leave the powdery-residue…can’t have that….is that a single roll or a double roll? I want a big roll, but not too big. I need to be able to hold it with one hand, I don’t want to have to use 2 hands to carry 1 roll…12 rolls is too much! Well how come they don’t have this in more than 4 rolls? Hey this one has 12000 sheets in the package, but I don’t see where this one has the number of sheets listed…here, we need to look and get a sheet comparision…..

Needless to say, I stopped making toilet paper suggestions and shut the hell up – mostly, to watch as this very common, potentially daily decision was being tossed around in the head of my friend. Finally a choice was made.

We went with the 9 roll pack of the Charmin in the red. (Big squeeze? Or something like that) He liked that, the Big Squeeze…I found that on an endcap and eyes lit up like Christmas lights – so that must have been good! I think it made his day…

In the end (har har har), never underestimate the power of toilet paper.



  1. Charmin® Sensitive, because pampering is what it’s all about! Yes, I even have it with me in my overnight bag for “away games”.

  2. You seem to have forgotten the last bit of this - which way to you load the TP on the dispenser: pulled over the top or pulled from the bottom. You would be amazed at the arguments with this little detail, too. ;-)


  3. Its clearly over the top. Behind causes the paper to statically stick to the wall. Why would anyone want to make life any harder for themselves than it already is. Why not put the toilet paper in another room altogether so you cant see it and offend anyone. Then when you gotta go, you hobble over to the other room with your pants around your ankles and wave to your guests. See? Two birds with one stone -- no offensive TP in the bathroom and an extra friendly host who waves to guests while hobbling to retrieve the hidden TP. Winning!