As the matriarch of my family, I am constantly amazed by what my little brood can do. Take, for instance, the skill of my 8 year old son, who can navigate a video game before I can even figure out how to turn the thing on. My 10 year old daughter has learned to tack up a horse and can actually get on it, something I am too chicken to attempt. My husband can coordinate a crew of 15 men forming 25,000 square feet of foundation, and I can’t even understand the blueprints. So can someone please explain to me why none of those marvellous people can replace the roll of toilet paper in the bathroom?


In my house, toilet paper is an ever elusive commodity. I always buy gigantic bags with 16 rolls of the plush stuff and then curse the creator of such packaging for creating something so huge I cannot stuff it into my linen closet, or under my sink. It’s impractical. Sometimes I divide the package, half upstairs, half downstairs. That doesn’t work either. Children under the age of 10 mistake rolls of toilet tissue for paper towels, using it to clean up such incidents as bathtub water fights, spilled dog water dishes, toothpaste gone awry, and yes, pee also gone awry – despite having the body equipment that makes the term “point and shoot” seem fairly clear. Before you know it, the stock of toilet paper in the downstairs bathroom has vanished. I never notice until it’s too late. I’m always in the downstairs bathroom when this reality strikes.

Maybe you’re reading me in the bathroom right now. I’m flattered. No, don’t get up, really. Don’t worry, I can’t actually see you. I just know where you are, because my friends comment that they read me in the lavatory a lot. I am awkwardly flattered (read: mildly horrified). Since I have your undivided attention, I ask you, is your toilet paper dispenser fully loaded with a large white roll of perforated toilet paper?  I hope so.

If it’s not, you are rooked.  Do what I do, bellow like the house is on fire. Call for help. Call out orders for someone to deliver a roll of toilet paper to you immediately. Then you can spend your time waiting by trying to imagine how you will endure the humiliation of getting that roll of toilet paper from the other side of the door to your current location. Take your time. Maybe flip through the rest of this newspaper. You’ve got a long wait. Nobody is coming to rescue you. They aren’t paying the least bit of attention. Nobody cares that your legs are now asleep and you are trapped. Why? Because they are all guilty of ignoring the naked cardboard roll and they know it.

One of them probably left the two measly perforated sheets dangling on the end of the roll, pretending to be courteous for the next person. That next person then went in, used those two sheets, leaving nothing but strangling strips of tissue hanging from the glue marks. The third person probably didn’t need paper at all, because the “point and shoot” model comes with the shake dry feature. Thus, it’s not their problem.

And there you sit, alone, plotting revenge. Next time, I’m buying cheap tissue made from recycled bark and sand paper.  I’ll stash my soft stuff in a secret spot. That’ll teach’em. Replace the roll or get off the pot, so to speak. Bottoms up. I mean, cheers.


Kelly Waterhouse