I didn't realize the great drama I would bring to our household when I made a simple change. In my defense, we were down to the last of the usual rolls and upon noticing the shortage and knowing what type of horror would ensue if someone found themselves staring at a cardboard tube at an inconvenient time, I grabbed an eight pack on my next trip to the store.
But it was a different store, and a different brand. And if I'm being honest, a different quality. A way different quality. (I swear they looked plush through the plastic.)
In no time at all, the family started commenting as they were leaving the bathroom. Innocent questions such as, "Who bought new toilet paper?" quickly turned mean. "This stuff is even worse than the stuff at school." "I've never been in prison, but I imagine this is what their bathrooms are like."
The insults have continued as the rolls diminished, as slow as molasses in January because when you buy jumbo rolls of single ply paper, they never end. Even when I am assured that it takes "half the roll of that junk" to get the job done, it's like no one has even touched them.
And we are stuck with them, for some undetermined amount of time, until they run out. I am not one to be wasteful when it comes to natural resources. Trees gave their lives for this modern convenience that we are lucky to have. So to help the time pass until that fateful day when we see the last of the cardboard tubes, I am entertaining my family with toilet paper facts. Not only will they learn something, but maybe they will be a little more appreciative when we return to the high-dollar high-ply glory days.
"This stuff is awful."
"Yes, but not as awful as what was used before toilet paper as we know it was invented by Joseph Gayetty in 1857. Would you prefer a rock? A stick? Can I offer you a corn cob?"
"Do we still have to use this?"
"Yes, but next time as you reach easily to unroll your desired length of TP, think back to 6th century A.D., when we find the first documented use of toilet paper in China. The rest of the world didn't catch on for 1,300 years!"
"Seriously, Mom, it never ends and it's terrible."
"According to the website "Toilet Paper History," 70 percent to 75 percent of the world's population doesn't use toilet paper at all, and it takes 384 trees to supply the toilet paper for one person throughout his or her life. So be thankful, be courteous, be clean and be thankful we live in a forested country."