Paper Chase

I should really write about much more serious subject matter. I mean……THINK about everything that is happening in the world right now. It could almost be ripped from a Harper Collins online description of a modern day dystopian thriller: Fukushima radiation and tanker oil washing up on west coast shorelines! California drought affecting millions! Bees disappearing at an alarming rate! Nah, I am not going to dip my ink quill into that heavy subject matter. I will leave that kind of depressing column to the experts who are MUCH, MUCH smarter than lil’ ol’ me.

What AM I going to write about? I am going to write about Toilet Paper. Yes…toilet paper: the most important paper in our home and one that we would be lost without (don’t try to convince me that you could manage with leaves, you are as spoiled as I am).

Minimal Possibilities

Some background if you will indulge me. As a child, I grew up in the country and developed a healthy respect for a septic system. I was counseled regarding how much paper was acceptable for use and I also was reminded often about what SHOULD NOT ever, ever go into the septic system.

I carried that knowledge /paranoia with me over into adulthood.

What is the purpose of toilet paper? The primary function/goal is to keep your……you know “tushy” tidy without getting any on yourself!

Women are highly efficient at this task and it might simply be because they have 50% more experience with the process than men have. If a woman enters a public washroom stall and they see a roll with only 3 or 4 sheets left, they will shrug and steel themselves for the challenge. They will use 3 sheets for the job and then origami the last sheet into an miniature swan and leave it resting on the back of the toilet like a calling card.

Men and children seem to require much more paper to complete the task. Instructions are as follows: With fingers firmly grasping the free sheet of toilet paper, jerk with a forward motion dispensing many, many sheets of tissue (enough that it puddles like curtains on the floor). The amount of tissue should be enough to staunch an arterial bleed. Taking the end of the tissue in your left hand, begin to wind around your right hand like you are wrapping your hand for a boxing match, taking care to cover ALL of your hand! Final step: use the paper.

This strategy is used regardless if you are using a single ply paper or a luxurious 4-ply paper.

I am certain that there are exceptions to the rules and not all men or children utilize the aforementioned toilet paper use strategy. My sincerest apologies if you are one of them.

Someone who simply did not care about the end user invented public washroom toilet paper dispensers. Designed to keep folks from using too much paper, you have to scratch and scrape at the roll until you have assembled a measly pile of paper pieces that you bunch together to use.

I am certain that the designers of the industrial dispensers have never met the designers of the industrial paper rolls. If they had got together over a beer to compare notes, they would have noticed that the cardboard roll is too small or the thingy that it slides into on the dispenser is too big. It simply does not roll freely.

Also, the teeth that cut the paper are dangerously sharp! Have you ever had to reach up into the dispenser to get the paper and found that the plastic teeth scratch up your wrist?

Apple should really invent something. They could call it the iPoop or iSwipe and it would revolutionize the industry. It would be an app that you download onto your iphone (not for use on android or blackberry….sorry). The app would allow you to trigger the dispenser to advance you some paper. You would need to indicate how many sheets of pillowy goodness you require for the job. After you have used the app about 10 times, it would calibrate for your individual needs and dispense your personalized number of sheets. Conversations like, “what is your iPoop/iSwipe number?” will be commonplace.

Person holding smart phone in hands to communicate and text

You can even GAMIFY the iPoop/iSwipe app! Those with iPoop/Swipe numbers less than 5 can compete to collect special badges! Collect 10 badges and you can redeem for prizes!

Gosh….now my brain is fired up! You would have figured that talking toilet paper could be so exciting! Is this how Steve Jobs felt?

Until next time!

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