Toilet Paper – The Great Debate

The preferred method at The Red House is the over hang. How does it hang at your house?

It is written in the book of ‘Internet’  that paper products were first used to do ‘clean ups in aisle one and two’ in the mid 1800’s. One option were sheets of manila hemp paper infused with aloe vera. Another option were the pages of the first widely circulated catalogs from Sears Roebuck. By the late 1800’s, paper was being rolled onto cardboard tubes.

From that day forward, people who had nothing more urgent to discuss, would debate how toilet paper should be hung. Some would advocate the forward (over) hang method, suggesting that might stop the paper from clinging to the wall.
The backward (under) hang proponents would point out that the family cat was less likely to unravel the roll if it was clinging to the wall…

Toilet paper holders have come a long way! I like this one from ‘Planet Dork Sculptures’

Friendly debate continues to this day, though it would seem that the over hang method is the preferred one. Manufacturer Georgia-Pacific conducted a survey in 1993. 73% of those polled preferred the forward hang. In 2010, the Cottonellle Roll Poll attracted half a million votes – 72% chose the ‘over’ method.

And so it went until 2020 when the world  went mad and people started buying up toilet paper. There may in fact now be a few homes with enough stockpiled toilet paper to last them for a very long time, as described in this joke that circulated late that year: “It was a quiet Monday morning in September 2053, when John awoke with a need to go to the bathroom. To John this wasn’t just any ordinary day! This was the day he would open the last package of toilet paper his parents bought in the year 2020.”

Also in 2020 – Stock Market Report
Helium was up, feathers were down. Paper was stationary.
Fluorescent tubing was dimmed in light trading. Knives were up sharply. Pencils lost a few points.
Hiking equipment was trailing. Elevators rose, while escalators continued their slow decline. Weights were up in heavy trading.
Mining equipment hit rock bottom. Diapers remained unchanged.
The market for raisins dried up. Balloon prices were inflated.
And toilet paper touched a new bottom.

What’s a mathematician’s favorite type of toilet paper?

What do you call someone who goes from one store to another looking for toilet paper?
Bounty hunter.

Francis Ford Crapolla – This photo is near the top of my sidebar. Click it and you will be whisked away to a random post… on my blog, not on your blog…

Since this might be my last post ever about toilet paper, I expect you want to share your thoughts on these important questions:

Does your toilet paper hang over or under?
Are you the empty roll change agent in your house?
Do you have an interesting roll holder?
Where do you keep extra rolls of toilet paper?
Your preferred vernacular – lavatory, throne, loo, WC (water closet), john, latrine, comfort room?
How many books or magazines do you have in that room?

My ‘Rona Virus’ Toilet Paper Posts, none of which went viral:

Will Trade Grapefruit for Toilet Paper

Not So Close Contact

More of the Lighter Side


15 thoughts on “Toilet Paper – The Great Debate

  1. So much to think about. Pre Pandemic, I started ordering a case of tp from a company called “Who Gives a Crap.” I keep the brightly colored paper wrapped rolls in a tall glass cylinder. Their tag line is Saving the World One Wipe at a Time. My daughter told me about them and once I sent a case as a gift after having been ill and had to stay at my son’s house for a month. Informative and thought provoking post.


    1. Thanks for the heads up about the tp company.
      The wrapping is delightful! I’ll have to check them out and compare them to Canadian manufacturers to compare source of fibers, sustainability practices, etc! I do like to support Canadian products where possible.


  2. Definitely overhang (and with a small grandchild who tends to use too much paper [not good for the septic system], I occasionally “squash” the cardboard roll so a quick swipe “releases” only 4 squares at a time!) My husband WILL change the roll if he finishes it; we keep spare rolls on a (boring) tall spindle in the downstairs bathroom (which is what we call them), and on a shelf in the upstairs one (within reach!) No books, no magazines – neither of us “lingers” in the bathroom (I never did understand that!) When the boys were little, I would occasionally try to “escape” to the bathroom for a moment’s peace and quiet – but little fingers would quickly appear under the door with a voice calling, “Mom, are you in there?” (Later, it would be tiny cat paws – none of my cats ever liked a closed door!) Toilet humour is always fun!


    1. Good idea about squashing the rolls. Yes, I remember trying to get some peace and quiet by retreating to the bathroom, but when you only have one bathroom, it wasn’t long before someone said they urgently needed to use it.


  3. My brilliant wife must have bought an automatic new roll dispenser. Every time I leave an empty roll, when I come back there’s new roll. If you want, I’ll ask her where she got it.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I keep spare rolls under the sink in our bathroom and we all put new rolls on as needed. It doesn’t matter to us if it hangs over or under. No reading material in the bathroom. It is so small there isn’t enough room to store any lol.


    1. Yes, that is where we keep spare rolls too.
      Yes, I remember small bathrooms. The bathroom in the first suite we rented was so small that it was just the toilet and shower. We had to leave the door open because once you were sat down, you couldn’t close the door. There wasn’t a vanity sink – we had to use the kitchen sink. Of course, it was a big step up from when we visited the farm where there was an outhouse…

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Overhang, and I am the agent of change….To be honest I am just grateful if someone makes sure to replace the toilet paper (in any direction) if they use the last of the previous roll. Drip drying is totally overrated (perhaps another blog post???)


    1. I think it is usually the woman of the house who is the agent of change. Changing the toilet paper roll seems to be a ‘pink’ job!
      The possibility of drip drying is why many people keep a box of kleenex in the bathroom too!?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I believe the tp should come off the roll “over.” It makes it easier to get the exact amount you want, I think. And I’m embarrassed to say I’ve got quite the supply of it in my basement. Not enough to see me through 2053, but I bet I’ve got two month’s worth!


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