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23rd November
written by Mombo#9

Two recent events caused me to do the proverbial “double-take.”

The first is that Scott decided that they are no longer going to put those little cardboard tubes in their toilet paper rolls. So in the future, when you come to the end of the roll, you are literally going to be down to nothing.

I realize most people may not give pause at the technological development of toilet tissue, but in my house it has been a point of contention for many years. My husband believes that there is a correct way and an incorrect way to put a roll on the spindle. The correct way is, of course, the method that he has decided was set in stone and the message sent down the mountain for his ears alone.

I say that because my mind is usually on more pressing matters, like what Beatles song can be spliced with a waltz, is there a machine that picks up crystals from the dressing room floor like those that scour the sand for loose change, and is the ISU going to try for the 70th time to lower the age of competing male skaters to match that of their female counterparts?

Maybe I am too distracted to care if the toilet tissue end is going over the top or flapping underneath. My husband, who has never worked for the Hilton, Westin, or any cruise ship line, swears the roll should come over the top. He doesn’t slam the point home by making little origami designs with the end of the top sheet, but he will “turn it around” if I “put it on backwards.” This wouldn’t be such an issue, if he didn’t need to tell me of his correction.

So there I will be, balancing the checkbook, making marinara sauce from scratch, and hand crafting designs for wrapping paper to be used for future birthdays, and my husband will enter the room.

He: “I had to change the toilet paper around again.”

Me: amortizing our monthly consumption of K-cups and doing a cost comparison of Green Mountain or using coupons from Bed, Bath, and Beyond, while stirring the hearty, bubbling sauce, merely looks at him.

He: “I don’t know why you can’t remember; maybe they should put little arrows inside the roll.”

Me: foiling a silver wing for an angel on the plain white paper, merely looks at him.

He: “I mean, it is a 50-50 chance of guessing at it and getting it right, I mean…” (walking away as I stir the sauce with a bit of a Steel Drum beat)

The second thing that gave me the snap neck was hearing the Pope say something to the effect that there might be times when wearing a condom is okay. I am not one to get into religious debates or filibusters, basically because I grew up in a Southern Baptist family (where at some point they must have removed my sunglasses and applied that memory erasing trick like in “Men In Black” because I have no real memory of the actual services but now I have an illogical fear of rivers and fried chicken) and because I converted to my husband’s Lutheran faith — which I once bottom-lined to someone as being quasi-Catholic without “wanting to pay for time in minor hell.” (This earned me “a look” from most of my in-laws.)

So, to me, the Pope saying it is okay to wear a condom in certain situations is a bit like my husband telling me that the toilet paper roll has only one way to go on correctly. I know that no matter how many times I shake my head at the underhanded method my husband mocks to keep that paper rolling smoothly over the top, he is never going to change his mindset. It doesn’t matter that the paper does the same job, just as effectively, no matter if it is under or over. It doesn’t matter that no one has ever stopped mid-wipe and said, “Oh hell, I just used the wrong side.”

Of course, we can still hope that even in the dark, there is a 50/50 chance that they will get it right someday.


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