Toilet paper rant
I’ve been here at HCSSiM for almost exactly a week now, and I’ve been exclusively blogging about what mathematics we’ve been teaching this year’s brilliant crop of high school kids. Considering the fact that I usually have lots of opinions on important subjects such as financial reform, data science, and the incorrigible misuse of statistics, you might think I’m dying to also post about such things now that it’s Sunday and I’ve finally had time to catch up on some sleep.
You’d be wrong.
What I really need to vent about this afternoon is toilet paper dispensers. You see, I’ve been using lots of bathrooms with stalls and with those new-fangled huge toilet paper dispensers.
Do you remember in the olden days when a toilet paper dispensing system was relatively easy to understand? There’d be room for at most two rolls, the normal smallish kind, and if that wasn’t enough there’d be extra rolls somewhere for you to use. Granted, sometimes there weren’t, and sometimes there were but they got wet or dirty rolling on the floor.
Nowadays there are they enormous plastic cases which contain about 4 huge rolls of toilet paper, and I guess it’s a good thing in terms of how often toilet paper runs out, although it’s not an excellent idea in terms of the overall cleanliness of the bathroom, since you can mostly fill those fuckers up and leave for vacation.
But I’m not here to complain about dirty bathrooms. What I’d like to complain about is that these huge toilet paper dispensers, which are now about 3 feet in diameter, are for some reason always placed at the same level, at their center, as their older counterparts which contained two small rolls and opened up in the front.
The old dispenser would allow you to get toilet paper at approximately shoulder level. It was a pretty good system.
But these new ones dispense out at the bottom, so now we’re immediately talking about having to bend down to even find a corner of paper, usually blind. God forbid if it’s a new roll.
And once you catch hold of the ephemeral toilet paper corner, you have to then pull out some paper, which sounds easy, but your natural inclination is to pull on the paper by pulling towards yourself. This causes your tiny little corner of toilet paper to be immediately cut off by the serrated edge of the dispenser mouth.
So what you need to do, unless you are satisfied with one square inch of toilet paper (which I am not, in general), is you need to devise a two-handed system of pulling where one hand acts as a soft corner, almost like a ball bearing pulley, directly below the dispenser mouth, and the other hand pulls on it, at first straight down and then around the other hand and up.
But mind you, you’re already stooping over to get the paper. So at this point you are basically on hands and knees trying to get more than one square inch of goddamned toilet paper.
People. People. People who install bathrooms, I’m talking to you right now.
Don’t you ever go to the bathroom yourself? Can’t you modify your installation procedure now that these big toilet roll dispensers have been around now for 10 years? Can we get them to dispense at shoulder level some time in the near future? Is this some way of keeping people from using too much toilet paper? If so, it’s not working. I always take too much because I always figure, “what the hell, now that I’ve constructed a pulley system I might as well see what she can do. I’ma gonna let her rip.”