On caregivers, faith, family, and writing…

Published in the Rains County Leader on March 17, 2017:

Empty ShelvesI don’t mean to make light of serious circumstances, but let’s face it, some of the situations that have arisen because of the Corona Virus are hilarious. The first time I saw a Facebook post that mentioned toilet paper, I thought it was a joke. However, a day or two later, Facebook and every other social media platform was flooded with stories, pictures, and jokes about empty shelves, hoarding, and panic at the possibility of being caught short of this bathroom necessity.

Two posts in particular fired my writer’s imagination. One was a narrative of a man who was in a Walmart about forty miles from his home. He noticed a stock of toilet paper, so he texted his wife to see what kind she usually bought. When he received his instructions, he bought six cases. Another post was a picture of two men in a checkout line. One was pushing a cart loaded with a stack of toilet paper higher than his head. The other one had a case of Corona beer. The caption was something about different coping mechanisms, and though the thought was funny, it wasn’t what caught my attention. I wondered if the first man had checked with his wife about the brand of tissue and, if not, what happened when he got home.

“Honey, I stopped at the store on the way home, and look what I found!” When his Do not honey meannouncement was met with stony silence, he continued. “What’s the matter, honey? Aren’t you happy?”

“Don’t you ‘honey’ me! You know that’s not the brand I buy!”

With that in mind, I have created a list for those of you who might be stuck with a stock of rejected toilet paper. Here, in no particular order, are ten uses of surplus bathroom tissue.

  1. For those who are passing their time at home by reading, I’m told that a sheet of toilet paper makes a great bookmark.
  2. Instead of reading, you might want to use your down time to work on the book you’ve always intended to write. A roll of tissue might be a good place to jot down your rough draft. Then, if the results aren’t what you expected, you can easily flush the evidence.

Dog with TPPets driving you crazy since you’re spending so much time at home? Here are a couple of suggestions for your fur babies.

  1. Throw a roll of T.P. in front of the dog and – voila – instant chew toy!
  2. Stack three rolls on the handle of a plunger stuck to the floor for an inexpensive scratching post for the cat.

These next few suggestions are for those of you whose children have now been out of school long enough to be saying things like I’m bored or There’s nothing to do.

  1. When I was a teenager, we made carnation-like flowers out of facial tissue. I don’t remember the exact method, but it involved fan folding, a pipe cleaner, and pulling the layers apart. You probably had to cut the tissue in half somewhere in the process, but you get the idea. Those of you who are crafty could probably figure out how to do something similar with bathroom tissue. The results wouldn’t be as colorful as ours were since facial tissues came in pastel colors in the 60s – that is until someone decided all that dye in the landfill wasn’t a good idea. But maybe the tips of the white flowers could be tinted with markers.
  2. Build a fort with rolls of toilet paper.
  3. Have a “snowball” fight with wadded up handfuls of tissue – or if the children really need to work out some built up aggressions, let them throw the entire roll.
  4. Create mummies by wrapping each other in toilet paper.
  5. If the children are mourning the fact that their favorite sports have been cancelled, let them use rolls of tissue to play hockey, basketball, or baseball.

If, after trying all these suggestions, you still have extra T.P., here’s one more idea.picky-eater-3

  1. Offer to trade your extra toilet paper to your neighbors for the ramen noodles their families won’t eat.

Seriously, I hope this finds you and yours in good health and stocked with all the necessities of life. As you deal with the inconveniences and fears, remember what Mom used to tell me when I complained about something: This, too, shall pass.

Blessings,

Linda

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Comments on: "Top Ten Uses for Extra Toilet Paper | by Linda Brendle" (1)

  1. Gloria Moore said:

    I just sent you a text to see how it was going at the Senior Center. I half-expected a one-call, You could always sell the extra for an exorbitantly high price. You might find Jason at your front door to tell you there will be a meeting with the elders. We’re good. I went and got Dennis more ice cream today. He should be good but I’m limiting him to 3 scoops per day.

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