Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Yes Dear - Blizzard of ’15 Edition

Little overdue with my periodic commemoration of life…my second one.  Wife saved my life almost 5-years ago and after the last go around with the doc and his vampire, he just said, “keep up the good work, see you next year.”

So, thoughts drifted back to the beginning, long time ago.  An extended bachelorhood established certain benchmarks….a 4-roll pack of toilet paper lasts a week or two in a bachelor’s apartment.  Add a woman, and that 4-pack is shot in a day or so.

“Honey, we need some more toilet paper.”

“Didn’t I just buy some yesterday?”

“Honey, we need some more toilet paper.”  So, I buy two 4-packs.

Couple of days later, “Honey, we need some more toilet paper.”

“Didn’t I just, ah…oh, never mind.”  So, I buy six 4-packs and stack them in the front foyer…a small pyramid of toilet paper.   

My gesture doesn’t go over well.

Adding wife to my comfortably predictable home life all those years ago introduced a number of new concepts I had never before considered.  We quickly became major consumers of Kimberly-Clark, Georgia-Pacific and Weyerhaeuser forest products….Bounty Towels and Kleenex etc.  Bounty, the best picker-upper…she uses each towel once to wipe up a couple of stray drops then, tosses it.

“You can use those good ones more than once,” I suggest…..no response.

“If you’re intent on using each towel but once, why don’t we buy the El Cheapo towels, instead?” 

“Germs,” she sniffs.

Cases of Kleenex….a bachelor just uses the toilet paper…an elegant dual use concept.

No response.

“Look at that lady over there.  She’s getting her own stock of Bounty in ahead of the storm.”

No response... 

Well, at least we've figured out how to reduce the trips to the store for this kind of stuff to about every other week rather than every other day all those years ago.

...and the beat goes on...


Anonymous said...

Careful here, Gus. You're treading on potentially dangerous paths that take you to mysteries that you might not be prepared to face. I think the toilet paper and paper towel mystery is akin to others like what happens to socks in the dryer. I strongly suspect that what women do with the toilet paper and paper towels is something that we really don't want to know. Tread lightly here.

Gus said...

I'm quite willing to limit my curiosity in this matter to a fairly simple statistical analysis of inflow rather than anything to do with applications. After closely observing what Filipino stewards did with their TP aboard ship, I'm willing to stipulate that applications can be highly variable and often utterly mysterious. The paper towel usage still befuddles me but, as you know habit and inertia can be nearly impossible to turn.

Anonymous said...

Believe it or not, I have a toilet paper incident. When Lou was in Shanghai with me back in the late 1990s, she and the wives of my English and Australian agents would tour Shanghai while myself and my agents worked a trade conference. The ladies would come back each evening highly distressed at what they had seen and done with their tour. The one issue that all three of them agreed pissed them off the most? They had to pay for each sheet of toilet paper at the public bathrooms on the tour.

Gus said...

It's one of the reasons I favored getting my world tours done early in life and thanking the good Lord for arranging my plumbing the way he does for half the world's population. Some of the silly stuff you encounter in many places around the globe involve very foreign (yes) approaches to handling the w/c ablutions, etc. It's just easier for us. One of the plants in the Caribbean had a bathroom that had limited running water and quite clearly hadn't been cleaned for years and no paper. If you really wanted to use it, you had to apply to the plant manager's secretary who kept a small roll in her lower desk drawer. Soap was also an unknown to them. Heck with it....I just left and went back to the hotel, if need be...actually just learned to get in gear with the afternoon siesta schedule, which was actually quite nice.

Anonymous said...

I was actually going to write a piece on this subject once and then decided not to do it. As for men having an advantage here, as the saying goes, to men the whole world is a urinal and there are real advantages to that being true.

Just a quick review of the subject and past experience: On our last day on Lou’s first safari in South Africa, we went on a morning game drive that let us watch a leopard make a wart hog kill and drag it back to her kits. This was pretty exciting stuff. This all happened very close to the airstrip where our airplane was parked, so the plan was to finish the drive at the airstrip where our luggage would have already been loaded, board, and fly back to Johannesburg.

Lou and her companion (our pilot’s wife) decided that they probably needed a potty break before the one-hour flight back, so the two of them walked out into the bush where they would be out of sight….and also where the leopard had been hunting earlier. In fairness, it was their only choice as the runway was in the other direction and that would provide no privacy at all.

They had only been gone for a few minutes, when we heard screams from their direction. Here they came, two women running (as well as they could) with their panties and pants down around their ankles, screaming and waving their arms. They had apparently just squatted when they heard a sound in the bush behind them, which of course, they KNEW was that leopard again. What a sight…not easily forgotten.

On my first trip to mainland China in about 1994, I took a train to Jingdezhen from Shanghai. It was in January and bitterly cold. there all night to Jingdezhen in a cold, unheated train compartment with lice infected blankets as the only thing to keep us from freezing, and that was in first class. The toilet was next to my compartment and consisted of a urine sloshing little room with a one-foot diameter hole in the floor that emptied straight down to the tracks.

In India, they don’t use toilet paper at all and you only find the paper in the hotels that cater to foreign clientele, they just have a water hose and wash rag next to the squatter.

Gus said...

Sounds about right....bet Lou got progressively more selective with regard to just which kind of new adventure she would take on with you. Mine, a F/A with about 9-years experience under her belt before getting our joint act together, came with a very well honed short list of new adventures she would consider. Two of her primary travel requirements was room service and shiny bathroom fixtures. Beyond that, the people couldn't "smell" as they frequently did on her flights. I could go on but, I think you get the gist. And forget the damned museums where she would be required to read the placards describing something about which she had never heard, nor had any interest in.

Anonymous said...

She became VERY selective, trust me. Your wife and mine shared those same priorities. As for room service, she had a requirement that the food had to look like food and not something that crawled out from under a rock, so there was a big no-go circle around the Middle East.