How To Change The Toilet Paper Roll

by Marinka on December 5, 2011

Welcome back to the absolutely-no-award-winning series where I teach you how to do things. Through my loving leadership, we already learned how to take the escalator and how to decide when to use Reply vs. Reply All , so we are now feeling advanced.

That’s why I think we are ready to tackle The Art of Changing The Toilet Paper Roll.

* * *

Step One: Use the last square of toilet paper. See the cardboard toilet paper roll middle.

Step Two: Don’t worry! You don’t need any more toilet paper and it’s highly unlikely that anyone who lives with you will ever need to use the bathroom. After all, everyone’s busy! Who has time for the bathroom?

Step Three: Enjoy your life!

Step Four: Eventually go to the bathroom again. Notice there is no toilet paper. Wonder how this could have happened to someone as wonderful as you.

WARNING: Do not attempt to use shreds of toilet paper.

Step Five: Feel denial. The toilet paper is there! It’s just in your blind spot! (Optional: start to worry that you’re going blind.)

Step Six: Feel anger. Why isn’t the toilet paper there? It was there earlier today! (Optional: explore conspiracy theory.)

Step Seven: Try to make a deal. If the toilet paper roll appears right now, you will become Monty Hall and ask people if they have floss in their purse. Or toilet paper. Why don’t more people carry portable toilet paper rolls in their purses? Decide to devote life to trademarking the Porta-a-Potty-Paper brand. (Optional: consider anti-psychotic medication.)

Step Eight: Become depressed. You’re a loser in the bathroom with your pants around your ankles and no toilet paper. Your so-called “loved ones” will find you in the same position in a few days or months.

Step Nine: Accept that there is no toilet paper. Think of options. The most obvious, of course, is to get married, so that your wife will change the toilet paper. But it’s hard for the unwiped to find a spouse.

Step Ten: Open the bathroom vanity cabinet.

Step Eleven: See 4 rolls of toilet paper.

Step Twelve: Rejoice!

Step Thirteen: Use a few squares.

Step Fourteen: Put the rest of the toilet paper roll on the edge of the sink.

Please note the placement of one square of toilet paper underneath the roll of toilet paper. No one knows why that's there.

Step Fifteen: Wash hands. Get the toilet paper roll wet.

Step Sixteen: Fume. Why does this always happen to you? Why don’t they make waterproof toilet paper? Now everything is ruined!

Step Seventeen: Proceed with life.


Step Eighteen: Make a New Year’s Resolution to learn to change the toilet paper roll.

Step Nineteen: Take a fresh toilet paper roll in your hands.

Step Twenty: Put it on the toilet paper roll holder. (Note: There’s a raging debate about whether the toilet paper should hang over or hang under. Do not get sucked into this moral dilemma. There are many texts written on the subject, and once we’re master toilet paper roll changers, we will explore it, but for now, let’s focus on baby steps.)

Step Twenty One: Insert the toilet paper roll holder in that thing that’s attached to the wall.

Step Twenty Two: Feel pride. Update Twitter and Facebook with this new achievement status. Receive “like!”s and well wishes from your social media family and friends.

Step Twenty Three: Resolve to help others.

Step Twenty Four: Write a blog post about your struggle and how you overcame it, against all odds.

Step Twenty Five: Start thinking of who will portray you in the movie about your life, Changes: The Toilet Paper Rolls On.

Step Twenty Six: Worry that you have no way to end the blog post about your struggle and how you overcame it.

One year ago ...

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

December 5, 2011 at 2:15 am

See… When this happens to me, there’s a bunch of additional steps after you hit step 10 in your list… which usually goes something like this:

Open bathroom vanity and discover that there is no toilet paper there either.
Consider other options.
Wander to kitchen with pants around your ankles and pee dripping down your leg.
If there are paper towels, grab a square and then rip it up into fourths. Use this as toilet paper until paper towels run out.
If there are napkins from take out, use those as toilet paper until they run out.
At which point there are no more paper products in the house THEN go buy toilet paper.

I’m so terrible at this….


Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes December 5, 2011 at 6:52 am

Reese Witherspoon should play you or perhaps Giselle when she is tired of modeling and in need of a second carreer as an actress.


December 5, 2011 at 7:29 am

It would be so much easier if we all just used corncobs still. Right? Okay, no.


December 5, 2011 at 7:36 am

Yep. Just like it happens at my house.


Dorothy December 5, 2011 at 8:02 am

Do you have a spy camera in my bathroom? Alas, I am the only one here who understands the complexities of placing a new roll on the tp holder. If the new one actually makes it to the toilet to be used, it sits on the nearby shelf because apparently it can only be placed on the roller by moi. I am so important.


December 5, 2011 at 8:49 am

“But it’s hard for the unwiped to find a spouse.”

Are you thinking new TLC show too?


awesome dude December 5, 2011 at 9:19 am

Siberian toilet = two sticks; one drown to the ground to hold to, second in your left hand to fight wolves.


December 5, 2011 at 10:05 am

I’m concerned about the number of steps required to conquer this feat. I don’t know a single man who would even look at a 26 step “How-To” never mind read it and then DO it.

Perhaps, therein lies the problem…..we expect too much.

We’re the bastards.


Megan December 5, 2011 at 10:39 am

Isn’t that why you had kids? So they could do things like this? Think, woman!


the mama bird diaries
December 5, 2011 at 11:37 am

I have to pee.


Cranky Old Man
December 5, 2011 at 12:19 pm

I’m confused…..What is the problem?

Cranky Old Man


dusty earth mother December 5, 2011 at 1:43 pm

I just keep a phone book in the bathroom, like they did in the good ol’ days.


Ester Jean December 5, 2011 at 2:22 pm

I love Awesome Dude’s comment. That’s just how Jack London used to tell it!

But seriously, the root of this problem is heterosexual men. I have never known a girl who won’t replace the roll, and have never known a man who does.

I also find that heterosexual men don’t often have trash cans in the bathroom, and if they do, never with a liner. …The conclusion is that all this is why men seek to marry their mothers. Because they’re lacking in some very basic “skills.”


Susan December 5, 2011 at 3:52 pm

I just don’t get it. When we moved into our house, it came with very “masculine” tp holders – wrought iron things that all you had to do was just slip the tp right on, no fuss,no muss. My husband still places it on the counter…right above the holder.


December 5, 2011 at 7:23 pm

Awesome Dude is cracking me up completely.

Also, did you place some kind of spy device in my house? Because it sure seems like it.


December 5, 2011 at 7:55 pm

I’ve heard you can’t change a toilet paper roll unless it really wants to change.


Lady goo goo gaga December 5, 2011 at 10:47 pm

Omg, this should go viral……soooooo perfect!!!!


December 5, 2011 at 11:17 pm

To #7:
I flew to the USA with a toilet paper roll in my purse. Yes, I was ready to integrate into Western society


December 6, 2011 at 2:17 am

If the toilet paper holder “liked my activity” when I changed the roll, I would change it all the time.


Phoenix Rising
December 6, 2011 at 1:59 pm



Hope December 6, 2011 at 3:39 pm

Thanks for making me chuckle. Now excuse me while I go remove the toilet paper from the roll and see what happens next in my family….


December 8, 2011 at 3:44 pm

I posted on Facebook last week that I was down to one roll of toilet paper. 30 minutes later I got a roll at my front door with TP Fairy written on it. Social media solves some of the earlier steps!

(here’s the photo because of COURSE I took a photo of the toilet paper because who would believe me otherwise?


Amanda Hill February 22, 2012 at 12:10 am

good one! I was drawn to read your site after Alexandria’s grand comments about you. This one cracked me up, especially since my daughter (5 years) is constantly screaming for me to come wipe her bottom. Sometimes the paper is there, and oftentimes it’s just in shreds, waving in the bathroom breeze. . .



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