T.P. or Not T.P.

My dear, departed father-in-law Raymond might well have rolled over in his grave had he somehow known what type of toilet paper John brought home yesterday after grocery shopping at the local Food Co-Op.

unbleached tp

Bad enough it’s made primarily from post-consumer recycled materials (“Toilet tissue is one thing that should NOT be made from used paper!”); this new Seventh Generation product is unbleached, to boot, meaning it’s more of a brownish hue. An unfortunate color indeed. Raymond, coming from a generation more in tune with Mr. Whipple’s line of thinking,

Mr. Whipple

would have been dumbfounded by John’s choice.

Thing is, this t.p. was on sale. And if we’ve learned only one thing about being unemployed, it’s if an item you’d want to buy anyway goes on sale, grab as many as your dignity will allow.

Considering we’re talking about toilet paper here, dignity is definitely a concern. I mean, I don’t think the Co-Op puts a limit on how many packages of Seventh Generation t.p. a customer is allowed per shopping trip, yet neither John nor I would feel comfortable trundling a cart overflowing with toilet paper up to the checkout line. We may be sans income, but that doesn’t automatically preclude our innate — at least as we perceive it — sense of decorum. Instead, we simply make multiple trips to the Co-Op during toilet paper sale time.

Why is toilet paper so important, you might ask? Well, apart from the obvious, we discovered early on that recycled toilet paper is mighty expensive here. Say what you will about Whole Foods Market, but we could buy a 12-pack of Seventh Generation t.p. at the Austin store for seven bucks and change. Here in Washington, specifically at the Port Townsend Food Co-Op, the going non-sale cost is just shy of $13.00.

See why we stock up when the price drops to $7.99?

cords of tp

Our first set of visitors from Austin got in on the act too. It so happened the Co-Op was running a toilet paper sale during our friends’ three-night stay in late June. John and I made a point to stop at the store to buy a ream of it every day as we chauffeured them to various sightseeing locales, and being the generous types, on two of those stops our friends picked up the t.p. tab.

A package of Seventh Generation even made it into one of the vacation photos they took of John and me.

tp in car

Some people might view this as an obsession, I suppose, but no need for concern. We don’t think only about reduced price toilet paper. We’ve been known to shell out cold, hard cash for the occasional bauble when something catches our eye, despite its cost. In fact, just recently John used some of the money we saved on toilet paper to buy Pablo a squirrel on a stick.


We understand it’s important to splurge on the finer things in life from time to time.

We do our best to retain some semblance of class around the house, as well. While we discreetly stack our toilet paper reserves in our walk-in closet, out of sight from visitors, I place a perfectly respectable three rolls in a basket tucked underneath the sink in the upstairs guest bath.

guest room tp

Gives the room a certain understated elegance, wouldn’t you say?

Downstairs in the guest suite/slash/daylight basement, I go for practicality over sophistication. To be certain any overnight visitors have a sufficient supply, in that bathroom I place an entire package of t.p. inside the cabinet under the sink, beside the spare bath towel.

downstairs tp

Oh. It appears we’re down to only maybe six or seven rolls in this pack. Um, is it getting warm in here? I’m starting to feel a bit flushed. Oh, huh huh, no pun intended…but gee, maybe I should step outside for some air. Better yet, I’ll grab my car keys and take a drive, do a little grocery shopping to clear my head. Maybe to the Co-Op? I hear they’re having a sale….


74 thoughts on “T.P. or Not T.P.

  1. Well, I don’t believe I have ever commented on your blog before, but I do have some concerns. 1. Should I bring tp when I visit in September?…now I’m nervous.
    2. Not sure how daddy figures into this discussion, but anxious to find out.
    3. Mike loved your story, but thinks maybe it’s time to find some worthwhile hobby or employment:)

    • I just got an email from a friend letting me know we can buy toilet paper on amazon.com! Soon enough, we’ll have t.p. by the pallet-load. Imagine! So no worries — you’re bathroom will be well-stocked by the time you arrive, Ann. As to your dad, I’ll never forget how flabbergasted he was when he visited us the first time and discovered we use recycled toilet paper. I’m surprised he didn’t run to the store for some Charmin.

      And it sounds like Mike doesn’t grasp the importance of the issue…

  2. Okay, first the bad news: when you find employment, you’ll need to get reacquainted with regular, unrecycled tp. But the good news is: someone else has to buy it and haul it around. So it’s a wash, no pun intended.

    • Or maybe I’ll just bring my own. To the interview. That wouldn’t affect my chances of snagging a job, you think?

  3. Pingback: Beat out by Charmin | Valley Girl Gone Country

    • Thank you Kathy! Pablo felt the same way when we presented him with such a fine specimen. Already, he’s gnawed it down to half a squirrel on a stick. If we don’t find a replacement soon, I’m a little worried. You know that old wives tale about cats sucking the breath out of babies? With no infants in this household, we’re his only choice…

  4. The best part of that show Honey Boo Boo (never thought those words would be in one place) is their kitchen/dining room. There is always a wall of tp and paper towels built up, due to the family’s extreme couponing. By comparison, you’re keeping your tp needs very classy and discreet. Nice work!

  5. I heard that TP is cheaper in Europe and will be shipped by a slow freighter to our shores. It is coming, so wait on it at a store closed for renovation near you.

    • Gosh, considering we’re on the west coast, it may be a while until it makes its way to our part of the country. We’ll keep stockpiling, awax1217, as we await the European onslaught with bated breath!

  6. I think it’s an excellent choice of T.P. You’re a new generation- it might be cheaper right now and might be more expensive later… but just having a post on it makes me want to be a bit more environmentally efficient… Good job!

  7. Technology is making things better & better in every walk of life, except one basic need!!
    There was a bar soap then came liquid then in an auto dispenser and now auto dispensed foam!!; no need to even rub your hands, even after that you have any doubts there’s hand sanitizer. TP has taken back seat, no one wants to talk about it, no one wants to improve upon it! Silver line is that it’s not recycled TP paper (technology can figure that one if given a chance)

    • TP and soap do go, ahem, hand-in-hand, don’t they Yatin? It’s up to us brave souls to bring attention to that lowly roll of paper in a manner it deserves!

  8. Love this post! We have a different problem in my house. Soft TP vs. PC TP. I’m for PC, eco- friendly, single rolls. The mate wants soft, double rolls that are harder on the environment but softer on the tush. It’s a conversation that never gets old even as we do!

    • Ha ha! That’s a rough one, nobluehair. Literally for your mate. (Great blog name you have there, by the way.)

  9. To TP or NOT to TP… I choose NOT to TP… or one square folded on the diagonal as required.
    Sh*t, shave, shower… In that order… times 330 million equals a lot of trees (recycled or otherwise)

    Consider the ~7 BILLION of us without TP. It seems we are the 1%.

    I am a minimalist. I have visited cultures that eat with their right and wipe with their left. Maybe they have a right to hate us. Anyway, I tend to do-do my business and then immediately have a shower… “end” of story.

    BTW, thanks for the potty talk.

    Happy bidet to you…

    If after a poop I have to blow my nose, I use my T-shirt before throwing in the laundry rather than use a “facial” tissue… times 330 million of us would be a lot less paper in the landfill (recycled or not) Just saying… Miles of smiles.
    Grogan V0E 2Z0

    • Pablo probably doesn’t appreciate the monetary value of that fine, fine squirrel-on-a-stick, but I can tell you for certain he adores the thing. So much so, it’s now half-a-squirrel-on-a-stick. Thanks for stopping by, Melissa! I’ll tell Pablo you say hello.

  10. When my mother-in-law came to stay for three weeks to help us after our second child was born, she brought her own toilet paper. Obviously the recycled stuff is simply too awful for her to bear!

    • Oh that’s hilarious! My father-in-law would have no doubt done the same, had he had advanced warning of what to expect. I love it!

  11. I’m fully believe that you should do the same if it goes on sale! I mean we need t.p. why not stock up, and stocking up on Seventh Generation is always a good idea. I hate to admit it but I may be out of papertowles or other things when it comes to my house hold stuff but T.P. is never one! I too have secret “stashes” of t.p. 😀

    • Oh a kindred spirit! Thanks DeAnna. The Co-Op has taken Seventh Generation off sale for now but I’m stocked up and waiting…waiting…

  12. Very entertaining. I share some of your traits as to eg. how many rolls to store by the loo, in view and out of view. Funny how you build up your own “laws” as to how things should be done. Really enjoyed this “blog roll”. Thank you for sharing.

    • Thanks Lindsay! Of course, by posting a photo of our toilet paper stash it’s no longer out of view, but I figured I could live with that. Like you say, we all do these kinds of things. I appreciate your comment!

  13. I find this funny. Oh, I’m guilty of hoarding T.P.s also, and make sure I have in all corners of the house. And congratulations for making it at Freshly Pressed. You’re one awesome writer!

    • Thank you Jellyfish! It’s good to know we’re not the only toilet paper hoarders around. Thanks for stopping by!

    • Thank you mytruenorth! We found Pablo’s s-o-s at the local family-owned pet store but I suspect Petco will have something similar, if not exactly the same. I’ll tell you what — it’s Pablo’s favorite, ever. And that’s quite a recommendation.

  14. Reblogged this on The Yay or Nay Blog and commented:
    YayOrNayQa Quality Check:
    Timeliness: Check. Going green is becoming widely practiced and is ever increasing in populirity. Distribution through co-ops and other stores makes the produch readily available to their targeted consumers.
    Accuracy & Customer Satisfaction: Check. I haven’t tried this particular brand, but it’s probably safe to say it does exactly what it meant to do.
    This product is a definite yay!

  15. Hello, I am new to the blogging world. I see that you have a good audience on your blog. I am an author and I just published my autobiography. I self published so I need to market it on my own. I want to raise awareness about my book so that it can reach and impact as many people as possible. If you can put this on your blog for your readers I would greatly appreciate it. I see that you have quite the following and it would really help if I had somebody with experience to help me promote my book. Thank you!! If you can even go to my blog and ‘reblog’ my post about my book that would be awesome thank you so much!!



  16. Pingback: T.P. or Not T.P. | bloggerbubbles

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