Friday, November 20, 2009

The Art of Give and Take...

How many times have you seen this? If you’re married or have children, or both…chances are you’ve faced this rather exasperating sight at least more than once. I’ve been married over thirty years; have two daughters and a grand-daughter. And I’ve stopped counting the number of times that pathetic bit of tissue has waved at me from the bare cardboard roll. It used to bother me. Not anymore.

Let me back up and explain. I’ve got about a thirty minute drive home from my day job. The particular day I have in mind, the trip seemed a lot longer because I’d consumed an extraordinary amount of coffee and I needed to use the restroom so bad I was about to gargle. Why is it when you need to go to the bathroom, everyone in front of you drives as if they’re in no hurry to get anywhere at all?

Finally, I got home. I bolted into the house, threw my stuff onto counter, leapt over the dog, tripped over the cat and careened into the bathroom just in time. Ahhhh…blessed relief. And then I see it, the one tiny square of tissue flapping in the breeze.

We live in a modest house. The bathroom is quite small. From the seated position, with your pants around your ankles, you pretty much have to be a circus contortionist to reach the new roll stashed under the sink. Not only that, but we keep a bowl of water for the pets beside the stool because we keep the seat down so they can’t drink out of the toilet.

So, while I’m standing on my head to reach under the sink, I flip the pet bowl and dump the water all over the rug and my pants. As I fish out the roll, every towel in the cabinet topples out into the puddle of water. Oh well, I needed to clean it up anyway.

After this adventure, I backtrack to the kitchen to ask my beloved husband if it would kill him just once to put a fresh roll of toilet paper on the holder. I receive a look of complete amazement along with the off-handed comment. “It wasn’t empty.”

I try to explain to him that a millimeter of tissue doesn’t constitute enough toilet paper for “a serving”. I’m then gifted with a roguish grin and informed, “Jasper did it.” Ever since both daughters moved out, the dog and cats are alternately blamed for anything awry in our house. My darling husband has been nominated for sainthood. I’ll let all of you know when the ceremony is to be held.

By now, steam is coming out of my ears. I’ve had a long day. I’m tired and I now need to change my clothes. He pulls me to his chest, kisses me on the forehead and tells me my supper is ready whenever I am. He also adds he’s emptied the dishwasher so he can clean up the kitchen when we’re done.
So you see? That’s why I’ve decided toilet paper’s not so important after all and I’m going to learn to look BEFORE I sit.


  1. Oh, man, that's great. Not for you Maeve, but for us to get a chuckle out of. My pet peeve with my husband of 17 years is that he NEVER fills up my vehicle when he drives it and it's low on gas. He'll add $5 or $10, then drive it some more, and leave me with having to fill it up when he could've taken an extra 30-45 seconds to fill it all the way!

  2. LOL! Usually, in our house, whenever my husband drives my car, I try to time it so the tank is totally empty. :)

  3. Hi Maeve,
    You made me laugh, but I can relate to the empty toilet paper holder, but at least hubby made it up to you by cooking your dinner. Let's face it, you can't have everything.


  4. Love the picture, Maeve! My kids are grown and gone and we have three cats, one of whom loves to unroll the toilet paper. Hence, we keep it up on a shelf, so we're always aware of what's there. No problems in that area. Gas? DH will fill the tank if I ask. But after 38 years, there are other issues, too many to list here. Thanks for the laugh!

  5. Great post! And I can relate. However, I've been the breadwinner for quite a while. My dh does the cooking and most of the dishes (I hate, hate, hate to wash dishes). Now I'm probably the one who irritates him more than he irritates me. Though he does do a lot of driving with the tank sitting on empty. Makes me crazy because I've been with him numerous times when the van/truck/whatever he was driving at the time ran out of gas. Grrr.

    I love the reference to a bit of toilet paper not equaling a serving! LOL That happens at work all the time. Grrr.

  6. Yes, I think Chassily said it best..."Laughing helplessly." In my case, we live out in the country and it can be awhile before I get home from where ever I've been. Invariably I get behind some farmer on a tractor going...get ready for this...20 miles per hour! Pretty darned fast for a tractor but SLOW-W-W when nature's screaming for release! Yes, I think you're right. Marriage brings the most interesting compromises!

  7. Geez, and you're complaining? Mine would ask me what's for dinner while he was working on a grimy part to the washer on the kitchen table.
    Talk about compromises! With my luck he'd have used the last roll in the cabinet too!

  8. Thanks Ladies! All in all, I think I've got it pretty good. I definitely think dinner and a clean kitchen trumps a roll of toilet paper. Thanks for your comments. My best to all of you!

  9. I'm very fortunate in that our master bathroom is so small I can reach the toilet paper in the cabinet from the toilet seat. So the end of the roll is never an problem!

    Putting gas in the car, however, is a huge issue in my family. Every time I drive the car it's empty. I'm pretty sure my husband thinks the car runs on air.

    Thanks for the chuckle, Maeve.