Image: James Porter
No. No your toilet paper is not killing you. Let’s just get that out of the way up front.
I don’t think it’s even looking at you funny. Sorry for the clickbait title, but ‘when in Rome’ and all of that. Real talk, big picture, it probably is killing you in some insidious, climate change way. What isn’t killing you, amirite? Still, if your sanitary tissue is hiding some murderous secret, I don’t know about it, and it’s not why I baited you into reading my rant anyway. No, today I’d like to talk about something else your toilet paper is not doing: it is NOT cleaning your butthole, you disgusting, feces encrusted animal.
Now, I am not here to engage in some misguided brand comparison. I don’t have a pick for best toilet paper; they are all equally pointless. Maybe you’ve fallen for boasts of stronger paper. Maybe you were dazzled by claims of bigger, fuller rolls. Maybe those cartoon bears, and their Disneyfied subtext had you believing that your brand is guaranteed to keep you from sprouting bunches of dingleberries. Don’t care. Two-ply, one-ply, Burger King bathroom tear-through-guaranteed-poo-finger-ply — doesn’t matter. Comparing different toilet paper qualities is like deciding whether you should dump your saltwater aquarium into a pile of horse manure, or a pile of cow manure; whatever you choose, you still end up with shit on your starfish.
Dumber even than a brand battle, is the age old war of which way is the correct way to put the paper on the roll. From the bottom of my heart, shut up with that. I know, I know, you say paper on top, while you over there, you say bottom. Upways, downwise, doesn’t matter. I’m over here all, “You’re both still smuggling leftover turds in your undies.” Savages.
Now, you might think, probably do think even, that I am not talking to you. I couldn’t possibly mean you. You are an adult. You are on top of your hygiene. YOU know how to clean your derriere. Oh really? Strap in, all of you skidmark samurais. I have a challenge for you. Next time you deuce out, do not reach for that roll. No no no. Take your empty hand, and wipe with it. That’s right. Drive that bad boy right up the Hershey highway. Now, Poop Fingers, grab the toilet paper. Clean your hand. Pick any brand, use as much as you like, but you may only use toilet paper. Do as thorough a job as you can getting the fudge out from between your fingers, out of the creases of your palm, on your knuckles, in your fingerprints. No soap allowed though. No water either, I’m afraid. Just your old buddy TP. Now? Go about your business. Go ahead. Use your keyboard. High five your boss. Touch your phone screen a bunch. Now make a call. Caress your significant other. Stroke their face in that way you know you don’t often enough. Feed yourself. Have some nachos, or fries. Use your wiping hand. Live out the rest of your day with that pooper scooper dangling on the end of your arm — What? No? Why, whatever is the matter? You should be good to go. YOU know how to wipe yourself with toilet paper. I’m sure you’re as clean as a whistle. No? I’m sorry, I can’t quite hear — oh, you’d still have poop on your hand? YOU STILL HAVE POOP ON YOUR PUCKER TOO, STUPID.
That’s right. Look around you. You’re not hurting for company. It’s an epidemic. This second, right now, you are more likely than not awash in a sea of supposed adults, walking around all day, every day, with poopy butts. Your mom, your sister? Your boyfriend? Dirty butts. Your priest, imam, rabbi? Crusties, for sure. Dave, down in accounting? Just kidding. You always knew Dave was a filthy bastard. Dave. The list is endless. How about this guy right here? That’s right, me, the smug bastard wagging his finger in disapproval at all of you dookie stains. How am I immune? Baby wipes, fools. Baby wipes. It’s not rocket surgery. DAMN.
People I talk to argue this point passionately. God knows why.
It costs a couple of bucks for enough wipes to last a month. Plus, I’m still over here enjoying a springtime fresh sheriff’s badge, and you are still a crusty disgrace.
“Bathrooms don’t just have wipes!”
How big is a baby wipe? Break out your slide rule and your graph paper and engineer a way around the insurmountable task of keeping a couple in your pocket or purse. Doing so you will also have mathed out the precise formula for having a tidier rump than the average preschooler for the first time in your life.
“It’s not sustainable! It’s not green!”
You know what else isn’t green? I’ll give you a hint: It starts with an “M” and ends with an “y butt crack.” Why? Because I’m not busy trying to rationalize my use of a one hundred percent dysfunctional product to fit in with the herd. The herd is drawing flies, kids! Follow it if you want, but I’ll be over here making my incredible leap in logic, using a proprietary blend of soap, water, and pleasing fragrances to maintain my dirtiest dirties. Also, if you really want to friend the environment, look up how water treatment plants deal with toilet paper. After you soak in that little slice of Americana, throw your baby wipe in the trash with pride, oh AND be the only grown ass person on your block with a properly maintained backyard.
Here’s a final challenge: buy yourself a pack of baby wipes. Try them out for a while. Next time you’re at some social or work function, look around. Take stock of all of the unwashed masses, laughing, talking, flirting. Remind yourself they all have shit in their diapers. Now, feel that swell of pride that comes from knowing you, and you alone, are immune to any inconvenient butt scratching, or surreptitious “adjusting” of your underoos. You are the cleanest backside in the joint. Well, unless you’re at a party with Captain Cucumber Aloe of team Squeaky Clean Balloon Knots. If you do see me, don’t worry. I promise to throw you that silent head check that only the initiated know means, “Hey you. Yeah you, with the wipes in your pocket. Welcome to the team.”