“Look at this.” Clara called from her bed.

I looked up and found her playing with a long string of toilet paper.

“Clara,” I said, “What are you doing?”

She smirked and said, “Just watch.” Then she pulled the layers of toilet paper apart till she had a string of paper in each hand. As she did this she whipped them around as if she had just accomplished a great feat of magical illusion.

“That’s toilet paper.” I said, continuing to help Lydia with her pajamas. “It comes apart.”

“Ahhh.” She said slyly. “But did you know this?!” There was another flourish of paper, “There is another layer!” she announced triumphantly.

I was impressed. I in fact did not know this. Apparently my wife has been sneaking three ply toilet paper into the house without me knowing it. I would have to look into this matter in the morning.

I finished helping Lydia and day dreaming about family budgets. When I finally looked back up I found Clara was still persisting with her late night infomercial about the wonders of overpriced bathroom tissue. And her bed was now covered in tiny torn shreds of white paper.


Yes, but if you fold a two ply in half it becomes a four ply. I am not sold on the hocus pocus magic of false prophet three ply. I believe in the mathematical promise of telescoping softness that comes with just a little skill and patience.

I, for instance, prefer eight layers of delicate bathroom kindness. But I am just a simple man, and I do not doubt that many men greater than I dare to dream even bigger. Buying three ply is like paying someone to fold the paper for you. It is mildly insulting to good character. I refuse to be some lord at Downton Abbey who needs a man servant to help me mount my trousers in the morning. We should rise above such pampered prejudice and aristocracy and proudly agree that all men are equally capable to control the layers of softness as they choose, and by their own hand. We should rise up against the tyrannical lies of three ply tissue peddlers. We should shout to the heavens that two ply is plenty, thanks, I’ll take care of the rest myself.