Monday, 10 June 2013

How will they wipe their bum now?

Have you read about this? The government in Venezuela has declared a state of emergency  because they are running out of toilet paper. Theyve had to pay money to ship in 36 million loo rolls because of panic buying and people hoarding the few rolls of lavatory paper that are still available. There is even an app that if you sign up for that will alert the user to the nearest shop currently stocking toilet paper so they can rush and go buy some before everyone else does then sell them (illegally) for high prices.

 Is there anyone else who sees a problem with this?  I already have issues with toilet paper. Thats a huge amount of trees (often virgin timber in the case of companies like Kimberly Clark) that is heavily bleached with harsh (and potentially toxic) chemicals to make it whiter than white that we just use once and throw away. Thats flushing away money and the environment. Literally.

Those who read the blog know I have been personally paper product free for about 2 years. We dont use paper towels or napkins in the kitchen--we use washable cloth ones. We dont use boxes of tissues for the snuffles--I use a handkerchief  just like my dear old dad. I don’t use cotton balls, I use washable squares of fleece.  Before the horrible hysterectomy I used washable cloth menstrual pads. Lastly, I dont use toilet paper unless I am out in a public lav or on holiday. Spiderman still does and thats ok with me. And even if it wasnt Id still do it I hear his voice echo in my head. Thats fine. He can do his thing as long as I can do mine.

Yes, I use what is known in crunchy granola circles as family cloth. It is not nearly as freaky as it sounds. If you want to read about it go here and read this post:

I find cloth to be so much more comfortable for wiping --cloth is softer than the softest paper and lacks those annoying balls of lint that get stuck to your naughty bits like when you use paper. I find it more hygienic as you rinse really well with warm water (many Asian cultures have done this for centuries) so there is nothing to wipe away. You wash and reuse them just like cloth nappies (diapers to my American peeps). I dont see what the big deal is. If you are sceptical then just try it for urine. You will be *shocked* at how much toilet paper you are using and how long a roll lasts after you convert to cloth.

I worry about countries like Venezuela who would spend huge amounts of money to import something to wipe peoples bums with. What about poverty? What about hunger? What about education? Surely these issues are a better way of investing money?

Maybe Im just talking out of my ass.


  1. A perfect example of a product being invented and then creating the market for it.

  2. I am with Spiderman on this. Esp. since I have found the Ology brand from Walgreens and their TP made from bamboo.