Jewish World Review June 21, 2002 / 11 Tamuz, 5762

Lori Borgman

Lori Borgman
JWR's Pundits
World Editorial
Cartoon Showcase

Mallard Fillmore

Michael Barone
Mona Charen
Linda Chavez
Ann Coulter
Greg Crosby
Larry Elder
Don Feder
Suzanne Fields
James Glassman
Paul Greenberg
Bob Greene
Betsy Hart
Nat Hentoff
David Horowitz
Arianna Huffington
Jeff Jacoby
Marianne Jennings
Michael Kelly
Mort Kondracke
Ch. Krauthammer
Lawrence Kudlow
Dr. Laura
John Leo
David Limbaugh
Michelle Malkin
Chris Matthews
Michael Medved
Kathleen Parker
Wes Pruden
Sam Schulman
Amity Shlaes
Roger Simon
Tony Snow
Thomas Sowell
Cal Thomas
Jonathan S. Tobin
Ben Wattenberg
George Will
Bruce Williams
Walter Williams
Mort Zuckerman

Consumer Reports

Flush with excitement | We are sitting in Grandma and Grandpa's kitchen having coffee, waiting for the 7 o'clock hour when the rest of the world begins to rally on a Saturday. Our youngest appears in her robe, with a full roll of toilet paper in one hand and an empty roll of toilet paper in the other. There are many wonderful ways to start a Saturday morning. This is not one of them.

"The - the - the toilet," she stammers. She is visibly shaken and as white as a roll of a Charmin. "The - the - the toilet -"

"What about the toilet?" I ask, leaping from my chair. "What about the toilet?" Grandma asks, leaping from her chair. "What about the toilet?" Grandpa asks, leaping from his chair. (The echo at Grandma and Grandpa's has always been bad.)

"The toilet - the toilet -"


"I blew my nose, was flushing the toilet paper, putting on a new roll of toilet paper, and the spindle bounced out of my hand and was flushed away."

It is a full mob press to the bathroom. There is no way the spindle could have gone down the toilet. It was an old-fashioned one-piece spindle, not one of those two- piece jobs that breaks apart. We look behind the bathroom door, behind the bubble bath and in the medicine cabinet between the Old Spice and tartar control Crest.

Grandpa, who has been perfecting his handyman skills for years, is not daunted. He may be the only man in the universe who can calmly utter the six most disturbing words in the English language and not flinch. "We'll have to pull the toilet."

Grandma swallows hard, hugs the spindle flusher and says, "We're so glad you came to visit, dear. We really must do this more often."

Grandpa pulls the toilet and locates the spindle, which fortunately did not go down the pipe. He announces this would be a good time to replace the wax ring and get new bolts. The flustered spindle flusher accompanies Grandpa to the hardware store.

The hardware clerk, an astute fellow, says, "Looks like you pulled your toilet. What happened?"

Grandpa, being a delicate sort, recounts the crisis and says he would never reveal which grandchild it was, but if the clerk was to guess it was the one standing beside him, he would be absolutely correct.

"What's the punishment for a crime like that?" the clerk asks.

"Don't know," Grandpa says. "I don't know how to handle that."

"You could take all bathroom privileges away from her," the clerk offers.

"Yes, we thought about not letting her blow her nose or use toliets in the house anymore, but that could create a problem."

"What if you rent one of those outdoor portables and charge her every time she uses it?"

"Once you start charging the grandkids to use the facilities, then they don't want to come back anymore. We'll have to give it more thought."

The punishment is still pending, but our spindle crisis could have been worse. An America West flight recently was diverted to Wichita and grounded overnight because of a "suspicious wire" discovered on a bathroom floor. The suspicious wire was a lowly toilet paper spindle.

It's probably just a matter of time before some Congressman introduces legislation to protect Americans from toilet paper spindles. Grandma and Grandpa may be among the biggest supporters.

Enjoy this writer's work? Why not sign-up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Lori Borgman is the author of I Was a Better Mother Before I Had Kids. To comment, please click here.

06/14/02: The Ways a Father Says "I Love You"
06/07/02: Garage Sale Treasures
05/31/02: No Pudgy Hour at the gym
05/19/02: Ozzy, if you come for dinner, bring change
05/19/02: Instant Messaging and LOL
05/10/02: Some mothers get something more
05/03/02: I Nudge, Therefore I Am
04/25/02: Motherhood is seasonal work
04/19/02: Paper trail to college
04/12/02: What to cook or not to cook
03/31/02: Mom and Dad Break Curfew
03/22/02: Introducing P.P.M. (Partners Per Month)
03/15/02: Birth of a Pothole
03/08/02: When Enron Momma gets mad
03/01/02: Little hope for bookaholic
02/22/02: Wrestling with prejudice
02/15/02: Say What?
02/08/02: Kitchen intelligence
02/01/02: Age-old words
01/25/02: Abortion: Switching Sides
01/18/02: Kids, take note
01/11/02: The heart-stopper e-mail
01/04/02: The slightly sunny side of 2001
12/28/01: The Way Things Work
11/30/01: The Leftover Shuffle begins
11/27/01: Glasses bring age into focus
11/16/01: A different portion of Thanks
11/09/01: The Next Stage of Parenting
11/01/01: Of boys and patriotism
10/26/01: College Son the Invisible Man
10/19/01: Out of the closet ... and into the school
10/12/01: A Parent's Guide to Dating
10/05/01: "Taking Care of You"
09/28/01: Time indivisible
09/24/01: Refueling capitalism
09/14/01: A time to mourn
09/07/01: Lack of modesty stirs the troops
08/31/01: Scholarship search an education
08/24/01: The test for parents
08/17/01: Immodest proposals
08/10/01: Trying to R-r-r-re-re-relax
08/03/01: It may be shabby and chic, but it ain't cheap
07/20/01: Bride showered with sage advice
07/13/01: Baby Bear Finds Driving "Just Right"
07/06/01: Pale at the Thought of Bronze
06/29/01: A Dog's Best Friend
06/22/01: Rethinking fatherhood
06/14/01 Don't forget to lock the door
06/07/01 How grandma punishes her kids
06/01/01 Hearing voices
05/25/01 Cyborgs for Better or Worse
05/18/01 The death of Common Sense

© 2001, Lori Borgman