You know what’s been on my mind a lot lately?
Stay with me here, people.
In high school, my group of friends—all girls—got into a t.p.-ing war with another group of friends, who happened to be all guys.
I know, for the love of god, it was like the toilet paper was flying along with the hormones, right? Could we have been any more obvious? (On a side note, one of the girls and one of the guys ended up getting married a few years later, so I guess it worked out for one of us, at least!)
For those of you who grew up in non-t.p.-ing countries or cities, first of all, I pity you. Second of all, let me explain: t.p.-ing a house is when you sneak up to somebody’s house in the dark, then take rolls of toilet paper and throw them way up in the trees, in bushes, around the house, around cars—you get the picture—so when the inhabitants wake up in the morning their entire yard is fetchingly draped in delicately fluttering white toilet paper.
It’s a nightmare to clean up and it’s even worse if it happens to rain during the night because all of that dry toilet paper turns into a gloppy mess that’s stuck everywhere.
It’s totally awesome if you’re the one who’s done the t.p.-ing, though, believe me.
My friends and I were masters at it at one point. We had a whole system going and we were a great team, although I think our activities were technically illegal. And now I’m counting on a statute of limitations so I don’t end up in jail for confessing to t.p.-ing houses 15 years ago, but if I’m arrested when I go back to the U.S. please take up a collection for my bail!
I’m way too pretty to end up in jail, people.
Also, you can just tell that someday when I’m a parent my house is going to get t.p.-ed and I’m going to be all annoyed and my parents are going to be like, Payback’s hell, isn’t it, honey?
The rest of this post, unfortunately, has nothing to do with t.p.-ing anything, although that would be a fantastic challenge. You better watch out, all the people I know in Bangkok! I’m coming at you with the t.p. and you’ll never know what hit ya’! As long as I can find your apartment and get into your building without calling you to let me in the front door!
So. Toilet paper. Bog roll (I hate that term). Bathroom tissue. Whatever it is you call it, it’s everywhere in Thailand when you don’t want it.
Like when it’s there to dry your hands in the bathroom.
How to smack it down: Get a whole, whole, whole bunch of it, wad it up in a tight ball and quickly swipe at your hands. That way you might escape without those annoying wet shreds of t.p. stuck to you that you have to embarrassingly pick off for an hour afterwards. Learn from my mistakes, people, which requires just forgetting about Mother Earth for a few minutes. You can make up for it later by, I don’t know, buying something organic or something.**
*Notice how the sign above the toilet paper dispenser says “useless”? Never a truer word spoken!
**As for the Mother Earth thing: I always separate my trash for recycling, even in Thailand, and when I was in Maryland, I had worms living in a bin under my kitchen sink to compost my garbage. So I’m totally into Mother Earth, and all that crap.
p.s. I was just informed that the toilet paper on the wall is there to take in the stall with you! I had NO IDEA and now I feel like an idiot, but…well…yeah, I’m an idiot.
p.p.s. I’ve been thinking…and I think sometimes the t.p. IS there to dry your hands. Sometimes there’s plenty of toilet paper in the stall, but then there’s just a roll set out by the sink, and no hand dryer or paper towels. I don’t see what else would make sense at that point. Anyway.
You can also helpfully find toilet paper on select restaurant tables.
How to smack it down: Try to forget that you have a strong connotation with toilet paper and toilets, not food. Definitely not food. And also try to forget that toilet paper is unsurprisingly ineffective as a napkin–especially the one-ply kind of toilet paper–then just go with the flow. So to speak.
I’m almost 100% sure that toilet paper is used instead of napkins because it’s super cheap. Somebody correct me if I’m wrong. (I’m totally kidding. I don’t want to be told I’m wrong! Do you even know me?!)
The funny thing about Thailand, though, is that there’s never toilet paper when you want it.
How to smack it down: Ladies! If you don’t carry around wet wipes when you’re in a developing country, you are just begging for some nastiness. JUST SAYING. I bought, like, 15 little travel packs of wipes when they were on sale, stashed them in every bag I have, and then still don’t have any when I need them. So don’t be like me, but be like the me I want to be, which is somebody who can find the damned wipes when she needs them.
Finally, don’t forget that toilet paper in Thailand is really just…tissue paper.
Because you know what? You can’t throw that stuff in the toilet! The sewage system can’t handle it.
How to smack it down: Just learn to suck it up and put your dirty toilet paper in the trash can. It’s gross, but it’s part of living and traveling abroad, and it’s better than the embarrassment of a clogged toilet and everybody looking at you like you’re a stupid farang. Which you are, BUT STILL. No need to advertise it, people!
Toilet Paper: ZERO Megan: ONE MILLION ONE TRILLION
Dudes, it’s MY point system! Shut up!