Toilet Paper

Here is one that will keep you up nights. What is the proper way to install toilet paper? Should it unroll from the front or the back? We are a 10 person firm and this is an ongoing argument, with the simple answer that it is a preference. With that said, I don’t care what the answer is, but I am extremely interested in the reason (if any) for the answer.

Try the search function. This his been discussed numerous times, including many polls. Since, as you alluded, there is no real answer and it’s subject to preference, try the IMHO forum, as opposed to GQ.

ETA: Here’s a recent thread:

It depends on whether you crack the big end of an egg or the little end. We know that God cracks the little end of his eggs, but that doesn’t help with this question, God doesn’t use toilet paper.

Is the roll on the right or the left of the toilet? Is it more than 36" off the floor? Is it single ply or multi ply?

single ply still exists?!?

Sitting on top of the toilet tank.

Of course it does. You’ve never experienced the unique pleasures of using the industrial-grade SYSCO crap on the giant roll that feels like you’re wiping your ass with 60 grit sandpaper?

Costco has a big package of Scott single ply. Like 36 rolls or so.

I remember the tracing paper stuff they used to have when I was at school, but happily that is but a memory. All my TP these days comes from the staff shop, and luckily we don’t manufacture anything in a single ply.

you could take a pol at your work, if one preference is overwhelming then go with that.

otherwise rolls replaced in the 1st and 3rd week of week of the month go over and those on the 2nd and 4th go under.

The problem here is that while there is a right answer, and those of us who understand and agree with it know we’re right, the poor misgiven souls who believe in the wrong answer passionately THINK they’re right and cannot be dissuaded from their pitiable stance.

I absolutely refuse to take a position on the OP’s question. Neither way is wrong.

OK, here goes. I’m only getting into this here because it is a factual answer, not a personal preference.

When the loose end of the toilet paper comes out under and behind the roll, I can tear it off using one hand, bracing the roll with my knuckles or the back of my hand, grasping the loose end with my fingers, and twisting my wrist to tear.

When the loose end of the toilet paper comes out above and in front of the roll, I need to use two hands, one to brace the roll and stop it from spinning madly, the other one to grasp and tear.

Those are two statements of fact. I ain’t saying which situation I prefer.

BTW, I admire the genius of both johnpost’s and Gary T’s responses.

I note, curiously, at a former office job I had, the union organized building caretakers always had the roll unwind off the back.

I guess no one complained about it for fear of torqueing off a Tony Soprano type . . .


Why would anyone complain since the union-trained professional craftsmen guys were doing the job right. Unlike non-union untrained janitors at other locations who would do the job wrongly out of ignorance.

But no, I don’t have any opinion on which way is correct, nor will I share it with y’all.

Since this is a matter of opinion, let’s move this over to IMHO.

General Questions Moderator

IMHO: Is My Hiney Optimized

Wow, I’m a total klutz, and even I can manage to tear off paper one-handed when it’s hung the correct way. I had no idea that some people had such difficulty.

There actually is a way to figure this out. Get yourself a couple of different rolls of patterned TP from various manufacturers (either printed or embossed patterns.) See which way they look “right” when you unroll them. If they all look right when unrolled in the same way, then that’s how the manufacturers have decided they should hang.

If, OTOH, one pattern looks right when unrolled from the front, and another looks right when unrolled from the back, then the manufacturers are being arbitrary, and you can, too.

Coming up next: aluminum foil, shiny or dull side? Followed by automotive gas caps, on the right or the left?