Battle of the Bowl: Moms, Kids and Public Restrooms


Kimberly-Clark automatic toilet paper dispenser

Image via Wikipedia

What is it about commercial toilet rolls and paper towel dispensers?

We have had these things around for decades, but for some reason the manufacturers just can’t get it right. What is the problem?

It’s bad enough you have to go to the bathroom while out in public, but when you finally make it to restroom, the damn paper won’t come off of those huge commercial sized rolls! If you are a mother, dragging your children into the stall with you, it only makes the situation more difficult. True story to follow.

So there I am – hovering  – quadriceps burning  – fighting with the commercial toilet paper roll. My daughter is standing in the stall with me about 5 inches from my face staring and wondering why her mother can’t do something as simple as wipe. Even a preschooler can manage that. First, I tore one 3 x 3 square of paper. I don’t care how efficient you are, obviously, that was not enough.   

So, I grabbed the next tiny bit of paper that was exposed in the large commercial canister and with two hands tugged down firmly.  I got another square. (I don’t even think it was two-ply.) At that point, I was thinking, “I could get by with three.”  Just when I thought I had leveraged enough momentum to send the toilet paper roll into a full revolution, the roll bounced back and pulled the paper from my grip. It was like I was on Candid Camera!

After I finally managed to get myself taken care of, my daughter decided she had to go. At that point I was thinking, “She can’t hover. So, how am I going to manage to cover the entire toilet seat in tiny squares and keep them from all blowing off onto the floor when she sits down?” Well, I covered the seat with some success, but some squares blew off.  I made the decision to sit her down anyway before she had an accident on the floor. That’s gross but that’s life.

After the Battle of the Bowls had been won, it was time to wash our hands.

Spoiler alert: that was ridiculously challenging too! In similar fashion to the toilet paper roller, the paper towel roller was poor at its job, to say the least. I’d pull down, the towel would rip, and the roll would retract. Rip. Retract. Rip. Retract.

Finally, my daughter and I had accumulated enough pieces combined to make a small paper wad with which to dry our hands.

No trip to the restroom should be that hard.  But so often, for a mom it is.

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About bizemom

I am a busy working mom (get it... "Biz e-Mom"?) of three kids under the age of four. I have a white-collar day job, I have a night job as a mom, and an "in between" job as a freelance writer and blogger. What can I say, I am a glutton for punishment and I don't go to bed until 1 a.m. No matter how much I complain, I like being busy. That must be the Sagitarius in me--we get bored easily. Now on to the next adventure (I mean... venture!)
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8 Responses to Battle of the Bowl: Moms, Kids and Public Restrooms

  1. I can’t’ believe the words coming from my fingertips but you’ve put the fear of the next public restroom into me – LOL. My favorite bookstore-cafe has those giant rolls that are just impossible to spin when they’re new. More than a few times the tissues in my jeans back pocket have come in handy. 😉

  2. gmomj says:

    That’s hilarious and so true!

  3. This is exactly why I love those automatic toilet seat covers and “touchless” sinks in public bathrooms. Only moms know the nightmare of a trip to the public bathroom with your child!

  4. I agree with allycatadventures, take some tissues with you every time you go out and perhaps some anti-bacterial hand gel incase the sink situation is as bad as the toilet! Good luck. Oh, and I’ve always wondered why there’s usually a queue in the ladies but the men seem to breeze in and out of theirs?

  5. Oh I know exactly what you’re talking about. I hate going to the bathroom in public only to find there is some toilet paper sucking monster living in that contraption. We can put a man on the moon…..

  6. Pingback: I’d Like the Thank…. | Mom Went Crazy

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