Thursday, August 12, 2010

Toilet Paper Capers

After a few months, Paul the Stomper moved on, taking over a friend's lease on a midtown studio.  Jake and I went back to craigslist to find yet another resident for our little apartment.  We found Tyler, a slightly pompous and full of himself Harvard grad who meant well, but could be a little much sometimes (once he came into the living room and announced, with glee, that he'd cleaned the bathroom!  well, congratulations, what do you want?  a cookie?).  Mostly the three of us got along well, but there were a few things (like the need for a gold star the one time cleaning was done by someone other than me) that got under my skin.  One of our issues regarded household supplies.

When Paul the Stomper lived with us, I felt like we were all buying our fair share of toilet paper, paper towels, soap, etc.  I bought things sometimes when they ran out, but there were other times when someone else brought stuff home.  After Paul moved I realized that this wasn't really the case.  I might have been buying 1/3 of the stuff, but Paul was definitely buying the rest.  After a couple of months of clearly being the only one buying everything our little place needed, I sent the following e-mail in reply to an e-mail Jake sent us about the bills :

On a related note . . . I was wondering if we could start a fund for apartment consumables?  I really don't mind picking up toilet paper, paper towels, soap and sponges for the apartment, but I can't afford to be the only one who does it.  So, I thought that if we each put $10 into an envelope, the next time we run out of something or need to buy consumable community property for the apartment we can use those funds.  I'm open to suggestions if you want to do something else.

Both boys responded positively and apologized for not buying more stuff.  I thought the issue was resolved and breathed a sigh of relief.  I'm not terribly confrontational, and I hate talking about money.  Even more, I hate asking for money -- even if I'm deserved it.  I was definitely happy to have this whole situation over with . . . or so I thought.

Despite their written positive feelings about the plan, the boys didn't act too quickly.  A few days later we ran out of toilet paper, neither of them was home and the "consumable property envelope" had yet to be fully established (and by this I mean that it existed, with my $10 in it, but no one else's).  I didn't quite know what to do, but I definitely needed some toilet paper, so I ran down to the bodaga and got some.  

After some careful contemplation, desperately not wanting to have to ask them again to pitch in some money, I came to a decision -- if they weren't going to pay for the toilet paper, they couldn't use it.  When I left the bathroom, I took it with me.  For a solid week my mobile roll of toilet paper was the only one in our apartment.  The boys were both home frequently this week and never said anything about the lack of toilet paper.  This turn of events raises a lot of questions:  1)  Why did it take them a week to do something about the situation?  2)  What exactly were they doing after going to the bathroom?  3)  What about going #2?  Were they saving it for the office?  4)  What did they think I was doing in the bathroom? (my secret stash kept a low profile.  I did no flaunting of the private toilet paper)  5)  Why are boys so weird? 

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