It was early evening when the classified documents indicated there was toilet paper to be found. Lon, a man who prided himself on providing for his family, decided he was up for the task. Sturdy, burly, and strong, he set his eye on the prize: a pack of plush tp for his family. So, climbing into the family truck nicknamed “Little Gray” (although it is brown in color), Lon zipped out of the cul-de-sac to embark on his mission.
As he drove down the main avenue to the local Walmart store, he happened to look over and see a car that reminded him of a pregnant roller skate. A man of about his age glanced over at just that same time and their eyes connected. Both accelerated.
And then Lon knew.
He was in for the race of his life.
Feeling a bit like Mario Andretti, Lon lurched Little Gray forward and stepped up his speed. He was up for the challenge. He only wished he had added some souped up options on Little Gray. An engine tuner, a lift kit, a turbo kit, a supercharge… all would have been helpful at this time, as the pregnant roller skate threatened to overtake him.
Were it not for the 30 mph speed limit, Lon knew he would have smoked the competition.
Not to be deterred, Lon rounded the corner into the Walmart parking lot on two wheels with the speed and finesse of the expert he was. He pulled into a parking space only to find the pregnant roller skate pulled in right beside him. Lamenting that he’d worn his camo crocs instead of his running shoes, Lon leapt out of the truck and began to sprint toward the store. Those grueling hours of high school track were coming in handy as he zipped through the front doors, his competitor at his side.
“You get the call too?” his competition asked as they strode side-by-side toward the sacred toilet-paper aisle.
“Yep,” Lon replied.
They continued their race to aisle B26 “Look, man, I got a family,” the driver of the pregnant roller skate said.
Lon sized up his competition. Similar height, similar build.
But he had this. Failure was not an option.
Everywhere in the store, chaos abounded. If necessary, he would draw upon his former experience as a football lineman and use his massive shoulders to push through the crowds (in a gentlemanly way, of course). Carts overloaded with multiple counts of bizarre items no one would have purchased before the Great Hoarding Phenomenon of 2020 threatened to hinder his quest.
Lon dodged into the tp aisle, the competition on his tail. His eyes settled on the prize: a pack of six rolls of fluffy white toilet paper. Only a couple packages remained on the otherwise empty shelves. He exchanged another glance with his rival. Heart pounding, muscles burning, he made the final leap to the shelf, and in one fell swoop, achieved victory. His competition did the same, securing his own pack.
They both stopped for a minute and chuckled. Were it not for the new social distancing rules in place, they might have shook hands or fist bumped.
The former competitors walked toward the checkout together with their prized purchases, discussing, at the appropriate distance, the ridiculous nature of toilet paper shortages.
Only later did Lon learn the hard sad truth. The toilet paper was one-ply.
*This story has been slightly exaggerated. The toilet paper pack actually contained 12 rolls, rather than six. 🙂