back to article As Australia is gripped by bog roll shortage, tabloid says: Here, fill your dunny with us

"Wouldn't wipe my arse with it" is an expression you'll commonly hear in the UK to describe a newspaper the speaker doesn't like. However, tomorrow Aussie tabloid the Northern Territory News will invite its readers to do exactly that. In case you haven't noticed, 2020 has been pretty apocalyptic and Q1 isn't even done yet. Not …

  1. John Robson Silver badge

    Ideal for politicians

    Who often confuse their rectal and respiratory systems... By talking out of their arses.

    1. Korev Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Ideal for politicians

      They could use it to paper over the cracks...

      1. Red Wolf
        Coat

        Re: Ideal for politicians

        I don't think the NT News has a print run large enough to handle that scenario.

    2. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Ideal for politicians

      "Who often confuse their rectal and respiratory systems... By talking out of their arses."

      Thy can't do that most of the time, due to their rectocranial inversion (aka head up arse syndrome)

    3. FreemonSandlewould

      Re: Ideal for politicians

      I figured you in England were accustomed to doing without toilet paper.

    4. MyffyW Silver badge

      Learn from my past mistakes

      Under no circumstances can I recommend wiping your arse with wide-carriage Pascal listings. Not only do the perforated holes chafe your, ahem, holes but the damned stuff absolutely fails to flush round the u-bend.

  2. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    Coat

    Nice marketing move, though

    It sure is a great idea from a selling viewpoint, however usage of such paper is best suited to bears-in-the-forest activity and not, as outlined in the article, as actual toilet paper to be flushed.

    Now, as a follow-up, I'd like to know what customers actually thought of the experience.

    Mine's the one with the 4-ply bog roll in the pocket.

    1. Korev Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Nice marketing move, though

      It sure is a great idea from a selling viewpoint,

      I'm sure their bank account will be flush with money after this...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Nice marketing move, though

        Bog standard marketing technique.

    2. Korev Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Nice marketing move, though

      Now, as a follow-up, I'd like to know what customers actually thought of the experience.

      They probably thought it was crap...

      1. Chris G Silver badge

        Re: Nice marketing move, though

        They would sell a hell of a lot more if the pages had a selection of politicians faces printed on them.

        For those who lack experience, screwing news print up and rolling it vigorously between your hands then flatten it back out before use, softens it, makes it more absorbent and tolerable for those with delicate derrieres.

        1. Alistair Silver badge
          Windows

          Re: Nice marketing move, though

          Considering some of the shite shit wipe I've run into in commercial bathrooms, That proceedure is required for some of the tissue thin sandpaper relatives that are labelled 'toilet paper' in public washrooms.

        2. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: Nice marketing move, though

          "They would sell a hell of a lot more if the pages had a selection of politicians faces printed on them."

          You mean like this?

          https://www.amazon.co.uk/Donald-Trump-Toilet-Paper-Novelty/dp/B07BTZZZXQ

  3. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

    You can roll up the rest of the newspaper and use it to whack dunny spiders.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Australian spiders? I'd be more for rolling it up and using it as the fuse for a Molotov.

      1. Adam 1

        That's a crazy stupid idea! Who thought that giving the spiders any additional weapons was a good idea?

  4. knarf

    Whole world gone to shit

    Can't Oz's just use Sand and pretend their on Dune.

    1. Korev Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Whole world gone to shit

      Would that then be sandpaper?

      1. Woza
        Joke

        Re: Whole world gone to shit

        Unfortunately sandpaper is in short supply, our cricket team has been panic buying.

    2. Arthur the cat Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Whole world gone to shit

      Can't Oz's just use Sand and pretend their on Dune.

      Sandworms are sensibly scared of Australian fauna.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Whole world gone to shit

        Every self-re.. loathing wife beater wearing territorian only uses this paper https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UEu3puWVUsI

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    If we run out over here I'll just get some tracing paper from the stationary shop for that authentic old school feel.

    1. albaleo

      That brought back bad memories.

      1. Steve Kellett

        Yes. What exactly was the point of that glossy-sided nightmare known as "Izal"?

        1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

          I think the point was to save money, by persuading kids to only poo at home...

  6. phuzz Silver badge
    Unhappy

    I used to live with a guy who refused to buy bog roll. So the rest of us hid our own stashes of bum wad (behind the sink was a good place), whilst he made do with a telephone directory*.

    * Note for kids; this was a big book in which the government-owned telephone monopoly, published everyone's name and land-line number. It had nice thin pages.

    1. Dr_N Silver badge
      Trollface

      phuzz >> I used to live with a guy who refused to buy bog roll.

      Is that why you broke up?

    2. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Happy

      For the kids: A land-line was a number on which you could contact people on a telephone on a table in their hallway at home. This telephone was connected by wires to the public telephoner network. It was usually located at the bottom of the stairs, next to the front door.

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
        Devil

        Note for young people: Talking on the telephone is what people used to do, before the invention of texting, WhatsApp, Facebook chat, Telegram etc.

    3. Cuddles Silver badge

      Oddly enough, I actually had a phone directory posted through the door last month. Hadn't seen one for years, and I thought they'd died out entirely, but apparently BT still do them on a somewhat erratic schedule. I'm in it twice; once for a house I haven't lived in for 6 years, and once for the current house which has never had a phone plugged into the landline. So still around, but probably not terribly useful.

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        Telephone directories are rubbish now. When they were important, they were great. Because with all the numbers and adverts they were thick enough to make perfect monitor stands. The ones you get nowadays are barely a hundred pages thick...

        It's like the glory days of Computer Shopper and PCW magazines in the early 90s. 120 pages of content, 500 pages of adverts - and a free AOL CD coaster on the front cover.

        1. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

          I was in an Argos shop the other day and saw their nice thick catalogue.

          A shop is a place where old people can buy things to take home instead of being delivered or 3D printed.

          A "catalogue" is like Amazon, but printed on paper. It is a "book" with "pages" showing things to buy, like web pages.

          "Paper" is a display system made from poor innocent trees. It has a digital interface if you lick your finger and then use it to turn the pages.

          "Licking" is a form of intimate greeting that we used before SARS bird flu swine flu coronavirus golgotha plague.

          1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge
            Trollface

            Re: catalogue

            Laminated book of dreams

      2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        At the Stately Manor, we regularly get a couple of phone directories every year: one for the (small) city in which the Manor is actually situated, and one for the metro area surrounding the nearest somewhat-larger city.

        I even consult them occasionally, though mostly out of nostalgia.

        Come to that, it was only last week that I finally canceled the Manor's "land-line" service. It has proven useful over the years, particularly during extended power outages when the cell-tower batteries run down. Then we're the only people in the neighborhood who can call around to see who has dry ice in stock. But now we know the secret reliable dry-ice supplier, and the cost of wired phone service from AT&T is outrageous - around $85 a month - so I turned it off.

        I'm keeping the wall-mount phone, though, as a sort of trophy display. "Oh yes, as recently as 2020 this thing actually worked! You could use it to leave messages in someone's voicemail, which they'd delete without listening to."

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Protect against panic buying -- Rush out and buy some.

  8. Mark 85 Silver badge
    Holmes

    Bog Roll/TP Shortage?

    Why? Has our collective education system failed that due to a virus that doesn't effect the lower end plumbing is a call to go buy this product? Strange times these.

    1. Tom 38 Silver badge

      Re: Bog Roll/TP Shortage?

      The logic goes like this:

      I'm safe at home

      I can catch disease from the people outside

      If I've already got the disease, I can't go outside

      What if no-one delivers more toilet paper to shops because they're all sick

      I don't like wiping my butt with my hand

      I'm going to buy 3 months of toilet roll

      Do like the Romans I say, have a nice sponge and give it a good wash afterwards.

      1. Andy Non Silver badge
        Coat

        Re: Bog Roll/TP Shortage?

        Like the Romans did? I think you've got the wrong end of the stick there.

      2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: Bog Roll/TP Shortage?

        have a nice sponge and give it a good wash afterwards

        And don't forget to add vinegar to the wash water as an antiseptic.. (Mind you, the standard red wine ration would do if you don't have vinegar..)

  9. Stevie Silver badge

    Bah!

    "Toilet rolls are down to three pounds, or four pounds new!"

    Michael Palin, Monty Python's Tiny Black Round Thing, New Musical express giveaway flimsy

  10. Dr_N Silver badge
    WTF?

    Am I missing something ?

    What is this bog roll obsession?

    I've heard panic buying reports from Japan, (They hardly use it anyway as they have delux wash'n'wax bogs.) Australia and now even England.

    It would be the last thing I'd be thinking about stockpiling for the apocalype.

    1. Joe W Silver badge

      Re: Am I missing something ?

      Also the rush on soap.... Don't people normally wash their hands or why are they so overly eager now?

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Am I missing something ?

        > Don't people normally wash their hands or why are they so overly eager now?

        "Wash your hands as if the blood of the rightful king you convinced your husband to kill is on them and won't come off"

        1. Mike VandeVelde
          Mushroom

          Re: Wash your hands as if

          Wash your hands as if you just finished chopping jalapenos and need to change your contact lenses.

          1. Alistair Silver badge
            Windows

            Re: Wash your hands as if

            I hear experience in that statement.

          2. James Wilson

            Re: Wash your hands as if

            Wash your hands as if you just finished chopping jalapenos and need to have a piss.

            It happened to a friend. No, seriously, it was a friend, but the look on his face when he returned from the bathroom was enough to teach me that lesson for life.

      2. heyrick Silver badge

        Re: Am I missing something ?

        Given the vast number of people I've seen leaving toilets without bothering to wash their hands, I feel I can safety say that for some, hand washing is an alien concept. Until some bloke on the telly points out that not doing so might make you sick (sick in a way that everybody is freaking out about).

        Of course, when this all blows over they'll go back to not bothering again, because a few moments washing hands (national anthem optional) is such a hardship.

        1. Warm Braw Silver badge

          Re: Am I missing something ?

          hand washing is an alien concept

          My grandmother always said the best way to clean her hands after black-leading the grate was to make bread. Worth thinking about if you can't find hand sanitizer.

          1. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

            Re: Am I missing something ?

            Now I can't think about anything but hand sanitizer.

        2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

          Re: Am I missing something ?

          without bothering to wash their hands

          My mum was a nurse. Washing hands was programmed into us from a *very* early age..

        3. MJI Silver badge

          Re: Am I missing something ?

          I have started abusing them, calling them dirty bastards, they look very sheepish.

          If security say anything.

          "That dirty bastard didn't wash his hands after using the toilet, and now he is going to walk around the supermarket touching food people eat. People are going to eat his pee or poo."

          If they tried to hit me I would not hesitate to break their kneecaps. (Stamp on them).

        4. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: Am I missing something ?

          "hand washing is an alien concept. Until some bloke on the telly points out that not doing so might make you sick"

          I had the same arguments with my wife about leaving cooked rice sitting around.

          No amount of showing her the reports would convince her - until some talking head said so on TV - and then it must be true because it was on TV wasn't it, and they don't allow lies on TV do they?

      3. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: Am I missing something ?

        Also the rush on soap..

        And, for a laugh, try to get hold of alcohol-based hand sanitiser. Not available for love nor money.

    2. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Am I missing something ?

      "They hardly use it anyway as they have delux wash'n'wax bogs"

      And for the less Japanese of us, searching on Amazon, et al for "Bidet Toilet Seat" will find a number of devices which are more reasonably priced.

      HINT: If you think you need warm water, you probably live in the arctic. Cold-water only ones are perfectly tolerable (Yes, I have one and yes they work - but you'll still need a bit of TP to dry off with. The expensive whizzo ones come with a warm air blaster to cover that angle.)

      This and "sharuf" sprayers are more sensible approaches than wiping a thin film of .... "stuff" all over your cheeks.

      1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

        Re: Am I missing something ?

        However, and who'd 'a thunk my knowledge of the Water Regulations would come in useful on here? You bog is often on the floor above your kitchen tap, and sometimes shares the same supply pipe. So a bit of precaution might be in order.

        The legal requirement is that you must have Fluid Category 5 protection between your bum and your glass of drinking water. Which means that a spray arm inside your toilet is a contamination risk - as is a shower head that can be accidentally dropped down the pan. Cat 5 means 2 pipe widths gap above the top of any vessel - i.e. your kitchen sink taps being high above the top of the side of the sink and old-school bidets having the taps above the top of the bidet pan with a spray nozzle to direct the flow down at your arse.

        Some of the sprays can be fed via the toilet cistern - which is already Cat 5 because of the fact it's supplying the toilet. Others come direct off the mains, which is both illegal and somewhat dangerous. Obviously a lot of regs are overkill, but in my opinion not this one - because all the risk is small - you really need a drop in water supply pressure to cause backflow (or back-siphonage from shower hoses) - the health risk if it does happen is very high.

        The law requries a break tank with AB air-gap, which then needs a pump, or to be high enough to give you water pressure via gravity (say in the attic). But that's because it's the highest risk and these are fail-safe. The fail dangerous option that's affordable and easy to fit is a double check valve on the final supply to whatever you're using. At lot of families where I live are of Pakistani and Bangladeshi origin, and a lof of those have shower hoses fitted off the mains cold water - and there's no way a lot of them can afford to do it legally. But it would be good if their plumbers would at least fit a £5 double check valve as a bit of insurance.

        Sorry, digression over.

        1. Outski

          Re: Am I missing something ?

          "Some of the sprays can be fed via the toilet cistern"

          In Malaysia, toilets have a hose with a trigger nozzle attached to the pipe supplying the cistern, ie, not from the cistern itself, which gives you a pretty good clean-up before applying paper. If I ever have the wherewithall to buy a place here in Blighty, that's the first mod.

          1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

            Re: Am I missing something ?

            If the hose is from the supply pipe then it's illegal here. Should the kids ever drop it down the bog and there's a temporary drop in supply pressure, it can siphon water from toilet to any other outlet in the house. Be that your shower, or kitchen tap.

            A double check valve makes that safe, if not legal. And a riskier kind of safe, because you can't check if the check valve is working very easily - but as the problem is low probability but high risk - it's probably a sensible trade-off.

            Or I can sell you a unit for £2,400 (ex VAT) to give you 2 minutes of warm water at 40°C that complies with the regs. Or you can do it yourself with a £100 break tank, a shower pump and your own controls.

            1. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

              Re: Am I missing something ?

              Yeah, install a second shower box just for rinsing of rump should be a cheaper design. A bit tricky to have some of the runoff not go in your socks, though.

        2. Robert Carnegie Silver badge

          Re: Am I over-sharing ?

          They say that invisible particles of crap land on your toothbrush just when you flush the pan in the usual way, if the bathroom sink is next to the throne. I think Snopes confirmed this but I'm not sure how to look it up. It still sounds scare-monger-ish and I'm not sure how having dishwasher components operating from under the seat is worse.

          I used a public loo in Perth Scotland where the flush was on touch control and I accidentally touched it several times during my meditation. I was moistened, but I did not feel fully cleansed.

          1. MJI Silver badge

            Re: Am I over-sharing ?

            They say that invisible particles of crap land on your toothbrush just when you flush the pan in the usual way

            Close the seat first

          2. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

            Re: Am I over-sharing ?

            Robert Carnegie,

            The word you are looking for is aerosolisation. And the advice is to close the toilet lid before flushing and also to keep your toothbrush more than 6 feet from the toilet. Even better if it's in a cupboard.

            The big legionella risk factors are all about aerosols - because that's the easiest way to catch the disease. So you try to stop it growing in all water systems - but you have to also mitigate the risks, because the bacteria is present in something like 70% of water sources. So you just assume it's there and design accordingly. Which means keeping temperatures below 20°C or above 65°C as much as possible. And then doing extra testing and mitigation for the danger areas, which are swimming pools, cooling towers, showers, jacuzzis and to a lesser extent toilets and spray mixer taps.

        3. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: Am I missing something ?

          "You bog is often on the floor above your kitchen tap, and sometimes shares the same supply pipe. "

          Which (along with washing machines in the kitchen) shows how utterly unfit for purpose and dangerous by (lack of) design most British houses are.

          1: That kind of layout is flat out illegal in most parts of the world - forget the water mains and think what happens if there's _any_ kind of disruption to the sewer pipe. (For the same reason a bath or shower above a kitchen would be illegal too)

          2: A lot of countries require _at least_ one room's separation between laundry and food preparation areas due to contamination risks - especially prevalent if you think of the words "babies" and "nappies"

          The regulations you're talking about are a half-arsed response to a slack-arsed problem that shouldn't ever arise in the first place - very much a case of "Oh, look, we'll deal harshly with a symptom AND IGNORE THE FUCKING CAUSE OF THE PROBLEM"

          1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

            Re: Am I missing something ?

            Alan Brown,

            Washing machines in the kitchen are fine. All standard washing machine valves have a built in check valve to stop the taste of the rubber hose getting back to your drinking water - and any CE marked washing machine must have a double check valve built in.

            The risk or washing machine water is a Fluid Category 3 risk - which can be dealt with by double check valve. Food waste is the highest category Cat 5, hence your sink tap gap being required to be twice the pipe diameter between the bottom of the tap and the top of the sink. So washing machine water going into is is less dangerous than the purpose it's already designed for.

            The point about bathrooms being a floor above is simply that gravity means if supply pressure is reduced, then the kitchen tap can be fed from water higher in the pipe, due to gravity. Position is therefor irrelevant.

            Whether bathrooms can be above kitchens, I've no idea. Though I thought UK building regs also required 2 doors between kitchen and toilet. We don't have those rules on laundries - but then I'm not sure that output from the dishwasher is any safer than from the washing machine. Both are Fluid Category 3 - and that should be the same across the EU, given that our Water Regulations are based on a common EU framework.

            The risks you are worrying about are lower. What I'm talking about is poo coming out of your kitchen tap. But you're talking about it possibly dripping from the ceiling - which hopefully you'd notice and suspend cooking until any leak was fixed. Or from common drains, but your sink is already considered contaminated by the Water Regs - so they're designed to protect the mains from backflow and the house from cross-contamination. The Water Regs are a statutory instrument based on the 91 Water Industry Act - whereas what you're talking about is building regulations. Weirdly Part P is electricity and Part L is plumbing. Never got that myself...

    3. eldakka Silver badge

      Re: Am I missing something ?

      What is this bog roll obsession?

      Two reasons IMO:

      1) It doesn't go off, so if the apocalypse doesn't happen, you don't have to buy bog paper for a while as you go through the hoard, you don't lose anything (such as going-off food) by stockpiling it if it wasn't necessary;

      2) people are squeamish about bodily functions, they often seem to lose common sense when it comes to piss and poo, so they stock up on bog-paper to avoid that squeamishness. I once had someone who pee'd their pants when the toilet at home was occupied (and they arrived home absolutely bursting to take a piss) rather than just going into the shower or bathtub or laundry sink and pissing there or on the grass in the back yard behind a bush or something. Hell, worst case, it's only piss, piss on the cement of the verandah and hose it down afterwards. All better options than pissing their pants.

      1. imanidiot Silver badge
        Gimp

        Re: Am I missing something ?

        And if you piss your pants, it's still going somewhere you don't want it (probably your nice carpet or hardwood floors). Better to have it contained.

      2. MJI Silver badge

        Re: Am I missing something ?

        We have two toilets, one upstairs one downstairs.

        I managed fine a few weeks ago with epic bottom squirty problems.

  11. Magani
    Holmes

    Observation 101

    It's pretty obvious - coronavirus gives people the shits.

    1. heyrick Silver badge

      Re: Observation 101

      I thought that was the "you're all gonna die!" style media coverage?

      Case in point - https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8074563/

      1. Twanky Bronze badge
        Headmaster

        Re: Observation 101

        "you're all gonna die!"

        At last something we can all agree on - except maybe AMFM.

  12. sinsi

    Just be like Granny and get the Almanac, nice thin pages...

  13. SirUseMyLanceALot

    TP shortage

    Back in the 1940s and 50s my father would read the newspaper and then tear it into squares and hang it in the outdoor dunny on a loop of string. Just saying that to my wife and she said not only too rough but too bloody expensive. At least once a week we would burn a couple of squares to keep the red back spiders at bay. Those red backs had a nasty bite at the best of times and they certainly wouldn't do your dangly bits any good.

  14. bwesley

    Now this is a newpaper I can get behind

  15. Winkypop Silver badge

    NT NEWS

    What a croc* of shit.

    * Their usual front page obsession.

    1. Ken Shabby Bronze badge
      Holmes

      Re: NT NEWS

      You have to take their stories with giant pinch of Saltie.

  16. mmonroe

    Deep Drop

    When I lived in the bush, we had a deep drop as a dunny and Mum would tear up old newspaper and hang it on a piece of string. It did leave your botty with a few black marks though! That was back in the days when you got your fish and chips wrapped in newspaper; they definitely tasted better.

    1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

      Re: Deep Drop

      when you got your fish and chips wrapped in newspaper; they definitely tasted better

      yeah - those lead salts in the newspaper ink really added to the flavour..

      (And even some modern inks contain volatile organics - not something you want near fried food..)

  17. This post has been deleted by its author

  18. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

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