It started on a day in the 21st century. News broadcasts had informed, enlightened and shocked many people in the previous weeks. Nobody knew what to expect. All that was certain was that a new illness had been discovered.
Fast forward to that faithful Sunday when the quarantine was announced. Businesses were to close and people were to stay at home as much as possible. Scientists and other specialists were still not certain, all they knew was that prevention was better than waiting.
A quick glance in the supermarket revealed a new development. Shelves where there had once been toilet paper were empty.
Okay, wait a little bit maybe extra supplies will help for the remaining people.
The next day the shelves were empty again.
Two days in a row toilet paper had been hoarded by tribes of people fearing some kind of diarrhoea outbreak. The new illness was not described as having symptoms including diarrhoea, the mystery was still not solved.
Now this was not the age of Sherlock Holmes and his trusty assistant Doctor Watson. Walking around would not solve anything and what logic to apply was still unclear.
Logic? Who needs logic when you can panic?
What would be logical in the outbreak of a new illness and cause(s), spreading, symptoms and effects are still not fully known?
- You stay calm and inform yourself.
- In case of a required quarantine stay home as much as possible.
- Stock up on the necessary supplies.
- Remain to stay calm, continue to inform yourself.
- Take preventive measures as you learn more.
Apparently many people chose to panic. In the following days new headlines appeared in newspapers. Whether to laugh or to cry, well it did not matter.
There was no toilet paper.
What could the reasoning be? Is toilet paper the new gold? Maybe toilet paper has healing properties and can save lives? Could toilet paper be like duct tape and fix almost everything? It remained a mystery.
One thing was certain. The people who had hoarded so much toilet paper could now carelessly defecate. Comfortable faeces management was now secured.
Oh yes, the mystery of the disappearing toilet paper…