It was a slick, shiny magazine about car design. To get that slick look, they mix clay in with the paper. Most slick magazines are measurably radioactive from the clay. Except for Physics journals, who don’t want to mess up their customers’ experiments.
All of sudden I realized that something terrible had happened. There was no toilet paper in my stall.
Can you imagine my shock and outrage at having my social contract revoked at such a time? The last person should have put a sign on the door warning of the stall’s immodest frugality. Instead it was every dog for themselves.
I tried using my cellphone to call a co-worker. I remembered one extension number. He sent me straight to voicemail. Then I accidentally pressed some strange and powerful combination of buttons on my phone, and it started telling me “Updating Services”. After five minutes, much past my wit’s end, I pressed the Cancel button. Five minutes later it was still “Canceling Updating Services”. I tried to turn it off. It was too busy canceling updating services. I pulled the battery out.
Five minutes later, it finished rebooting. Carefully, I dialed into work, and chose the option for the Corporate Directory. “Enter somebody’s name, and we’ll connect you.” I was trying to pick one of my two co-workers. Instead, it was offering people in other buildings. It was mentioning people that I don’t know. I couldn’t get it to acknowlege that somebody named Chris worked here! Then it started going really weird, offering to let me listen in to somebody’s voicemail if I just pressed 1 and the # sign.
I gave up on the phone.
All this time, not a soul had entered the bathroom. Maybe there’d been a nuclear war, or fire drill, or some other reason to evacuate the premises. Maybe I’d been there so long the place had closed for the night. I was getting desperate.
Slick magazine pages can serve no purpose other than to display photos and prose. But I tore one page out and crumpled it up a little bit, just to test it.
So I climbed over into the neighboring stall. It was better than crawling under the stall, through the brown bubbling ooze of doom that was standing in a puddle on the floor.
OK, so I made that last paragraph up. Instead I did a quick u-turn from one stall to the next, and before long life was fine again.
After my escape, I put a sign on the stall door, warning away others from my terrible fate. Don’t you see, it would be the end of civilization were I not to.