Today

The Toilet Paper – Behind the Scenes

By Nate Stein ’24

On Sunday, August 26th, 2018, the first Toilet Paper went up in bathroom stalls around
Woodberry Forest’s campus. Luke Stone ‘20 was the first editor; he passed it off to Lewis Rand
‘23 two years later in 2020, and Lewis passed it off to me in 2021. I am currently the editor for
the Toilet Paper, a subsection of the Woodberry Oracle, and I’m happy to report that the
publication is still in print on a weekly basis.
Each Toilet Paper features regular, more serious sections like the Weekly Calendar, the
Weekly Weather, and a snippet of an article from the Woodberry Oracle website. But the
publication is not all serious—it also features fun sections like Calvin & Hobbes comics, Mr.
Huber Trivia, riddles, memes, and occasional tidbits like Mr. Goldstein’s Top 5 Favorite Quotes,
Books, Movies, etc…, or Dr. Erb’s Top 5 Favorite Words in the English Language.
Although almost everyone sees or has seen a Toilet Paper here at Woodberry, I don’t
think that many people know exactly what goes into it. The purpose of this article is to detail the
entire process, from an empty template all the way to being taped up in the bathrooms.
I generally start with the Weekly Schedule, which I find on the “Calendar” page of
woodberry.org. I normally move to weather next, inputting the correct information and changing
the emojis. My usual third step is the Calvin & Hobbes comic, and after that, I go to the
Woodberry Oracle website to find an interesting article to add. Sometimes that article is a
popular Humor Section staple: Bachelor of the Week, and other times it’s a profile or opinion
piece—whatever’s been published during the last week that I think will be best. At this point, my
tabloid is mostly full, apart from the rightmost column (where the extra sections typically go).
This is when I add a Mr. Huber Trivia or a Mr. Goldstein’s Top 5 to the Toilet Paper. Space
permitting, I reach out to my unofficial Meme Team (Dan Chen ‘24 and William Green ‘24) for a
funny, Woodberry-specific meme. I often work through a few rounds of revision with them, but
we normally settle on something pretty neat. After that, I move some sections around so that

there isn’t any empty space on my spread, and after a quick edit by Mr. Geiger and/or my editor-
in-chief, Carter Harrell, we’re ready to print.

Printing and distribution of the Toilet Paper are an entirely different beast altogether,
though. Just over 100 copies are printed each week on 11” × 17” glossy stock and are distributed
by a group of people on Sundays. Distribution can take anywhere from half an hour to an
hour and a half, depending on the number of people helping out.
The whole process of designing, editing, printing, and distributing the Toilet Paper is a
lot more complex than most people probably think at first glance, but it’s a fun challenge that I
get to undertake every week, and it’s always a rewarding and worthwhile effort.

Categories: Today

1 reply »

  1. Nate Stein ’24 is a great editor. He is responsible, hardworking, and honorable for mentioning his meme team! The meme is always my favorite part of the Toilet Paper. Well done!

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