The Right Way? Quick Five Fun!

Over_or_Under_Toilet_Paper_postDid you know that one of the most contentious debates people have is called ‘Over or Under‘ and is about which way you put the toilet roll on the holder? Husbands and wives row about it, families argue about it and friends have been known to avoid each other’s houses/bathrooms because of it!

We all have our views, I’m sure but do we need to fall out over it? Apparently, a lot of people do. Ann Landers once answered the question in her column, recommending one way – under – generating thousands (yes, thousands!) of letters of argument. She then recommended the other way – over – and got thousands (yes, thousands!) more letters of complaint! In total, she received over 15,000 letters on the subject!

Dishwasher flatwareThen there is the issue of the cutlery in the dishwasher – should the handles be up or down? Does one way clean better or is that a myth? Certainly one way is safer for the person doing the unloading! Again, this issue has been known to cause ructions, deep and bitter.

Although there isn’t a right or wrong way to squeeze a toothpaste tube, that too is a cause of much irritation and frustration. The neat ‘squeeze it from the bottom and curl it up as you go‘ brigade go nuts with those in the ‘who cares, squeeze it wherever you like‘ gang!

Then, there is the ‘hangers‘ argument. Yes, those things you use to hang your clothes onto a bar or hook in the wardrobe. Should the open part of the ‘C’ of the hanger face towards you or away from you? Does the front of the garment face right or left?

I suppose we shouldn’t mention books on a bookshelf or we could start a war!


So, let’s see what you all think with a Quick Five about the right way to do these things. But please, please don’t fall out over it!

1. Toilet roll – over or under?

2. Toothpaste tube – squeeze from the end or wherever?

3. Cutlery in the dishwasher – handles up or down?

4. Hangers in the wardrobe – open part of ‘C’ facing you or away from you? Which way does the front of the garment face – right or left?

5. How do you organise books on your bookshelves?


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  • Jane says:

    Hello Anna,
    1. Over
    2. Squeeze it wherever
    3. Handles down
    4. Hangers face away and the front the garment faces right.
    5. I don’t sort my books in anyway. Not alphabetically or genre.

  • flchen1 says:

    1. Over
    2. From the end
    3. knife handles up, the rest down
    4. C faces away, front faces left
    5. Right now, the bookshelves are a disaster, loosely clumped by author πŸ˜‰

  • Helen says:


    This is a good one LOL

    1. Either way
    2. From the end
    3. I don’t have a dishwasher
    4. C faces away
    5. Alphabetical order (when I tidy them up) LOL

    Have Fun

  • Shannon says:

    1. Depends on my mood
    2. Wherever
    3. Handles up
    4. Away from you? Usually inside out πŸ™‚
    5. How ever many can fit–sometimes across, then on top, then more in front. Thank goodness for my Kindle.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Shannon! That’s interesting – how does your mood dictate whether the toilet roll is over or under? πŸ™‚

      LOL I hear you on the bookshelves and the Kindle!

  • Mozette says:

    1. Toilet roll – over or under?

    Under… and this infuriates my family as they put it the other way. So, they know if I’ve changed the toilet roll … but my brother is the same way as me… so they can’t really blame me or him… or him or me… πŸ˜›

    2. Toothpaste tube – squeeze from the end or wherever?

    The end… otherwise it makes the tube split at the bottom and it goes all over the place and it looks disgusting.

    3. Cutlery in the dishwasher – handles up or down?

    handles down… always.

    4. Hangers in the wardrobe – open part of β€˜C’ facing you or away from you? Which way does the front of the garment face – right or left?

    Facing away from me. It makes it easier for me to get my clothes in and out of the wardrobe without it hooking onto other clothes.

    5. How do you organise books on your bookshelves?

    Um… how do you mean? I don’t use the dewey decimal system… Horror has its own shelf, so does Classics and biographies and autobiographies, then Mt TBR and really old books are on the bottom shelf away from sunlight. Non-fiction is a whole bookcase of its own. My children’s books are way up on top and away from any sticky fingers… and then there’s a massive pile of books that are in no particular order of reading. Then, I have a space on the bookcase where I place books that I’ve read over the year. After the year, I put them away with the spines facing inward, so I know I’ve read them. πŸ˜€

    • Mozette says:

      Oooh… I missed a bit of a question there on question 4: on clothes facing left or right.

      Facing right. I’m a leftie, so my clothes are always facing to the right so I can turn them around to look at them with my left hand. πŸ˜€

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Mozette! That’s some system you have for organising your books! Especially putting read books spine inwards!

      • Mozette says:

        And the fun thing is that my books are in a whole room of their own! πŸ˜€

        Very cool… I live in a two bedroom townhouse and when people look at it from the outside, it looks normal, but when they see the inside, they are amazed what I have on the inside… my townhouse is the Tardis of the unit complex – bigger on the inside than on the outside. πŸ˜›

  • Heidi Howard says:

    Too fun!
    Toothpaste, however I can. My hands hurt, so my husband makes sure to squeeze the end and roll up
    Handles up.
    Hangers away, clothes to the right
    Books by genre, mostly. Kind of messy right now. Books I’ve read go on a shelf all around the room above the door and windows

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Heidi! So glad you enjoyed this!

      I love the sound of your shelf that goes all around the room – I think we need one of those … in addition to the other 40 bookcases in our house!

  • Laurie G says:

    1. Toilet roll – over or under?
    OVER always, easier to grab and tear

    2. Toothpaste tube – squeeze from the end or wherever?
    I start out squeezing where ever until it’s almost gone then I roll it up from the bottom to squeeze the remainder out.

    3. Cutlery in the dishwasher – handles up or down? I only use the dishwasher at my F-I-L’s house. I always put the handles down so I can see what I’m grabbing on the way out, even sharp knives

    4. Hangers in the wardrobe – open part of β€˜C’ facing you or away from you? Which way does the front of the garment face – right or left?

    C is always away from me and clothes face to the left

    5. How do you organise books on your bookshelves?

    Haphazard I’m an avid reader and put only my keepers up on the bookshelves.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Laurie! Thanks for taking part in the fun today!

      I’m finding it fascinating how everyone does things – and a little relieved that people do have particular ways of doing them πŸ™‚ Especially interesting how such avid readers do or don’t organise their bookshelves!

  • Deb says:

    Hi, Anna!

    1. Toilet roll – over or under?

    2. Toothpaste tube – squeeze from the end or wherever?
    Guilty! Wherever. Drives my husband nuts because he rolls the tube up from the end.

    3. Cutlery in the dishwasher – handles up or down?
    If knives, sharp points down, otherwise, any which way. However, I don’t have a working dishwasher (not for 4 years, and I just don’t think it is really necessary right now). But, I do the same with the strainer, so sharp points down.

    4. Hangers in the wardrobe – open part of β€˜C’ facing you or away from you? Which way does the front of the garment face – right or left?
    The C part away from me; seems to be easier to hook over the rod.

    5. How do you organise books on your bookshelves? I like the same author to have his or her books together. Or, if it is a series, book one on the left and the others following to the right of it.

    I’m going to add another: 6. Canned goods in cupboard? I am a little OCD with this. Cans MUST face outwardly to see the name of the food; cans MUST be right-way up and not upside down; and I have vegetables on the left of the shelf, fruit on the right. Veggies and fruits on middle shelf, soups, dressings, sauces are on the top shelf; peanut butter, dry mixes on the bottom shelf! πŸ™‚

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Deb! What’s a little OCD between friends? I must admit, I don’t like cans upside down in the cupboard! I like to have all books by a particular author together too – and in series order. πŸ™‚

  • Debbie Oxier says:

    Believe it or not, I have such short arms the reach is better if my toilet paper is over so that’s how it is at our house. Don’t have a dishwasher so it doesn’t matter about the handles. My hangers always face away from me. As for my books, they are organized by author and some are standing some are laying down. Wonder what all this says about us?

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Debbie! Thanks for taking part in the fun! I’m not sure what it says about us all LOL.

      So far, we show a preference for toilet rolls over. We’re evenly balanced on toothpaste tube squeezing and we are mixed on how to load a dishwasher (quite a number don’t have one!). We mostly hang our hangers with the C facing away and with garments facing to suit whether we’re right or left-handed. And we don’t seem to be as OCD about organising our bookshelves as one might expect! πŸ™‚

  • Diana Huffer says:

    1. Toilet roll – over or under? — OVER! (yes, pet peeve!)

    2. Toothpaste tube – squeeze from the end or wherever? — End

    3. Cutlery in the dishwasher – handles up or down? — Handles down

    4. Hangers in the wardrobe – open part of ‘C’ facing you or away from you? Which way does the front of the garment face – right or left? — facing me (Hubby’s quirk!)

    5. How do you organise books on your bookshelves? — by author, then by title….

    OK — after reading these again, along with my responses, I feel a bit anal-retentive! ~LOL~

    • Anna Sugden says:

      LOL Diana! Thanks for taking part – and don’t worry! I think we’re all a little anal about such things!

      It’s funny – my hubby is a leftie, so he hangs things in the wardrobe the opposite way from me!

  • pjpuppymom says:

    1. Over (harder for puppies to unroll)

    2. I use the squeeze bottle.

    3. Knives are handle up. Everything else is handle down.

    4. Open part of “C” facing away. Garments on the left side of closet face left. Garments on the right side of closet face right. That way, all garments are facing me when I walk into the closet.

    5. I’ve been working on organizing my bookshelves. About 75% are in alphabetical order by author. The rest are a mess.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi PJ! That’s funny – kitties seem to have no trouble whichever way the roll is put in with unravelling and killing it!

      Sounds like you need to come and organise my shelves … then again, my office is a mess! πŸ™‚

  • Great Quick Five, Anna!!

    1. Toilet roll – over or under? either At our house I’m just happy there’s toilet paper on the roller!

    2. Toothpaste tube – squeeze from the end or wherever? bottom, but I don’t use a tube anymore, it’s in a kind of bottle.

    3. Cutlery in the dishwasher – handles up or down? Kives handle up the rest are handle down. It’s a safety issue for me. Took me a while to convince hubby of this, until one of the kids cut their hand putting them away one day. Still can’t convince him there’s an organized way to load a dishwasher. Most days doesn’t matter, but after a family meal I have to load it or we end up with 3 washings to get it all done.

    4. Hangers in the wardrobe – open part of β€˜C’ facing you or away from you? Which way does the front of the garment face – right or left? C away Just makes no sense to do it the other way. Right but I suspect this is more from me being right handed than anything else.

    5. How do you organise books on your books on your bookshelves? Uhm, I group them by author only. No alphabetation. Research and dictionaries/thesaurus are on the bottom. My books for giving away are on the next shelf in groups of each. The rest are keeper books in groups by the authors.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Glad you enjoyed it, Suz!

      Now see that’s the funny thing about the dishwasher thing – my ex used to be so OCD about handles down! I always used to make the same point about safety! Thankfully Doc Cambridge is a handles up guy :). Does that sound rude?! LOL

  • Connie Fischer says:

    1. Toilet paper: Over

    2. Toothpaste: I try to do it from the bottom but end up in the middle. I know. I’m lazy!

    3. Cutlery: I keep all knives pointed down but the rest of the utensils can be pointed up as long as there’s nothing sharp.

    4. Hangers are facing away from me. I even take my closet “obsession” a step further and “color code” my clothes.

    5. I alphabetize my books by author.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Connie! Thanks for taking part in the fun!

      YAY – I wondered if someone colour-coded their wardrobe! My step-d once did that to her boyfriend and it completely bamboozled him LOL.

      I’m like you about the toothpaste!

  • Teresa Hughes says:

    1. Toilet paper under always!
    2. Toothpaste should always be squeezed from the end.
    3. Cutlery should be handle up in the dishwasher.
    4. The “C” on the hanger should face to the back of the closet with the shirts facing toward the right.
    5. My books are shelved in order of favorite authors. The book size doesn’t matter.

    Fun post!

  • Hi Anna –

    So much fun reading all the various answers.
    1. If I change the paper, it’s over the top – if hubs does it, it’s under. We laugh about it.
    2. As long as it’s used, I don’t much care :-), when it looks to be running low, I’ll push from the bottom like a clothes wringer to move the paste to the top.
    3. I put them handles up. The knives won’t fit any other way.
    4. Away from me because it’s easier. Did you know that real estate agents now recommend that all your hangers in the closet match? Crazy…
    5. I only really shelve my research books. The others are in the TBR pile or “already read – help yourself” basket. Guests don’t leave my house without books. Every so often the one left in the basket are donated to the library.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Donna it has been fun! Glad everyone took part πŸ™‚

      I’m LOL about the estate agents and the matching hangers. Somehow that doesn’t surprise me. Just like when I see people looking around a house and checking out the decor and the furniture, instead of the basics!

  • EC Spurlock says:

    This has been an entertaining Quick 5 today!

    1. Don’t care, I just wish SOMEBODY ELSE would change the roll occasionally! (That’s what i get for living with 4 guys.)

    2. Toothpaste squeezed from the end, so I can get every drop out!

    3. Cutlery handle up, although I do sort for utensil type.

    4. Hangers face away for easy removal; clothes face left generally, altho I’m not necessarily particular about that.

    5. Fiction (paperbacks) grouped by author, non-fiction grouped by subject, although my collection of antique children’s books has its own shelf, and so do my manga

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi EC – thanks for taking part in the fun today! Glad you enjoyed it!

      ROFL at your answer about the toilet roll! Actually, I’ve found girls can be just as bad πŸ˜‰

      I’ve never understood why people have the C facing you – it makes it so hard to get clothes out of the wardrobe!

  • Pissenlit says:

    1. Over.

    2. Squeeze from the end.

    3. I haven’t got a dishwasher but when I’m loading someone else’s, I do it handles down.

    4. If, growing up, I had bars in my closets, I might’ve been been open part of ‘C’ facing away from me…but I grew up with closets that had the hanging lip type things where you had to have the open part of the ‘C’ facing you…so that’s what I’ve gotten used to. I don’t have a particular preference for which way the front of the garments face, providing they all face the same way in a closet.

    5. By genre and author and reading order(as opposed to pub date). If I had enough room and bookcases for a library for all my books, it’d be alphabetically by author and reading order. Oh and pushed all the way to the back of the shelf. I had a friend in university who lined all her book spines up with the front edge of the shelf. I always itched to push them all to the back(I did it once πŸ˜€ )!

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Pissenlit! Thanks for joining in the fun!

      Ah interesting – I grew up with hooks and a narrow wardrobe, so can understand how that might make a difference to how you hang the hangers.

      LOL – oh yes – I can’t stand when the books are lined up like that. I’d have pushed them back too πŸ™‚

  • catslady says:

    1. I don’t care lol. We had a cat that destroyed toilet paper so we added a holder up high that she couldn’t reach. Now we have 2 in one bathroom and one is usually up and one down.
    2. Again, I don’t care lol.
    3. This one I do care about – forks and knives must go down. I almost poked my eye out once reaching for something that fell. Spoons can be up lol.
    4. Hangers – the c facing away. Clothes can go any way they want lol.
    5. ahhh books. In an ideal world I would have enough shelves for my humongous collection and they would be in alphabetical order by author.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Catslady! I love that you’re laid back about such things – and that you understand the ways of those curious felines πŸ™‚

      I hear you on the bookshelves – we have 40 and still don’t have enough room for all our books.

  • Pat Cochran says:

    Hi, Anna,

    1. Over
    2. End
    3. All pointy ends down
    4. C facing away, clothes facing left
    5. Alphabetically by author with cover facing right.
    Two rows per shelf with 2×4 raising back row
    into view. All autographed copies on the top
    shelve, out of harm’s way!

    Pat C.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Pat! Thanks for stopping by!

      What a clever idea for raising the back row of books into view! I must look into doing that for our books. We don’t have enough room and have had to resort to books on their sides – which I don’t like πŸ˜‰

      • Fiona Mckelvie says:

        You just need either more bookcases or a bigger house so you can fit in more bookcases!

        • Anna Sugden says:

          You’ve seen our house, Fiona! There isn’t room for any more bookshelves! πŸ™‚ Even converted our dining room into a sitting room with walls full of bookcases and need more space!

  • Fiona Mckelvie says:

    Hi Anna
    1. Under
    2. Wherever
    3. Handles down, but sharp knives handles up
    4. Open end away, facing any way
    5. By category fiction/non fiction fiction subdivided by author all the same genre together all the detectives etc. Non-fiction by category all the travel books together in countries, history by era, larger books together. And that is just the study. General reference books in family room. Sets and old books in drawing room. Favourites in bookcase next to bed………………………..

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Fiona! Happy squeal! Great to see you! Thanks so much for stopping by and taking part in the fun :)!

      Now I knew you’d have a proper system for organising your bookshelves. One of these days we hope to pop up and see them – and you both, of course!

      • Fiona Mckelvie says:

        Yes come up and check out the study for yourselves! Currently empty nesting with a floor each and a neutral zone so plenty of space.

  • Barbara Elness says:

    1. Toilet roll – Over!
    2. Toothpaste tube – squeeze from the end.
    3. Cutlery in the dishwasher – handles down.
    4. Hangers in the wardrobe – open part of β€˜C’ facing away and the front of the garment faces left on the left side and right on the right side (walk-in closet) and clothes are organized by type & color.
    5. Bookshelves are organized by genre and author.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Barbara! Thanks for taking part!

      I think you need to come and organise my wardrobe – that sounds so neat and perfect! The only time mine gets sorted is when I’m stuck in my writing! πŸ™‚

  • Vrai, my husband and I had a long chuckle over this one. Here’s our consensus:

    1. Toilet roll – Me: over / Him: either
    2. Toothpaste tube – Me: from the end mai oui / Him: wherever
    3. Silverware – Me & Him: up
    4. Hangers in the wardrobe – Me & Him:: open part of β€˜C’ facing away? Me: right / Him: left

    5. Organise books – only I organize the books, so everything’s my way. Mwah hah hah hah. Fiction is strictly alphabetically. Nonfiction is by subject and then by height (oh, dear!). Children’s books: no rhyme or reason, every way goes.

    • Anna Sugden says:

      Keira! *waving madly*! So great to see you!

      So glad you and hubby enjoyed and took part in the fun πŸ™‚

      Isn’t it funny – mu hubby would be almost the same – except for the toilet roll thing. He is, thankfully, an ‘over’! Plus we each organise our own books – πŸ™‚

      • Vrai, *waves madly back* It’s so good to “chat” with you, even briefly. Separate book arranging is a recipe for a happy marriage devoid of strife. πŸ™‚

  • SecretNinja says:

    1. Either, I really don’t pay attention when I change the roll lol

    2. whatever, I try to roll from the bottom but most of the time I just grab it and squeeze

    3. No dishwasher for me but if I had any, I’d say down.

    4. facing away with the clothes facing left

    5. In order of series (left to right) and by my favorite authors – those books are always within reach


    • Anna Sugden says:

      Hi Ada! Thanks for stopping by! Looks like your Jets are on a bit of a roll! πŸ™‚

      I love to have my favourite authors in my office or in easy reach. It’s funny because I don’t have time to reread anything, so it’s purely for the enjoyment of looking at them! πŸ™‚