Pandemic Dreaming: The EOQ of Toilet Paper

Today is my three year anniversary of blogging. I picked up this hobby after early retirement and started off writing about weird little problems. Now weird problems are turning up in my dreams. Some of these quarantine stress dreams have taken me back to old career dilemmas. As a supply chain manager with demanding production requirements, I was warned never to run out of anything! One of the commodities we tinkered with repeatedly was toilet paper. Limits on storage space and variable work forces kept the Economic Order Quantity in constant check. Living and dreaming through this pandemic have taught me that none of the versions of that EOQ formula are relevant. I now know the answer depends on how many cats you have, what brand you are talking about and whether there are suitable substitutions.

Photo by Chris Amaral Published by Avanti Press, Inc.

I could go on, but I won’t. What have you been dreaming about lately?

20 thoughts on “Pandemic Dreaming: The EOQ of Toilet Paper

  1. Hi Tracey,

    Read your blog and thought I’d comment…

    As a plant manager I got the dig…but then again thats my job to make sure everyone else is doing their job😉

    My rub has always been when salaried people shut production down and hourly people who live paycheck to paycheck go home with out pay because we ran out of a vital ibgredient but the salary person who failed to order the materal never felt the pain…

    I like to think being demanding was protecting the people who did the heavy lifting on the other hand I can honestly say I never had to give direction on toilet paper purchases….even amidst the covid shortage scare.

    Just one Plant Manager’s perspective…

    Hope you are well and you can find peace from the Covid stress dreams…glad I sleep like a baby even with all the added stress.

    Happy blog anniversary!!! Paula PS was that your kitty destroying the TP role?


    • I love your comments and appreciate your perspective. When I said plant managers were demanding, did it sound like a bad thing? I completely get it. I worked in power generation, so if we didn’t have the right spare parts for critical equipment we didn’t run or make money. It was a big deal. We built bills of material for that stuff. But, consumable items could be a crap shoot (pun intended) sometimes. I don’t know why I’m having stress dreams, not having to work hard like you. No, that’s not my cat, but I thought it fit! Thanks Paula!


  2. I’ve been dreaming about my and Lee’s Instagram feed. We are taking an online course to improve Lee’s thereby building her brand and hopefully online sales through her website. So I have little squares of color in my dreams and photos and questions and running on top of blocks of photos. Then I dream of my dear friend R. who recently lost her job. It was an odd thing to happen because of the type of job she had — not one you would ever expect to be lost due to the economic slowdown. I miss her and wish I could give her the deepest bestest hug ever.


    • Dreaming of Instagram makes perfect sense, under the circumstances! I look forward to promoting Lee’s beautiful work when you guys are ready. Hand over heart for your friend. Lot’s of layoffs here too. Hang in there!


    • Thanks Janis. It’s been fun connecting with people from other places during this time. As for the dreams, we’ve started comparing notes each morning. It’s quite comical.


    • Marty, I was in contracts and procurement for the first 20 years of my career. I have way too many dreams of those deadlines. Now I get your “Marge from Procurement” remark last week. Ha!

      Liked by 1 person

      • lol. Yep, guilty as charged.

        For me, it was lawbooks, both standalone and with annual subscriptions for the libraries I managed. We’d get a pot of money with specific dates and percentages of how it would have to be spent. If I missed a deadline, I lost the funds (i.e., “you snooze, you lose”). I still get dreams about it!

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I can honestly say I don’t have work dreams. My most recurring dream seems to center on losing my purse. I’m always so relieved when I wake up and realize it was just a dream!! My problem isn’t dreaming but too much thinking that keeps me from falling asleep. I often find myself writing blog posts in my head and of course I lose all that great (ha) content once I do fall asleep. Can’t blame any of this on the pandemic. Congrats on three years.


  4. Too funny, Tracey. My sister would agree with you on the cats. She found the only deterrent to TP Spooling was to buy one of those TP dispensers with the cover flap on it. That really freaked her cats out. Thanks for the laugh. 🙂 ~Terri


  5. My work dreams have changed into divorce dreams since my possob (try to figure out that acronym) filed for divorce while we were 2000 miles apart and I’m still trying to figure out why. Like you, though, and many of your followers, I had work dreams (or more accurately nightmares) for quite a while after the lack of use of EOQ (these people were strictly JIT all the way) finally drove me to almost as early as you retirement. And I was also in contracts and procurement. On the upside, I recently became the proud grandparent of my third grandcat! Photos, videos and stories about their antics keep me nearly as entertained as they do my daughters.


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