AT Europe: In Paris, the Toilet Paper is Pink

I was a little worried the first time I visited the powder room at a French man's house and found that his taste in toilet paper ran to pink.

Was this a sign of something I'd been missing, like a pink-toilet-paper-buying secret girlfriend, or a tendency to play for the other team? Or as innocent as a pink dress shirt?

Turns out it often not a matter of preference but lack of choice that drives a Parisian to pick pink toilet paper from the shelf, if this photo of the offerings at my local supermarket is any indication. It's not that white toilet paper doesn't exist (as well as flowered, purple, scented and a few other abberations), but it's always in the minority, with pink the best-selling and default option for the home (you won't find the pink stuff in restaurants or public buildings). Doesn't seem to me that pink toilet paper is very green. I have no idea who decided that pink should be the shade of the national toilet paper (or the national drivers license, which is also shrouded pink), and informal surveys of friends and fruitless Google searches have yielded no satisfying conclusions. Any toilet paper scholars out there?

- Kristin Hohenadel blogging from rue Vieille du Temple, Paris, France. If you know why French toilet paper is pink, please write kristinh @ apartmenttherapy . com