Last week, my husband bought us a new toilet. During the process, I felt like I earned a “Low Maintenance Wife of the Year” Award:


I MEAN. I don’t care whether the toilet paper rolls from the top or the bottom, and I don’t care about the geometric shape of my toilet. I’m a catch, y’all.

The timing for a new toilet was ideal, as our master bathroom currently looks like this:


Yes, the toilet is unhooked from its pipes and still has water in it. No, I don’t know why. No, I wouldn’t recommend flushing it.

Last time we redid a bathroom (the kid’s bathroom that time), I did not replace the toilet, and I’ve highly regretted that heinous oversight since that day – especially since their toilet was what caused the problem.

So I remembered my past mistakes and was determined not to repeat them.

I asked the construction crew leader about it.

“Hey – I’d like to get a new toilet while everything is ripped up. Can you make that happen?”

“Sure. I figured you’d want one. You know, one of the past residents in this house was a smoker.”

“What? What’s that got to do with my toilet?”

“Oh – you know those brown spots on the rim? Smokers often put their cigarettes on the toilet seat.”





“Yeah. Come here. I’ll show you. See those burn marks?”


“Smokers do that all the time. They have burns on their sinks, burns on their toilet seats…”


“Okay. I get the sink thing. But the TOILET SEAT?!”

“Yup. See it all the time.”

“Do they put the cigarette back in their MOUTH after resting it on the toilet seat?”

“I don’t know, ma’am. I’m not a smoker.”

“WHY the toilet seat??”

“I couldn’t tell ya.”

I was astounded.

Life didn’t make sense anymore.

What was I to do with this information?

And how exactly could he be so certain about this practice but then have no further details? You can’t just drop that bomb and give me nothing to my follow-up questions.

Clearly not all people who choose the pastime of smoking also opt for the hobby of setting their cigarettes on the toilet seat. OBVIOUSLY. But that did not stop me from asking all of my smoking friends and family if this was a norm. They all adamantly said that it was definitely not normal and that they’d never heard of it.

But I had so many questions.

1. Is the point of putting a cigarette on the toilet seat because you also are sitting on the toilet seat and don’t want to smoke and poop simultaneously?

2. If so, is it because it makes the cigarette taste like poop like when you have to change a dirty diaper in the middle of chewing your first bite of breakfast?

3. If so, doesn’t the cigarette still end up tasting like poop?

4. Do you ever worry about an explosion happening while combining your cigarette with the creation of methane gases? And should you really be moving your cigarette that much closer to the source of those gases?

5. DO YOU PUT THAT CIGARETTE BACK IN YOUR MOUTH. The answer to this question could (and probably will) change how I view humanity.

6. Is the smell of burning toilet seat helpful or harmful to the relaxation of your bowels?

7. Are you a bathroom smoker because you’re hiding your habit and if so, are you a current resident of my house?

I just don’t know what to do with this information. If you do, by all means – let me know.

13 thoughts on “A Burning Question About Toilets.

  1. Here’s my theory: They’re smoking the cigarette while sitting on there taking care of business, but then one of two things happen: 1) they use up the cigarette and need to extinguish it before throwing it in the trash, and therefore use the toilet seat; 2) they get ready to wipe and realize it’s not easy to wipe with a cigarette in one hand and potentially painful if hanging out of your mouth, which brings us back to the need to extinguish it and throw it away.

    I realize neither of these really explain the (ahem) burning need to use the toilet seat to extinguish it. Why not just have an ash tray in there with you? But it DOES potentially answer your question of whether it goes back in their mouth. I hope. For humanity’s sake.

    1. It makes sense. It’s not something I would do, but I don’t smoke. But….I would think that extinguishing it against the bowl would be better–you wouldn’t be melting the toilet seat and you could easily wipe off the bowl…I”m talking about the outside of the bowl of course, about an inch lower than the spot where they did extinguish it.
      Though I’ve noticed that lazy people DO do a lot of things that make no sense–like once I moved into an apt (not in the US) where apparently the former residents had habitually leaned against the walls, propping one foot up against the wall as they did so…while wearing their dirty shoes…so there were all these foot marks about 18″ high on the walls.
      But the deep psychological question–do you think some people dirty up their homes on purpose, because it feels more “lived in” and “homey”…like they’re leaving their mark, so to speak?

  2. So, my initial thoughts are they put their cigarettes OUT on the toilet seats, which is a whole different ballgame than laying them on the toilet seat to be smoked again at a later time. Here’s the scenario…he is having a smoke while he’s taking care of his business (it is most definitely a man because a woman would never have or take the time to smoke a cigarette while taking a dump). He finishes his cigarette (because he’s been in there a good 30 minutes by now), but how to put it out? Throwing the lit cigarette in the toilet is an option, but a smelly and potentially toxic one…hey, I’ll just grind it out on the edge of the toilet seat I’m currently sitting on! Problem solved!

  3. Now I understand why the wall-mounted toilet paper roll holders in Spain had an ashtray attached. Thought itt was the strangest thing at the time…

  4. My mom smoked her whole life and she always smoked in the bathroom. Little know fact: nicotine has a laxative effect.
    However, she kept an ashtray in her bathroom and never, ever put a cigarette out, or on her toilet seat.

  5. As an off again on again smoker, & most of my family smokes, I understand smoking while using the bathroom, if only to get a break where you can be somewhat certain of being left alone. But putting it on or out on the toilet seat? No! I suppose you need to wash your hands after both anyway, but no need to ruin your toilet! And would people put it back in their mouth? Disgusting! One bad habit is enough, don’t need Ecoli on top of it!

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