Howzat for a Loo Roll?
Our Cricket Wicket Toilet Roll holder was a misunderstanding...
In the early days of Oak & Rope a friend asked if I could quickly knock up 'one of those cricket stumps for loo rolls'. I had never seen one of those, but did not want to let on that after over 10 years in England I still did not understand a single thing about this national sport. Rather than ask what she ment, I quietly went off to do some research!
(At the end you can see what she actually meant...)
I set about trying to make sense of the world of cricket. This is however a challenge rarely completed by anybody who was not born within the boarders of The British Empire. Eventually I came across an illustration of what I now know is called 'the modern three-stump wicket' .
These dimensions were determined by the size of the ball as they are spaced such that a cricket ball can not pass through. I thought they were too large for most lavatories and also the proportions did not look right in relation to a loo roll. Using my best school maths I set about altering the sizes, yet ensuring that the ratios remained true to the game.
As you will see at the bottom of this article all my friend was really asking me to do was to find a block of wood, drill a hole in it and stick a single cricket stump into it... Instead she got a miniature model of a cricket wicket.
Ours is 71% of the real live size tournament standard wickets.
Remodelling the cricket wicket completely, meant making all the pieces from scratch.
The diameter of our wickets are 30 mm and the bails are hand turned in matching pairs for every order.
Our Cricket Wicket Loo Roll holder can be used to hold a large number of toilet rolls AS WELL AS playing a family game of cricket in your garden.
What followed when the orders started coming in, was an even steeper learning curve... I had no idea what the various engraving choices were referring to!
It can mostly be described as tasteful lavatory humour...
If you think the rules of cricket are difficult to understand, try making sense of the rest of the jargon!
'70 - not out' and 'Another Great Innings' made no sense at all, where as terms like 'Bowled Over', 'More Runs To Come' and 'Better Out Than Inn' sort of make sense of in a lavatorial context.
As it happens, I didn't have to know much more than how to make these Cricket Wickets in solid oak. Our customers come up with the most wonderful engravings themselves. Playing with words and with intimate knowledge of the various elements of cricket our toilet roll holders are transformed into fantastic wedding, housewarming, retirement or birthday presents.
I know I am not alone in not understanding cricket. Whenever presenting Oak & Rope in non-Commonwealth countries we have to explain what this product is all about.
Already in the c17th Cricket was described as “a useful way of keeping the boys out of mischief ” by school masters and clergy at cricket obsessed schools like Eton, Westminster and Harrow.
Little has changed, and this can be tested if you put a small group of English men of a certain age together for any extended period of time. They may struggle to remember wedding anniversaries or family birthdays, yet they can bring back to memory distant and some might say obscure cricket matches, their scores, stats and facts; the catches, googlies and run-outs, from their early childhood to the most recent test match of the year.
If you listen to their endless jargon, puns and cricketing jokes they often revert back to ‘little boys’, possibly explaining some of the cricket related engravings commissioned for our loo roll holders!
Cricket Related Engraving Ideas:
50 (or 60 or 70 or any age) NOT OUT, or even 80 SOLID RUNS...
BOWLED OVER or STUMPED on the top and their names or wedding date on the front edge.
WHAT A GREAT INNINGS or for a school cricket master simply the team or school name.
House Warming Present:
Thank You Present:
THE SAFEST PAIR OF HANDS IN ENGLAND or WELL DELIVERED...
The cheeky ones:
RUN OUT? or CAUGHT OUT?
BETTER OUT THAN IN...
BATTING FOR THE OTHER SIDE...
NO REST FOR THE WICKET...
Your cricket quotes do not have to be limited to The Cricket Wicket Loo Roll Holder.
On a showpiece cake board or wedding cake board
On a Father’s Day BBQ carving board!
HANG YOUR [england or other] CAPS HERE
For a peg rail housewarming gift for a sportsman or woman
W’d love to see some of the more esoteric cricketing phrases engraved GOOGLY, DIBBLY- DOBBLY OR SILLY MID OFF, but were still waiting for them...
There is nothing wrong with this loo roll holder. It is a wonderful d-i-y project achievable by most and they do the job of keeping multiple toilet rolls organised.
However, they don't have much room for engraving, nor do they make particularly good presents.