An Associated Press story heralds the inevitability of high-tech toilets that don’t need toilet paper or even to have you touch them. I was aware they were more popular in Japan than here, but, according to the article, 74% of Japanese homes have them.

Basically, they work like a bidet, only more high tech. They spritz the water (at a temperature you choose) from back to front and side to side. Some models have built in dryers, heated seats, and a button to raise the seat so you don’t have to touch it. They are becoming very popular in most of the world, but haven’t made inroads in the U.S. I don’t know this to be true, but I would guess that American toilet paper manufacturers would be doing everything in their power to prevent such toilets from gaining a foothold here. Surprisingly, they have been available in the U.S. Since 1989, but I don’t know anyone who has one.