A world without plastic?

I’m surprisingly perky for a Sunday morning – well any morning really. I’ve made french toast and I’m ready to complain about people’s stupidity before the first sip of coffee has touched my lips.

While reading the morning {digital} papers, I came across this story of a woman trying to live without plastic for a week. I knew from the beginning that it was going to be a standard “Oh my goodness I never realized how much X existed in the world and now I’m forever changed” stories, but when it comes to the environment, I generally appreciate efforts made.

Now I’m surely not the biggest environmentalist out there but I really do try to do better. Sure, I recycle, rarely drink bottled water and get a knot in my stomach when I have to take a plastic grocery bag at a store. But the fact that I eat red meat, buy commercial flowers, and flew in an airplane 25 times last year means that I’m still going to environmentalist hell. That being said, it always amazes me how stupid people can be.

It is very easy to jump on the no-plastic-grocery-bags band wagon, and I’m glad people have. But why the hell can’t they stop using produce bags?! At least shopping bags made sense. You purchased products so you need some thing to carry them home in. I don’t expect everyone to be as doofussy as me (right away at least) and walk down the street carrying a tub of yogurt because I forgot my bags. I do, however, expect them to stop being jack-asses.

Produce bags have absolutly no place in the world. People walk around putting a bunch of bananas, apples, oranges, etc in a plastic bag to then go into their new “I’m an environmentalist” public bag. The woman in the article put one single apple in a bag, yet she had to conduct an anti-plastic experiment to realize that was a moronic idea!

Here’s how it works, people: Enter grocery store. Pick up basket (or basket to put in cart if you like). Walk to produce section. Put produce directly into basket. Do not pass Go, do not put your apples in a plastic bag. Easy as that. You don’t need to go out and buy a fancy “reusable produce bag” from an Eco store. It is an unnecessary product that is getting an even more unnecessary replacement.

Yes, you will have to put in a little bit more effort to unload your basket. And yes, the cashier (who hates her life anyway) will have to go to a little bit more effort to put them on the scale, but you’ll both live. I was a cashier for 8 years and weighing un-bagged fruit didn’t kill me.

Other things that are stupid? Individually packaged anything. Things like juice boxes or those ridiculous portion-controlled snacks (Newsflash: Just eat less!) are ruining the earth.

I guess my point is this: some things that are bad for the environment are really hard to change. I’m not sure I’m ready to give up cows and flowers, I can’t afford to buy milk in cartons or glass jars, and I think exploring the world is important and airplanes are neat. But some things are so easy to change: bringing your own coffee cup, drinking tap water, walking instead of driving short distances, and for God’s sake skipping the produce bags.


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