Wednesday, February 26, 2020

4555 Bag the Bags

Practical and practically unbreakable. Bringing an oil drum to the checkout line is kind of like driving a Tesla or a Prius to show that you think every day is Earth Day.

Starting March first, New York State will ban most plastic shopping bags. The law is heaven-sent to environmentalists and to the corner grocer.  The state wants you to bring your own.  They’re thinking those germ germinating cloth bags.  We’re thinking paint buckets and oil drums.

The grocer can sell you paper bags at a nickel per. New meaning for a drug abuser term, “Nickel bag.” Assuming there’s no sales tax on paper grocery bags that’s not all that much. But if they DO tax ‘em that nickel jumps to just under six cents within NYC limits. No doubt, they’ll round it up to a full six.

Some items still will get plastic bags. Fruit, vegetables, prescription drugs. Probably some other items.  But those are the majors.

You may not know this, but stores aren’t required to supply bags. Some of the warehouse clubs never offered them.  Cheaper for them, cheaper for you, better for the landfill and if you’re buying ketchup in 50 bottle quantities, they probably come already boxed.

There are alternatives -- real ones -- to plastic bags and 50 gallon steel drums. Bankers’ boxes. Just bring a couple of them to market, fill them as you go through the aisles and let the checkout clerk unpack and repack them.  It’ll slow the line. But so does packing those cloth bags.

Picnic coolers are pretty good, too and they fit neatly in most shopping carts.  Or how about a canoe? That may be a little awkward in a shopper traffic jam. But if you have a bicycle bell or horn on your cart, people will clear a path for you.  Just be careful not to knock anything fragile off the shelves.

And you can stop blaming the former mayor for creating a nanny state.  It’s been around longer than most of us.  And it’s in our cultural DNA.

Final thought: you can order stuff on an app and get your groceries delivered in most places nowadays.  That’s one way to help both the environment and the further the retail apocalypse at the same time.

-New pet peeve: Grammar apps that insist-every-damn-pair-of-words needs either a hyphen or to be squished together into a singleword.

I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ® 
Any questions?
© WJR 2020

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