Monday, May 26, 2008

Top 10 things in a paper bag

Some realizations come late for me. Here I am in the store standing in line, biding my time and I get asked the timeless question "paper or plastic". I say plastic, and it hit me. I don't know ANYONE that asks for paper. I don't know anyone that cares. Now I will admit that I haven't taken the time to query everyone as to their bagging preference, but I am going to assume that everyone I know takes plastic.

They say plastic, but It's actually bio degradable cornstarch. I'm pretty sure that most people don't care about that either.

So what happened to the once vaunted paper bag? The bag that used to do it all for everyone, the elevated expression of recycling. This is my tribute to the paper bag. These are the Top 10 things you would find in a paper bag.

10. Screws - In my garage, I have a bag of sheetrock screws that try really hard to puncture the bag and cause trouble. If that bag were PLASTIC it would have given up the ghost a long time ago, but paper retains it's integrity longer after being compromised.

9. a Hand - I remember using the smaller paper bags to make those goofy hand pupets with block heads. you could even cut a hole in the bag to make it seem like your creations could actually eat. In fact as I think about it now, I'm sure there is a re-enactment of Star Wars somewhere done in paper bag puppets.

8. Ripple - Or the ultra cheap adult beverege of your choice. You could go with Thunderbird as well, or maybe a lovely concoction of your own design. The point is, you keep it in the brown paper bag so you can just carry around the bag and drink out of it like a precursor to the juice box.

7. The Unknown Comic - This guy was a semi-funny regular on the Gong show. His head was to be ever shrouded in the identity concealing confines of a paper bag. His bit would just not be the same in a corn starch plastic bag.

6. Groceries - of course. Time was that all groceries were found in the paper bag, which was more of a flimsy box than it was a useful carrying device. This might have been a reason for it's demise in the market place. Plastic has the handy handles. Paper, you gotta heft it from the bottom. The ironic thing is that for years careful baggers would put your ice cream and your fresh produce in plastic bags before they put it in the paper bag because the paper bag's mortal enemy was moisture! It didn't take much to turn this once sturdy carrying device into a handful of pulp. So I guess they thought it would be best to cut out the middle man and use plastic bags because they were using them already.

5. Newspapers - I don't know about you, but in my house growing up, all the newspapers would go into paper bags and await the eventual troop of Boyscouts to come pick them all up and cash them in for a dollar a ton or something like that. Sure you could use twine and tie up bundles of newsprint, but we used paper bags.

4. a Cat - Back in the day, our cat would immediately find her way into the paper bag that always tended to make a box shaped tunnel that was semi closed in the front but had a sturdy back wall when laying on it's side. She could not resist. From her paper lair, she would slowly peer out and assess her quarry until it was STRIKE!

3. Garbage - The paper bag was the original form of recycling. When you were done taking your groceries home, you would stack up the paper bags and use them one by one in your medium size garbage cans. Obviously best for DRY garbage, it was still very useful for holding refuse of all sorts. But now our garbage cans have also opted for plastic. *sigh*

2. Bananas - There might be some hope for the paper bag yet. The problem was this. If you had green bananas out with your other fruit, everything else would go bad, while the bananas came of age. This was because of some gas that the banana emits as it ripens. A few other fruits do this as well. Paper Bag to the rescue!!! lets good air in but doesn't let bad gas out. Maybe they should make underwear out of paper bags.

1. Presents - My mom was a crafty lady growing up. She realized that my interest in Christmas presents would be more than I could conceal. To thwart this, she pre-wrapped the presents in paper bags and THEN in colorful wrapping rendering the contents virtually invisible to prying eyes...BLAST!!! FOILED AGAIN...say foil, that could be another blog...

Ahh paper bag, we hardly knew ye.

Till Next time...Thanks for reading!

1 comment:

Scoops Mangum said...

One of your best yet! I laughed out loud on several. Excellent work sir!