Tuesday, December 02, 2008

The Good Old Day May Not Have Been

I am still amazed when I see something get replaced by plastic. I know it is for safety, durability and/or economics, but I really have a bad feeling of what is to come from it all. Most everything that came is glass containers now comes in plastic. I thought it was a good idea when shampoo was placed in non-breakable plastic containers, but now it is hard to find products in glass any more.

I do understand that glass is heavier and more fragile. One can ship a hundred or more plastic containers at the same price one could ship 25 glass containers. As I preached in the past about not buying bottled water and instead fill a reusable container with tap water, we have been searching for glass containers for our water and they are pretty hard to come by. We did find some iced tea in glass and we snapped them up. I would really like to get some stainless steel water bottles, but the price is beyond reasonable.

More plastic disappointment recently came in a box of Barnum’s Animal Crackers. What was once an inner container made of wax paper is now plastic that somewhat looks and feels like wax paper, but it isn’t anything as natural as was or paper. There used to be wax paper that contained graham crackers and now that is plastic as well.

I know, I’m a hopeless romantic for the way things once were and I do overlook the inherent evils of that which was of the olden days; like how the wax used to make waxed paper is paraffin, a petroleum product, and how before padded plastic was used on automobile dash boards people had more injuries when involved in crashes.

I suppose it’s easy to become myopic.


Blogger Donna said...

Yeah, we can only do so much. But like a quote I heard from, of all people, a television evangelist: "Do something, lest you do nothing!"

When I was a kid, bread came in waxed paper, and my grandma even re-used that! Milk was in wax-coated cardboard, too. Of course, every once in awhile you'd get a piece of wax in that last glass of milk.

You've started me off on a nostalgia trip; that's easy to do in this season.

4:12 AM  
Blogger Trop said...

I remember waxed paper;
specifically, I remember my dad neatly wrapping sandwiches for his packed-lunch.

We've really reduced our dependence on plastic. We have stainless steel SIGG water bottles (they're all looking beat-up for all the use they get). We replaced all Tupperware with Pyrex (which my daughter hates because it makes her school lunch weigh a ton).

We don't have a microwave oven either

4:49 AM  
Blogger loopymamain06 said...

I think there should be a middle ground....like "Leave the heavy metal outside (of cars) but put the cushy plastic inside" But some people (manufacturers) are not capable of doing that, it's either all or nothing....so now if we have a fender bender at 30 miles and hour....our whole front end (made of plastic) is totaled.....BAH!

P.S. I'm going to miss the metal coffee cans, myself

5:34 AM  
Blogger Auntie said...

Stop waxing all nostalgic about Animal Crackers again.

Dont' you remember how "stale" they used to taste. THAT, my friend, was what the real wax paper did to them. Or....perhaps you liked them that way?

6:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah but did you ever have your milk packed in a mayonnaise bottle in your lunch by your mom?? Wax paper under the cover was the only thing that kept it from leaking...

And what's Animal Crackers Auntie? Is that like some wild white cookie??


9:40 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Frankly Guy I don't see where buying ice tea in bottles is any better than buying water in bottles. I solved this problem by buying a 750 ml bottle of S.Pellegino mineral water and a bottle of ice age premium glacier water with the handy dandy push-pull spout. After consuming those preached against liquids, I refilled the Pellegrino bottle and capped it with the easy to use Ice Age spout. I generally don't subscribe to the end justifying the means, but here I made an exception. It should last for years. Another option is one of Auntie's old wine bottles complete with cork. One of the great sounds is a cork coming out of a bottle. You might raise a few eyebrows but it would just give you the opportunity to do a bit more preaching to further the cause.

10:04 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Donna,There nothing like having something to chew on when the milk is finished.

Trop, you make her take corning wear to school? Poor Amanda...

Loopy, I have a metal coffee can that I still use. I've had to replace the lid a couple times, but that's OK.

Auntie, the point was to eat them all at one sitting, not to try to reseal them.

No Moose, we could afford the 2 cents for the milk carton at school. Yes it only cost 2 cents. Heavily subsidized by the government. I remember how shocking it was when the price went up to 3 cents and then later to 5 cents.

The point was that only iced tea came in glass bottles, but I do love the wine bottle idea. Corks are cool and wine bottles are durable and can =be used as a weapon in a pinch.

10:43 AM  
Blogger weese said...

plastic freaks me out.
we also use mostly glass for food storage.
my wife always laughs at me because we must keep wax paper in the house.
(I wrap a mean sandwich, trop)
we do have a microwave - tho seldom used.
but we have no dishwasher. which may not speak to the plastic discussion.. but our water use is quite controlled.

12:27 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You had milk cartons?? You were privileged - rich Mericans! Hell...we had to chip away at the frozen milk left at the door before we could pour it out for breakfast. We also had to walk to school and then back home. It was uphill both ways....


1:15 PM  
Anonymous gearhead said...

Many of my school lunches came out of the garbage.
When I was in grade school I would take my wagon down the alley and to the rear of a Piggly-Wiggly grocery store where the dumpster was.
I would PILE heads of lettus, fruit, vegatables, breads, all kinds of perfectly good food items onto that wagon and haul it home.

Then in the 7th grade I got a Saturday job riding along with a Darigold jobber on his rural milk route. This route went to lots of teeny rural Oregon towns: Pedee, Kings valley, Blodgett, Burnt Woods, ect...
I got paid $5.00 and lunch.
But then at the end of the day I was allowed to go through the "dump" and take whatever I wanted home.
"dump" was anything we pulled from the stores that was 1 day outdated or more.
I carried a HUGE box of sour cream, buttermilk, yogart, cottage cheese, chocolate milk,,,,etc...
Then, while working in a chain resturant, paying my way in college, the rule was that you had to throw all leftover casseroles and foods out; nothing could be taken home.
Guess what?
I love leftovers!!!! Especially casseroles!!
Yes, I ate well and stayed healthy all the way through school thanks to garbage.

2:27 PM  
Blogger Auntie said...

Hey, whose the anony-mouse lurking in my recycling bin checkin' out my empty brown and greens?

7:09 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Weese, oddly dishwashers use less water than washing by hand. They also heat the water to a safer temperature for disinfecting than ones hands could stand when hand washing dishes.

Moose, you mean you got to walk to school and home without checking trap lines? Lazy bastard!

Gearhead, that explains some of the places I've met you for lunch ; )
I know that you and your uncle both have strong dietary constitutions. Did he cook gull again for Thanksgiving? Joking aside, people that work in the food industry during hard economic times never starve. That was what I heard from my parents who lived through the Depression and through the rationing in the 40s.

Auntie has a stalker. I guess you are blog famous. Can't wait to see the photos show up over at NCO.

4:44 AM  
Blogger darev2005 said...

I cannot bring unsealed drinking containers to work, so everyday I bring in two bottles of water. I frequently apologize to the earth for that, but we do recycle them. The tap water here is so horrible that everyones faucet should bear a large red warning label stating "Not for human consumption". The amounts of lead and radium and other contaminants in our water here is horrifying. We are frequently cited by the government for water quality citations but it would cost unknown bazillions to fix it so they just won't.

6:58 AM  

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