Paper or Plastic?

At the grocery store on Wednesday, I realized how much I hate grocery shopping.  Not because of my local market, but because I don’t like putting the stuff away when I get home.  The same is true of doing laundry. Wash, dry, fold…no problem.  Putting clothes away…problem.

I like having my groceries packed in paper bags.  I could pretend I am an environmentalist, but I am not.  I recycle when convenient for me.  But, paper bags allow you to carry more in one bag, thus eliminating extra bags lying around.  Also, they can be used to collect recycling at our house (my husband’s rules).  However, baggers do not like paper.  When I ask for paper, I often feel as though I get a slight sigh.  The cashier relays it to the bagger, “She wants paper.” (Head nod of understanding about my difficulty.)

This trip to the store I realized why.  When bagging in paper you have to think.  It is wasteful to put one thing in a paper bag, but when bagged in plastic I frequently get one item in a bag.  I will come home with all these singletons packed in one bag.  No thinking necessary.  But in paper, you must consider how to pack the bags.  It should not take much to figure out how to pack the bag.  Do a quick survey and decide your best route.  I would pack my own bags, but ultimately a bagger comes running over taking it away from me when I try.

I am fairly certain my bagger on this trip did not survey first and then load.  The pickles were on top of the eggs.  The hand soap in the bag with the bread.  Freezer products by dry goods.  No rhyme or reason.

Typically, I alternate between my request for paper or plastic, but I feel I should always ask for paper.  To help the baggers of the world become better at it.

Note:  I have the same reaction when I bring my own bags.

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