Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Can you open this??

In the past several weeks I have had to open more product packaging for the boys than I have had to do in the last 8 years. I have had to use scissors, a razor cutter and, yes, kitchen shears that could cut through cold hard steel. These shears make ginsu knives look like child's play. What's up with this? Why is American packaging designed so that only people who have the upper body strength of Andre the Giant (prior to his premature demise) and who also happen to have a chain saw can effectively open this stuff?

I'm not talking specifically about those hard plastic packages - - they have a name that I cannot remember - ah yes - blister pacs. These fall in to a completely different category. I have heard that there is a specially designed opener to tackle these bad johnnies. I am talking about your run of the mill packages and containers such as pickle jars, chip bags and fedex packages. These are now held together by a mystery sealant that could keep even the smallest atom from breaching the product. How do elderly people who live alone actually access the innards of their Special K?

On the same vein - what's up with everything being packaged and then packaged again in to smaller portion packages? Gosh we Americans love to create little parcels of things. There's a whole world of individual serving stuff out there. The way I see it is that either there is a highly improportionate number of "singles" out there or non-single people are incapable of rationing out their own servicing sizes. Having been to Cheesecake Factory not too long ago I believe it is the later. I had a salad the size of a mid-sized outdoor shrub.

The boys go to a school that prides itself on being waste free. This means that all of their lunches need to be packaged in reusable containers - - it's called Tupperware. What's really bizarre is that I spend the morning opening little packages of things, throwing away the refuse in my own home and then repacking it in to a reusable container that I then need to wash out when it comes home. Using this technique, the school is able to tout itself as the benchmark by which "Green" should be measured. The consequence is that my own home is spewing out enough refuse and water waste that I have been asked to "name" the next landfill project.

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