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dedtired

I miss bags

28 days ago

Ever since plastic bags were banned and we are encouraged to bring reusable bags, I find myself searching for bags for household use. I am glad the plastic bags are gone, although they were often handy around the house.

My grocery stores will sell you paper bags if you didnt bring yours but they are flimsy brown bags. There are some exceptions — Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods and Mom’s Organic — that use sturdy grocery bags, but they charge .25 each. Sometimes i purposely forget my reusable bags in orcer to get some paper bags. i use them for my recyclable paper and for recyclable plastic , glass and cans.

Sometimes I use them for weeding, to toss in the weeds.

Im thinking of ordering a bunch of kraft bags to have around. Do you miss them, too?

Comments (98)

  • 26 days ago

    " I find the plastic bags are useful not only to keep the car clean but also to keep the mess from dirtying fridge shelves and bins. How does that get handled with your method? "

    You can wash fridge shelves too. And bins.

  • 26 days ago

    I've been using my own bags for over 35 years and even then I ended up with some plastic bags. I always used the plastic bags for garbage bin liners. I also have wastebaskets that I don't line. I rarely used the produce bags unless I needed to group something small (ie. snowpeas). I then reused those after as well. I just put my meat in the bottom bin in the fridge and clean if it leaks. I'm in Canada so our milk comes in bags and I do sometimes slip the meat into the outer milk bag if it looks like it wasn't well packaged or if I want to put it in the freezer. I've started using those outer milk bags for my garbage now. I also wash out the inner milk bags to freeze things like soup. It's funny that the plastic bags were picked on to eliminate since they were designed to breakdown in about 20 years compared to some of the other bags that are being used now.


    Another thing I learnt from my mum to avoid using plastic wrap is to put things in a bowl with a plate ontop.


    Off topic, but I'm always surprised about how many people drink bottled water or use paper plates at home. I understand using them when travelling or out for a picnic etc.


    I do use disposable things on occasion but I try not to if I have a choice.

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  • 26 days ago
    last modified: 26 days ago

    I've gotten used to reusable straws, brita water jug, and bags. And almost always use them. Impulse buying, or remembering I need something bigger than fits in my bag while inside the store, ends up in a plastic bag. My city/state doesn't make you pay for the plastic bags at the store? Kiddo gifted me a set of reusable utensils when they left home. They're in my car. I think they will come in handy.

    I used two bags yesterday. I dropped garbage on my back deck (why!?) and picked it up, using them like gloves. Great for picking up and tossing cat barf without touching anything. Yuck! I will use a bag to take someone something I promised when I go to work or church, for instance. I think it's ok to use recyclable bags on occasion. I think most people reuse them, and that's enough to cut down.

  • 26 days ago

    "You can wash fridge shelves too. And bins. "

    Yeah, you can wash tables, chairs, clothes, floors and hands too. But I don't eat with my hands nor ignore containing wet items when I'm eating.

    Leaky chicken packages, as just one example, are a biohazard full of pathogens that can cause illnesses. I'm not sure what words best applies to describe letting those juices drip in the fridge but it would be one along the lines of foolish, stupid, careless, or thoughtless. Or all of them. It's easier to contain a mess than clearn up after one.


  • 26 days ago
    last modified: 26 days ago

    I don't understand the attitude of reusing, reusing, reusing anything and everything that could be put to some use. When there are inexpensive alternatives that are more convenient.

    For those of limited financial means who REALLY can't afford alternatives, maybe to a limited degree. When my mother in law moved out of her lifetime home, we found that at least half of what was left in her home was stuff "that could be useful to have" in her words but which she had no need for. 4 broken toaster ovens - "I kept them because maybe they can be fixed". Linen for 10 beds for her 2 bedroom hours. 15-20 people could have showered in her house with a clean towel sequentially. On and on.

    And grocery bag after grocery bag full of plastic bags. "You never know when you need a plastic bag".

    I pay for refuse collection (as most do) and feel no hesitation to use it for anything not of immediate use. Grocery stores have bags available for purchases, a useful and convenient servic.e

  • 26 days ago

    " I don't understand the attitude of reusing, reusing, reusing anything and everything that could be put to some use. When there are inexpensive alternatives that are more convenient"

    I don't understand why you question people who want to reduce the amount of material they throw out, or why you don't understand that there's limited room for the disposal of things you throw out, or why you don't understand there's an environmental cost for the residue of things you throw out.

    I guess that makes us even in that we don't understand.

  • 26 days ago

    Feel-good efforts and do-good efforts are often not the same things. Making small gestures can often be like saving pennies, in that the results may not add up to something worth doing.

  • 26 days ago

    " Making small gestures can often be like saving pennies, in that the results may not add up to something worth doing. "

    Or it might. Or it might be that the intention and effort is more important than the results. Or it might be that not being part of the problem is as important as being a solution to the problem. Or it might be that we have different priorities and value different things.

  • 26 days ago
    last modified: 23 days ago

    Leaky meat packages can be put into a dish or box which then goes in the dish washer. The first R. is reduce/refuse. That's always better than the other two R.s.

  • 26 days ago

    If we, collectively , did not generate so much garbage we would have less use for garbage bins lined with plastic bags.

    I have been for years not using plastic bags for garbage. We have large trash cans that go out to the curb and I make sure that what goes into that trash bin is not wet or nasty. Since we use only the trash bin and no plastic, I dont want the guys who work to collect the trash to be in dnager of being exposed to wet and nasty stuff. I will wrap it in newspaper if I have it, or just clean it, or compost. But I live in a suburban neighborhood with a yard and it is a lot different from what one can do if living in an apartment or some such.

    At the heart of so many of these kinds of issues around garbage is the fact that we make so much of it and so much of it is waste from products that are , themselves, of questionable, or overtly zero, value.

    I have never kept a garbage can in the bathroom because what would we put in it? We just dont use all of those products. Even the likes of personal products can be taken to the larger trash can. We just dont use a bunch of stuff in the bathroom.

    At the heart of most of our threat of being consumed by trash is our consuming of it in the first place. We buy so much useless junk!!!! and useless housrhold products of all kinds and all of it is in containers and packages that are also junk . Junk comes in and junk goes out. The only ones winning at this are the corporations and manufactureres of this stuff. They walk away with our money while we are left to deal with the trash. They keep the profits and we are left with paying taxes and fees to deal with all the myrid number of expenses of collecting and processing the resultin trash. Some places are beginning to question this and there is a growing movement to hold those who produce this garbage accountable for it. And we do this willingly, to ourselves.

    Just STOP! Save your money and try living with out so many of those useless items.

  • 25 days ago

    " Or it might be that we have different priorities and value different things. "

    Yes, of course, My comment was made with a particular thought in mind, how some small well-intentioned habits some people have are treated by them as offsets that excuse and rationalize negative things they do.

    Small gestures often don't add up to anything meaningful. Saving pennies and wasting dollars, a way of saying having meaningless habits of little consequence as a personal excuse for other and more significantly negative habits or practices. "Well I do this and so, so that thus and such are okay. ". I know plenty of people with contradictory, self-excused habits of that sort in this area of environmental concerns, if you don't. It's hypocritical.

  • 25 days ago

    Ditto, claudia valentine.

    I'm not ready to take a wicker basket to six individual stores on shopping day to fill it with 'raw' items, but I hear you about all the unnecessarily wrapped goods at every grocery.

    Few of the things in the produce department *need* to be packaged in plastic. (So what if I don't put a head of broccoli into a bag. So what if the checker touches it? How many hands already did that? ) We used to buy berries in cardboard boxes, not plastic 'jewel boxes'. Meat didn't need to be *presented* on foam plates in plastic wrap; the butcher wrapped our selections in paper. (Ah, but we're in a hurry, eh? We don't care that the steak is presented with the bad bit on the bottom or covered by the sticker? Maybe we don't want to see blood and remember we're buying part of an actual animal?)

  • 25 days ago

    Convenience vs not eating plastic.

    One penny saved in 1 100th of a dollar. 8 billion pennies save (about one per) is 80 million dollars.

  • 25 days ago
    last modified: 25 days ago

    Feel free to start a new thread when your personal habits have caused you personally to save 8 billion pennies. Or even 8 million

    Considering the economy as a whole, it's a zero sum game. There's no community good that results from you not spending money or spending less.

    Money you don't spend is money people working to produce goods and services don't receive. And onward, money they don't have they can't spend on goods and services that produce jobs for other people.

  • 25 days ago

    When speaking of environmental issues it is a communal cumulative thing. I cant destroy the environment all by myself but I can if I have help.


  • 25 days ago
    last modified: 25 days ago

    Hard to not agree with that. If you want to move a pile of dirt, better to use a large shovel or even a powered piece of equipment instead of a teaspoon. That was all I was trying to get across.

    Too many people with good intentions stick to teaspoons that do little and miss the big picture items.

  • 25 days ago

    FWIW, when such a huge portion of the food we produce is wasted - sometimes before it even goes to market - personal choices don't seem that consequential, IMO. It will take big shifts in our larger culture, and laws, to really make a difference, IMO.

  • 25 days ago

    My point is if everyone did any small bit-and I mean everyone hence 8 billion (and counting) it actually makes a real difference. That is while we wait endlessly to do the big things.

  • 25 days ago
    last modified: 25 days ago

    I thank carol for reminding me of the word I needed and couldn't think of - consequential.

    On the topic of plastic bags and people thinking that they're saving the planet by avoiding or reusing them. The issue with plastic items is disposal and pollution from same after use, not their production. If they were properly handled by everyone and the waste handling system after use, it wouldn't be as big an issue.

    Most people release more environmentally damaging chemicals from their cars in one week than does the production of many years' worth of their own consumption of plastic bags. Saving bags has an inconsequential effect, even if everyone does it. Feeling like one is making a contribution with plastic bag avoidance and reuse is silly.

    On the other hand, too many people drive needlessly large cars each and every day, set their thermostats too high in the winter and too low in the summer, and these are simple habits with huge and avoidable consequences that are not being addressed. Just simple examples.

    I didn't mention those regulars in this forum who " save the environment" by saving plastic bags but think it's fine that they burn wood for heat. One hypocrite even mentioned this week using home air purifiers to clean interior air smoky from local forest fires. Yet that person creates that same health problem, often nightly, for their neighbors, by burning wood for heat.

    Say what?

  • 25 days ago
    last modified: 25 days ago

    If plastic wastes could be recycled into cheaper plastic roofing, plastic wood and other building materials, we could have cheaper housing, pole barns, garages for many. Today we have plastic flooring, fencing, sheds, pool liners, fiberglass reinforced plastic pools……but none of them are cheap.

  • 25 days ago

    Very true. Dealing with problems thoughtfully and responsibly is usually more costly than taking the least expensive approach. It's cheapest to bury plastic items in landfills.

  • 25 days ago

    Apparently it has been even cheaper to dump it in the ocean. You might want to look into the problem of microplastics. The broken down plastic debris that is saturating our environment. You are becoming recycled plastic.

  • 25 days ago

    I think I've mentioned that microplastics are now being discovered in testicles...

  • 25 days ago

    " cheaper to dump it in the ocean "

    You can keep on thinking you're saving the earth by reusing sandwich bags but in the meantime, a search I just did disclosed something you should know. The vast majority of the Pacific garbage patch comes from Asia. And not from onshore sources but from the fishing industry.

    How do you feel about modern homes with alternative equipment installed nonetheless burning wood for heat? Are you upset about the real harm that does to human health? Is that something you do?

  • 25 days ago

    " are now being discovered in testicles... "

    Is there a reason you mention this without covering whether or not they're also to be found in female anatomical parts too?

    Is this something I need to warn my husband about?

  • 25 days ago

    Guess I gotta flush them out more often!

  • 25 days ago

    What, your bags?

  • 25 days ago
    last modified: 25 days ago

    I love reusable bags.

  • 25 days ago

    " You can keep on thinking you're saving the earth by reusing sandwich bags "

    Did anyone say that's what they think? I don't recall anyone saying that's why they're reusing bags. I know you presume it, because then you can mock people about it, but the truth is you really don't know that people's reason is that they "think they're saving the earth".

  • 25 days ago

    I don't think we're saving the earth by making small changes in our reduce, reuse, recycle habits, but if more people tried it would help while larger issues are tackled. I know our town's garbage dump is reaching the end of it's life and I'm not sure where the garbage will go next. I agree that more thought needs to go into the lifecycle of products/packaging so there isn't much waste to deal with in the end. There are programs in place to deal with some things (ie we pay a recycling charge upfront when purchasing an electronic item) but it isn't enough yet. Then of course there are all the other topics that need solutions like heating, cooling etc.

  • 25 days ago

    "the truth is you really don't know that people's reason is that they "think they're saving the earth".

    So tell me, how do you know it isn't the underlying thought for many? I think it's applicable to you- hoping something is or isn't a certain way doesn't make it so.

  • 25 days ago

    One thing to realize and to keep in mind about reusing and repurposing is that it does not keep the itme from the landfill and it does not prevent the item from ever having been made in the first place. The item, in this case--- a plastic bag-- has already been produced and it is going into the trash , one way or another.

    I saw a ridiculous article about what to do with plastic jar and bottle lids and how they can make excellect coasters for drinks. so, it was advised to keep them and repurose them as such. But, how many "coasters" can one possibly need or want? And, it is not as if you didnt have these plastic lids that you would go out and buy an equivalent number of coasters. It is not as it has prevented those coasters from having been made. Repurposing them to be used as sometihng that you dont need does not validate them at all.


    All it does is that it just delays the time until it gets to the landfill.

    Until we change,or , are forced to change our excessive consuming habits, we will continue to build small mountains out on teh edge of town filled with all the forever trash. And, an awful lot of that trash was created from a consumer item that very likley served no real need or purpose at all.

  • 25 days ago

    " So tell me, how do you know it isn't the underlying thought for many? "

    I don't, but you're the one making statements about what others believe, not me. I suggest possibilities, but you've made declarative statements about it.

  • 24 days ago

    How can a post about bags have 81 comments???

  • 24 days ago
    last modified: 24 days ago

    It's not just about bags, that's why 😃

  • 24 days ago

    " Until we change,or , are forced to change our excessive consuming habits, we will continue to build small mountains out on teh edge of town filled with all the forever trash "

    In some parts of the US, and in much of Western Europe, refuse is incinerated and the heat produced is used to generate electricity and, in a few places, heating for buildings. No small mountains are produced. Does that resolve the problem for you?

  • 24 days ago

    " I don't, but you're the one making statements about what others believe, not me. I suggest possibilities, but you've made declarative statements about it. "

    I was relating what my experiences have been, and pretty consistently so. You're just being argumentative.

  • 24 days ago

    " It's just about bags, that's why "

    Yes, just bags. Don't get me started about banana peels and cherry pits.

  • 24 days ago

    My point has always been that environmental efforts are additive so either convincing people to make personal changes or making it law you can have an effect. Obviously coming up with ways to deal with trash in an environmentally friendly way is the better way to go. Every plastic bag that isnt made and used is one less plastic thing to have to dispose of and that much less plastic in our environment. Plastic trash is a world problem and making trex decking out of it while a good reuse doesnt take the plastic out of the environment. We have created a practically forever problem but I cant do anything about that. All I can do is put as little plastic into the environment as I can. And that is what I do.

  • 24 days ago

    Problem is, you cannot rely on individual choices to make the kind of impact needed.

    If you want people to change their behavior, you need to make it as easy as possible. Recycling is too complicated now. People get confused, &/or overlook the requirements/restrictions, and they do a lot of 'wishcycling'.

  • 24 days ago
    last modified: 24 days ago

    " environmental efforts are additive "

    Yes, to a point. Most efforts can be additive but revert back to my suggestion that very small efforts rarely add up to much more than very small consequences. The modern world relies on plastics for many things so tarnishing such products with blanket condemnations is narrow-minded.

    Edit to add:

    It's rare that in weighing alternatives for anything that choices don't involve compromises of various kinds. It often can be pick the one that's least worst. An example - governments have legislated fuel economy standards for cars. In order to achieve better mileage numbers, car manufacturers have turned to replacing heavier components with lighter plastic ones. They perform less well, they're less durable, and often can be prone to breakage. The car companies don't prefer them, car owners don't either, and for people like you, they're that hated plastic. But mileage is better. It's a compromise.

  • 24 days ago

    It's true that banning plastic bags is a drop in the bucket, but it's a start. I also agree that the item may end up at the dump in the end, but if people reuse it, less items will be produced overall. Choices do matter - I used to try to purchase things in glass jars versus plastic until companies stopped all glass. Glass is one of the few items that can be recycled completely and effeciently. I'm hoping that recycling will become easier and less complicated. I'm lucky where we are as we have recycling bins and compost bins that are picked up. I also hope that some new innovations will appear to deal with many things including dumps. I read somewhere that burning garbage might be a solution once they figure out how to deal with the pollution that causes.

  • 24 days ago

    Here in FL plastic films in the environment pose a danger to aquatic life - they get swallowed by turtles, for instance.

  • 24 days ago

    I’m curious. Where do you all live that plastic bags are banned? I’m assuming California for one ……..

    Here in rural America I have not yet heard of banning plastic bags. (Yet)

  • 24 days ago

    NY state. New York State's Bag Waste Reduction Act, which bans single-use plastic carryout bags, went into effect on March 1, 2020,

  • 24 days ago

    I dont remember how i disposed of my kids diapers 42 plus years ago i think it was in plastic Now i need them to dispose of mine 😩 i reuse every plasti wrap i can find as a plastic bag nd my friends from other states save them for me maybe ill have to resort to wrapping disposables in newspapaer

  • 24 days ago

    Elmer, you have never seen a trash mountain? Are you, seriously, saying that these things dont exist? So, call it a trash valley if you please. It depends on the water table. In Florida there are mountains because of the high water table . Where I am, in the mid Atlantic, it is dumped into a big hole and repeatedly covered.

    And, there is also an incenerator in our county. But how does a tossed out coffee maker get disposed of, for instance? It wont decompse. It has too many different materials that it is made from and cant be seperated out and recycled and it stay forever in that landiflll under the poopy diapers and old hot dogs. What cost to burn it? It takes fuel to burn and it takes tech and taxes to capture the toxic gas from burning.


    Fran, 42 years ago disposable diapers were not as widely used . My own are now grown and are mid fourties and I never used disaposables regularly but used them a couple of times when traveling . It is assumed nowadays that you will use disposable diapers, but, back then it was not as common as it is now. We used to buy cloth diapers from some place like Sears and you had to learn how to fold them for a boy or for a girl. Then, there was that little trick of running the diaper pin along the side of your nose to get just a bit of body oil on the pin so that is would slide through the layers. It worked like a charm!

  • 24 days ago

    "Does that resolve the problem for you?"

    Elmer, for me? It is not me, Elmer. It is you, and me, and your mother and your cousin's mother and her daughter and their cousins and your neighbors and that nice lady that works at the library and that guy driving the Fedex truck and every living, breathing entity on earth.

    Does it resolve the problem for EVERYONE? No, it does not. This is NOT my personal problem.

  • 24 days ago
    last modified: 24 days ago

    I'm in Canada and bags were banned. It hasn't made a big difference in my life.

  • 23 days ago

    carol, your coined term is creative...wishcycling. I have begun to call it "green wishing". It is meaning the same thing. A take off from "green washing", which, of course is a reference to all of these misleading environment claims from companies who make a pledge to the consumers and announce to the media how, years from now, they are going to do this or that to reduce plastic by a fraction or change a packaging or some other nonsense. But they are going to do it the future when there will be no accountablilty to ever do so at all, and no one will even remember.

    To harbor the delusion that we can recycle, repurpose, reuse or restyle our way out of this mess is to be a Pollyanna. ( a Pollyanna is a Karen before she got mean, for you young ones who dont know. Whereas Karen is a know it all, a Pollyanna is blissfully ignorant and too darned happy about every darned thing so that you just what to slap her right upside the head. I dont think that there is a male equivalent, and that is another issue all together. ) That idea that any of our trash and excess consumer waste is of value is delusional. The number of folks who buy that donated career wear, for instance, and go on to get the job at the interview are very slim, indeed.


    Of course all of those R words are things that we should do. But what really needs to happen is for us, collectively, to just stop buying, consuming and casting aside so much excess waste of all manner, from clothes to toys to food........everything! also plastic bags. We are missing the most important R word of them all. That word is Refuse. Refuse to buy into that lifestyle that requires buying mass quantities of.......everything. You might be surprised at the immense added value of having . buying, using , throwing out , paying for, storing and having less to clean around.

    No matter that it was two for a dollar at the store Extrapolate further down the line to include the taxes and fees that you pay to have a truck come round to everyone's house and collect all that trash and to build and maintain all of those landifllls. Where does the expense stop? At what point in time does an item actually become really gone if it cant decompose back into what it came from? Some are forever. Nay, MANY, are forever.


    Most of us interact with that item for a very short time along its journey and give little thought to how it came about and where is it going. It may be stored for a while, but forgotten.


    I have begun to lose sympathy for Americans belly aching about how much things cost while continuing to buy such useless and needless junk and to feel so entitled to think that they are deserving. Things like housing and health care and nutrition are the real expenses that we have little control over. We can stop buying junk. It benefits no one and is detrimental to all. The only real thing to do is to curb consumption and adjust our expectations. But we are about to let our very democracy implode, so we are not graced with wise decisions . We are an abysmally ignorant culture, acting against our own self interest and imperiling our very future and the futures of our children and their children.

    We are caught in a counter clockwise flow as we circle the drain with all of our stuff.