Friday, October 10, 2008

Wolf pack

OK, that was a dirty trick. This has nothing to do with wolves and everything to do with packs. I simply wrote “wolf”, because they’re inherently cool, like ninjas, spy-planes, and most dinosaurs*.
Unless you’ve been living on Mars, under a rock, with your eyes closed and your fingers in your ears, you’re aware that those plastic bags that they hand out- well basically everywhere- clutter roadsides, streams, and parks, get stuck in trees, and fill landfills. You may have also heard that some cities and communities are so tired of dealing with them that they’re banning them from grocery stores and drugstores. IKEA and other retailers have begun charging for them, while others plan to discontinue using them altogether.
Be the solution. You, the clever Blue Island Almanack reader, can sidestep all of this bureaucratic mayhem, duck the recurring charges, and reduce the stream of trash moving into landfills and everywhere else by carrying your own bag.
Skirts, you’re way ahead of me on this one. Cats, fear not: I’m not talking about toting the ridiculous “European men’s carryall” of Seinfeld and Friends fame. Lots of vendors offer backpacks, rucksacks, knapsacks, and courier bags that are amply manly. (If you’re still a little worried, you can grow out your beard, talk loudly about contact sports, or smoke a Stogie or a pipe while you carry it.) You can compound your positive impacts by buying your reusable bag from a vendor that offers environmentally-friendly or fair-trade models.
In addition to carrying any carefully chosen odds-and-ends you buy while you’re out, this is a great way to bring along your other reusables: your Ka-Bar hobo set (or titanium spork, or lacquered chopsticks), your travel mug or water bottle, and your cloth napkin.
When you inevitably become the owner of a plastic bag or two, remember that they can be reused and recycled.

*Author's note: Leptoceratops is an example of a tragically uncool dinosaur.

Image sources:
US Fish and Wildlife Service
Simple Shoes

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