Sorry, no pretty photos today! Today it’s all about plastic bags…
It just so happens that today is Earth Day and I’m writing a post about plastic bags. I promise I didn’t plan it! For me, every day should be earth day so today being the “official” earth day doesn’t warrant a special post or special action. In fact, I wish people, companies, and the government will spend less energy publicizing that today is earth day and more energy on actually living an earth-friendly life.
Plastic bags have been on my mind a lot lately and I’ve been meaning to launch an official CPL challenge to reduce my (and hopefully your) plastic bag usage. Whenever I know I’m going to make a trip to the grocery store or any store, I take my reusable bags to make sure I don’t bring any plastic bags home with me but on those random, spontaneous trips when I don’t have my trusty reusable bags on hand, I end up walking out of the store with plastic bags in hand to add to the bijillion I already have at home.
Who doesn’t have a pile of these at home?
I do (sadness). A couple months ago, I dumped a whole bunch in the plastic bag recycling bin at the neighborhood grocery store with a resolve to never have to do that again by never compiling so many plastic bags. Being religious about using my reusable bags for all my shopping needs was my plan. Well, that plan has had a success rate about 50/50 so far. Hence the again growing pile of plastic bags, most of them from those trips when I had forgotten the reusable bags. But even if I don’t bring plastic bags home from the grocery, I’ve noticed they end up finding their way in through other ways, i.e. through people who visit us and bring stuff in plastic bags or through us visiting others and bringing stuff back in them. Things just tend to travel in plastic bags in our society…
But again, I believe small actions can make a big difference when all those small actions accumulate. So!!! Here’s the very first CPL challenge! I challenge you, dear readers, to minimize (and eventually eliminate) your plastic bag pile. If you’re taking me up on my challenge, how you’re going to make that happen is something you might have to think about. In specifics.
For me, I’ve found it’s about working towards changing my habits even more. Apparently, bringing out the reusable bags when I think I need them isn’t enough. I need to cultivate the habit of always leaving some in the trunk of the car and of keeping a small foldable one in my purse at all times (for those spontaneous impulse buys). And not least, be brave enough (and not embarrassed) to tell family and friends “no plastic bags for me, thanks!”
As I’ve been learning, eliminating plastic bags from my life won’t happen overnight. There will be times when I forget and will have to use them to bring groceries back. But rather than guilt tripping myself, I’ll just have to file those moments away towards furthering my resolve and making concrete steps towards my goal. Plastic bags, be gone!