I used to be indecisive…

…but now I'm not so sure

Friday letters – the mid October edition

17 Comments

Dear noise cancelling headphones,  I am very sad that you have stopped working.  Last time I used you everything was fine but next time I picked you up you had obviously decided that enough was enough.  Extensive trying of brand new batteries couldn’t coax you into life.  You have been great, but it looks like it’s time to exchange you for a new pair.

Dear plastic bags,  I wonder if you realise what a rumpus you have caused here in England since October 5th as the government attempts to reduce litter and protect wildlife.  People are objecting, in their droves, to paying 5p for every one they use in supermarkets and shops.  People who previously thought nothing of using 10 new plastic bags each time they did their weekly food shop, are now being asked to pay and are not happy about it.  Apparently voices have been raised, fingers have been pointed and letters written to newspapers.  The fact that the money raised will go to good causes rather to the shops themselves is passing some people by.  Useful as you are for many things, I would rather reduce the numbers of you that are festooning trees, and blowing across the park after a lovely summer’s day where people have been having picnics.  I would much rather your plastic was used to make a sturdier bag, for which I would happily pay 10p, and which can be re-used many times.  I’m sorry if you are unhappy with the situation, and aren’t seeing as much of the world as you used to (from the tree tops, from the cupboard under the sink, in the park, in the school cloakroom…), but we have to start thinking about reducing pollution in this throwaway society of ours.  Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales have been charging for single-use bags for some time now and have seen great benefits, so hopefully we can too.

Dear cyclistsPlease, WEAR BRIGHT CLOTHES AT NIGHT!  PUT LIGHTS ON YOUR BIKES!  You are very hard to see now that the dark mornings and evenings are upon us.

Happy Friday everyone!

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17 thoughts on “Friday letters – the mid October edition

  1. Sadly my noise cancelling headphones have gone the same way as yours 😦
    And as for the plastic bag thing, what is it about some people? All they ever do is complain. If you can’t be arsed to carry your own bags (which I have been doing for the last 10 years now, unless I pop in to a supermarket on the spur of the moment) then 10 bags is ONLY 50p. Much less than the lottery ticket you buy or the booze or the cigarettes. Is it just the English that love the sound of their own voices?
    Whinge, whinge, whinge…

    • Perhaps there’s a conspiracy amongst noise cancelling headphones!
      Some people just love to complain I think – regardless. It’s not hard to carry your own bags (I’ve been doing it for years now) and for the odd unplanned shopping trip – 5p isn’t going to break the bank! I saw someone come out of the supermarket the other day with all their items unbagged in their trolley. It would maybe have cost them 15p to put them in bags, but they would rather take ages to unload the trolley, load the car, unload the car than pay. So silly.

  2. I have been following your plastic bag – trolley stealing saga with a bit of suppressed glee. We went through the bag charge a few years ago. People were mostly concerned with where that 5¢ was going – turned out to not quite be for environmental causes as stated and then it was repealed. Most stores now just ask if you want a bag, though some still charge. But, every store started selling their own reusable bags (generally at 99¢), and for some it became a thing to collect them for their pretty designs.

    As for riding your bike without any reflective gear or lights, that’s just suicidal. I make deliveries at night, and am often ready to yell at them when i see them (after swerving to avoid hitting them).

    • I’m not sure how they are monitoring the 5p charges and using them for good causes – it will be tricky. In Scotland, where I visit regularly, I have never been offered a free bag since the charges came in – apart from a very small paper bag which I was told wasn’t covered by the new legislation – just plastic bags.

  3. Stores here started out charging for plastic bags but now many have stopped and will just ask if you want one. I had been trying to cut back on bags for a long time before the new laws came in and usually remember to take a bag with me to the shops. I have a one of those ones that folds up to the size of a purse that lives in my handbag for impulse shopping.

  4. It’s taking time, but I have been working on remembering to take my reusable bags into the stores with me. It’s something I can do, along with recycling as much as possible. There are some places that charge for plastic in the US.

  5. Sorry about the noise. I’ll tiptoe 🙂
    Very valid points you make, Elaine. I’m entirely in agreement. What sane person isn’t? (yippee- I must be sane today 🙂 ) Happy weekend!

  6. Good advice for the cyclists! Sorry about your headphones…..when you go shopping for new ones, be sure and take your own bag! LOL. 🙂

  7. South Africa started charging for plastic bags about 12 years ago, and the cost has increased considerably since then. People still use the same number of bags, but have just got used to paying for them, and the government is laughing all the way to the bank, as it’s just become another tax. We still get free bags here in the USA, and I use mine as kitchen bin liners. Happy noise-free weekend, Elaine. 🙂

  8. The supermarkets here sell sturdy reusable cloth bags and I have quite a collection. I just have to remember to take them in with me. Some places also have strong plastic bags to reuse.

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