Lady of bag | Reviews | journaljournalonline.com







Robin Garrison Leach


Robin leach

“Paper or plastic? The bagger at the grocery store looked at me and waited for a response. I was confused; hadn’t I already made enough choices? The conveyor belt huffed and moaned as it threw my purchases alongside my purchases. I wanted to throw them in a paper bag, lug them to the car, throw the bag in the trunk and take them home.

I glared at him and spat “PAPER!” “. He lowered his head, grabbed my junk mail, and slipped it into the corner of a brown bag.

I loved my paper bags. They were familiar. Robust. I had a stack of them at home, all neatly flattened and folded and ready to be reused.

Why would I want to give them up in exchange for a fragile, transparent, unstructured plastic bag?

It was 1972. Years went by, one shopping day after another. Every time “Paper or plastic? Was asked, I flinched and sagged under the pressure.

All around me, families were carrying plastic bags full of food. They didn’t rock them from the bottom, like you carry a paper bag. They laced them to their forearms like loud, swaying bracelets. It looked rather convenient. Almost pleasant.

In the early 90s, nobody asked me what kind of bags I would prefer. It was plastic. I gave in and as my supply of paper bags dwindled at home, I began to crush plastic bags in drawers and between cupboards. In no time, I had enough bags for the rest of my life.


About Marion Alexander

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