Old Habits Die Hard

The Guideposts editor-in-chief shares why reusable bags are a better option than plastic.

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Old habits die hard. I tried to do the right thing, but I failed. My first several tries were failures. I still fail. But now and then, I have begun having occasional successes. Why? I learned a valuable lesson from my neighbor and friend, Floss Wharton.

Back to the beginning. I’ve been trying to stop—well, at least, limit—my use of plastic bags. It seems as if everything comes in them. Have you noticed…they are everywhere? Flying around in the wind, getting stuck in the trees and bushes, littering roadsides, clogging the streams, and lakes—even the oceans! And sadly, getting stuck in the throats of songbirds and in the gills of fish, strangling them.

I’ve been wondering…what can I do? Write letters to my senators? Sure. Ask businesses to package differently? Yes. But, first, maybe I should start with myself. Just do one, small unremarkable thing.
My strategic plan was simple. First, buy reusable bags. Second, use them for shopping.

Trouble was, I never seemed to think of the bags when leaving for the store. My strategic plan wasn’t working very well.

Back to my friend, Floss. Recently, she gave me a ride home. As I was getting into her car, I noticed a cloth bag, lying on the front seat. While moving it aside, she told me its story. Like me, she had tried to make the switch from plastic to cloth. Like me, she, too, kept forgetting. Now, she keeps at least one cloth bag on the front seat of her car, and that reminds her of the others in the back.

Floss does it, and now, so do I. Join us! Let’s start the “Front Seat Cloth Bag Club!” They’re easy to buy and available almost everywhere. They’re smart, in fashion, fun, and colorful. A long-term bargain, they bring down the cost of items where you shop. On the ecological side, they prevent further “plastic pollution.” They require less energy to make than piles of disposable plastic ones. They make a better planet for our kids and grandkids.

Gotta go now. I just remembered…the last time I shopped, I didn’t return the cloth bag back out to the front seat of my car! Are you ready for the Cloth Bag Challenge?

Feel free to email me your environmental tips and questions!

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Tags: Friends,Nature
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