Channelling My Inner LOL

I just noticed that the acronym for Little Old Lady is LOL.  Coincidence?  I think not.  (For those who aren’t up on text abbreviations, “LOL” means “Laughing Out Loud”.)

I’m not sure whether it’s my inner LOL or whether I’m on the cutting edge of the Reduce/Reuse/Recycle movement, but I have a confession to make:  I wash plastic bags and reuse them.  I want to qualify that statement, though – I only wash bread bags.  I save and reuse plastic grocery bags, but I don’t wash them.  All other bags go to the recycling depot.

My aunt doesn’t wash bread bags.  When I mentioned it to her, she gave me a quizzical look and said, “I used to save bread bags, back when they were hard to get.  I don’t do that now, though.  You can get them anywhere.”

Um. Yeah.

So I just out-LOL’d my 85-year-old aunt.

In my defense, I’d like to point out that I bake my own bread, and it seems wasteful to buy fresh new bags, use them once, and then throw them away.  Maybe I could be more cavalier about the process if I’d gotten the bag free when I purchased something else.  But probably not.  It’s still a perfectly good bag.

Which leads me to yogurt containers.  And sour cream containers.  I keep those, too.  They’re a handy size:  they hold the exact amount that fits in my soup bowls, and they’re wonderful for freezing single portions.  But lately I’ve been struggling with the news that we’re not supposed to reuse those containers for anything.  Something about harmful chemicals leaching into our food when they get reused.  Say what?

They’re selling me a food product in a container they consider too toxic for me to continue using?

I like those plastic containers, dammit.  I like being able to drop them into my freezer without worrying about suffering a laceration on a shard of broken glass.  They’re cheap, convenient, and space-efficient.

So I went looking for some new, non-toxic plastic containers.  Turns out there’s really no such thing.  Each manufacturer touts their own “non-toxic” product while pointing accusatory fingers at the other manufacturers.  By the time you work your way around the circle, it’s obvious that either they’re all toxic, or they’re all lying.  Probably both.

I thought stainless steel was the answer, until Hubby helpfully pointed out that steel can be alloyed with a huge range of other metals, including toxic heavy metals.  “Food-grade” stainless, here I come.  But how do I know what those manufacturers put in their so-called food-grade stainless?  They’re probably lying, too.

Sigh.  Back to glass.  No, wait, some glass contains lead.  Or, hey, better still, radioactive thorium.  Woohoo!

I’ve probably washed my sour cream containers enough times by now that the toxic parts are all gone.  And I’ve got a couple of bread bags to salvage.  ‘Scuse me while I go channel my inner LOL.

Get off my lawn, you damn kids!

26 thoughts on “Channelling My Inner LOL

  1. Found you via Chris9911 above. Love the idea of channelling my inner-little-old-lady. I’m getting closer and closer to the old part, or perhaps I’m already there in some eyes, but I’ll never be little! I have an inexpensive baby bottle rack out in my laundry area to hang the drying ziplock bags on after I wash them. (We’re in a place where ziplock bags are hard to find and a bit pricey.) Doing a series over on my blog called Frugal Friday. Someone commented there that she uses her yogurt and sour cream containers for spouting seeds in her garden and replanting seedlings, after cutting holes in the bottom.


    • I’m pretty sure that’s a healthy attitude. Someday I’ll manage to overcome my bag-washing compulsions.

      Erm… maybe I should rephrase that. *dirty mind leaps to the forefront, chortling*


  2. make your own pottery, glaze it, and bake it in the oven 🙂
    Only way to know the content of a product is to make it yourself. If you are really serious about your stainless steel and how its made. You need to find one that is made to specific mil spec. All those stainless steel will come with stack of material property sheet that is traceable to its origin or of origin, and all the test data along with it.


    • I’d love to be able to get that info (and since I’m a geek, I actually did try). I was able to find it for the food-grade SS water bottles I bought, but there’s no spec available for any kind of retail-available kitchen stainless. Probably because the manufacturing process is so uncontrolled, even the manufacturer isn’t really sure what goes in there. For some odd reason, that doesn’t give me a warm fuzzy…

      Thanks for commenting (definitely not a “mediocre” comment). 🙂


      • I get all my metal from local distributer called “Ejay’s” in baltimore, MD. Its not cheap but its as good as it gets. Most consumer grade ss will have material originating from china or russia, and, no, they don’t guarantee a specific spec. One time we were qualifying a supplier in China and we were insisting that we see the exact place where our castings were coming from. This main company was beautiful and really modern, but as an engineer, you don’t really care about that, you need to see the place where it gets made, inspected, and shipped. Through much arm twisting, they agreed to take us there. You wanna talk about uncrontrolled manufacturing process? lol. You would not believe what was going on. The facility was full of people and children. Children as young as like 10yrs old. No steel toed shoes, most of them running around in opened slippers with high voltage lines and hydraulic lines all over the floor. These kids would take some of the castings over to final finishing area where there are series of high speed spinning blades! These kids would hold the part and attempt to shave off some rough areas, by hand!!!

        People, please buy American manufactured products!

        Mediocre comment? wink Nothing but quality comments from my messed up brain…lol


  3. WHAT?! LOL! You wash plastic bags? We re-use all sorts of things, but haven’t got as far as washing out bread bags. You get a laugh in UK, they have holes in them (so the kids can put them on their heads – bloody brits and their strange habits).

    But I have been wondering about the news that we can’t re-use some containers because they’re only safe the first time. How the ding-dong does that work? Do small robots sneak in your house and spray all you re-used plastic with weedkiller? Do I get a good dose of toxic bromo-whotsit if I accidentally scrape my spoon against the side of the yoghurt carton?

    Agggghhhhh, chemicals, they’re everywhere 🙂



    • “Toxic bromo-whotsit” – Nigel, you never fail to make me laugh! 🙂

      So that’s what all those little robots with the teeny backpack sprayers were up to. Dang, I should’ve known it couldn’t be good. I wonder which exterminator I can call for an infestation of Robotox Plasticites.

      Of course, the exterminator would probably spray them with toxic chemicals…


  4. I think I just outed my LOL self in today’s post about sleep, so I feel your pain. I’m too lazy to bake my own bread – or clean and reuse containers, though. So, I guess I’m just a Lazy Old Lady.


  5. The day I moved into my first apartment I vowed never to wash another plastic bag! Always hated that…water sprayed everywhere, ran down your arm, and pooled in your elbow. And they never dried properly. It would have been easier to take them into the shower with you…at least there you expect to get wet! That guilty, “is mom watching” feeling still hits me when I pull a new Ziplock out of the box, but given the alternative…I’ll live with the guilt!


  6. I assign the meaning “Lap Of Luxury,” as in “LOLCATS.” 😉

    BTW (By The Way) I recycle everything, even stuff I’m pretty sure is non-recyclable. I’m evil that way. MUHAHAHA


  7. Really showed your talent in this one. Nice job. As to the subject matter, I use bread bags to pick up my dog’s poo. It’s a great container. You can insert you hand easily. And, the poo smells a little like bread which is a nice plus. All joy in writing and using what’s at hand and in my case on the hand. HF


    • Thanks, Harper! My stepmom uses them for litterbox cleanup, too. What if the the stores stop supplying grocery bags entirely? It seems wrong to buy a fresh new plastic bag just to hold poo…


  8. Lol this is pretty funny! I have to say I dont do that but my bf would say that my issue is my resuing of plastic grocery bags. I dont just save a few for when you might need them- I save every last one of them! That means we have piles of these plastic bags busting out of every corner or our apartment! And yet the idea of throwing one out seems so wasteful…I just cant bring myself to do it…


    • I’m glad I’m not the only one! I carry cloth bags to the store, so I don’t get many plastic bags anymore. I only have a small stash left, and I live in fear that someday I’ll use the last one and won’t have anything left to carry my wet shoes. 🙂


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