Have I got your attention yet?
Let me start off by saying I am a big fan of panties. I wear them almost daily. I wear bikinis, thongs, boy shorts and yes I will even admit to big-girl panties when required. Heck, since we’re being honest here, I’ll also cop to – on rare occasions – squashing my ever-ripening flesh into a girdle-y thing. Oh my, how I hate those torturous contraptions. Frankly I’d rather let it all hang out. But sometimes a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.
So why are we discussing panties? Well, yesterday I bought new ones. At Costco. Calvin Klein microfibers no less (bikinis if you must know) perfect for everyday wear. You know – every day that you don’t want French lace invading your butt but bloomers just scream “I’m too sexy for my Depends” a little too much.
I’m sure these will be mighty fine panties. They weren’t too expensive and that microfiber stuff is kind of cool. It’s the packaging I take issue with. Oh Mr. Klein, sir, what in tarnation were you thinking? Five pairs of panties, each individually wrapped around a wee cardboard box, taped up with more adhesive than I use at Christmas, plus a little plasticky thing (I have no idea why) tossed into the mix. Then all five of these little sweethearts are wrapped in cellophane and placed into another bigger box. Which is taped shut.
Honestly, I started taking this stuff apart at breakfast and lunch was over by the time I finished. I was starting to believe I’d be collecting social security before microfiber ever caressed my cheeks.
And then the garbage. Or is it recycling? Okay, I know the cardboard is recycling and probably the plasticky thing but what about all that tape? And cellophane? Which was of course stuck to my fingers, refusing to release.
So much leftover crap, all for five pairs of panties.
And so yes, I am ranting about packaging because really and truly all this excess drives me batty. The worst are those hang-up heavy plastic cover things typically found in hardware stores. Do they even have a name? All I know is you pretty much need to have completed a surgical residency to get whatever it is you bought, out. Why is stuff hiding in there? To avoid dust? To allow merchandise to hang? To facilitate more advertising? To con us (hapless consumers that we are) into believing we are getting more bang for a buck?
Maybe. And damn I hate being hapless.
Case in point: my fabulous ex-husband designs and builds custom robotics. He was once called to a factory which manufactures cosmetic cases to design a machine which would place a ball-bearing into the bottom of a lipstick tube. Sure thing, says he. No problem. But do tell – why does there have to be a ball-bearing in the bottom of a lipstick tube?
Because – please get ready for this one ladies – women will pay more for a heavy lipstick than a light one.
Here’s another Costco gem: I bought a big box of Kashi cereal. Double the normal size. Brought it home, opened it up and found – two normal-sized boxes of Kashi. Two boxes inside one box.
Because yup, I guess the savvy consumer can’t get enough boxes with their cereal.
And apparently when we’re buying from designer Cal, we want our panties individually wrapped. Sort of.
I’m tired of it. Tired of recycling endless quantities of cardboard and paper weekly, just because that is how too much stuff is delivered to me. Tired of cutting my fingers on that super-duper hardware plastic trying to free a new pair of scissors. And tired of paying for “heavy” lipstick when it’s all just a con anyway.
I realize there’s not much I can personally do about a lot of this stuff except maybe lobby for a more old-fashioned market style of shopping (bring your own bags please), leave as much leftover crap at the point of purchase (would you mind removing these scissors from their prison before I leave your store?), or simply not buy anything that is over-packaged. Period.
These will be the last panties I buy from you, Cal honey. Put those 5 pairs in a Ziploc bag and I’ll reconsider. Throw them on a display table at Walmart and I’ll reconsider. Put five pairs on one plastic hanger and I’ll reconsider.
But no more boxed panties for this girl.
I’d rather go commando.