18 January 2011

Some Other Things We Recycle Around Here

Wrapping paper and birthday candles.

My grandmother used to use sewing scissors to cut carefully through all the pieces of tape so that the paper could be reused. On the other side of the family, some of the great-aunts didn't even use tape -- just carefully folded the paper around the package and then tied it with string, never knotted, so both paper and string could be used again (and again and again).

Back then, I think the main reason for it was probably economic good sense. On one side of the pond, there were Great Depression memories; on the other, post-war privations.

It makes sense economically for the Great Recession -- have you priced those little gift bags lately? -- but it also makes sense ecologically in a planet that's being slowly cooked.

And another thing. I really dislike shopping, and reusing paper and gift bags and birthday candles means fewer trips to the store.