DEAR ABBY: I am a committed recycler. If I have a choice between two similar products, I'll choose the one that has the least packaging and/or is the most recyclable. When I buy fruit and vegetables, I do not put each item into its plastic bag. I bring my own cloth bags for my groceries. I wash my fruits and vegetables when I get home, so I don't mind if they are handled a couple more times along the way.
My problems begin when I reach the checkout counter. First, I hear a big sigh. Then they try to put all my produce into separate plastic bags. Sometimes the bagger even lines my cloth bag with a plastic one. What's the point in bringing my own bags if I take home as much plastic as if I hadn't brought them?
On occasion, I have even tried to bag my own groceries, but the employees just roll their eyes, or glare at me.
Abby, please remind checkout personnel that customers who bring their own bags are trying to conserve our resources and are concerned about our environment. -- TEXAS RECYCLER
DEAR RECYCLER: The next time you're in a checkout line and the bagger asks, "Paper or plastic?" say, "Neither, thank you. I brought cloth bags, so it's not necessary to segregate the produce."