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Going on picnics without scissors for instance. If scissors were forgotten everybody would starve or die of thirst. It would be like surviving Holocaust without a can opener.
Why do you seem to need scissors for every task to remove packaging?
Dribbly giblets from inside a chicken have to be cut away from their plastic bubble. What did we use before to sever umbilical cords? Why do paramedics have to cut away a perfectly good pair of jeans just because you leg is caught in a haybaler?
I remember on one occasion my Mother cutting my hair with pinking shears and I went to school next day with a Barnet looking like an upside down bun case. I thought they were for 'running up' curtains with? There again you should not run anywhere with a pair of scissors in your hand.
Samson from Bible had his hair cut off by Delilah as he slept. This was to sap his strength. It was believed as Hebrew custom then, as it is today, that masculinity was all in a man's long hair. Men of all creeds wear long hair at times. Today they are called tw*ts.
A women's hair is supposed to be her 'crowning glory'. This has changed and become her handbag and accessories. Who doesn't want a shock of long hair plunged into your chest at intervals? If your woman does not have long hair, hold onto her ears.
We take scissors for granted.
'Edward Scissorhands' didn't, but he could hardly point finger. There was one guy who could never scratch his balls without becoming a human shish kebab.
Dishwasher or soap tablets that won't prise from their wrappings.
Endless crap car accessories or kids toys that fill you with trepidation before you snap it from carcass only to find most vital component falls in half when it makes a bid for its freedom. You can't buy a carrier bag without advertising something on it. Maybe we could have a dating service on them next. Have a different lonely heart on each side of bag along with a contact number.
Like those scandalous bookclubs … that send you every book you didn't want and call it 'Editor's choice' and charge you fourfold 'Amazon' prices on fifty books you have apparently pledged to buy within three weeks. Editor's choice? If I meet him I will give him my 'readers choice' that of 'War and Peace' up his cable layer, sideways, to effect most injury. Yes, still in its packaging!
God bless little cream pots at motorway 'Welcome breaks' airports, or those found at cheap hotels that guarantee to be a hit with folk. A direct hit that is! From forty paces and causing your entire family to duck down under table in case they see that it was you without any fingernails.
It is with rich fondness I reminisce about having all my produce put in a 'twisted at corners' brown paper bag of just one size. All in a string handled brown paper holdall. Chips in newspaper that somehow made them taste better than they do today. Real cutlery instead of plastic forks wrapped with a serviette in cellophane too, that so often lose a prong inside your cheeseburger and cause a three hour wait in accident and emergency.
This brings me to crisps… Once again there is enough room in each seal fresh pack to hold a moonie convention and yet only one sixth of a potato as facts bear out resides inside. One packet is never enough, so they sell you whole selection packs for you to munch through guiltily. Whatever happened to those giant family packs of 'Golden Wonder' crisps? Just one big f*ck-off packet with crisps loose inside. They were best thing to come out of sixties and seventies. Just heaps of crisps to share amongst bus queues. You couldn't eat them all even if you ate nothing else for a week. They welded together after a while and would bend in half like putty. No 'sell-by' dates in those days. No 'best befores'. You only got rid when they reproduced of their own accord. You could almost fold them like underwear at point of optimum staleness. You had to roll your sleeves up to reach all 'smushed' ones at bottom of bag. Once eaten giant thick foil bag was great to 'chuck up into' as you were sure to be blowing chunks for rest of day.
'Ringpulls' became familiar 'shoosh' to be heard until present time. Soon small catapults could be made from them by pinging tab of aluminium in crook of ring. Now, packagers have even put a stop to that and smoothed ring pull mechanism. That has stopped fizz fun for many!
Now we have 'Widgets'… that take up a whole mouthful of beer space in can and then will fill rest of beer with air so you can stay sober but end up with reflux. If either too warm or too cold will depend on how much beer you want to end up over cat and down back of telly.
Packaging is a crazy waste of resources and raw materials. It is misleading. It is unwieldy. Most of all it causes litter louts and pollution. There are so many preservatives in food nowadays so who needs it?
This is true…. My father was known to be a real re-cycler. Others called him a tightwad! Either way, he saved all polystyrene and packed loft with it. Feet thick. Our house was a potential tinderbox but Father always said that "keeping bills down and keeping warm" were more important than possible future invention of smoke alarms. In 1973 we had more firemen because there were less hoax-callers then. They didn't need risk assessments. They just had to be good at getting cats out of trees or your toes out of tap. Firemen today are so afraid of health and safety they will fit smoke alarms in your house for free just in case you have urge to sue them for dying of third degree burns or having to cut top of your car roof off when you slip your disc during sex.
Father even covered ceilings of our home with those polystyrene tiles. He chainsmoked too, so miraculously I did not become 'toast' at any stage and am here to tell this tale as a result. I escaped any inferno of gargantuan proportions to mar my childhood that hypothetically, quite likely, would have been seen from one of Apollo missions and lit up East Anglia like a solar flare.
Alternatives? Easy! Make all packaging edible. Then watch how marketeers become more frugal with it! You are not going to sell as many Big Macs if customer is full with Fries carton are you?
Anyway, my Mother was wrong when she said everything good comes in brown paper packages. I once put dog-shit in a brown paper bag and placed it on a neighbours doorstep. I would then take some matches and set light to it and play 'Knock down Ginger' by pressing doorbell. Retreating to my hiding place I would watch with delight as householder would come to door and try to put incendiary out and only discover sticky hitchhiker when it was all too late.
We made our own fun in those days. Practical jokes meant something to victims back then.
Perry Estelle. Satirist, cartoonist and fiction writer. If you need original and sizzling satire on tap I am your man. Please contact me if you don’t mind my overconfidence and want a weird regular feature! firstname.lastname@example.org