27 June 2005

I don't like the plastic. It feels cheap.

I've rarely tried other brands of mayonnaise when my grocer's shelves were devoid of Hellmann's. Most often, I'll drive to another store to find Hellmann's. If, however, I have chosen to substitute, (for the record there is no substitute), I either look forward to running out of whatever brand I've "substituted" quickly or I throw it out as soon as I have finished my potato or tuna salad so I can replace it with Hellmann's. Four generations of my family have preferred Hellmann's. It's as close to homemade as it gets. I don't mind paying a premium for it because it's the best, and it comes in glass jars.

Oh, wait. Best Foods has begun to stock my grocer's shelves with Hellmann's in plastic jars. I purchased my first jar of Hellmann's in plastic while at Costco a couple of weeks ago. At first, surprise. Then repulsion. The plastic feels cheap and nasty -- a lot like the way I feel about Kraft mayonnaise. Or Miracle Whip (unless I am making cole slaw).

Plastic sucks. It cheapens whatever it contains. The glass containers add value. Glass containers say "we cherish our product, our brand. It's important to us to put it in the best container."

Take Coca-Cola for instance. Or, Pepsi, 7-up, Mountain Dew, Dr Pepper. They all taste better out of glass. Brown plastic beer bottles? Stupid. Plastic squeeze bottles of Heinz ketchup? Come on. Heinz gave up a big part of their brand when they did away with the small glass bottle with the "57" on it. In a diner once, while the voice of Carly Simon sang in my head as I waited for ketchup to grace my plate, a cheerful experienced waitress told me, "tap the 57". It worked, and ever since then when I want ketchup, I tap the "57". But, the only way that piece of pop culture stays with me is because I refill my glass ketchup bottle like I learned to when I was waiting tables.

Oh, sure. We can argue that plastic is unbreakable. That's why it's perfect for shampoo. Or, bleach. Food and beverages belong in glass bottles and jars.

20 June 2005

No news is good news

I am amazed at how much more relaxed I am after spending the weekend outdoors. No TV. No CNN. No FoxNews. I don't know if we've ever done that all weekend. The first I heard about Iraq in three days was this morning on the way to the airport. I didn't realize how therapeutic it is to ignore current events every once in a while.

Current events being what they are, I have just had enough right now.

It's not that I don't care about what's going on in the world. I am just sick of/tired of/digusted with/sometimes crazed with hate for:

* Bullshit excuses and trumped up reasons for us to be at war.
* Rhetoric.
* Corrupt politicians getting kickbacks for legislation they enact.
* Lawmakers getting richer from legislation that they pass -- all the while bitching about so-called special interest groups.
* CEOs of corporations who cheat their employees and investors. (Not just the heads of Enron, Tyco and MCI, but also the CEOs of major airlines asking for caps on pensions in a congressional hearing that aired on CSPAN last week. These are the same creeps that negotiated hundreds of millions in pay cuts from their employees. And, magically, the company can then afford to give these assholes $300 million in "retention bonuses." Exactly what miracles are these people performing that they need a six-figure bonus in addition to their six- or sometimes seven-figure salaries? And who are the idiots on the boards of these companies that allow this to happen? Without the employees that they are screwing they have no company.

When will we pull our heads out of the sand and hold these crooks accountable for their actions?