Don't leave home without it.

Most of my spare time over the past few weeks has been consumed with one subject…bags. This happens to me sometimes in life…an otherwise piffling object suddenly takes on far more significance than you could possibly believe it is due. But lately it has been bags. Paper bags, plastic bags, homegrown eco-friendly, hemp-woven, whatever..bags. The Frau was mortified, almost beyond the realm of mico-economic endurance, by the fact that stores in the nation’s largest city now charge five cents for a plastic bag.

We both understand the good green groovy feeling behind this decision but , honestly, you should have seen her face when the first checkout clerk at that first store during the first transaction dropped this non-biodegradable bombshell. I think I may have fleetingly  glimpsed such a grimace several times during childbirth. And the vocal reaction was only slightly less shrill!

Good thing…damn good thing…she packed her own plastic bags in our bags when we left Vancouver. No one in this new city is going to get a penny out of The Frau for a new plastic bag. Not on your life. Now she carries beautifully creased and folded British Columbian , heavy duty, plastic liquor store bags with her wherever she goes. She’s a bag lady, in the truest sense of the term.

This means, by proxy if not by marriage, I must become a bag man. Which begs the question : where does the average guy carry two or three plastic bags? They don’t fit into a wallet and even a bag set upon by the most skilled origami master will soon bulk up your pocket. When we leave the house now we must carry bags. She would rather I walk out of there without underwear, frankly, than sally forth unprepared into the land of these grotesquely punitive pouches.

She’s leaving town soon and I have half a mind (?) to just run amok. Go out there with, oh I don’t know, twenty or thirty cents and lose all control. Is this what the average husband dreams about when his wife is away? Plastic bags? I didn’t think so.

So there will come a moment ( I can picture it now) when I will inevitably forget myself and be forced to buy a five cent plastic bag…and, as sure as Tom Ewell lusted after Marilyn Monroe in the movie The Seven Year Itch, I will emerge from that store with pangs of if I have somehow cheated…violated the very sanctity of the vows.  And then, as swiftly as if I were trying to ditch some other woman’s bra, I will have to hide all evidence of the noxious carry-all before she walks back in the door.

I know it’s pathetic. You don’t have to say it. She’s got me wrapped around her finger like a quarter cent twist tie.


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