The other day I opened the refrigerator and witnessed the scene captured in the accompanying photo. In their zeal for a skinned baby carrot, someone had bypassed the zip-lock opening and punched directly through the middle of the plastic bag to get to the bright orange veggies. It looked like something you might find in a mouse’s burrow.
This is a not-uncommon occurrence in our home. If a member of the Webner household needs sustenance, the niceties of modern American product design are casually ignored. The evidence of this is everywhere. When the desire for a Triscuit becomes overpowering, the box will be ripped open at the bottom so that it cannot be closed up. The impulse for immediate Honey Bunches of Oats gratification will cause a hungry Webner to eviscerate the internal plastic bagging, leaving tattered remnants so that the cereal cannot thereafter be poured into a bowl without the contents scattering over counter top. And parched Webners always bypass the roll-down design of a soft drink 12-pack. Rather than carefully opening the container as intended, so that the next can flops down when a can is removed, they tear open the carton through the hand-hold opening at the top.
American product designers spend billions on the design of food packaging to promote freshness, allow simple resealing, and permit ready extraction. As far as our family is concerned, they needn’t have bothered.