Sunday, January 10, 2010

In the new year...

gaggle of geese near administration building in Upper Marlboro
Recently took care of county business, but in the process narrowly missed being surrounded by the above gaggle of (large!) feathered friends looking for treats before entering the administration building. Guess they're used to being pampered up the road in Upper Marlboro...


Need to do a bit of shopping in DC (after errands), and I must remember to take along a couple of reusable bags along, to avoid the dreaded 5 cent bag tax that just went into effect this January 1st.

Whatever your misgivings about Whole Foods, at least it was ahead of the bag curve, as it provides a 5 cent discount for each reusable bag a customer uses (and has done so for years). In the 'burbs, Target recently started touting a 5 cent reusable bag discount on its receipts for customers who bring them in (as I have on occasion); however, it apparently hasn't yet trained all employees on how to activate the discount--a problem which has crept up more than once, which currently makes its reusable bag discount more myth than reality.

Now, while I find the notion of a bag tax annoying, it's even more foolish for affluent folks to waste gas (and time) shopping elsewhere. The fact is that there is visibly more litter in DC and suburbs since stores have begun using plastic bags in earnest (in lieu of paper bags)---you never saw paper bags, say, fluttering in the wind from a tree or other such nonsense. At least the DC government has actually proposed a way to pay for a program ahead of time, instead of coming up with a program first and then figuring out if it can be paid for.