The Environmental Attaché

Yesterday there was a package waiting on my stairs. I was perplexed: I hadn’t ordered anything recently and wasn’t expecting any gifts. And then I opened it. . . .

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Why would anyone send me a reusable shopping bag? I do use them, but. . . .

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Oh, it’s my swag from joining Grey Poupon’s Society of Good Taste, a challenge willingly accepted for my first Table Matters article. To peek behind the curtain, I “liked” their Facebook page, which triggered an app to scan my profile for language and likes. Something like that. I qualified for the 86th percentile of elite discernment, and the tote bag was my reward. I think I was supposed to earn more rewards by getting more friends to sign up.

The accompanying letter describes it as an “EcoCurean Totebag.” The “Eco,” I have to presume, derived from the bag’s reusability. Otherwise, its distinctive attributes include a strong plastic smell, a “Made in China” sticker, and nary a “recycled” or “recyclable” icon to be seen.

Edited to Add: On New Year’s Eve, I packed up this bag with a quart of collard greens, some lemons and oranges, and a bag of carrots to take to a party–and one of the straps snapped as soon as I got out the door! Said strap is now trailing sadly from my recycle bin, though I have no guarantee this bag can be reused any more effectively than it could be used,

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