Sunday, 28 June 2009

I'm a failure

So today is the last day of Recycle Week and I just thought I'd let you in on a secret.

I failed my mission.

But don't tell anyone. I'm trying to keep it a secret because it's just so ridiculously daft. I mean, who, other than someone completely useless, can't manage to re-use their carrier bags for one week?




Twiddle, twiddle.

That'll be me then.

Like I said, please don't tell anyone, because I am trying to forge this image of being something other than completely useless.

This is the silly thing - I only chose this pledge, out of the handful on offer because it was the easiest!! That'll teach me for being so lazy.

And just in case you wondered how on earth I managed to fail something so simple, here's the story.

I'm normally smug about re-using carrier bags because I have an enormous supply, some of which are stashed in the back of the car ready to be taken to the supermarket and some of which are in the kitchen having just been emptied ready to be put back in to the car and taken to the supermarket. Notice a common denominator here?


You should have seen my smug face at the beginning of the week.

'Need any carrier bags love?' Said the checkout assistant already reaching for her supply.

'No, I have plenty. Thankyou.' I said, making an extra special effort to rustle them loudly so the whole queue could hear.

Like I said, I was smug.

Fast forward a few days and I checked the calendar. A birthday party. A friend of Renée's was turning five and I hadn't yet bought a present or a card. But that wasn't a problem - no need to drive to the supermarket (let's be all eco and walk to the corner shop instead). So we did. Fairy wings and magic wand and hair clips and all sorts of little things guaranteed to make a five year old smile. Perfect. That was until I was half-way back home, blue plastic bag in hand and suddenly aware that it wasn't one of my plastic bags.


Mission far from accomplished.

So that's how easy it was. The problem lay in the fact that I hadn't factored in the non-supermarket visits. Trips to the corner shop, without the car, were not considered, therefore my generous supply of plastic bags were not available. So here's a warning to all of you wanting to re-cycle - carry a bag with you at all times.

I have to say, I did continue to re-use my bags for the week, but a fail is a fail and I can't lie to you all (tempting though it is).

And just in case you thought I'd forgotten, there is a forfeit to uphold. I can't quite bring myself to say it though because I think I might cry...

No computer use for a whole day. That's no Blogging. No Twitter. No e-mails. No Facebook. No Google searches. No life as I know it.

So as of midnight tonight, I will be computer-less for a day. Apologies in advance if I ignore you. I will be back on Tuesday raring to go.

Wish me luck!


  1. Oh no.....and no computer either... that's doubly bad. If it's any consolation, it took me so long to remember to take a reusable receptacle of some measure, I ended up collected so many bags for life I could now open a market stall.

    Thanks so much for joining in Emily and I hope you enjoy your day away from the PC. I'll be thinking of you, while I'm busy sorting out the carnival. And if it's a really sunny day, I'll be thinking about you a lot :-D

  2. I know - I'm sorry!!!! I tried...really I did! The silly thing is, I didn't even realise that I had accepted a carrier bag fromt he corner shop lady until I was half-way home. It stopped me in my tracks though...and I wondered if I should walk back to the shop and give it back! But I had so many little bits and pieces that I needed that bag. Good lesson though... Good luck with the carnival tomorrow. I'll have to come by on Tuesday for a visit! x

  3. Poor you no computer for a whole day, that's even worse than my punishment of cleaning my grimey oven....well maybe not quite as you haven't seen the state it's in. It's shocking how difficult these seemingly "easy" little tasks are, i failed mine too big time, but as they say if a first you don't succeed..... x

  4. Oh no!! Its hard isn't it I'm much better now, I have a cloth bag folded up in BG's nappy bag so I can use that and I try and remember to tell the person at the till I don't need a bag but I only remember once I've left!!

  5. Me too! And I've now got to buy a razor...

  6. It's hard to always have a bag at the ready, but I try to keep a small canvas bag rolled up in my main bag. It means I can use it as and when, and just put it back again. I also have a car boot full of shopping bags, but sometimes I just forget to get them out of the boot before going into the shop. Duh!

  7. Oh no! Good luck!

    Im like you, reusing when I have the car is easy, it is just the popping out and buying things that fooks it up!!!!

  8. I have now bought a canvas bag that folds up small for this very reason and I always take it when I go out.

    Fair play to you for being honest and owning up!

  9. Well attempted you! We'll miss you on the superhighway! Don't feel too horrible...plant a tree while you're wishing you could be online. Hand write a few posts for ease of typing. Bake a cake! Stir your compost bin (don't have one maybe??). Go for coffee with that's a plan!
    I spent the other night NOT on the internet because I have been on it too much and feel I'm neglecting hubby. I swear I could hear it calling to me in my absence! See you Tuesday!
    :) Karin

  10. Well, I feel for you, I failed pretty much the same way. It's bizarre isn't it, when you're thinking of the no bags pledge all the time and still it catches you out good and proper.
    Enjoy (!) the computer free day! I have a week of no chocolate to get through (can we swap?)

  11. I have carrier bags everywhere, just in case.
    I get caught out the day after a night out. To make my handbag appear smaller than the monster is normally is I take out the nappies, wipes, water bottle, rice cakes AND carrier bags. If I'm in a hurry the next day I go out with a light handbag. Ooops!
    You did so well. See you Tuesday x

  12. WoB - I'll swap you the no compuer use for your grimy oven - at least you'll have something to show at the end of it - I'll just have the shakes I think!!

    New Mummy - I know - I should really do that - carry a bag with me at all times - I can't believe it didn't even occur to me until I was halfway home! And I thought it was going to be easy!!!

    The Dotterel - Oh No!!! Just read your post. Disaster... But you never know, it may reveal a whole new might even like it!!!

    notSupermum - I always have bags in the back of the car - which is why I was so convinced I was going to succeed - I thought if I did leave them in the car I'd just pop back quickly and get them. Never thought I'd forget to take the car!! But yes, at least it's taught me a lesson - I must and will always carry a bag with me!

  13. Mrs OMG - Exactly - well at least I'm not the only one! Thanks for the empathy!

    DancinFairy - Thanks! Yeah, I couldn't have lied - everyone would have seen through me straight away! But yes, must always take a small canvas bag with me...why does everyone else know to do that and not me??!

    Karin - I know - I've already planned coffee with a friend!! Anything to keep my mind off the computer. I think I'll be alright during the day, but evening will be hard. I'll just have to go to bed early - now there's a thought!! See you Tuesday xx

    cartside - Oh no no no no no no no - you didn't???? I thought my forfit was bad....No am definitley not swapping with you on that one. Good luck honey. Awful isn't it - didn't realise it would be so easy to fail - but at least we've learnt something now...

    Sandy - Yeah I hadn't thought of that - emptying your handbag - mine is so full of cr*p that I wouldn't be able to fit anything into it should I need it - so maybe I should do a bit of emptying too. Thing is, it only occurred to me after leaving the shop, so even if I'd had my handbag with me it wouldn't have made any difference. I'm just too too silly!

  14. Oh well done! Actually, when I quit carrier bags it took me months to get it right. I now have several re-usable bags stashed in various places. All my big hemp ones are in the car but I have some nylon ones that fold into little pouches that I keep in handbags, nappy bags and the back of the buggy etc so I don't fail. We finally got rid of our last stash of plastic bags and have managed to collect only three in the past two months - it takes major concentration before it becomes a habit.

    I failed my pledge so miserably I can't believe it and my garden still smells awfully bad.

  15. Don't get too upset, YOU did make an attempt. Habits take a long time to break. Imagine how many YEARS we have been using plastic bags and you have been recycling for only ONE WEEK.

  16. Holy Moley! We're all end up as bag ladies!

    You did your best. It's changing habits that are hard.

    Bravo on what you did do and now you must be punished for what you didnt do!!!!


  17. Sparx - Yeah if there's one thing I've learnt from all this it's that I need to carry a foldaway bag with me at all times. The other thing I've noticed (on the negative side) is that we now don't have any normal plastic bags which have always been so useful for using as bin bags/rubbish bags/wet clothes from the beach bags. Hmph. Will have to re-think that side of things...

    kestrel - Thanks!! Yes, at least I made an attempt hey?! And it did open my eyes to my I'm going to carry a bag around with me at all times!

    RM - I know - just as I'm trying not to cultivate an inamge as a bag lady, it seems that we have no choice in the matter. Will you join me m'dear as a bag lady of Brighton?? I think we could work that image pretty well! x

  18. What a shame. You know, round here, it always used to be the other way round; people took their own carrier bags to local shops, but not to the supermarket! You should have lived here, then you wouldn't have been caught out!

  19. Don't be so hard on yourself. Actually, it takes about three weeks to establish a new habit. A single week just isn't long enough.

    So, have another go at it, this time for three weeks, and see what happens.

  20. ahh, the joys of recycling. i stash a spare bag in all of my 'day' handbags - works a treat! however, temptation in the form of the sales always scuppers my good work as I end up reaching capacity on the good bag fast and have to relent on the plastic!

  21. Well I'm on your side. Life is hectic, shit happens, carrier bags are not always with us when we need them. xx

  22. did you hear me gasping??? Not at your use of a new-to-you carrier bag, but... no... computer...????

    That's harsh. That's severe punishment. Seriously, let me know how you did (once you can, that is(), I'm hoping to go cold turkey one day too.

  23. Ouch - not sure I could survive for a day without my technology, hope it wasn't too hard

    Good luck keeping on the good work and not using too many in the future - think I might have to try and emulate you a week late

  24. Working Mum - Oh so that's why I failed - I'm just in in the wrong place! Phew - I thought for a moment there I was just a wee bit stupid. I'm so grateful you corrected me! Thanks x

    Rob-bear - I love your little tidbits of information - ok thanks. Will try for 3 weeks...

    smallworldmum - Hello and welcome! Hee hee - yes I can see your dilemna - In future you might have to plan ahead for the sales and take supplies of bags with you...

    Reasons - I like it!! Yes, you're right. Shit happens...I can't say I was overcome with gulit at the time though. Plenty more things to worry about! x

    ibhh - Oh thanks for the symapthy. It was pretty bad actually. Every few moments I felt myself being drawn to it - just wanting to turn it on, touch the mouse, etc. And then trying to justify reasons for writing an e-mail or quickly checking my blog (which I didn't do). I had to fight it all day...The upside was that I got to spend the evening with my husband which he was pretty pleased about! Sorry...meant to say which I was pretty pleased about!!! If you do try it, good luck. Plan plenty of things to do for the day...and go to bed early! It's the only way x

    MAM - Thanks!! See comemnt above for how hard it was - it really felt like weaning myself off an addiction which was pretty scary since I'd never really seen myself as addicted before... Good luck when you try it. As I said above - plan to do lots of things out of the house - you just need to take your mind off things!

  25. This is so easily done! But you have done really well, there is something really stupid I keep doing all the time:
    I have carrier bags in my car but then forget to take them INTO the shop, so I have to put all the shopping back into my trolley and then pack it as soon as I get to the car. One extra job for my stupidity lol
    But well done, soon you'll get used to it!

  26. Anxious - I do that all the time too - you're not the only one! I'm normally so pleased with myself for having remembered to put the bags in the car that I completely forget to take them in to the shop. I am getting better though. One small step...

  27. Hmm. Turns out I failed too. And I pledged two whole days sans non-work-related internet. How did your one day go? Still, tis nice to be back.

    The bag thing just takes a bit of getting used to. We're both very good at it now, but would often forget to take extras with us and end up laden down with carriers. I keep a small canvas bag rolled up in my handbag and we have a pile of reusable bags sat near the hats and coats and stuff and it's become second nature to pick a couple up and shove them in the rucksack, along with the porta-potty!

  28. Tasha - You crazy lady - I read you post but didn't have time to comment and I saw that you'd set yourself the forfeit of two whole days away from the computer and I thought you were either completely mad or very brave! Which one was it?? Hope you managed ok. I felt very twitchy all day...but I'm still here to tell the tale! x

  29. Oh dear, sorry to hear you failed....better luck next time...if there is a next time.

  30. magnumlady - It's ok!!! I'll get over it. I am now carrying a foldable canvas bag around with me in case this situation catches me out again. At least it's taught me something...

  31. A day without the PC...I feel for you, I really do. I couldn't do it! Hence I knew my forfeit of no computer for a WEEK would really force me into composting everything I could! x

  32. clareybabble - Crikey lady - a whole week???? I thought my forfeit of one day was bad enough and Tasha's of two days was yours is just plain crazy!! Thing is, you can never make 100% sure that you'll do it right - it's much easier than I thought to fail...I'm just going to pop over to yours to see what the outcome was!! I hope for your sake you didn't fail!! x