The Barbershop has re-located

The proprietor has moved the shop to ChicagoNow, a Chicago Tribune site that showcases some of the best bloggers in the Chicago area. You can logo on to the Barbershop home page here. The ChicagoNow home page is here.

You'll still be able to post comments with the same ease as in this location. The proprietor also will keep this web site alive if you wish to review old posts.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Evanston, Precious Evanston

Bags get sacked --

Where else other than politically correct Evanston (well, maybe Wilmette or Oak Park) would an argument erupt over whether customers at a farmer's market (its presence being one more sure sign of correctness) have to pay 25 cents for four plastic bags to haul away their purchases of organic arugula and bok choy?

Farmer Harry Brockman started charging for the bags used at his booth because he thought it would reduce the use of the bags and thereby help improve the environment. But, the charge caused OFFENSE--the greatest of all politically incorrect sins. Said the Tribune story:
Brockman got an e-mail from Chicago attorney and longtime customer Joan Ferraro: "While I admire your dedication to trying to change the environment for the better, I have to tell you I find your plastic bag policy offensive. You are in the business of selling produce. If you don't provide something for the people to take your produce home with, you are not good businesspeople." [Emphasis added]
She later told the reporter:

"I think his true motive is he wants to make it difficult to not bring your own container; he wants to penalize people if they don't," Ferraro said. "I personally don't need him or anyone else to impose penalties on me. He doesn't know that I recycle those bags. He has no idea what I do with those bags."
Others folks protested and nearly half of the respondents to an informal Tribune poll said they would not spent a quarter to buy the bags. Use of the plastic bags plunged 90 percent, demonstrating either the deep environmental sensitivity of Evanstonians, and a really cheap streak. People, it's 25 cents for crying out loud.


billyjoe said...

This incident does get to the crux of the Evanstonian mindset.

On one hand, my fellow citizens want to bend over backwards to "do the right thing" when it comes to the vast and mostly unwritten checklist of politically correct behaviors.

On the other hand, you're dealing with (over) educated, wealthy, and privileged types who don't cotton well to being told what to do, as they consider themselves the exception to rules they don't agree with.

Regardless of it multitude of quirkly personalities, Evanston is still a cool and fun place to dwell. Certainly beats living in "car-bound" Schaumburg, Mr. Byrne.

Anonymous said...

Hey, this doesn't even compare to the time I saw an Evanston Farmer's Market customer complaining she wanted her money back...because her organic produce had a few bugs in it. The farmer politely explained that if she wants organic, that's going to happen sometimes - but she didn't back off, insisting that she have organic and bug-free, too.

Isn't the point of organic produce that they aren't killing the bugs, people? Are you expecting the farmers to erect a magic force field around your heirloom tomatoes? Really!