Sunday, June 22, 2008

Hey-hey cheese man thanx for the cheese!

You would think I had won the lottery, but no I just bought cheese at Whole Foods today and it didn’t involve acquiring new plastic!
Here is my story.
The quest:
Blue cheese to go in this yummy looking pasta salad recipe I just came across.
The journey:
I walked up to the fancy cheese display counter at Whole Foods and asked, “Can I have you cut me a chunk of cheese from that cheese wheel (that has not plastic on it) and have you put it in this plastic bag for me?”
Look for dumbfoundness from the cheese man.
Okay, I am going to need to explain. Deep breath I can do this.
I told him how I am trying to cut out plastic and that all the cheese that is already cut is wrapped in cellophane and well this is problem for me.
He offered to cut me a piece and put it on a plastic tray/plate like thing and then wrap it in cellophane…hum…I guess I was not making any sense to the cheese man.
Let me try again.
I told him I have a bag to put the cheeses in. I demonstrated the bag. I’ll take the cheese home, you see, in my plastic bag and then reuse the bag, but I can’t really reuse the cellophane. So no cellophane please.
He offered to put the cheese in a plastic cup. Well, at least we got past the cellophane, but cheese man please work with me here.
I almost gave up. Apparently when I say “No plastic please.” people hear “Blah blah blah plastic blah.”
Cheese man let me explain again.
(I have to hand it to him for putting up with me. He was patient. I think the real problem for him was putting his fancy smelly cheese in my lowly plastic bag.)
Finally he said, “That’s a really bizarre request.” I agreed. It is. Then, “Let me ask my manager.” and off he went with my plastic bag in hand…as proof…for inspection…I will never know.
Wow! Whole Foods really does not want me to leave their store without my fair share of their plastic.
The conquest:
Whole Foods gets major props for putting up with my “bizarre” request.
The end:
The cheese man and I bonded while he cut my piece of cheese and put it in my plastic bag. We talked about how Whole Food’s doesn’t use plastic bags to bag groceries anymore. One small step for plastic-haters, one giant leap for Whole Foodkind.

Lessons learned.
1) Ask;
2) Persist;
2a) Explain repeatedly the concept of no NEW plastic;
2b) Explain again;
3) Bring aluminum foil to have them wrap your cheeses in, this way the cheese man won’t be offended by the plastic bag;
4) The cheese man is cool once you get past that hard plastic exterior.
I cannot tell you how amazing this cheese buy was for me. My life revolves around dairy products: ice cream, cheese, and yogurt are staples! Plus no cellophane on my cheese allowed me to use my piece of plastic for the day to buy nitrate free bacon!


plasticfreenyc said...

i haven't laughed so hard since discovering mitch hedburg on youtube.

doorkeeper said...

That is pretty funny. Not sure if your a real plastic hater or an out-of-work comedian! Some shops wrap their cheese in paper when cut directly from the block or wheel. Two points for that patient, but rather thick, cheese man.
A cheese lover from VT

Rasbi said...

So, in the end, you can count on the cheese man to cut the cheese!