Our Straw Wrappers Have Been Illegitimately Replaced
January 22, 2011, 9:38 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: ,

I’ve noticed something sinister about our society recently that seems to have gone largely and insidiously unnoticed:

Drinking straws are ridiculously hard to unwrap nowadays.

Everyone knows that you’re supposed to be able to take the paper off a drinking straw by grasping it gently by its sides, banging it briskly on the table in one clean vertical motion until the top of it pops out of the paper, grabbing that top, and then sliding the paper off easily in one piece.

For some reason, this no longer works.

Whether it’s McDonald’s or other fast food or generic cafeteria straws, the paper just no longer cooperates: it won’t slide off easily, and the more likely outcome of banging the straw vertically is that a fracture forms in its side, meaning that as you drink, liquid leaks out. Thereby rendering the entire drinking experience unsatisfying if not unrecognizable. So, to avoid this and get the straw out, you have to unpeel the paper off carefully, in several pieces, in several steps. Like an idiot. Like a sucker.

What has happened to our nation’s straws? Am I the only one to have noticed this? That’s the creepiest thing of all. I searched diligently on the Internet for over 80 seconds, but it appears nobody has noticed that our straw wrappers have been silently replaced by these pale impostors of their former glory.

Naturally, I blame communists. Or more specifically, greenies. Namely, I’m guessing that the straw wrappers are now made out of ‘recycled’ paper or some such nonsense, and everyone decided that would be ok to do, and no one would notice. Well what about ME dammit. Nobody asked ME whether I’D be ok with it.


Just another example of how, rather than progress, what we are actually getting is regress. Every day, all the time, little by little. When our grandchildren are drowning in tears with frustration and thirst as they fumble with hopelessly unwieldy straw wrappers over their so-close yet unattainable 64 oz drink of Brawndo, will they be able to forgive us? More to the point, can we rightly expect them to?

19 Comments so far
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We’re also being engulfed by a deluge of movies about ghosts, starring incredibly gorgeous blond women with blue eyes who really should be stark naked but instead are wearing all of their clothes from the opening titles to the final credits.

You’re definitely on to something about the straw thing though. I thought it was me.

Comment by Morgan K Freeberg

That is eerie. Yes, how many times have I thought to myself during one of those movies, ‘why would this woman not be naked right now?’

Comment by Sonic Charmer

You know what really pisses me off?

Whole Foods replacing the great plastic bags they used to have with paper. Now, I can’t go food shopping if it’s raining without running the risk of the bags disintegrating.

Maybe that’ll fly outside of Manhattan where bags only have to make from store to curb but here people walk home with their organic plunder.

Comment by Steve Johnson

I think it is the Communists. Here’s how:

I think the straw wrappers, if not the straws themselves, are being manufactured (if I may use such a word with regard to paper wrappers) in China. And, the dumbass Communists of China, who can not ever come up with a new idea as a result of the fact that they are not rewarded for their innovation (no intellectual property rights) make the same wrappers for straws that they do for chopsticks. You know how tough those chopstick wrappers are. Only difference is, chopstick wrappers have CHOPSTICKS in them, and as chopsticks are made out of wood, not flimsy plastic as are straws, the stucture of the chopsticks is sufficient to break the wrapper, whereas the structure of your average straw is not.

Hope this helps.

Comment by Pastorius

Hope this helps.

It does. It flat-out does.

Comment by Sonic Charmer

By the way, this really is an abomination,and I’m glad you brought it up.

Comment by Pastorius

The worst thing about it is, now that you’ve gone & jotted this whole thing up and displayed it on the innertubz, someone is going to find a way to harness the power of green technology to fix it and this effort is guaranteed to make it much, much worse.

I’ve got a feeling it’s gonna involve opening instructions printed on the wrapper, wind/solar power, and a free ring tone you can download into your phone.

Thanks loads, Sonic.

Comment by Morgan K Freeberg

Not only are the straw wrappers as tight as skinny-jeans on a *ahem* zaftig woman, but what sadistic villain has taught all the fast-food-drive-thru cashiers to give you your change with the coins on top of the bills? This poorly-thought-out method has a 50-50 chance of the coins sliding off, either onto the floor of your car or the pavement below the drive-thru window, where you cannot retreive said coins because you have pulled up close to avoid that very outcome! And don’t get me started on any current-day cashier’s (lack of) ability to make change without a calculator.

Comment by Chris C.

I consider giving me bills with coins on top to be a crime against humanity and a violation of the Geneva Conventions. But how about this one: bills-RECEIPT-change. I just bought fries and a soda at a fast-food place. I need the freaking RECEIPT? And I need it tucked IN BETWEEN the bills and the coins?

Without fail I remove the receipt at that moment and leave it on the counter in disgust. YOU CLEAN IT UP. Commie.

Comment by Sonic Charmer

[…] Charmer notices something: Everyone knows that you’re supposed to be able to take the paper off a drinking straw by […]

Pingback by House of Eratosthenes

You’re not alone, I’ve noticed this too and it pisses me off. I’ve been popping straw wrappers off since I stepped out of the womb 51 years ago and now I’m being deprived of this simple action, WTF!!
So you think it’s a communist conspiracy? Close, but not quite. I know who’s behind this, it’s my brother in- law. For the last 30 odd years he has been employed by numerous corporations up and down the east coast for his ability to find ways of cutting costs so that they can make bigger profits. Sometimes he just fires large groups of 300 people or more other times he finds ways of making the products we buy cheaper. Ever wonder about the pump in your cordless Waterpik and why it’s so weak?
Just think, by reducing the size of the straw wrapper by one millimeter in it’s circumference it’s saving that manufacturer’s CEO enough to buy a summer home in Rio de Janeiro.
I’m telling you my brother in-law is a sleazy weasel and to make matters worse he looks just like David Hasselhoff.

Comment by Ray Hamburger

The straw thing actually has three pretty clear and distinct causes:

1. the straw wrappers now use less paper and cheaper paper stock, making them more difficult to slide, and also requiring stronger seams to hold together. Older straw wrappers used more paper, and thus the seam joining could be weaker (because the seam had greater area to resist falling apart), and easier to break through.

2. Straws are now made with much thinner walled plastic; because it is cheaper to do so. They are also generally of a smaller diameter than a generation ago; again because it is much cheaper to do so. This makes them considerable weaker, simply because there’s less mass of polymer trying to tear through the paper. Oh and for places that offer refills (and many if not most fast food places do now, because it’s cheaper to put a fountain out front for the customers than to use staff time you are paying for to fill drinks) a narrow straw slows down the customers drinking.

3. The polymers used have changed. They use less elastic polymers (or less elasticizing additives), and also less hardeners in their blends; as both are more expensive. This makes the straws more brittle, and thus more likely to collapse and split.

Comment by Chris Byrne

All of which further substantiates something I’ve been noticing for awhile now…

This modern hippie-communist assault on our culture which is in general a superficial respect for the “environment,” and in particular a fashionable concern about “global warming” and lust for the accompanying family of solutions which are “green” this-or-that…ironically enough, in a twist of circumstance which no responsible author of fiction would ever allow himself — has become a propaganda drive used by cheapskate corporations to thin out their expenses by short-changing customers.

“Green” straws. Yipee, Mother Earth is saved. And yet, you have to be pretty damn cynical to put a soda fountain in your restaurant lobby and then buy skinnier straws so the customers drink more slowly. Good Lord.

I think it started in the data centers. Here’s a server that takes up 1U of rack space…now here is a chassis that holds several blade servers…you keep miniaturizing, and suddenly this ten year old data center has a raised floor area 90% empty. From a business standpoint it’s just dumb not to go for it, in fact, it would be unsustainable. And once you’ve shrunk all your equipment in order to provide a better return to the shareholders, it would be equally stupid not to pump up the public relations with the line about “Yeah, we did it for Gaea…whatever.”

Rack-mount servers. Straws. It’s the same thing happening. Business is evolving to accommodate a new environment. Some of this is a good thing, some of it is not.

Comment by Morgan K Freeberg

[…] so hard to burst drinking straws out of their wrappers with one hand lately…although he did do exactly that, and nobody else has. But because he looks at movies in a very intelligent and useful way — […]

Pingback by House of Eratosthenes

[…] Read it. I’ve noticed something sinister about our society recently that seems to have gone largely and insidiously unnoticed: […]

Pingback by DYSPEPSIA GENERATION » Blog Archive » Our Straw Wrappers Have Been Illegitimately Replaced

Oh my god I love you right now lol because I have tried to tell my friends for months about this and they think I’m crazy!

Comment by Lacey

I was about to rant on this myself, and decided to Google first. I am no longer alone.

Comment by stacygturner

I am filled with gladness that others have harkened unto this! How long and oft I have lamented the changing times and changing straws! My misery finds balm in your company.

Comment by Anonymous

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