Or, maybe for you other, more sane people, something like 7:45, or 9:45, or if it was an exceptionally good weekend night, 1:45 in the afternoon. At any rate, the time isn't that important, except that it measures how long you've been awake, which in this case, is just long enough to be mobile and hungry but not quite long enough to do long division with a pencil and paper.
So you reach into your cupboard and pull out some tasty, tasty cereal. It's a fresh box. And you know what a fresh box means... ANTICIPATION. From the moment you bought the cereal at the store, you've been, at some level, playing through what it will be like to pour that first delicious bowl of your favorite breakfast treat. And now it's here... The moment of triumph. All that waiting has led to this moment.
So you gently lift the top of the box and separate the two folding pieces of cardboard which are held together with a modest amount of adhesive, and for just a very small split second, you say a silent prayer to the Cereal Gods who finally -- FINALLY -- figured out the proper amount of glue to keep you from ripping the damn top off completely (which makes folding the tab back into the slot to preserve freshness completely impossible).
You get to the bag, and here's where the conundrum starts. You're not an idiot. You remember what happened last time you opened one of these bags -- it ripped all over the damn place. But the time before that? It opened smoothly, what the hell is that crap? But wait, was it the same brand of cereal? Is it possible that different brands have different abilities to open properly? Which brand is this one... Was this the one that opened with no muss and no fuss?
Tired and not quite free of the cobwebs just yet, you gingerly pinch both sides of the bag and begin to separate them. And that's when one of three things happens:
- It opens smoothly. Chances of happening: approximately 20%
- It begins to open smoothly, but as you get to one of the two edges, varying degrees in levels of adhesive along the seam cause you to have to change the amount of force you're using, and the bag tears down the side. This is the most common occurrence. Chances of happening: 79%
- You HULK RIP! the damn thing apart, expecting the tensile strength of the plastic to actually withstand being opened with some immediacy, and cereal explodes from your hands like a grand, tasty HADOKEN! Chances of happening: If you're everyone else on Earth, 1%. But if you're me... Well, stop it. I'm me. Get your own gig.
- You're one of THOSE people who use SCISSORS which is AGAINST NATURE and you should stop being so SMUG and posting snotty COMMENTS to my FACEBOOK. Chances of that happening: about the same as a Prius owner not telling you within the first 2 minutes of meeting them that they drive a HYBRID.
Right. In this case, it was #2:
- Redistribute the adhering solution and pull back slightly on the heat sealing process, so as to allow for an even distribution of force when opening which will keep us from struggling to the point of ripping the bag and spilling cereal all over the stove and having the little bits fall into the holes where the burners are and causing us to curse the stupid cereal executive's existence and wanting to fuck him in the mouth with an all-steel flashlight, or
- Put the cereal in a ziploc-style container.
I was so moved by this potential solution, I demonstrated to the cereal executives the process we consumers currently have to take when this situation arises:
This really can't be that hard. And I'd gladly pay another, what, 35 cents per box to make this happen? I mean, Ziplocs are, in quantity, about 35 cents each -- and that's after retail markup. I can't help but think that they'd get a price break from the distributor.
Please, cereal people: MAKE THIS HAPPEN. Or there will be more foul language and early morning grumpy YouTube clips in your future.