SunChips singlebaggedly ruining the hearing of America


GateHouse — I think if we can agree on anything in this disenchanted, disgusted, polarized, murderous, Rick Sanchezed, easily agitated world, it’s that nothing that unites the sides — left and right, Democrat and Republican, socialist and un-socialist, people who like “Glee” and me — than the shared hatred for a snack bag that emits an unpleasant amount of sound.

It is fortunate, then, that, we as a society have risen up! Unified! Launched a movement! Moved a launchment! Formed cleverly titled Facebook groups! And put a definitive end to Frito-Lay’s 18-month-old biodegradable SunChips bag, a container which proved itself too deafening and crinkly for the fragile cochlea of the average snacktastic American.

Here was the problem: The bag, if you have never purchased one (and we’d be able to tell because of the geysers of blood spraying out of your ears), was louder than other snack bags.

This bears repeating: This particular snack bag — the bag that contained chips, in a bag — was a little louder than other, normal snack bags. If this is a sentence that sends you into large fits of rage, or even normal-sized fits of rage, or elicits in you any sort of physiological glandular reaction whatsoever, we are probably not going to be doing a lot of hanging out.


• The Hold Steady – Chips Ahoy!


The bags were unbearably crinkly because Frito-Lay did this crazy thing where they used plant material to make them 100% compostable. And this week, after 18 hideous months of raining crunchy, salty terror on an easily frightened public, the company finally relented.

In fact, according to USA Today, the bag has been compared to “everything from lawnmowers to jet engines,” ostensibly by people who are fluent in Obscenely Hyperbolic Metaphors Are A Second Language or have spent their lives flying on the world’s quietest aircraft.

Now, having purchased a few bags of SunChips in my time, I can confirm the bag is marginally louder than its baggy cousins. But jet engines? Really?


Related, sort of


In an attempt to determine whether or not my perception of bag-sounds is well afoul of the human average or if some interviewee simply wanted to sound clever for the Newspaper Person, I put this jet engine theory to the test, designing a thickly scientific poll of the two other people who live in my house. After relentless testing, we discovered that the bag sounds like a bag, except for the rare occasions where it suddenly began playing “Use Your Illusion II” in its entirety.

OK, I made that part up — most of the music perform by my groceries is pretty lousy — but we did learn something from our experiments: That there is a percentage of the population that will never care about environmental concerns, and at least they’re sticking to their oily guns. But there is another percentage that cares about environmental concerns, just not enough to where it trumps being able to hear TV.


About Jeff Vrabel

My writing has appeared in GQ, Men’s Health, Success, the Washington Post, the official, Indianapolis Monthly, Billboard, Modern Bride and more. View all posts by Jeff Vrabel

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