What Are You Doing with Your Trash Bags Lately?

Posted by Vivian McNeil on

  • A scuba suit made from trash bags
  • A trash can cleaning truck
  • A trash can that automatically seals and changes the trash bag 

What do these three contraptions have in common? 

We will attempt to educate and entertain you with these original innovations in the use of the mainstays of the trash industry, plastic garbage bags and the trash cans they service.

Scuba suit

I might be misleading you into understanding that this is an invention of a scuba suit to be used in scuba diving. Well, I’m sorry to mislead you, but I think you will agree with me on its relevance, with two needy grandparents figuring out a way to not only visit their grandchildren, but to hug them as well during the coronavirus pandemic. Only you can decide if these loving grandparents acted wisely. 


Daria and Bobby Lacarelli are a pair of cool Southern Californian grandparents. Although they live only a few minutes from their grandsons, ranging from ages five years to seven months, due to the coronavirus they could only see their four grandsons from afar. A seven-month baby changes and grows every day and who would want to miss out on the baby’s major achievements such as, sitting, standing, crawling and walking. The two families have been driving by each other's homes for the past several weeks to see each other. Thank G-D, for FaceTime and Zoom but neither of these two technological advances can compensate for a real hug. (I remember a movie from many years ago where the characters walked out of the TV to become real people. So far this has not happened yet). 

Grandma Daria thought of the innovative idea of designing a scuba suit out of clear trash bags, by reading about nurses who were compelled to use trash bags as tweaked protective gear for themselves in contaminated areas of the hospitals where they worked, due to the coronavirus. These hero-health workers had unfortunately run out of personal protective equipment and had to get innovative about protecting themselves while treating COVID-19 patients. The U.S. Government has revved up the PPE supply and hospitals are no longer experiencing such shortages. It’s still always good to have a backup PPE plan, just in case. 

Grandma Daria picked up some clear plastic trash bags, and designed two sets of clear plastic pants and tops, custom fitting them to both Daria’s and her husband’s specifications. As we are all aware of, even a face mask hardly lets you breathe, how were the Lucarelli’s going to get air through their homemade scuba suits? What else would a scuba suit wearer wear but a snorkel kept up in the air. This would avoid having to cut a hole in the suit which would defeat the whole purpose of not breathing anything inside their grandchildren’s home. Half-jokingly, grandma Daria admitted that it did get quite hot in the suit and she may try adding a battery operated fan next time she visits.

Monthly outdoor trash can clean service

How much would you pay to have your outdoor trash can washed and cleaned each month?

How about a one-time cleaning charge of twenty-five dollars per can? Or a better deal? How about $19.95 per month automatically charged to your card, every thirty days? This is for two cans with each additional can, costing another $8.50. This sophisticated truck was designed just to wash out two outdoor trash cans. I’m not sure that I can take this trash can business seriously, but surprisingly there are several of such businesses around. 

I don’t know about you, but I’m satisfied with my ninety-five gallon contractor bags that I use to line my trusty black outdoor ninety- five gallon trash bins. I really do not have to clean them more than once or twice a year and generally in the summer when the sun is shining. My kids and I get into our bathing suits, I put my strongest sprayer on the garden hose, and we have such fun spraying each other and washing the cans at the same time. It’s not like there is all kinds of garbage gook and dirty trash juice in my trash bins. What we are actually doing is washing the inside and the outside of the bin that needs a bit of spraying. When you use the right size and weight trash bags, there is never any risk that you will end up having any leakage or ripping of your bags. In fact, because I use sturdy trash bags on the indoor trash cans as well, my outside cans usually remain squeaky clean.

Indoor Battery-Operated Trash Can

The TOWNEW Self-Sealing and Self-Changing trash can is an innovation which eliminates the need for the owner to touch any part of the mechanism other than lifting out a sealed trash bag and removing it to the outdoor trash bin. I like the fact that it opens automatically when it senses that someone is trying to throw an item away. When the trash bag is topped, at the push of a button, the machine seals the full bag thereby avoiding any spilling or exposure to any germs and bad smells. The owner only must remove the full and sealed bag before the mechanism places another bag in its place. There is an overload feature which detects when the trash can is full and then seals the bag automatically. Unfortunately, I am not running to buy this trash can right now.

There are three reasons for my decision. Firstly, the size. The dimensions of this trash can are 9.4 by 12.2 by 15.8 inches. That means that the height of the can is less than sixteen inches which is about the size of a typical office trash bin. For my kitchen this size does not work. Although I like the idea of taking out the garbage at least once a day, it’s not a practical size for my lifestyle. I do not recycle on a regular basis so most of my garbage goes straight into the can. The second drawback is that regular trash can liners do not work with this product. You must purchase a roll specifically for this model called a refill ring. This bag attachment only must be replaced about once a month since the refill ring contains up to twenty-five liners, however, it is more pricey than regular trash bags. The third drawback is the price at $119.95. No matter how automatic this can be, eventually there will be wear and tear and replacing it would be costly.

It is certainly amazing to learn about the ingenuity of innovative thinkers. I will leave it to the reader’s judgment about the experimental grandparents in their scuba suits. I am no doctor nor would I be comfortable with this novel approach to physical visiting and hugging. Something to think about, is that the suits obviously cannot be used more than once since contamination would automatically be present. It is certainly a beautiful expression of the love and longing of parents, children and grandchildren. One thing is for sure, respect of these close relatives will soar to a new high with close ties being reestablished in a much stronger way once we will, G-D willing, put to rest, this horrible piece of history to the past, where it should already be.

Appreciating the simpler things in life, not having to have material items immediately and looking into the spiritual reasons for our existence, even without knowing the reasons why challenge happens, will no doubt make this world a better place to live in.

The second innovative business, monthly outdoor trash can cleaning services, is a double-edged sword in a way. On the one hand, with our present need for disinfecting of everything and anything, these services could very well be a necessity. If this service would have disinfecting products in their water spray, then professional garbage can clean would be quite an important service currently. However, if things get back to normal and we have a cure and vaccine for the coronavirus, the high cost of this service might not warrant using it at all. No one can foresee the future right now.

The third innovative approach to garbage, the indoor self-sealing and self-changing trash can also have some solid ground to stand on from a sanitary point of view. Living with family members who could potentially be carriers of the coronavirus would cause any other family members to avoid touching the trash bin. The touching of used disposable gloves and masks can be avoided once they are set in this type of a trash bin.

These three futuristic, diverse and problem-solving trash bag innovations, shown above, surely make sense on different levels. Desperate measures, like the grandparents coming to visit with the scuba suits, will hopefully be an experience that will be looked back on soon with a chuckle. As far as the other two alternatives, garbage can clean trucks and the TOWNEW Self-Sealing and Self-Changing trash can, I will leave it for you to decide.

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