3.27.2011

DEPARTMENT OF FRUSTRATION


Tamper-proof pill bottles. How many times has the lid gotten impossibly stuck between open and closed, off or on, a state of purgatory where the medication is neither available nor unavailable for its final descent into my belly? Some of the plastic packaging around now--and I'm thinking of that very hard casing that comes around things like new scissors, or, ironically, OXO utensils, (meant to be ergonomically kind)--is nearly impenetrable. At times I have had to return to the shop for help breaking into the contents.


I know this packaging is meant to deter shoplifting--or curious children. But this reminds me that when my children were young, they were the best ones to ask for help opening child-proof bottles. They were quite dextrous with lids. It is like technology. Our children simply understand the ways of the plastic world in which they are growing up. Unlike me. I shake my computer when something goes wrong. The children simply tap heedlessly away at buttons until something happens. As the children are not around, I take a hammer to the pill bottle--not the recommended approach unless one is desperate--so that I can transfer the contents to a small jar. 

32 comments:

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

"There is no limit to the ingenuity of man if it is properly and vigorously applied under conditions of peace and justice". W. Churchill

In other words, sometimes one has to take a hammer to the medicine bottle. Well done.

Madgew said...

Push down on the bottle and take out the part that makes it childproof. Most of them have a lip inside that you can push up or down and makes it normal again.

Watercolor said...

Or, most pharmacies, you can request your meds NOT come with these caps at all, but regular ones. They'll put it in your account info and voila! At least, Walgreens does.

Ashling said...

Applause for the dual-natured solution, allowing both problem-solving AND the release of frustration!

c said...

My pet peeve is the packaging of my BP pills - they come in a strip, backed by foil and a "peel-off" plastic. I'm sure the layers are meant to protect curious children, but why this daily torture?

Wouldn't you think drug manufacturers could come up with something a little less frustrating? Never mind that many blood pressure pill packages must be opened by arthritic hands ...

William said...

The hammer and cracked bottle photograph looks like it was lifted straight from a scene from Valley of the Dolls. "She just wants a doll...somebody give her a damn doll!"

Dominique said...

You got it, William. One of those days....

Anonymous said...

Dominique, I was just perusing your older blogs, the one on the "sit back and enjoy middle age" has many pornographic blogs, can't you have them deleted, its very demeaning for women to have to be subjected to, they have been on there since August of 2010.

GRAYSONFAVOUR said...

This type of package drives me nuts...Have you seen Larry David trying to open a plastic pkg? Life is too short for this kind of stuff!

Anonymous said...

First time post, love your book and blog! You crack me up lately, you have really be on good rants. I must admit I totally am not up to speed on the coal plant issues but will keep reading but I think all the frustration was taken out on the poor pill bottle today! ;-) Get rid of that negative energy!

david terry said...

1. "william's" Valley-of-the-dolls comment is the funniest thing I've read in a long while. I'd completely forgotten that "just give me a doll...I need a doll!" line.

2. Ms. Browning? I read the comment (about two comments above this one) from "anonymous" about your various "pornographic" blogs and immediately wondered what THAT was about (to be honest, I felt like I was back in my twenties, when I regularly found myself wondering how I could have been at a party and somehow missed all the "real" fun....).

In any case, "Anonymous" is QUITE correct (although, "comments" is the word needed, rather than "blogs").


I just went to the August 2010 section. You'll find that the comments section for your posting (the one enlarging on the plane-runway/flight metaphor, in reaction to some young person's ill-advised remark to you) is utterly filled with filthy and, yes, pornographic spam.

I don't recall seeing those comments at the time.

I'd follow "anonymous"'s suggestion that you delete these, and I assume that all of your actual readers will be sorry to hear that you have to deal with such problems.

Salon.com's "Broadsheet" section had to constantly deal with this sort of problem.

Sincerely,

david terry
www.davidterryart.com (where you will find no pornographic spam; I pay good money for someone to delete the stuff before even I see it, and I'm too much of an prissy-prude to concoct it on my own).

Blue said...

Convenience packaging has frustrated me for years and have watched it grow ever larger, stronger and the contents even more inaccessible. I've never quite had to take a hammer to packaging but knives are regularly used, as are screwdrivers and even wrenches. My meds come now in a newly designed plastic tub with a lid that can be twisted off by just looking at it.

Even more frustrating is not being able to read what the damned small print says without reading glasses and a magnifying glass.

Cristina said...

I liked the part when you write that sometimes your children were the (only) ones able to open those child-proof bottles. funny world, isn't it?

SweetRetreat said...

Must confess I tried to find the August 2010 posting, without success, but what a lovely journey. I re-read many of your wonderful postings, some I must have somehow missed, and realized how much I have learned and how much comfort I have received from your blog. Comments included. So, I say thank you Anonymous for leading me on a leisurely morning read.

Anonymous said...

To SweetRetreat, your welcome, I too, enjoy Dominique so much that I read a lot of her old postings last nite. I was really shocked and disgusted when I saw all that pornographic crap (about 16 comments) thats why I thought I would let Dominique know so she could get it out of the posting.
To David Terry, I enjoy all your comments, I do stand corrected,I should have said comments.

mary said...

I love the photo of the hammer with the pill bottle--would the same methodology apply to hard-headed people? Rants can be good if they mean that you are regaining your personal power. But once the ranting is done it's best to follow Anon's instructions (reading The Tao helps). Mary

Anonymous said...

Yikes, what happened to the pills!!

Ask your pharmacy to never again put childproof caps on anything! It does work, but if notput old cap on new prescription.

Now about those little suckers in the foil with the backing - some of my pills end up in the toilet, some on the floor, and a few in my mouth...who's crazy idea is that!

Hang in there, it's almost Spring.

mytwocentsworth said...

You need to have a little chat with your pharmacist. There are many different kinds of bottles available, child-proof or otherwise. If you don't want a child-proof bottle, again, have a little chat with your pharmacist. They're supposed to keep that request on your info sheet at the pharmacy. If he/she doesn't get the message, then you need to change your pharmacist. I'm sure you're a smart enough lady not to place your prescription meds in "a small jar."

Tricia said...

I can identify with your frustration over pill bottles and packaging. One could easily end up in the ER trying to open some items that are sealed in molded heavy plastic. Not one of our better inventions. I wish I could come up with THE better idea. I would be rich overnight.

david terry said...

hey "Tricia",

a friend of mine (he's the former head of Trauma Surgery at duke and, as you might guess, all-too-familiar with the sort of cases that flood into the ER) was here one night when I was struggling with some relatively small-thing (I can't recall what it was...something electronic/computer-ish from COSTCO) that was encased in that flat, hard-plastic casing that had presumably deterred me from simply shoplifting the item.

I was bitching about the packagin when he told me "Oh, you wouldn't BELIEVE how many people come in with stab wounds and punctures from those packages...trying to open them with scissors or box-cutters...."

true story.

Apparently, a lot of unwary folks try to hold the item down with one hand, on a counter or in their lap, and (with the other hand) end up with a box-cutter blade or scissors in their abdomen.

Fortunately,I grew up hunting and camping in the country and, so, know not to pull a blade TOWARDS you......

In any case (and like you), I really hate that "encasing", hard-plastic packaging, and I somehow doubt that it decays into productive compost once it hits the landfills.

----david terry
www.EVERYcutFeelsLikeIt'sTheDeepest.com

Violet Cadburry said...

Hey Dominique - got any tips for when the cork refuses to let go of the wine bottle?

pamingram said...

i generally hover on the sidelines, but i can't just do so when david terry comes up with www.EVERYcutFeelsLikeIt'sTheDeepest.com... I mean one just has to pay homage to such clever cleverness.pamela

Warren said...

A good strong nut cracker, the kind for walnuts, gently cupped, may provide that same release, while strengthening your grip. I've got my pharm trained tho.

Don't forget your safety goggles with that hammer!

david terry said...

to "violet Cadburry" (comment above)....

You might do well to remind yourself of W.H. Field's comment (made after an expedition with friends to some remote spot):

"We lost our corkscrew and were compelled to live on nothing more than food and water for several days".

Best of Luck,

David Terry
www.davidterryart.com

sixty-five said...

There's a blog about this:
http://icantopenit.blogspot.com/

Dominique said...

Thanks for letting me know about the mess in the old comments section; I generally don't got back, so I appreciate your help. I think it is all mopped up and hope the blogger system keeps these creepy robots away...

Violet Cadburry said...

To David Terry - ha ha, for that very reason I always bring vodka in screw tops bottles on my expeditions.

Barbara said...

I'm with you on that!!! Even more annoying are the drugs (or for that matter, dog & cat flea medicine) they package in individual little plastic coffins sealed in voluminous layers of other plastic & paper - ugh! It takes about a year to open each one. I hate them, so when I get a supply of such stuff, the first thing I do is cut ALL of them out of their individual containers, put the pills in one bottle, the flea meds in a small container & throw away (in the recycle bin, of course) the yards of paper & plastic that was wasted to for the sake of our inconvenience in the name of safety.

Anonymous said...

Recommend - if you don;t already know www.growharvestcook.com
Just remember when you open it and find almonds, berries, etc, it is in Australia so they're heading into fall.

cathy howard moore said...

When I went to the ER with a dislocated fracture in my right arm, I was examined, tortured, had a cast put on and was sent home with pain meds to get me through the night. Since my husband was with me they could have noticed that, due to an accident 2 weeks earlier, he had a cast on both his left arm & leg and was in a wheelchair. Once home I realized I had been given a bottle with a childproof cap containing pills in blister packs with cardboard and foil backing. How they thought we could open that, even working together, is beyond my comprehension. I ended up having to get a neighbor to come over to get to the pills. Can you say "overkill"??

karensandburg said...

aaaaaa

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