Just One Word: Plastics

By Steve Bennett | July 30, 2020

We’re all getting used to paying for just about everything with plastic these days and transacting with people behind plexiglass “sneeze guards.” (I’ve used a total of $7 in cash since early March 2020). Plastic isn’t just in our wallets–it’s become the common stuff of PPE large and small. Here are some images from my travels about town as businesses started reopening this spring. Plastic is pretty prominent.


The proprietor of a convenience store in North Cambridge took the sneeze guard concept a step further, shrouding his entire counter in heavy plastic sheeting with a flap for passing goods back and forth.

Convenience store in North Cambridge, MA –taking the spit guard concept to a new levelDitto for the front desk of Judy Jetson Hair; all transactions are done through the plastic slot.

Judy Jetson Hair salon business manager at the protected reception desk.

Judy Jetson Hair reception desk–payment transactions through a slit in the plastic



Initially I saw a lot of face shields when businesses were re-opening. Gary Drinkwater, owner of Drinkwater’s Cambridge, uses a plastic face shield when doing close-up measuring for alterations and fit. (This was a dry run before the grand reopening. Gary measures a store employee. Gloves would be worn for actual business).

Gary Drinkwater does a practice run with store employee before reopening day.

At Chalawan restaurant, opening day was marked with…. plastic. The server and individual packs of plastic cutlery were wrapped in…plastic.

Server sets table at Chalawan restaurant in Cambridge.


New look for today’s waitperson


And on the street, I bumped into a fellow wearing safety glasses, face shield, and mask (exam gloves, too). He was on his way to the supermarket. When I asked why he was taking the extra precautions, he said he was concerned about keeping his mother safe. Good son.

Not taking any chances…..


Just one word: plastics… perhaps the 1967 movie The Graduate was prescient….

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