Do you cut the top off a half eaten bag of chips?
April 7, 2005 6:43 PM   Subscribe

Do you cut the top off a half eaten bag of chips?

After eating about half a bag of Ruffles the other day I cut about half of the bag off, folded it and clipped it.

My girlfriend and her mother found this and looked at me like I had commited a mortal sin.

Growing up I was always told to cut the bags when they got to a certain point. (Who wants to stick their hand through a greasy bag anyway?)

Appearantly they did not grow up that way. When I pressed for a good reason why I should not cut the bag, there was no response.

What do you do, cut or not?

posted by thefinned1 to Food & Drink (52 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: I do not cut, nor have I ever heard of cutting. I've never even considered it. But from now on I'll cut. That's fucking brilliant.

Why didn't anyone tell me this sooner? A lifetime of greasy wrists could have been avoided. Every time I eat chips it's like I'm acting out that scene from Caligula. No more.

Thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
posted by bondcliff at 6:50 PM on April 7, 2005

When they get to the point where I feel like I'm dragging my hand through the greasy sides of the bag, I'll cut 'em off. I don't need to be reminded of how greasy the chips I eat are.
posted by Coffeemate at 6:50 PM on April 7, 2005

I do not cut. In fact, this is the first time that I've heard of cutting the top off a bag. I just fold/roll it up and clip it. I've found that putting bagged chips into a bowl or onto a plate avoids the greasy hand, although my fingers still get greasy.
posted by Juicylicious at 6:53 PM on April 7, 2005

Personally, no, though the logic behind it seems sound after being explained.

It does remind me a little uncomfortably of my mother; she used to cut cereal boxes in half and repackage things into smaller containers, which seemed more like a psychosis to me. This brings on waves of revulsion, something to do with there not being a bounty of "whole product", as well as not being able to read the packaging while eating, something I do for most products.
posted by trevyn at 7:04 PM on April 7, 2005

I am obsessed with keeping chips and cereal crisp and crunchy. That's 90% of the reason I moved to Southeast Asia, where airtight clear plastic cylinders are cheap and ubiquitous. When I open a bag of cereal or chips, I move it immediately to a 2-liter clear container with an airtight lid.

A lifetime of greasy wrists could have been avoided.

*A single tear rolls down my cheek*
posted by squirrel at 7:05 PM on April 7, 2005

I cut! I honestly never even considered ever not cutting.
posted by youarejustalittleant at 7:07 PM on April 7, 2005

As to the specific question of to cut or not to cut, what can I say? I'm Jewish.
posted by squirrel at 7:07 PM on April 7, 2005

No. I don't purchase large bags of chips unless they are tortilla chips and somehow, my tortilla chips are not greasy.
posted by dame at 7:15 PM on April 7, 2005

what bondcliff said.
posted by elisabeth r at 7:15 PM on April 7, 2005

I'm going to do that tonight, right after I alphabetize my CD collection and iron the hanger bumps out of my sweaters.
posted by greasy_skillet at 7:23 PM on April 7, 2005

Oh yeah I do, and my friend thinks I'm teh w13rd. But he's pretty wierd too.
posted by SlyBevel at 7:33 PM on April 7, 2005

Never cut, never will. Too much effort. I dump half the bag into a bowl, then wrap the top half of the bag around to create a reasonably tight seal that will last till when I need to access the other 50th percentile of my [contents of bag].
posted by Sonic_Molson at 7:35 PM on April 7, 2005

Yes, I do. I learned that trick from mom.
posted by pmurray63 at 7:37 PM on April 7, 2005

Oh no, that's just wrong.
posted by puddinghead at 8:14 PM on April 7, 2005

Do you carry scissors around with you just in case you decide to buy a bag of chips on the fly? Or is that not allowed?
posted by bingo at 8:20 PM on April 7, 2005

I couldn't be bothered.
posted by raedyn at 8:27 PM on April 7, 2005

If you cut the bag of chips, you ruin the sealing properties of the extra unused bag portion!

Just fold flat the unfilled portion, and wrap it around the used portion. Lie the bag on the unfilled portion and you have a somewhat airtight seal. You don't even need extra stuff!

The serious people will use an elastic band... :-)
posted by shepd at 8:52 PM on April 7, 2005

I cut, gleefully even.
posted by yodelingisfun at 8:57 PM on April 7, 2005

My God... Haven't you Philistines ever heard of Chip Clips?
posted by pjern at 9:02 PM on April 7, 2005

Yes, I cut. The sad thing is, I thought that I came up with that brilliant idea on my that I know all you bastards are doing it, I'm going to stop.
posted by MrZero at 9:11 PM on April 7, 2005

Never heard of cutting. If you have remnants in a bag, you can just pour them out or shake a few into your hand, no?
posted by CunningLinguist at 9:12 PM on April 7, 2005

Oh, ya gotta cut. I'm a cutter from way back.
posted by NewGear at 9:19 PM on April 7, 2005

Never heard of this before. I'd have to say I'm a roll the bag up kind of guy.
posted by sjvilla79 at 9:36 PM on April 7, 2005

Silly question. It has nothing to do with how you were raised, whether you're jewish, or if there is a "cutter" gene in the genome.

It's a simple matter of the quality of the bag and its contents. Because while a shorter bag brings the chips closer to the opening, the oening represnt no only easy accss for your hand but easy access for stale-making oxygen and airborne bacteria. Long, uncut bags roll up more times and will keep contents fresher.

Greasy contents: more likely to cut.

Big bag of stuff that cannot be eaten in a day or so: more likely to cut.

Transparent bag I can see into easily: less likely to cut (and less likely to get my wrist greasy when I can see what I'm reaching for).

Stuff that I like a little stale: more likely to cut.

Stuff that goes bad quick: less likely to cut.

Cheap celophane bag that tends to come apart in ribbons when cut: less likely to cut.

It all depends, folks. There are no easy answers in this life.
posted by scarabic at 9:40 PM on April 7, 2005

I cut...I think my wife taught that to me. I still think it's an amazingly clever thing to do.
posted by jacobsee at 9:41 PM on April 7, 2005

Big bag of stuff that cannot be eaten in a day or so: more likely to cut.

Oops, I meant "less."
posted by scarabic at 9:41 PM on April 7, 2005

I do not cut, never have. But I recall becoming quite upset when my mother cut the bag to the last 6" or so, though I do not recall why.

My husband cuts. Always. And makes fun of my non-cutting ways.
posted by rhapsodie at 9:46 PM on April 7, 2005

What about greasy stuff that you like a little stale in a transparent celophane bag, scarabic?
posted by squirrel at 9:48 PM on April 7, 2005

I don't buy that shit in the first place as it blows my system.
posted by scarabic at 9:53 PM on April 7, 2005

You need to have a knife or scissors handy in order to cut. Tearing doesn't occur reliably in the way that you wish. Assuming that I've opened the bag neatly only along the top seam, then I just fold it in on itself the way a tailor would fold your pant leg for adjustment while pinning it. Hey presto -- non greasy outside is now on the inside.
posted by randomstriker at 10:01 PM on April 7, 2005

iron the hanger bumps out of my sweaters.

So many things there to make Baby Jesus cry.

I've never heard of this cutting thing of which the original poster speaks, but it does seem like a not half bad idea for those who eat chips out of the bag. For me, however, I've been on a diet for so long now, that my first reaction (besides, are you freaking kidding, do you know how many points are in those?) is to weigh a single serving into a bowl and put the rest of the bag away somewhere, thus eliminating any and all reaching into the bag.
posted by jacquilynne at 10:17 PM on April 7, 2005

*has moment of Weight Watchers-induced-psychosis solidarity with jacquilynne*

As for cutting the chip bag, that's really weird. And I come from a long line of obsessive compulsive snack food storers who won't hesitate to use chip clips and tupperware containers and larger zip-top plastic bags and who have been known to keep pretzels in the fridge during the very humid months.
posted by jennyb at 10:33 PM on April 7, 2005

I cut my bags. (And my bangs, too, but I think that's another topic.)

I thought I was the only one. It helps me get back into the trimmed bag to eat even more chips--it's a bit quieter when you go back for seconds. Or thirds. I love potato chips, Og help me.
posted by Savannah at 10:37 PM on April 7, 2005

I've been tearing chip bags open for years. Once you get to the greasy wrist phase, bite the bag to start a tear, then guide the seam all the way to the base of the bag. Unfold. Voila: chip bag as plate, chips displayed before the world.
posted by croutonsupafreak at 10:37 PM on April 7, 2005

Cut with scissors.

If it's a narrow band of bag that I cut off, then the top band of the bag becomes the 'ribbon' with which I tie the bag for later use of the contents.

This is good for bags of mini-carrots, bags of lettuce, etc
posted by seawallrunner at 11:00 PM on April 7, 2005

I call it "scalping," and I do it to pretty much everything in the kitchen. Flour sacks, frozen vegetable bags, whateveter. Just not cereal bags, since those go back in the boxes anyway. My wife has always questioned this.
posted by Alt F4 at 3:45 AM on April 8, 2005

I trim off with scissors too, much to my husband's dismay. I do probably go a bit overboard, though - I'll cut it half, then a little while later a bit more, until there's barely bag and frankly, no chip left either.
posted by cajo at 5:59 AM on April 8, 2005

I eat the whole bag at one sitting. I'm efficient like that.
posted by electroboy at 6:38 AM on April 8, 2005

Most of the time I wrap the excess bag around the contents, but I'll occasionally cut, when the situation is right. We usually eat at a small cafe table, and a big bag of chips takes up valuable real estate.
posted by mbd1mbd1 at 7:30 AM on April 8, 2005

I cut chip bags, no matter what type of chip. I also fold down fast food bags and dump the fries in them so I can enjoy them while driving...
posted by blackkar at 7:46 AM on April 8, 2005

I disapprove of cutting the tops off chip bags, but will defend to the death your right to do so.

And after one too many drunken nights spent thrashing about blindly in the gutter with a king-sized Cheetos bag taped around my neck, collecting a glorious bouquet of bruises that resemble the sneering profiles of brutal dictators long since deposed and buried, I wake to find that a solution was within my grasp all along... eyeholes, oh, my god! Why the hell didn't I think of that while I was cutting the "Night Train tunnel"?
posted by naomi at 8:31 AM on April 8, 2005

I have also never heard of such a bizarre practice. But I thought my stepmom's "chip clips" were weird enough (when I was a teenager), so I'm definitely behind the curve when it comes to domestic junk food organization. The only chips I really buy are tortilla, anyway, and I'll usually put them out in a bowl with the salsa & avocado...

My basic reaction is, freak, but I'm not really sure why it seems so weird. As others have noted, it's perfectly rational... I guess there's just something about the mutilated shape of the bag post-op... that it would look sort of like a strange plastic pocketbook-for-chips or something.
posted by mdn at 8:52 AM on April 8, 2005

I have never heard of cutting chip bags to save the unused portions, but then again, I have never heard of there ever being leftover chips. Bag size determines portion size. Maybe that's why I am on a diet.
posted by Duck_Lips at 8:56 AM on April 8, 2005

Nope because it never occurred to me. However, I've used some sort of clip for years (clothes pins before they invented the chip clip). BUT! It's a good idea and will implement it.

Actually, I should just quit eating chips and the like. But hey, like that's ever gonna happen.
posted by deborah at 9:39 AM on April 8, 2005

I'm a non-cutter, but this could be related to the fact that I don't eat chips out of the bag. I'm far more likely to put a portion of them on a plate or napkin, and eat from there.
posted by mosch at 11:32 AM on April 8, 2005

I've known bag cutters in the past. The few times I've been faced with a half bag of chips I couldn't be bothered to search out the scissors. I'm a fan of rubberbands.

Now, another question along a similar vein - ketchup in the fridge or out of the fridge? Whole nother thread?
posted by Constant Reader at 1:48 PM on April 8, 2005

Overcut once, non-cutter since.
posted by safetyfork at 2:41 PM on April 8, 2005

How fucking big are your snack bags, for gawd's sake?
posted by dash_slot- at 6:11 PM on April 8, 2005

Wow, it's a whole level of snack packaging interaction that I never knew existed! I have never, ever, ever heard of cutting a bag like this, nor have I ever, ever, ever observed a friend/family member/roommate/boyfriend/in-law/coworker/sitcom character even ponder such a thing in all my decades of consuming prepackaged snack items. Are there other similar habits out there that I've never witnessed? Is there a whole subculture of people who smooth over the uneven surface of a half-eaten pint of ice cream with a hot spoon before putting the lid back on, for example?
posted by scody at 10:40 PM on April 8, 2005

I had never seen nor heard of this practice. "Haven't I done that in front of you?" asks my wife of nearly four years. Thank you, AskMe, for helping me discover new facets of this fascinating and mysterious woman.

Once, while traveling in a country lacking peanut butter, I cut off the top half of a Skippy's plastic jar, the better to get the last of the contents. My roommate did the same with a glass jar, but stopped eating it when he kept discovering shards of broken glass in his mouth. True story!

On preview, to scody: in high school my friend Noel visited one night, and my parents distributed a pint of ice cream fairly to the four of us, by cutting the closed container into quarters. That may have been the last time he came over.
posted by Aknaton at 11:25 PM on April 8, 2005

Bags of sliced bread are also great for this, by the way.

Is there a whole subculture of people who smooth over the uneven surface of a half-eaten pint of ice cream with a hot spoon before putting the lid back on, for example?

I will scoop away the "peaks" before I'll further scoop the "valleys," but that's a "pre-serving modiication." All of my scalping and bag modifications happen post-serving. I guess that's the determiner: If I'm modifying the food itself, I'll adjust the food as-or-before I get it set for the meal at hand; If I'm modifing the container, I wait until I'm done pulling the food out for that meal.

ketchup in the fridge or out of the fridge?
Ketchup: in
Jelly: in
Honey: out
Peanut Butter: out
Syrup: in, but heated up before serving
Butter: in if I won't use it in the next 12 hours or so, otherwise, out
posted by Alt F4 at 9:42 AM on April 9, 2005

I cut and use a chip clip. That is when I don't eat the whole bag in one sitting. ;-P
posted by mischief at 7:49 PM on April 10, 2005

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