One of the most infuriating aspects of modern life surrounds the difficulty associated with opening things. I have looked long and hard for something or someone to blame – ease of production – safety – defense against contamination – personal injury attorneys – insurance companies. While showering you notice your soap is missing. With wet hands you confront a shrink-wrapped trio of soap bars that no amount of ripping and clawing will budge.

The same company developed the airline peanut bag, which requires razor sharp incisors to penetrate.

Open the peanut butter jar and looking at you is an aluminum seal that requires a scalpel to remove.

Pull that fresh bottle of Absolut from the freezer and that innocent looking cellophane condom on the neck requires chisels to free up the cap. Medicines are worse. The Listerine cap requires a Jesse Ventura squeeze. Advil means lining up arrows. Vitamins – push down and squeeze.

Capsules, individually packed in cellophane are nearly impossible, and the cardboard back defies tearing in either direction.

Candy bars, once a joy – now a nightmare.

The rolls of cellophane bags in the produce section to hold your plums, lemons, etc. cannot be opened even if "open this end" is indicated. I can’t tell you the number of times I have squeezed and rubbed the wrong end only to find the right end is no more accommodating.

Large packages present their own unique challenge. Corrugated quality has improved to the point where it is machete proof. I challenge anyone to open the carton containing a television set without severely spraining wrists and tearing fingernails.

For those who travel, I give you the complimentary airline toothpaste. As your 8-hour flight winds down, you eat your last meal, take your bag and line up for the lavatory.

You assemble your toothbrush – usually in turbulent conditions – and with the knowledge that many others are waiting for you to finish.

Now you uncap the paste only to find that it is sealed with an aluminum cap set into the tube in such a way that nothing short of an ice pick will puncture it. It is actually easier to tear the tube in half than to move that plug. Why I ask?

At one time, only the cork stood between the lip and the wine. Now the variety of cork covers and sealants necessitates a set of tools, not just a corkscrew.

Once a first-class hotel gave you a key with your room number on it so when you stumbled back with a snoot full, you had a good chance of finding and getting into your room.

Today you get some computer programmed wand or card which invariably fails at the worst possible time and contains no clue as to what room you are in.

Some cars lock automatically, often when you are outside the car with the engine running, or surround you with seatbelts even if you don’t want them.

I read recently that shoplifting, pilferage, internal and external theft was at an all-time high in U.S. retail stores. Why then do we have to contend with the holes caused by large plastic alarm tags on every jersey and jean when it appears only innocent people suffer when the bells go off for no reason. There can be no thief today dumb enough to carry the tag through the sensors.

I guess someone is trying to protect us from something. Frankly, if I knew who it was, I would tell him to quit.