Monday, November 10, 2008

I'll Have a Little Humble Pie with that Plastic Tumbler, please...

Learning, learning, learning. I am always learning.

After reading today's Fake Plastic Fish entry, I have asked our web guru to pull all of the #5 plastic items from the Mercantile inventory. I hope it will be done by the end of the day.

While #5 is food grade plastic and previously considered safe, there is now some question about how safe it really is. And it would seem rather hypocritcal for me to continue to carry the items. On one hand it breaks my heart - I love the idea of being able to use recycled plastic, as kind of a penance for our over-consumption. But on the other hand, this is just another red flag, another "come to Jesus" moment.

We must stop all of this consuming. We must find ways to be more thoughtful in what we use, and how. We are so rich, and so priviledged; we must take responsiblity for the waste we are generating.

Also on today's Fake Plastic Fish was this 60 Minutes Report about exporting electronic waste - you know all of those cell phone, computer monitors and televisions we "recycle" each year? Turns out much of the recycling is not done here in the US - our very toxic waste goes to the poorest parts of China. Watch it here:

Watch CBS Videos Online

Do we really need the newest, thinnest phone that does everything from answer your email to walking your dog? And how many tvs do we all need? (Disclosure:when my parents passed away in 2004, there were FIVE tvs. Five. For two people. It's just how we're used to living. We feel we deserve it. But at what cost?).

It feels so insurmountable, so overwhelming. But like anything else, I just have to take it in small pieces. I'm taking a vow to be more deliberate and thoughtful before I buy things. How about you?
Should you need some lovely recycled plastic, um, flower vases, let me know:

Ooooh, what a pretty flower vase!

The Laptop Lunches would be great for beading supplies. I can get them for you wholesale!

Fantastic beading supply cases, cheap.


  1. Wow. I love your enthusiasm!

    Thanks for passing on the 60 Minutes video. It's heartbreaking, and I hope it spreads very rapidly across the Internet.

  2. Oh, also, if you will include the plain "plastic" label on this post, it'll be included in the plastic-free posse update I'm going to do tonight. The "plastic #5" tag will not make it because I can just choose one plastic tag to link to.


  3. I found it ironic that the 60 Minutes clip was surrounded by advertisements - for a new Blackberry phone and for batteries.

  4. Alline,

    When I was living in India, you could buy a stainless steel lunch caddy. I wish you would look into that. These things stack up on top of each other, and they snap in place with something that connects all of them. They are called Tiffins.


  5. Oh, and here is one you can see...


Now it's your turn - what do YOU think?