I’m going to spend this month exploring the plastic in my world since I have the luxury of living in a place where there is relatively little plastic. Instead, I’m going to develop an awareness of what plastic exists in my life on a day-to-day basis.
This is a list of all the plastic that I came into contact with today, from the moment I woke up until now, right before bed time:
♽ my eyeglasses
♽ my toothbrush bristles
♽ my yoga mat & yoga bricks
♽ my toilet seat cover
♽ the light switch
♽ my computer, mouse & mousepad
♽ a disposable pen
♽ a pen drive
♽ the surge protector
♽ a torch
♽ the generator & switch at the school’s computer lab
♽ my plastic, refillable pen
♽ a plastic chair
♽ the plastic trim on a stapler
♽ my tetrapack school bag
♽ a magnetic bookark
♽ a post-it page marker
♽ a DVD, its case and the DVD player & remote control
♽ a photograph
♽ a library book with a plastic cover
♽ laminated papers (used for lecturing about trash)
♽ plastic jerry cans
♽ and lots of plastic trash picked up along a hike I took with my husband and some friends this afternoon
As the month goes on I’m going to explore some of these items more deeply, but I first need to finish reading Susan Freinkel’s fascinating book, Plastic: A Toxic Love Story.
In the meantime, in the afternoon my former Garbology children came running to my house to tell me that Amul (the dairy coop that has such fantastic ads and seems to have such a commitment to India historically), has shifted from recyclable paper packaging to plastic packaging (seeming to mimic Cadbury’s Diary Milk. So sad for a company whose ads typically pride themselves on not copying the foreign things.
My husband and some friends and I were leaving for a walk at that moment (which for me means picking up trash), and I found, and therefore touched, an awful lot of plastic. Mostly these ₹1 candies that come in plastic packaging. Indian shopkeepers often use them in lieu of change when they run out and they are littering the countryside like nobody’s business. But I also found a lot of chappals and clothing even though I cleaned the same trail just last week. Worse: there were fields being plowed while we were there and some of them were just laden with plastics in the soil.