Good times! But that's not actually what I want to write about today. Instead today, I'm going to talk a little about plastic. Or more specifically, the plastic found in the caps of Klean Kanteens.
So, as most of you know, my Klean Kanteen was stolen with the rest of my contents of my messenger bag. Which meant that last Friday, when Beth of Fake Plastic Fish and I went to Rainbow Grocery, I decided to replace it.
And that's how Beth and I found ourselve staring at a bunch of water bottles for about 15 minutes discussing the relative merits of one water bottle that had a stainless steel cap but came packaged in plastic versus another water bottle that had a plastic cap but was unpackaged.
Now, first of all, I want to clear something up. Beth says on her blog that I said that shopping with her is stressful. Now it is true that I did say that. But what I also said was, "This is why I don't shop!" It's not just Beth, it's shopping in general. Because frankly, being a non-consumer is much less stressful and guilt-inducing than staring at water bottles for fifteen minutes. I came extremely close to saying, "Screw it, I'm just going to use a glass jar." Except that, I'm sorry, I know Mr. No Impact Man uses a glass jar, but I just dont. want. to. I did the whole glass jar thing for a bit during my non-consumeristic days, and it made me feel a little like a bag lady. Also because I'm clumsy and always dropping stuff and glass, you know, breaks.
The point is, I needed a new water bottle, and the lack of a perfect option caused me to be paralyzed by indecision for fifteen minutes.
So. First off, Beth and I would like to encourage all y'all to write Klean Kanteen and ask them to not make the plastic caps their default cap. (Also it would help if Klean Kanteen didn't package the stainless steel caps in plastic, but one thing at a time.) Here's the email I wrote to Klean Kanteen:
I wanted to write to you as a loyal Klean Kanteen customer because while I
love your product, I do have a concern about your water bottles. Specifically,
that the water bottles now come with a plastic cap as the default cap. One of
the reasons that I switched to Klean Kanteen was to get away from plastic, so I
was disappointed when I learned that now Klean Kanteens all come with plastic
caps, and that if you want a stainless steel cap, you still have to purchase the
Klean Kanteen with a plastic cap and then purchase a separate stainless steel
cap. I would really love it if instead you offered two different options so that
people could choose to pay a little more for a Klean Kanteen with zero plastic,
if that's what they wanted.
Thanks for your time, and I look forward to hearing your thoughts.
Okay, so that's my letter to Klean Kanteen, and if you want to email them, you can reach them at Klean Kanteen, 4345 Hedstrom Way, Chico, California 95973 or email them at email@example.com.
But beyond that, there is something else I want to talk about, which is, this. There are very rarely going to be perfect choices. When Beth and I were at Rainbow Grocery, we found cocoa powder in bulk, and fair trade packaged cocoa powder. But we never found bulk fair trade cocoa powder. Similarly, my bulk food store in London sells bulk organic sugar. But it doesn't sell bulk fair trade organic sugar, so instead, I buy packaged fair trade organic sugar.
The point is, we have to make choices sometimes. And as frustrating as it is to have to choose between fair trade sugar in plastic versus plastic-free unfairly traded sugar, unfortunately that is life. So what I'm trying to say here, is, if you find yourself staring at sugar for twenty minutes, and you think you're going insane, well, you're not alone. I've been there. We've all been there. And in the end, you just need to take a deep breath, and make a choice. And then, yes, maybe talk to the grocery store manager about why they don't have fair trade sugar in bulk, or write Klean Kanteen a letter, or what have you, but, at some point you then need to let go and accept that you made the best choice you could make given the circumstances. Don't go home and beat yourself up over sugar. Or Klean Kanteens. Or cocoa powder. Because life is too short, and beating yourself up and feeling guilty doesn't do any good anyway.
Also, next time Beth and I hang out, we are definitely going to karaoke. But not because shopping with Beth is stressful so much as karaoke is just awesome.