I’m not agro about it. No composting or saving of toenail clippings. (I made that last one up. I hope.) Just newspapers, cardboard, cans, plastic and glassware.
Years ago, unable to figure out the “paper or plastic” question in terms of which is less worse for the planet, I bought two reusable bags for the supermarket. I had even less of clue as to how to properly dispose of the legion of plastic bags I’d already brought home from the aforementioned landfill filler. I knew throwing them in the regular trash wasn’t good, but also knew they didn’t belong in the recycling bin, either.
Then, on a grocery errand in 2011, I noticed a sign stating the store would begin collecting plastic bags for recycling. Nice! Since then I’ve dutifully dropped off any bags I’ve accumulated: clothes shopping, the ones wrapping the LA Times on rainy days, to-go sacks from restaurants, etc.
Like most environmentally conscious acts, though, this good deed is not hassle free.
First, the plastic bags must be dry. This makes sense from a mold/disease standpoint, but it is hard to meet this exacting standard when you store them under your leaky kitchen sink. Malleable plastic dries slightly faster than the half-life of Uranium.
Second, once you are standing at the recycling bin located just inside the store’s entranceway, you have to turn each bag inside out. Sounds easy, but I like to wait until I’ve saved up enough bags to merit the trip. This morning, the process took me six minutes.
Initially, I enjoyed the mindless process, which forced me to stare out the large, front windows and check out my fellow shoppers as they arrived. (Note to self: tennis lessons seem to let out at 11:00. #ManhattanBeachMILFs)
But then I noticed everyone – regardless of gender – noticing me.
And they were all looking at me like I just walked into a Super Bowl party and asked if Kobe Bryant had made a goal yet. Which is to say, the guys sized me up as a total pussy and the women determined I was half a man.
This nearly made me cry. (But I did not.)
What is so wimpy about recycling?
I mean, I’m only trying to singlehandedly save the fucking planet. Sounds pretty masculine to me. Bruce Willis rescued, like, twenty people from terrorists at Nakatomi Plaza and he’s the very vertex of virility. Me? I’m only trying to rescue the polar bears – all of them. And they are anything but wimpy. Tell a mama polar bear she’s a pussy, I dare you.
Didn’t think so.
Men are supposed to fix stuff, right? (At least that’s what all my female roommates have said, when complaining about my inability to fix stuff.) So, by standing in the window of the grocery store, turning my plastic bags inside out and cramming them into the disposal bin, I’m attempting to fix the Earth.
How is that not “hefty, hefty, hefty”?