Tragedy struck me today, on this blistering 90-degree day on the first official day of summer. I wanted to cool myself off with a nice, refreshing cold fountain drink. On my lunch break, I popped over to the local quickie mart for an ice-cold fountain pop, with loads of fantastic nugget ice, and what do I find in my hand under the fountains but a hard slippery plastic cup. A plastic cup! When this no-styrofoam ban (not actually styrofoam) went into place, I didn't think it would affect me. I hate the flimsy takeout containers, so sure, upgrade those. I have like six coolers in my garage, so sure, don't need those. But it never crossed my mind that the sanctity of the ritualistic glory of a fountain pop would be decimated in such a cruel manner as to be a gross plastic cup that you could get at any rinky-dink place. 

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 Why the ban?

It's all part of the game—you need the foam cup to make it perfect. I felt so heartbroken I feel I need to have a moment of silence... Why is this ban in place, you may ask? Well, it's because styrofoam creates a significant amount of waste in America. Apparently, these plastic foam products contribute toward dirtying Washington’s public roads and parks at an estimated rate of 11,000 pounds or 1 million pieces of litter each year, according to the state’s 2022 litter study. While it is technically recyclable, very few recycling centers accept and recycle it. The majority of the country's styrofoam ends up in landfills. 

 

Environment Wins This Round

I guess the environment wins this round. I am always for trying to do my fair part to help with climate change. No single-use bags? Sure, not a big fan of it, but I understand. Eat locally produced and organic food? Done, I try. Reuse and recycle, and watch water usage? Yep, we try. There are just things I can't handle to help with it. One is my car—I love my cars, and they are big block V8s. I know it's not good, but I love them. Two is paper straws. Paper straws are the worst thing in the world for me, well until number three. And three, the styrofoam cup. I do not splurge very often on a pop, but when I do, I want it to be perfect. So for the rest of the week, I’m sure I’ll be going around shouting at birds and animals I see. “You are welcome, Little Duck. My ritualistic perfect pop had to suffer so you could have a better life. Jerk!” 

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