Fuck Naw to the Straw (aka The FYN Guide to Being Sustainable AF)

Fuck Naw to the Straw (aka The FYN Guide to Being Sustainable AF)

OK FYN Homies, it’s 2018 and it’s time for us to get real and talk about SINGLE USE PLASTIC

FIRST OFF, SMUG AND OBNOXIOUSLY SELF AWARE FYN PERSONAL ANECDOTE TIME

britneybored

Fuck don’t be like that – but I used to see the Facebook posts and videos on these Zero Waste Warriors who were all “Yes, I went to the shops the other day and forgot my bag so I just got my dried goods lady to spoon my raw almonds directly into my hand and then I just walked home, clutching my nuts, smug in the knowledge that I’d avoided using a plastic bag”.  I was just wallowing in my plastic filled life, sipping on my Slacktivist Soda with a plastic straw and was all, this sustainability shit is for overachievers amirite?

dog-overachiever

But what changed for me was I started seeing information on just how long these plastics last, where it ends up in landfill, the ocean or our food chain. Let this hot piece of 1990s Bon Jovi explain to you just how long plastic kicks around in the environment:

bonjovi-always

More importantly, it was the mental shift in how sure, some people are goddamn environmental angels who don’t use any plastics and have completely moved to using bamboo leaves to wrap everything in their lives, the rest of us should just focus on taking small steps to reduce our plastic usage as every small positive change adds to a larger change.  Then the final thing that pushed me well over the edge was the images of our oceans and beaches being completely choked by gross, fuck no plastic trash and then going to a supermarket and seeing shelves of vegetables and fruits, all wrapped in plastic on plastic trays.  It seemed that everywhere I looked, the food and beverage business seems to be all:

aqua-barbiegirl

So here it is, The FYN Guide to Being Sustainable AF as told through pop music cultural references.

ONE:  FUCK NAW TO THE STRAW

This is one of the easiest steps anyone can take to reducing their plastic footprint and I refer to this as the “gateway step” to reducing plastic, as it’s small, doesn’t change your life and easily makes a change.  Just say #fucknawtothestraw and if you really need to drink from a straw, BYOStraw (there’s many great sustainable options, made from stainless steel or bamboo.  I use a rad gift I got from a FYN homie, from Bambuhay).  Restaurants, I’m really sympathetic because keeping reusable straws clean is a complete and utter ballache, not to mention paper straws which fail at their sole purpose (transporting liquid from glass to someone’s mouth).  Real life footage of a paper straw in a drink:

bonnie-fall-apart

So, my two suggestions are reusable is great in theory, but REAL TALK for most drinks, we’re all entirely capable of using our mouths to drink direct from a glass.  And if restaurants feel it’s that essential to their customers to have straws, at least move to a “Straw on Request” model to see who really asks for them.

FYN Homies, this is where I encourage all of you to write to EVERY single restaurant / bar you go to which still serves drinks with plastic straws.  I now take this step with every place I go and sometimes you’ll get a FUCK YEAH response where they’ll actually write back and they will stop using straws overnight and other times, at least you start the dialogue.  From little things, big changes grow.  I’ve even prepared some copy-pasta for you guys to use.  Make sure you comment / tag me in any positive dialogue you get back and use #fucknawtothestraw:

Hi!

I had drinks at your establishment recently and noticed that you guys are still using plastic straws in your drinks. Globally, millions of straws are used a day which are used for a few minutes and then end up in landfill forever, never to decompose. Reducing single use plastic is a small step that restaurants, bars and consumers can take to try and reduce our plastic footprint. Can I suggest that you consider removing plastic straws from your drinks? If you really feel that straws are vital to your clients’ experience, a plastic reducing option is to make it a “straws on request” establishment – ie. Serve drinks by default without a straw and wait for someone to ask before you provide them with one. The straws that you use might seem innocent enough but you multiply this by all of the bars and restaurants in the world and that’s a lot of plastic straws which will outlive us all. Let’s see if we can all be part of the change.

Best,
YOUR NAME HERE #fucknawtothestraw

And if they’re assholes about it or don’t even dignify you with a response, pick another venue who is doing more about this to give your business to.

eminem-stan2

TWO:  DROPPING PLASTIC DRINK BOTTLES FROM YOUR LIFE

Disposal PET water/drink bottles are so unnecessary, especially when you live in a country where the tap water is potable.  It takes a bit of organisation and forethought, but BYOBottle, fill up where you can and stop being part of the cycle which sees PET bottles just breaking down into smaller, toxic particles. If you get caught without water, think about whether going without bottled water for one hour is actually going to kill you.  Pop bottles all night when you BYO and as TI notes, you can have whatever you like without being part of the single use plastic bottle problem.

ti-whatever-you-like

THREE:  TAKE AWAY, TAKEAWAY COFFEE CUPS

I am someone who is practically mainlining coffee just to drag myself through the tedious and dull existence that is known as Monday to Friday.  Those plastic coffee cup lids and waterproof paper cups aren’t going anywhere though from now until the end of time.  If your barista can’t pour your drink into your own cup (I use a KeepCup) then find one that does, before celebrating your righteous entry into truly living and breathing the sustainable Cup of Life.

rickymartin-cupoflife2

FOUR:  BE A BAG HAG

This one is obvious AF – bring your own bag and don’t take plastic bags for your food or shopping.  Fighting off plastic bags is a constant battle and I’m bellowing “NO BAG” all the time, at everyone.  But for real. is there any point in taking a plastic bag which you get to use:

fugees-onetime

But if you fuck up and you forget to bring your bag out to the shops, like no biggie – just at least try to reuse it:

fugees-twotimes

Then go back to strumming your environmentally friendly heart with your cloth tote bag.

FIVE:  BYO Container / Utensils

Ok, this one’s a little bit more intense because you’re ordering your sad little box of overpriced salad and you don’t want to upset the production line that they’ve got going on.  But how do you even know if it’s an issue?  I’ve found that most places are actually pretty chill about you bringing your own container and if they’re not, plenty more boring ass salad options around or bring your own lunch.  Single use lunch plastic bums me out so hard – I see it all in the trash, plastic container, plastic utensils and all wrapped up in a plastic bag.  My normal salad joint made the move from plastic to cardboard containers, but said they couldn’t find an affordable, sustainable lid option.  So I keep my plastic lid that fits their containers, wash it and bring it back every single time.

britney-hitme


So there you have it, that’s my five, easy fuck yeah steps to leading a less plastic filled existence.  Even if you just start with one less straw, one less coffee cup or one less plastic lunchbox this week, that’s one less piece of plastic that’s going to kick around forever.  Take a small step and see where it goes.  Support businesses who are making steps to more sustainable choices (cause that shit costs more than the cheap plastic options).  As always, let me know what works for you and believe me, together we can all be better.

tupac-change-the-way-we-eat

 

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