Posted by: David McKay | April 5, 2010

Bottle caps

Until I made my New Year’s Resolution to cut my use of plastics, I was drinking a lot of bottled water.  It was convenient.  And I recycle, so where was the harm?

Apparently, the bottle and the cap are two different types of plastic, and thus need to be separated in order to be recycled properly.  This made little sense to me, and I figured the people at the recycling place that sort the stuff need to be employed, so I let them do it.

“Many municipal recycling programs throughout the United States still do not accept plastic lids, tops and caps, even though they take the containers that accompany them. The reason is that lids typically are not made from the same kind of plastic as their containers, and therefore should not be mixed together with them” ~ from

That was the ‘old’ me.

So, instead of tossing the caps with the bottles, I started saving the caps (I use them in art projects).

These caps also have a tendency of floating off to the briny seas where they are mistaken for tasty pieces of food by birds and consumed.  The birds die.  Not cool.

I have been pulling these little, tasty, colorful pieces of crap out of the waste stream (we are all islands in it).

Yesterday, I went to a favorite waterfall to take some pictures.  I found a green plastic bottle cap. I was up in the mountains, far from the sea, but that little green bottle cap had the potential to travel oh so far.

Not anymore — I got it.  And soon it will become part of a piece of art.

My suggestion to you (and by all means ignore me if you wish) is to pick up some litter in your part of the world and try to find a better place for it to go.  Little bit here, little bit there.

Rethink.  Refuse.  Reduce.  Reuse.



  1. Thought of this driving to work this morning: How about Rewind? Rewind to the time before consumable/disposable plastics were everywhere, and consider how things were done then.

    Also, Green-up day is May 1 this year:

  2. I used to be obsessed with cutting up those plastic 6 pack holders that birds would get caught into and die. I used to take the time to collect bottles from friends on campus and recycle for them. I used to take bottles from bars that did not recycle and contribute to the recycling process. I used to bring left over food from pastry and bagel shops to homeless shelters. I used to do a lot of things.
    Today I find I talk about recycling and reusing and refusing with my students and son. I don’t “do” as much. I hope my sermons don’t fall on deaf ears.
    Watching you pull that one green bottle cap off the ground was a reminder of the positive effects of the little things we ‘can’ do.

  3. Awesome! A new plastic-free blogger joining the ranks. How can I contact you directly? Would love to swap blog links and talk about plastic-free solutions.

    Living Life with Less Plastic

  4. BTW, I just added you to my blogroll here:

  5. Great blog! I’m happy to have found you from a link from Plastic Pollution Coalition!
    Elsa, I LOVE your comment!
    I have been collecting caps for a few years now but this past year, I’ve been trying to find products that don’t use those caps. It’s a tough task. I hope more companies join the effort for the benefit of the earth!

  6. Kate E.,
    I just read one of your posts on your blog — beautiful. (I am liking the Michael Jackson song, too). Keep it up!

  7. Thanks, Kate :). Rewind didn’t sit so well with David, so I proposed re-discover, which also works…Do you know the blog Soulemama? She is more of a crafty mama blog, but she is pretty anti plastic and occasionally some great plastic free ideas slip onto the blog.

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