Sunday, November 9, 2008

Amazon.com Launches Frustration-Free Packaging Initiative

Earlier this month, Amazon.com announced a Frustration-Free Packaging Initiative that will improve the packaging of the products they ship. This means packaging that is easier to open and requires less plastic.

Obviously, this is great news for eco-nerds, but it's also great news for everyone who absolutely, totally, completely, and utterly hates blister packs. They're the most annoying things in the world and for klutzes like me, they're even dangerous—I once sliced my hand open on one.

Down with blister packs! Hooray for Amazon!

Related: A letter from Amazon's CEO about the new initiative and Amazon's Gallery of Wrape Rage, which illustrates why better packaging is long overdue.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

It's November

I'm glad it's November because October didn't go so well for me.

Mid-month, I went on a week-long business trip that made it pretty tough to remain plastic-free. I was working conventions, and all the free lunches came in plastic boxes. And of course, the food inside the boxes was wrapped in plastic, too. It was a bad scene, and for some reason my whole travel experience, which included lots of time in airports eating stale, plastic-packaged salads, sucked the life out of me and my plastic-free experiment for the rest of the month.

Which led to something interesting—I became a normal person for a while and realized how much plastic I used to throw away.

As you might expect, it really shocked me. I used plastic silverware, and water bottles, and mini plastic butter packages. I bought bread in plastic bags, and ate fortune cookies from those little plastic wrappers, and even got a slice of pizza in a styrofoam clamshell. I used tons of plastic.

And it made me feel horrible. This whole month was like a giant guilt fest for me. Looking back, though, I think it's also given me a renewed belief that what I'm doing is a good thing. I don't want to be like I used to be.

So I'm glad it's November. It's a new month and a brand new chance to be plastic-free.