The Jar

It’s not every sunrise that I go out on the beach, though it’s an easy walk down the hallway to the elevator, out a few security doors, then there’s the gate to the beach and a landing where I take off my flip flops and put them in one of the bins that typically hold shoes, towels, toys, whatever.

In my quest to have more conscious and responsible visitors on our beach I decided that I would make another type of statement. I took an empty plastic food container (organic cashews 1.13kg or 2lbs 8oz for those of us who haven’t fully converted to the metric system), covered the label with a hand written note that simply said 3900 Galt Beach and placed it toward the back of one of the empty cubbies. As this was before seven am, the only other cubbies that had anything in them was one that had two towels, one medium green and the other a now off-white. The towels had been left behind a few days before. Initially very wet with the rain, I put them over the available railing to dry out. Later, once dried, they got folded by either one of the staff or one of the residents and placed in the upper right cubby spot for someone to reclaim.

I went out to collect trash. When I got back to our condo’s landing area, where there are also trash cans, showers and hoses, I dumped the entire collection on the sand to further sort. Recyclables go in one place, trash another, hard plastic for me to further process and this time, I had another item I separated out – cigarette filters. Curious as I am, and a mathematician at heart, I counted the number of butts. There were 25.

They were all placed in the repurposed organic cashew container. How many butts would it take to fill it up; how many people would that represent; and how long would it take to fill? The photo was taken a few days into the collection process.

Contemplate that.