Saturday, October 23, 2010

Day 165 - Oct. 22, 2010

life guard tower 26 - Ocean Park, Santa Monica CA
trash collected for 20 minutes
4.3 pounds
665.8 pounds total

What makes an idea take "flight?" One thing usually leads to another. One inspiration follows the next. One person passes a spark to someone else, and may not even know it. So have you voted yet for my incredible friend Danielle in Wrightsville Beach N.C. picking up cigarette butts? She's in the Britta Filter for Good Film contest. Her story, "Our Daily Ocean: A Story of Butts," will be made into a short and shown during Sundance if she wins. Lets help her get there!

By the way - Oct. 23 is National Make A Difference Day - (as Danielle pointed out on her blog)
Umm...I think she's doing that! 7,360 butts off the beach in 15 days!
These glow sticks aren't for Halloween. They are for attracting fish to lines at night.

Do you know what Long-Lining is?

It is a commercial fishing practice where they let out miles - yes MILES - of mono filament line with thousands of hooks attached to it - let it sit baited - and then reel it in. But the by-catch is enormous. By-catch = unintended or unwanted animals/fish and sea birds that get caught in the line or net, die and are throw back into the water.

I like to check the Blue Ocean's FISH text report when I go out to eat. It is fast, easy, save it in your contacts, have some sushi guilt free. I don't need to think about the turtles that died for my fish when I'm out to dinner. I like to have a scallop hand roll with a clear conscious.

There are apps to download - or

"No iPhone? No worries! You can send us a text message to learn about your seafood choices.

Text 30644 with the message FISH and the name of the fish in question. We'll text you back with our assessment and better alternatives to fish with significant environmental concerns."

Balloon with green trim, or jellyfish?

Hard to tell if you are a sea turtle that used to be able to eat almost everything out there until about 60 years ago. They've been around for millennia so it might take a little while for them to adapt. But should they have to, or should we try to keep the freakin' Mylar balloons out of the ocean for them?

I've taken this shot at least 3 out of the 5 times that I have gone to the beach for collections lately. A pattern that I would rather not document.
I was talking to someone yesterday about the six pack ring photo I included in Day 163, and we were agreeing that most people know to cut those things up, right? I don't recall our tone being righteous really, just more astounded that it's not second nature by now. (maybe a wee-bit of righteous sprinkled in coming from a good place...)

Then I hung up the phone, and my stomach dropped. I had picked up the six pack ring, blogged about it, and thrown it away without cutting the rings....I don't share this to absolve myself - although I feel awful - but to say perhaps that even people with the best intentions to help the environment are not perfect. I will be the first to say that I am not.


  1. GF, we are all human... honest mistake.. I remember when my oldest when she was a young teen got visibly upset when she saw a 6pak ring. That child never grabbed scissors so fast and cut the heck out of it... Glow sticks to attract fish? omg... sad... I know u heard about Long Beach passing the no smoking as u stroll measure? Hope its a sign of other cities following suit... Simi Valley is supposed to have passed a similar law ..they were trying to pass a measure so no one could smoke ANYWHERE, including their backyard.

  2. What you shared about a turtle not being able to tell if it's a jellyfish or balloon, it really made me see from his view.

    No, I did not know we're supposed to cut the six pack plastics up, we don't have those on the drinks we buy. Thanks for that :D

  3. Sara... that just summed it all up perfectly. We all impact each other... sometimes we don't even know we've made a difference in someone's life. The flights we help to soar... the ripple effects that we help create can be so powerful...

    thank you for being an inspiration in my flight. (it's a surreal one)

    AND.... hello synchronicity!! I was (literally) just telling Aaron about long lines... I'm baffled as to why "fishermen" are still allowed to use those things... just so ridiculous. Makes my head hurt thinking about those and all the other things that just shouldn't be made or used.

    Plastic rings... another "why do they still make those??" Oh, and I'm sure you know this.... but *I'm perfect* is in imperfect. Perfection is uninspiring. So you just keep on inspiring us :)

    Hope you're enjoying "Oceans"... and, of course, Happy (early) Birthday!

    {{Hugs}} Danielle