“Empaque su basura” reads the sweatshirt hanging in my closet.
On it is a picture of a surfer carrying a broken, “Geek”- brand board and tossing a glass soda bottle out onto the beach while a garbage can is clearly within reach.
And while I’m wont to support such an organization – organized by the Pleasure Point Night Fighters, originally a volunteer firefighting crew that served the small surfing community located at the end of 41st Street near Capitola – I’m not necessarily somebody that sticks hardily to its ideals.
In other words, I’m a hypocrite.
I’m not completely sure where this trend initially started. I don’t throw my fast food bags out of the window of my car when I’m driving down the road or anything like that, but my fulfillment to the environment – even when I have bumper stickers on my car affirming my dedication to it – has never been fully there.
Just last month I drove over to Pacifica to take one last spin down Devil’s Slide before Caltrans closed it forever in favor of the bored tunnel that they had completed after decades of politicking has sidelined the project.
Stopping in at my favorite surf shop, I popped in next door to grab several slices of pizza with the intent of eating them in the parking lot while watching people make their way to, and, from my favorite beach.
It was delicious. But when I was done, rather than wrap up my greasy pieces of wax paper and place them in the trash can that was more than likely in front of the grocery store at the other end of the strip mall, I just dropped them in the abandoned shopping cart in front me.
Who has time to walk that far?
I then made my way to my car, with its “Surfrider Foundation” license plate cover, and drove off up the hill to enjoy one of the windiest and most beautiful stretches of road in California one last time – never giving my hypocrisy a second thought.
Sure, it wasn’t like I buried it on the beach. I made it a habit of not throwing my cigarette butts along the water a long time ago. But I have no way of knowing whether it blew out of there three hours later and straight onto the sand – where, when I see trash, I curse people under my breath for being so arrogant and self-involved.
Hypocrite, party of one?
I’m not much better when it comes to recycling. I’ve had an entire counter in my apartment full of aluminum cans only to swipe them with my arm into a trash bag and carry them straight to the garbage dumpster.
Plastic water bottles. Trash. Empty cans of fruit. Trash. Any cardboard that has ever gone through that front door? Trash.
The more I write this the more I realize that I really don’t deserve the sweatshirt that hangs in my closet, nor the license plate frame on the back of my car.
Looks like I’ll have to grab a screwdriver and take it off.
And then throw it in the in the trash – or the nearest shopping cart.
Where else do you expect me to put it?