August 28, 2011

Plastic Challenge: Becca Ryals and Gordon Bennett, Week 29

week 29

Are there plastic-free pain killers?

Location:Berkeley, California, United States

Name: Becca Ryals and Gordon Bennett

Week: 29

Personal Info:

A couple and a couple of cats.

We’ve been busy this summer, so we haven’t posted our weekly tallies here in a while. We haven’t posted on this Challenge format since week 22, but we have just finished week 30. Rather than posting several posts here, you can check out our blog: (

Here’s week 29.

Becca Ryals and Gordon Bennett’s personal blog:

Total items: 13

Total weight: 6.4 ounces

Items: Recyclable
two gallons of bottle water

Items: Nonrecyclable
Southwest drink cup
three condiment cups
package of motrin, one of the small packages from the gas station
wrapper around firewood
ties around climbing rope
cliff bar wrapper
lid to kombucha (in glass bottle)
piece of nylon climbing rope
an old ziplock

What items can I easily replace with plastic free or less plastic alternatives?
two gallons of bottle water – we brought four 1L reusable water bottles on our camping trip along with a water filter, but there was no water at the campground. we bought two additional gallons in a nearby town.
Southwest drink cup – “oops” says Gordon, “I asked for the can!”
three condiment cups – “oops” says both of us. We keep forgetting about these.
cliff bar wrapper – we gave these up long ago, but bought a couple for the camping trip. totally not necessary.
lid to kombucha (in glass bottle) – We’ve been making our own at home, but bought a bottle on the road.
an old ziplock – this was laying around the house and we reused it one last time.

What items would I be willing to give up if a plastic free alternative doesn’t exist?
all of the above.

What items are essential and seem to have no plastic-free alternative?
package of motrin, one of the small packages from the gas station
wrapper around firewood – sometimes we harvest our own wood, but this campsite prohibited it.
ties around climbing rope
piece of nylon climbing rope – needed for rock climbing, but not essential for living

What lifestyle change(s) might be necessary to reduce my plastic consumption?

What one plastic item am I willing to give up or replace this week?

What other conclusions, if any, can I draw?
Road trips can happen with less plastic!

Beth Terry
Beth Terry

Pain killers... how about vodka? That comes in glass. :-)

Just kidding. I have a plastic bottle of ibuprofen too. And Naprosyn.

There are acupressure techniques for headaches and other pains. I've tried them, but I tend to be too impatient. I wish I had a magical answer.