Let’s Talk Trashy

I have to face it, I do not like it when people talk trash about me.  In the past, I have been called crazy, selfish, witch, and many other very un-flattering things.  Some of those did have the effect intended and pissed me off.

So now it is my turn to talk trash about some of my fellow humans.

“You PIGS!!! You Plastic Consuming PIGS!”

“You anti social litter bugs!”

“Did you smoke and toss that butt on the ground?  Pick that piece of trash up you PIG!”

Maybe a more blunt abusive language would get your attention?  Well, I am not going to use abusive language.

Why have I gone to name calling and trash talking to get your attention?

Here is why…

Over the holiday the Hubby and I went for a walk on the beautiful Dutch beach.  When I say beautiful, I mean, at first look, it is not covered in trash like some of the beaches I have visited around the world. South Padre Island, Texas comes to mind as one of the worst I have visited in recent years. If you don’t see it when you visit there then I encourage you to take a few steps into the dunes.  You will find a sad sight, trash piled in piles right in the middle of a National Wildlife Refuge!

The beaches here in The Netherlands are not lined with multi million euro homes with a beach front view. The Dutch figured out a long time ago that the beaches provide a natural barrier from the sea, a valuable natural protection for its inhabitants.

Some of what we collected before I cleaned and sorted

Some of what we collected before I cleaned and sorted

The Hubby and I have been moved by the recent articles and movements on climate change.  We see the changes as we travel, paddle, and hike not just here in The Netherlands but in the United States.  The one thing we notice more than anything else is the amount of plastic and other trash that ends up in the water due to careless actions of our fellow humans.

Nice collection of trash fished out of Big Marine Lake.

Nice collection of trash fished out of Big Marine Lake.

I documented some of this last year when I paddled in the early Spring in Minnesota.  The early Spring lakes are crystal clear and thus reveal the trashy ways of my fellow Minnesotans.

Second sack of items getting cleaned

Second sack of items getting cleaned

As we walked down the beach we looked at the sand.  We started finding the beach was not as clean as our eyes first perceived.  Within minutes and less than 500 meters we had collected over 20 liters of plastic trash!  I have to admit the plastic sack I found full of dog poop stayed on the beach!

I follow a blog written by two Dutch sea kayakers that recently talked about the amount of plastic they find washed up on the beaches in Scotland. All Exclusive Cruises have seen the effects up close and personal to how the trash of us humans tossed out into the water is effecting the ocean life.  I would encourage you to read about what they found this last year.

Why, maybe you ask, would we pick up trash and not just put it in the nearest plastic recycle bin?  Why clean and sort it out?

We feel we can’t change our behavior or the way others think about usage without understanding what is being carelessly throw out.

I personally have been against plastic one use shopping bags (yes, WALMART, TARGET and any other companies that produce and use those damn things, get my message!) for years.  I bring my own reusable bags to the store. When someone comments to me about bringing my own bag and what a great idea that is, I tell them why I do it.

“I kayak, I find these damn things everywhere!”  Blunt and true I continue, “I hate them!”

A collection of cleaned trashed items removed from the beach

A collection of cleaned trashed items removed from the beach

With this small collection from the Dutch beach we wanted to know what we would find.  Did it wash up on shore?

Was it carelessly tossed by other beach walkers?

Are there other bloggers that will want to talk trashy with us?

Can we bring attention to a problem by focusing our attentions on this subject? A subject that seems to be overlooked by corporate profits and international news headlines.

A collection of cleaned trash

A collection of cleaned trash

So here is what we found.

Can you identify any of this?


Plastic bags.




Tennis ball.


Some of it was so small (micro plastics) that we no longer identify its original purpose, can’t place the blame on a person or a company.  That fact alone does not make the problem disappear, doesn’t make the clean up of the small items in our environment less necessary.

If there is one resolution that we hope everyone can make this year, please make the resolution to use less plastic.  Maybe find a way to dispose of it properly.

We really want to stop talking trash about you.

Maybe you already have found a way to reduce and reuse.  Have you collected or seen an issue with plastics in your area?  Are there local programs in your area that help in the reduction of plastic items in your environment?  We would love to hear how you are tackling this issue!  Please leave your comments below.

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