She looked over miles of stretched out sodden plastic. She remembered how- as a kid- the sand would grit in between her toes and the sun would beat down above the crashing sea.

Now the waves brought the decomposed by the thousands, and a synthetic musk rested atop the cluttered beach.

What can we do? What cure was there for this- this perversion of five generations? Was this worth the convenience, the sterilization, the cancer? This perfect material- a near impervious polymer- made the world she lived in so easy to enjoy, yet how long can hedonism abstain us from self destruction? Not long.

The best she could do was pick this up and move it: make this place pretty again while making another beach- someone else’s beach- a waterfront trash heap. What could I possibly do, she thought, to make a dent in this- to frame a message that not only gets the world involved, but ensures resolute action?

She kicked a Styrofoam cup. It burst and sailed in the wind. She pulled out her phone and took picture. “This is the beach I played on as a kid.” she wrote, “It used to be covered in sand, now not even the geese will touch this water. I am not proud of being human or even American if it means having all my life been a part of this- having helped cause this. How are we the thinking apes if we can’t even think up a way not to poison our home world?

“Help me clean this beach, help me fix our world.”

She uploaded the image and grabbed a few bags from her car, and got to work. After an hour, while she mapped her progress, someone came- then another- until fifty people helped clean the beach. Before long their bags were full and the sand on the ground- though still full of plastic- gritted between their toes.

We aren’t done yet, she thought. We have much farther to go.



-Life has become complicated. Not a single one of us is innocent in the systematic destruction of our world- I know I am little to no help, but I want to be. If you are part of a clean-up group, or if you want to be- I applaud you. It’s past time to get to work on solving our most fundamental problems as a species: protecting the future.

While it may seem a distant problem, it will effect you, your wallet, your kids, and their kids. It will destroy your life as you know it and bring about a new kind of desperation never before seen in human history. We no longer live in a world where we can continue to live as we do- so I ask, what are you doing to help?

Please, in the comments below- tell me what I can do to help solve these issues. Tell me what you’re doing to solve these issues. None of us wants to live in a landfill.


Featured image credit here


6 thoughts on “Plastic Beach

  1. This is a great story, inspiring and positive. We all must work together, but we don’t. Raising awareness is a good start though.

  2. A lovely story and one I thinks that captures the essence of what can be done by each and every one of us.
    My advice: small everyday gestures. Try to buy products that aren’t wrapped in plastic; go to the butcher with a glass container. Stop drinking soft drinks, look at where the food and products you buy come from. Look at the composition of your shampoo and detergents and move to more natural products. Try and buy clothes that don’t contain synthetic materials (they create microplastic beads in the wash and then pollute the oceans). Try and take public transportation more often.
    If you do even one of these things you are already helping.

    1. Thanks for reading and for the helpful comment!

      It is next to impossible these days to avoid plastic packaging- even our pens are plastic! If only wishing it were better helped.

      Oh and don’t forget to take shorter showers! No need to be in there for thirty minutes every day..

    1. It really doesn’t!

      But I still have hope, it’s the ten or fifteen people who make great changes that the rest often follow. The question is, who among us is willing to step up?

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