Friday, November 5, 2010

Are Styrofoam Cups the Devil?

This post is has nothing to do with weight loss and isn't all that positive...but I need to vent so that's that.

Alrighty...we'll start with the title.  Let me preface this by saying that I'm all for taking care of the environment.  I understand we only have one Earth and so we must protect it.  I recycle, I reuse plastic bags, I turn lights off when I leave the room and I turn the water off while I brush my teeth.  That being said, in an effort to "go green" (anyone else entirely sick of that phrase?) my office has decided to do away with Styrofoam cups.  I don't have an issue with this if they replaced them with paper cups, reusable cups or something else equally recyclable.  Nope.  Nothing.  They took the cups and that was it.  We had a "Bring Your Favorite Mug Day" and they called it good.  Now...I always use my own coffee mug because it's just beyond cute.  However, I prefer using their cups for random cups of hot chocolate or water.  We have a water/ice machine that has pretty good water so I would use the cups for that...easy to count and measure and ice won't fit in my water bottle.  After the initial annoyance of the mere fact that they took away the cups wore off, I now have to deal with the unintended consequences of this action.  The kitchenette has 3 refrigerators, a 3 pot coffee maker and the needed accessories (sweeteners, stirrers, etc.), 3 microwaves and 1 sink.  This is supposed to accommodate over 250 people.  Yes...1 sink.  If you're using a cup for all your coffee, tea, water, soda,'re going to have to rinse out your cup.  So there's a backlog of people in there ALL THE TIME waiting to use the sink...causing people to not be able to open refrigerators to get lunches, causing a backup at the's chaos I tell you!  On top of all this, they have no dish soap.  They have hand soap which is what people are using to clean their dishes.  Now I don't claim to be a soap expert but why make hand soap and dish soap separate things if they're not meant to be used as such???  Disgusting!  We all know that the real reason they've done away with the cups has nothing to do with "going green" but with the costs.  In the little flyer they gave us talking about how many cups are thrown out each year, they just happen to mention how much it costs our site to purchase said cups for a year.  Anything to save a buck.  So that's my Styrofoam vent for the day.

Still going with blasting my office for stuff.  They did a "reduction in force" yesterday.  For anyone who hasn't worked in the corporate world, it means they fired people.  They're "job eliminations" and they're making getting the severance pay difficult.  First off, you'd think with all the money they're saving on Styrofoam cups, they could afford to keep a few of these jobs.  But I digress...luckily, my job has been spared.  I work for a bank (not a branch) and overall it's a good bank.  If someone were looking for financial services, I wouldn't hesitate to recommend my company to anyone.  But sometimes it feels like I work for the devil.  So many of our jobs have been shipped overseas since I started working here.  I know eventually they'll send me to Manila or Mumbai to train my replacement.  I'm prepared for it and know I'll land on my feet one way or another but it's so frustrating.  They talk about how consumers aren't spending right now and how that's affecting our bottom line but what they don't see is how they exacerbate the problem.  Banks have owned up to (didn't have much choice) the role they played in the housing market bubble bursting and the hedge fund issues but this is something no one is crucifying them for but should be.  You lay off hundreds of people every year and send those jobs offshore.  Then you wonder why these same people aren't spending money???  Who do you think your customers are???  Then of course, when raise time comes around and we get something (if we're lucky) that doesn't even cover the rate of inflation, I'm told to just "feel grateful I have a job."  Yeah...working for the devil.

Since we're talking about things that bug me today...politics.  Now I'm involved in politics as much as anybody else.  I keep up with the issues and I vote in every election.  That being said, this year just absolutely killed politics for me.  What's sad is that it wasn't the politicians that did it.  It was the people.  The left wing/right wing...can't have a conversation without them blaming the other party for something...can't have a conversation without it turning into a political debate...can't have a political debate without it being reduced to childish name calling and irrational arguments...people.  I'm all for's how ideas are exchanged.  And you can debate with someone whom you know you're not going to convince them of anything and still enjoy it and be productive.  But not this year.  Everyone is so polarized and out to get the other people.  It's really quite sad that it's all come down to this.  Democrats are "heartbroken" by the results and republicans are smug about their "win" (getting the feeling I'm an Independent?).  Give me a break.  They act as if there's some HUGE difference in political parties.  Politicians are politicians.  They are in it for themselves...not US...and anyone who honestly believes that one party is truly representing the needs/wants of the country as a whole over another party is just naive.  Now I could go off on a tirade about how this is always going to happen as long as we have a two party system and how until you elect a true MODERATE into office, you're going to have these same issues.  But I won't.  I won't because I am sick to death of politics and all the word implies.  Nuff said.

I think that's all the griping I'm doing today.  I had my first parent/teacher conference ever for my oldest daughter.  Academically, she's doing fantastic.  Too smart for her own good.  They tested her for an advanced reading group and while she's not quite ready for that, they are going to make sure she's challenged a little bit more in her current reading group.  She loves to write letters and is one of the best writers in her class (kindergarten so we're talking being able to tell what the letters ARE. LOL) and she's excelling at Math and numbers problems.  All good stuff.  Then the teacher mentioned that normally Maddie is bubbly and happy and is one of her easiest students but in the past week or two, she's become a bit of a handful and is showing some attitude.  Since it was such a drastic change for her, the teacher wanted to bring it up to see if we could provide some insight into what might be wrong or if something happened at home.  We told the teacher we had noticed it too but couldn't pinpoint anything that's happened that would cause a shift in attitude.  This has me a little concerned but her teacher said if there hasn't been any big changes, then it's probably just a phase.  I hope so. 

Weekend should be pretty laid back.  Taking this weekend off as far as walks go in order to rest up a bit for the big event.  I gotta get all my packing stuff in order.  Sunday, I'm dying my hair pink.  That's right...PINK.  Not my whole head...just putting some chunks of pink in but it's going to be freakin' awesome.  I checked with my boss and there's nothing in the dress code against it so I won't get in trouble...good thing.  I'll only have the pink in for a couple weeks...just over the walk and a little while after until I get around to taking it out.  I'm pretty excited about it!  I'm also going to try to get some housework done this weekend.  November is a busy, busy month this year with the 3 Day, Thanksgiving (I host) and my youngest daughter's birthday the weekend after Thanksgiving.  Lots to do, lots to clean and lots to cook.  Still haven't hopped on the scale.  I don't think I will until Monday.  I have my next fill appointment November 15th...the day after my walk.  I was thinking about rescheduling it because it'd be nice to not have to do liquids that day.  But then I thought...nope.  This is what lifestyle changes are all about.  Stick to your schedule.  So I am.  Thinking I may go see a movie that day.  Anyhoo...that's all I got today.  Hope y'all have a fantastic weekend!  I'll leave you with this (a Family Guy reference of all things meaning "What bugs you?"): 

What grinds your gears?


~Lisa~ (Mrs C) said...

Hey Lady! TGIF to you! Sounds like you're ready for a good weekend - can't wait to see a picture of you with pink hair!

Vent on! That's what we're here for, and it's good for the soul and well being. You're not alone, I like my stryofoam cups too.. Maybe you can keep a sleeve in your desk for your own personal use. And as far as politics go, you've read MY vent! I'm with YOU - it's getting beyond crazy, and I'm just about sick to death of it all!

Have a terrific and restful weekend.. (((hugs))) to you!

Patrick said...

George Foreman grills grind my axe. They do a poor job grippling meat, and the machines do not last long. A month after first use, the difference in hot and cool spots is rediculous. george Forman, a great boxer, but a crap piece of equipment.

amandakiska said...

I'm sorry about your job stress. You are right about shipping the jobs overseas. That is just such a dumb thing. We will all pay for that idiocy.

I do have to say, however, (and don't hate me) that I am glad your company is no longer providing the styrofoam cups. Those little bits of foamy-plastic NEVER, EVER biodegrade EVER. That sink situation sounds like a nightmare though. I'd probably wash mine in the bathroom I guess. I doubt there's any big difference between hand soap and dish soap.

I hear ya on the elections too! I'm liberal, but I hate how extreme politics have become. Where are the moderates? Where are the people working accross party lines?

Anonymous said...

I sometimes think that "Going Green" is more about the money savings and less about the environment. What would they say if you bought your own sleeve of disposable cups?