So this past Sunday, as I’m swimming a few warm-up laps before my synchronized swim class, what do I spot in the bottom of the deep end? Plastic fish toys. And plastic rings and other random plastic toys. Makes sense, we use the pool at a private school that’s only K-8th grade, a lotta little kids use that pool, and they use the toys when learning to swim. It also explains the teeny-tiny lockers and the extra high chlorine levels.
And as I’m swimming and looking at the fish toys on the pool floor I’m reminiscing about my watery revelation of years back, the one about how all is cooking is simply about removing water from food, remember that one? And as I’m figuratively patting myself on the back while actually doing the crawl, I remember an article I read recently about real, living, plastic fish. Not little pink and blue and yellow plastic toy fish, but fish who’ve ingested millions of micro-particles of plastic that they mistook for food, and who are now made up of so much plastic, they’ve basically become that; plastic fish.
Toxic, inedible, chemical-filled plastic fish. Our oceans are so filled with discarded plastics, which get bashed, beaten and ground up by the energy of the sea into micro-particles, that our sea-life is now filled with plastic sand. They ingest it when they feed, and can’t digest it, so it gets stuck inside of them where it leaches all sorts of nastiness into their systems, and then they die because they become so bloated with indigestible particles that they starve to death, if they’re not first poisoned by the decaying trash inside them.
See why I hate lap swimming? It brings up all kinds of trauma for me. I strongly suggest you don’t do it. Switch to synchro, as it’s way more fun, and you get to wear lipstick and swim upside-down.
Plastic inside fish stomachs is bad enough. Never mind overfishing, mercury, rising water temperatures, algal blooms…Our poor sea-life, they really don’t have a chance, do they? We really are so intent on destroying everything around us, aren’t we? Didn’t anybody listen to Leo’s Oscar speech on Sunday? The plastic micro-particles come, of course, from plastic trash; water bottles, packaging, old toys, synthetic textile fibers, food wrappers, you name it.
And micro-beads. Those freaking micro-beads added to face scrubs for exfoliation purposes. Those nasty bits have been found in great lakes fish, too. Making this not just an oceanic fish problem, but a lake problem too. Ahh…petrochemicals, is there anything you can’t touch without turning it into toxic shit? And all because of some dinosaurs who decided to die and decay. Thanks a lot, dinosaurs, for dying and decaying and turning into oil. Look what a mess you’ve caused us now.
Oh, it’s Let’s Get Real’s 150th episode anniversary show, in case you’re wondering. And I’m swimming and ranting and making lists and everything. Tune in!