The other day I found myself sitting on a bench made of an interesting material. I would not have given it a second thought, but I realized I wasn’t burning my bottom on hot aluminum or steel. The material was brown. Brown I wondered? Upon looking a little more intently on this brown seat to rest and recline my tired body, I saw a decal that read the bench was made with 1,050 recycled plastic milk jugs. I was impressed.
Consumers always thought of recycling but never really acted upon it until recent decades. Even though Earth Day was named in April 1970 by a US Senator, it really gained momentum in the 1990’s through the present. During that time, it also became an international movement where other countries celebrated Earth Day as well. Some even extended it to Earth Week.
So we know about recycling the basics such as plastic bottles, cartons, glass bottles, and aluminum cans and so forth. The list is long, yet the end result of all our recycling efforts can be fascinating just like that sturdy bench that offered me a seat. The other side of recycling is reusing. The internet offers a galore of websites to peak your creative side in recycling-reusing our everyday discards. Children’s crafts many times use empty cartons or toilet paper rolls. This all makes recycling fun and involves and teaches young ones.
A great example of reusing can be found at Rotterdam’s Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen, where you will come upon a lovely tennis bench like no other. This bench is brought to us by Dutch designer Tejo Remy. He used real tennis balls to create this work of art. It is quite a sight to see. It resembles a giant piece of PVC pipe covered in yellow balls. Museum visitors can sit and muse at the art hanging on the walls. Some are even giving this designer some ideas to make a tennis ball couch. How comfortable would it be to sit on? Not sure, but you may want to bring a lint roller with you.