08/29/2006:"Who needs oil, anyway?"
Sitting in a meeting yesterday, I was struck by the irony that on one side of me, a person was drinking decaffeinated coffee, while on the other side, a person was drinking caffeinated water. The plastic bottle the water was in got me thinking: how many products do Americans use every day that are made using petroleum products? Here's a little list I found:
Ballet tights, nylon cord, women's polyester blouses, beads, pajamas, women's polyester pants, bracelets, pantyhose, nylon zippers, plastic hangers, permanent press clothing, dresses, purses, thongs/flip flops, earrings, ribbons, fake fur, windbreakers, sandals, garment bags, shoe laces, rain coats, iron-on patches, sneakers, sweaters, men's nylon undershirts, sofa pillow material, men's polyester shirts, men's polyester slacks, tote bags, umbrellas, Ball point pens, diskettes, thermometer, Ink, computers, typewriter ribbon/cartridges, business card holders, copiers, waste baskets, calculators, printer ribbon cartridges, microfilm, carbon paper, protractor, name tags, correction fluid, ring binder, erasers, rulers, letter divider, scotch tape, magic markers, telephone, Back packs, fishing lures, air mattresses, Polaroid camera, beach balls, fishing poles, hang gliders, vinyl cases, cameras, footballs, glue containers, puzzles, darts, Frisbees, golf ball/bags, shotgun shell casing, ear plugs, knitting needles, waterproof jackets, stadium cushion, earphones, yarm, kites, tennis racquet, fabric dye, decoys, lifejacket, nylon strings, face protectors, volley balls, model cars, plastic water gun, fishing bobbers, soccer balls, oil paints, parachutes, fishing cylume, light stick, earphones, playing cards, photographs, monofilament fishing lines, diving boards, poker chips, goggles, roller-skate wheels, whistles, guitar strings, picks, rafts, ice chests, tents, sleeping bags, pole vaulting poles, motorcycle helmets, skis, rubber cement, plastic flower pots, water skis, hot tub covers, sails, snorkels, monkey bars, photo albums, wet suits, flippers, tennis balls, boats, insulated boots, Acrylic toys, baby oil, laundry basket, waterproof pants, baby aspirin, bath soap, mittens, pacifiers, baby blanket, bibs, rattles, double-knit shirts, baby bottles, disposable diapers, baby shoes, teething ring, nipples, dolls, stuffed animals, baby lotion, Allergy medication, cotton-tipped swabs, inhalator liquid, Pepto-Bismol, aspirin, first aid cream, lancet for blood testing, pill case, band aids, first aid kits, latex gloves, prescription bottle, burn lotion, glycerin, mosquito spray, rubbing alcohol, chap stick, heart valve replacement, nasal decongestant, surgical tape, syringes, Vaseline, antiseptics, hearing aids, anesthetics, artificial limbs, eye glasses, antihistamines, cortisone, vaporizers, Bactine, oxygen masks, stethoscope, prescription glasses, cologne, hair brushes, lipstick, permanent wave curlers, perfume, hair color, mascara, petroleum jelly, comb, foam rubber curlers, denture adhesives, shampoo, contact lens/case, hair spray, hand lotion, shaving foam, cough syrup, hearing aids, hair dryers, shoe inserts, dentures, Keri body lotion, face masks, skin cleanser, deodorants, laxatives, moisturizing cream, soap holder, disposable razors, leather conditioner, mouth wash, sun glasses, facial toner, lens cleanser, nail polish, sunscreen, tooth brushes, toothpaste tubes, vitamins, synthetic wigs, bubble bath, soap, capsules, vinegar bottles, egg carton, meat trays, trash bags, bread box, freezer containers, melamine dishware, tumblers, cake decorations, jars, microwave divided dishes, utensils, candles, freezer bags, milk jugs, vacuum bottles, coasters, gelatin molds, nylon spatulas, wax paper, coffee pots, ice cream scoops, oven bags, mops, drinking cups, ice trays, plastic containers, fabric softener, detergent, liter bottles, plastic table service, drain stoppers, dish drainer, lunch boxes, pudding molds, sponges, dish scrubber brush, baggies, drinking straws, Styrofoam, paper cup dispenser, measuring cups, Teflon coated pans, table cloths, refrigerator shelves, Carpet padding, naugahyde, Venetian blinds, TV cabinets, extension cords, picture frames, flocked wallpaper, shower doors, Formica, refrigerator lining, vinyl-coated wallpaper, curtains, kitchen carpet, shag carpet, welcome mats, fan blades, lamps, shower curtain, patio furniture, swings, linoleum, upholstery material, rugs, caulking material, light switch plates, plunger, faucet washer, clothesline, measuring tape, polyurethane stain, water pipe, electric saw, paint brush, propane bottles, wood floor cleaner/wax, vinyl electrical tape, plastic pipe, shingles (asphalt), light panels, garden hose, plastic wood, spackling paste, awnings, glazing compound, Plexiglas, spray paint, enamel, epoxy paint, artificial turf, folding doors, floor wax, glue, house paint, paint rollers, toilet seats, water pipes, putty, solvents, roofing material, plywood adhesive, sockets, propane, Anti-freeze, flat tire fix, street paving (asphalt), car battery case, coolant, motor oil, tires, loud speakers, bearing grease, sports car bodies, traffic cones, car enamel, brake fluid, dash boards, windshield wipers, visors, car sound insulation, oil filters, car seats, convertible tops, fan belts, gasoline, Ash trays, dog food dishes, tool boxes, cd's, balloons, dog leash, tape recorders, synthetic rubber, bubble gum, dog toys, flashlights, nylon rope, bungee strap, fertilizer, flight bags, disposable lighters, cassette player, flea collars, flutes, lighter fluid, cigarette case, electric blankets, tool racks, name tags, cigarette filters, ammonia, insecticides, newspaper tubes, calibrated container, insect repellent, food preservatives, phonograph records, crayons, ice buckets, dyes, pillows, credit cards, flashlights, fly swatter, plastic cup holder, dice, movie film, k-resin, plastic tie, polyethylene, polypropylene, rain bonnets, luggage, video cassettes, charcoal lighter, rayon, safety glasses, safety gloves, safety hats, shoe polish, signs, cassette tapes, toys, watch bands, waterproof boots, shopping bags, bed spreads, traffic cones, check books covers, tobacco pouches, clothes hangers, flea collars, flavors, masking tape, safety flares, flags, signs
Somehow, I don't think driving more fuel-efficient cars is going to help very much....maybe we need some wheat plastic?