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How Do We recycle?

Recycle, Reuse, Restore. It’s kind of a catchy little mantra isn’t it?

In general though, how do we implement it? I usually hear the same line every election season. I’m not going to vote because one vote really isn’t going to make a difference. I guess if we all lived by that garage logic we wouldn’t have to wait in long lines and drive around town looking for our polling places any more. Luckily the moral majority doesn’t think this way. Instead we do drive all over town and we do stand in long lines so we can fulfill our civic duty.

So what about recycling, reusing & restoring?

Do the moral majority of people have the same sense of responsibility to separating out their garbage? Do we throw caution to the wind and just lump everything into one big barrel, sleeping soundly knowing that a strange kind of magic will make it all go away by the time we wake up?

Putting my money where my mouth is. Getting back to the mantra of recycle, reuse and restore brings me to a plastic chair I came across by a dump bin the other day. It was in perfectly good shape and just needed a little cleaning. I brought it home and set it out in the back yard to take the hose and scrub brush to it. Silke saw old, beat-up chair before I got that far and asked what I intended to do with it. She suggested spray painting it and my new free chair suddenly had a purpose. I would restore it to a whole new level!

Krylon Fusion Spray Paint Can

A quick search in the hardware store brought me to the spray paint isle. There it was! A whole section of spray paints exclusive to covering plastic. I wasn’t too caught up in the moment to not check the price of a brand new plastic chair. What would be the sense of going through all this trouble if I ended up spending more on the spray paint then I would for a new chair?

A single can of spray paint was half the price of a new chair. Seeing as how the chair was free, I still felt I was coming out ahead. Besides, I was going for a whole new color that the plastic chair people hadn’t even dreamed of: Red Pepper.

Old Chair Before Spray Paint

Old Chair

Old Chair After Spraypainting

Old Chair Made New

The one hit wonder. I had set the chair on newspaper and stepped back shaking the spray can to make sure it wouldn’t come out in big blobs right away. For such a little chair there was a lot of area to cover. I had to be frugal with the amount I wanted to put on so I wouldn’t end up running out before I had finished.

It really didn’t take that long as the spray paint dried rather quickly on the plastic chair.

If I had wanted to completely cover the whole chair I would have had to buy two cans of paint. This was not an option. I covered the visible areas and left the under side it’s ‘original color’.

Not only had I recycled the doomed chair, and restored it but I had every intent to reuse it as well.

Attitudes can change. A lot has changed due in large part to more self awareness. There is no magic that happens when you wake up and bring your garbage can back from the curb. The trash we throw out doesn’t just disappear, but actually goes somewhere like the dump, some back alley, the side of the road or into our oceans. If we keep this in mind we’ll be a little more self aware of how we handle the things we discard.

Do you recycle, reuse and restore? Leave us a comment below. 

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