Monday, December 5, 2011

Un-learn Cards - Do You Realize?

Used to be a card-sender. Now, not so much. Here and there. And I almost never go into a drug store, and even less wander into the greeting card aisle when in a drug store. So, as I walked through that very area the other day, I was surprised at how many musical cards there are now.

They are fun. They are cute. My cousin loves to send them. They make people smile, laugh even. Happy! Good times.

Do you realize that every single one of those cute, fun, happy little things is considered e-waste?

But it's so small. So what? It's harmless. Am I really going to be this nit-picky? Well, yes. Because this is just one of those things that is a tiny useless piece of e-waste that will add up. How big of a pile is a million of these things? And because they are cards, no one thinks anything of throwing them in regular trash, when actually they are NOT regular trash. Tiny bits of chemicals... precious metals... for what? 2 seconds of "Oh ha ha how cute" then immediately forgotten? What's really the point?

Sure, it's so small it may as well be harmless. But where does it end? We aren't learning anything. We aren't changing for the better, we aren't improving, we just keep going in the wring direction. Here I was, in one aisle in one drug store in one small part of one big town in one big state, so let me think of how many times this scene is repeated. How about those that aren't sold, and just end up in a heap because they don't work anymore?

Staggering, isn't it?

Sure, they are NICE. They are pretty. They are delightful (for 5 seconds). WHAT'S the POINT? Do we need these? Can 't we enjoy a nice, full, satisfying life without these? Are you going to die thinking, "I'm so sorry I never sent or received a greeting card that played music."

I surely hope not.

This is another case of the big greeting card companies making scads of money on nothing-really-useful. And it's not like they are creating jobs. Some little factory in China surely makes these. Are they enriching our lives so much that we cannot do without them?

There are other ways to show love or spread a little smile. Better ways. They might take a little more time and effort than buying a card and sending it, but isn't that part of it? Am I being overly picky? Maybe. I'm OK with that.