Weekly weigh in number four

Filed in Blog by on July 2, 2008 7 Comments
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weekly weigh in number four
This week’s weigh in is what’s technically known as a ‘bit of a balls up’.

To begin with we had a week and a half rubbish, as we were away for some of last week. Me being me, I smugly believed I would be showing off today with hugely reduced amount of waste, and a nice dip on the graph (have you seen our lovely graph over in the right hand menu system?) despite the fact it was a week and a half’s worth.

But yesterday evening, Little Miss Green showed me a rather dramatic bleeding hand. Not being content with a ‘I cut it on something sharp’ story; as she couldn’t meet my gaze; I finally managed to eek the truth from her.

She had taken one of my blue glass bottles of hand cream out with her and the bottle had smashed. She wasn’t supposed to take it out with her, obviously, and she’d tried to maintain her secret by hiding the glass into a hedge. <snigger> Too much reading Enid Blyton I say. That’s how she ended up cutting her hand; by forcing bits of broken glass into aforementioned hedge. Poor love. I don’t know what was worse, the cut hand or having to admit what she had done.

So, a big hearty cheer for Little Miss green for having the courage to tell me the truth. We went out and cleared up all the glass with stories of little hedge sparrows cutting their feet to warm the heart and soothe the tears. Unfortunately though, we ended up with a carrier bag for the landfill with broken blue glass wrapped up in newspaper.

You can’t put broken glass out for the glass kerbside collection, and some authorities won’t take blue glass per se.

So, I duly accepted my grief and packed it up for the landfill.

However, there is more to this epic saga. I was a bit miffed, but philosophical about the whole shit ‘waste happens’ idea when Mr Green, how shall we put it, got a bit of a bee in his bonnet.

He told me that this was NOT going to end up in the landfill. He had put it all into the porch and he claimed that the next time we visited the recycling centre it was coming with us to go into the brown glass collection. I argued that this was not acceptable and we’d contaminate the load; with visions of Mrs A flogging and stoning me and of the polar ice caps melting in an instance as a consequence of my crime.

But he was what might be called adamant and in true Adam Ant style; as long as we don’t have any car trouble my handsome Prince Charming will stand and deliver the blue bottle into the brown bank like a true Goody two shoes.

Personally, I think if it’s going anywhere it should go in the GREEN bottle bank, but then he retorted with ‘well some people are colour blind, how do you think they manage?

When you get a comment like that you know it’s best to leave it, walk away calmly, grab yourself a snifter or two and leave the conversation for another day.

In the meantime I’ve written to our council to find out the real deal on getting rid of blue broken glass.

All this is a very long winded way of saying that we’ve maintained our SUPERMIDDLEWEIGHT status of one small carrier bags worth and we weighed in at 454g.

Pretty good, as we’ve STILL lost a little weight (30g to be precise) AND we had a week and a half’s worth full of holiday goodies such as the hugest poppadom box you e’er did see, some plastic meat packaging and a few hummousy and shop bought salad plastic offenders.

I guess I’d better get that yogurt maker out and start reducing things ready for next week – just look at all those yogurt pots; I could sculpt them into the leaning tower of pizza.

Oh, and incase I look like an uncaring Mother, Little Miss Green’s hand is completely fine – we just washed it, put some magic cream on it AND she got her first ever plaster; which took away all the pain in an instant. I’m not even going to grumble that I now have a plaster to put in the landfill…….

About the Author ()

I am a long time supporter of the Green and Sustainable lifestyle. After being caught in the Boscastle floods in 2004, our family begun a journey to respect and promote the importance of Earth's fragile ecosystem, that focussed on reducing waste. Inspired by the beauty and resourcefulness of this wonderful planet, I have published numerous magazine articles on green issues and the author of four books.

Comments (7)

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  1. Poor little Miss Green but LOL at Mr Green’s tenacity re the blue glass. Question is…are you going to paint his face in the Adam Ant style and allow him on horseback to ride to the recycling centre?

  2. Mrs Green says:

    Hey Mrs A, well I’ve just been really mean LOL! I phoned the council and was told that blue glass goes in with the BROWN glass **shock; I was WRONG!**

    I just had the following conversation with Mr Green about the glass:

    Me: So, what was it we bet again on where the blue glass gets recycled?
    Him: (pre coffee, so not in the best frame of mind). You said it couldn’t be recycled, and I said it could.
    Me: yes, but which colour bank would it go in?
    Him: Ummm, brown.
    Me: you said Brown?
    Him: Yes, didn’t I? No green, it would be green because green is closer to the colour blue.
    Me: So you didn’t say brown then – are you sure?
    Him: No, I didn’t say brown; I said green.
    Me: HA! well, you were wrong then and should have stuck with your original answer and trusted yourself because it’s BROWN. And now you’ve lost the bet.

    **Toss of hair and walk out of room**

    Off to find the face paint and saddle up the horse….

  3. Mr Green says:

    Ok ‘Ma Green’, this was all pre-coffee, which is another way of saying brain and mouth are not synchonised. However, I feel pretty cool about the idea that most glass ends up broken once deposited and blue glass must be acceptable somehow. It would be useful to know how ‘tolerant’ the recycling and sorting process is to mixed items. I mean green with clear and brown with clear glass etc. I’m guessing that some ‘humourous’ people mix these up anyway, or just get it wrong ‘pre-coffee’! This raises the same question for plastics. We know someone who openly mixes different types of plastics and deposits these in the ‘Milk & Water plastics recycling bin only’ stating, “it’s not my job to sort one plastic from another”

    We’ll look into the tolerance issue and let you know, unless someone has some inside knowledge about this…?

  4. Fumblina says:


    I think I have read that clear glass was the most valuable and brown the least with green (and blue?) in the middle. And if the containers are contaminated with the wrong colour glass they just get down-graded to brown quality.

    I don’t know what they do with other contaminants: for example I don’t know a safe way to get the metal sleeve off the neck of an olive oil bottle. But I guess any process hot enough to melt glass is going to melt or destroy everything else first?

    I can’t find the original link I read but here are some others:


    http://www.cwc.org/gl_bp/gbp2-0403.htm – this one talks about contaminant tolerances and the amazing way contaminants can be filtered out

    http://www.wasteonline.org.uk/resources/InformationSheets/Glass.htm – this one talks about low grade glass being used by the construction industry and I have seen our local council using ground green glass as a filler instead of sand when laying paving bricks.

    http://www.greenhome.com/info/articles/reduce_reuse_recycle/113/ – this one has a nice list for recycled glass at the end and is a reminder that we do need to find use for the stuff we recycle.

    Cheers Fum 🙂

  5. Poppy says:

    No idea about glass and plastic, but I’m told paper can cope with 5% contaminates 🙂

  6. Mrs Green says:

    Thanks Poppy; we’re trying to collect this sort of information for an FAQ section, so I’ll file that away for future use….

  7. Mrs Green says:

    Hi Fumblina!

    Your comment was caught in the spam folder because of the links in the post – doh! I didn’t think to check there this morning.

    Thanks for the great information, there is plenty there for us all to read through. It’s all very interesting stuff – I would never have believed how much there was to learn about ‘rubbish’ and recycling!

    thanks again and sorry for the delay with sorting this out,

    Mrs G x

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