Priyanka and the Case of the non-biodegradable straw

She’s a student by day and Slender Loris watcher at night. She’s the face you see in the papers screaming out against the poisoning of yet another lake. She’s crazy about birds and wild about elephants. She’s a lass with eco-friendly sass. She’s also the best environmentalist I know.

World, say hello to my friend Priyanka and yes, she’s only nineteen.

How many of you think twice before using a straw to drink your juice? I definitely don’t. I’m sure nobody else in college does either. How else are we supposed to drink what we’ve bought, right?

And among the millions of people who can’t identify a problem that is staring at them in the face, screaming out for help, there is fortunately one Priyanka who always finds a solution.

So what is this great thing she did when she found out that one of the Cafe’s in our college was offering free plastic straws, whose unchecked use, could potentially fill our trash cans with non-biodegradable junk?

She went and asked them to stop giving straws.

But obviously, it wasn’t as easy as that. The staff had a legitimate reason not to listen to her plea. What could they do if the students asked for one? It’s a business after all and customer is king.

So she did the next simple thing that popped into her head. She targeted the customers i.e all the staff and students that came to the cafe. She stood in front of their counter, for two hours, urging each and every person who came to not take the straw. And well, they listened.

Maybe it was the passion and dedication with which she was fighting this little cause or the fact that she had addressed the only obstacle they were facing, but believe it or not,  the straws were soon put away by the staff, never to be seen again.

That’s all it took. Two hours of coaxing the public to switch to greener options and the task was done. Our campus was straw less again and peace had been restored upon the world.

No protests staged, no articles written, no campaigns signed and no PIL’s filed. That’s the power of a simple word. And sometimes people listen, not because you tell them the solution but because they finally hear the problem.

On behalf of all of us, rediscovering our love for drinking our juices and ice teas, straight out of the paper cups, without the help of those pretty/colorful/curly/ funny planet destroyers, I thank her for setting an example with both her words and deeds.



2 responses to “Priyanka and the Case of the non-biodegradable straw

  1. Great post! Only the other day I was thinking about the un-needed mass consumption of straws, and it’s ridiculous! As a product designer,of course I’m thinking about alternatives and a way to solve this problem big time x


  2. Yes! That’s so true.I’ve never realized how pointless they were until my friend pointed it out in class. Such an eye-opener!
    Wow. You’re a product designer? That’s fascinating. What kind of products do you design?


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