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Don’t you DARE throw away that bottle

Submitted by on Wednesday, 2 September 2009 2 Comments

waterThe insignia for the 11th Armored Cavalry Regiment, Fort Irwin’s resident experts at playing the opposition when other units come to train, is a black horse.

A water bottle would be more appropriate. I see those every day. I’ve yet to see a black horse, though Dad tells me I’m just not looking in the right places.

I have no desire to look. I have enough trouble tracking down our water bottles, much less horse. And in a land where the high temperature last month was 109 and has dropped below 100 only nine times in the month we’ve been here, you need to keep a water bottle at hand.

We’re an exceptionally forgetful family, though. Big Guy alone should have at least six water bottles to his name – including three I bought during his first soccer season because I didn’t have time to go home before practice and kept forgetting them in the morning.

I can currently find exactly four of the dozens of water bottles we’ve bought over the years, and that’s only if the one Big Guy forgot at school today still is on his desk tomorrow.

That’s why I’ve become obsessively preoccupied with plastic.

The guys barely have a chance to finish a drink before I grab the bottle out of their hands. “That’s going to the freezer.”

Dad downs his Gatorade – another addiction that’s developed since we moved here – and I quickly grab that bottle, too. “You’ll thank me tomorrow.”

Forget the vegetables. Forget the popsicles. Clear the freezer, gents! We need to make room for more ice bottles.

I fill the bottle halfway with water, let it freeze and add water in the next morning. The chill factor’s higher if you tilt the bottle as you freeze it – that way, there’s ice working at the top and bottom in the early stages.

Big Guy usually can make it until at least noon with ice still in his bottle. Boots got upset at first because the ice didn’t move, but he’s learned to like it since we started finding shapes inside the ice.

We haven’t seen the Virgin Mary yet, though we did have a really cool air bubble the other day that stopped just shy of spanning the width of the bottle. “Cool, Mommy! You blew me a balloon in there!” Boots said.

The beauty of this form of recycling is it doesn’t matter if you lose the bottle – as members of this family are wont to do. You’ve enjoyed the drink you bought, and you’ve used the bottle again. Anything else is gravy.

Besides, within a week you’ll see that deranged look in your mother’s eye as you sip your soda, and you’ll know she’s ready to pounce the second you drain the drink. Another bottle’s headed for the freezer.

Copyright 2009 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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  • Sprite said:

    That’s a great idea, not to mention I can just see you eyeball to eyeball, staring down a half finished water bottle. *hugs*

  • Debra said:

    You pretty much nailed me on that one! :)

    I’m sure it’ll only be about another week before the guys start catching on to my fanaticism. They’re already pretty good about bringing the bottles back to the freezer. It’s partly out of self-interest, because otherwise they’re going to have tepid drinks. Soon, I just know they’re going to start volunteering the empties.