pile of colored straws
Image courtesy of jeff_golden/Flickr.

In a previous post, “Hold the Straw, and Other Tips for a Humane and Sustainable Life,” I wrote about my frustration every time I receive a straw in my glass of water at a restaurant. I just can’t understand why restaurants would choose to use a single-use, petroleum-based product that becomes trash in minutes, especially when they are wholly unnecessary and cost money, time, and effort. It just seems like such a lose-lose decision.

At one local restaurant where I eat periodically, they bring water with a straw so fast that I often don’t have time to request my water sans straw before it’s in front of me at the table. I’ve gotten into the habit of asking the server to please hold the straw before I’m even seated.

Recently, the server happened to be an environmental advocate herself, and not only did she hold the straw when I explained why I’d asked, she decided that she would hold the straw from now on with every table. And then she informed the kitchen of her decision.

I loved that. By using my voice, I created an immediate system change. So simple.

So use your voice. You’d be surprised at how quickly you can make a difference.

~ Zoe

Zoe Weil, President, Institute for Humane Education
Author of Most Good, Least Harm; Above All, Be Kind; and The Power and Promise of Humane Education
My TEDxDirigo talk: “The World Becomes What You Teach
My TEDxYouth@CEHS “How to Be a Solutionary”


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