The straws are sold in packs of ten for fifteen dollars, which means you are paying $1.50 a straw to deny that all the plastic people spew onto the earth is having a negative impact on the planet. This is a pretty pricey act of environmental defiance, equivalent on a small scale to burning your house down to prove it would have no effect on global warming. Straws can be had way more cheaply, even here in California, which is leading the way in banning them, because we live next to the ocean and would be seriously disappointed if it turned into a mass of soggy plastic.
But in Trump country, if you display the least bit of concern about the landfill washing into the bog or the creek in the holler turning into a coal sluice, you are a snowflake. It’s an article of faith for the MAGA crowd, like gun rights being more important than kids getting shot and that people speaking Spanish at the 7-11 are what’s destroying the nation. And you are proud to give a said-to-be billionaire a buck and a half for a straw, so you can own the libs, because you are…well, at this point any phrase other than “a fucking idiot” eludes me.
Straw bans in Cali haven’t had much of an effect on me anyway, since I seldom use them. My top three beverage choices—coffee, Crystal Light and beer, don’t require a straw to be slurped. Even when I get a soda at a self-serve soda fountain, I seldom pluck a straw. This is not out of environmental concern, but just outright laziness—I don’t feel like trying to pick out which of the lid sizes will fit my cup, the straws are next to the lids, and I guess I prefer to have the ice surge up against my lips when I drink, causing the soda to dribble down my chin.
Yes, I am a lazy environmentalist—many of the six-pack rings floating in the Great Pacific Garbage patch were no doubt once mine, but we here are getting used to being forced into environmental consciousness. We are accustomed to our plastic bag ban now. Even Baja California has banned plastic bags as of this year, which came as a surprise to me the last time I hit the Walmart in Ensenada, but it’s better for Mexican waters, too. Some years ago, I was traveling through the peninsula with a Republican friend. When we stopped at a beach for a game of horseshoes and a swim, I noticed a stingray sunning itself in the shallows. They do this by exposing their white undersides to the sun. I pointed this out to my buddy, and gave him my best guess that the water was full of them. He looked at the ray and said, “It’s probably just a Calimax bag,” jumped into the surf and promptly got stung, which led to him spending the night soaking his leg in hot water and his liver in cold tequila.
It could have been worse. Another friend offered to urinate on the wound, and just in time somebody remembered that was a remedy for a jellyfish burn, not a stingray stab.
So, the bag ban would have saved his Republican ass. Not that he supports Trump. He’s a Californian, too. Out here, we would support mandatory amputations for wearing mismatched socks before we would support Trump for re-election. If you do, however, and you buy a pack of Trump straws to further that end, I suggest you do your bit for the environment by locking yourself in a phone booth with a bobcat and trying to stick one of your Trump straws up its ass.
You know I’m just kidding—there are no more phone booths.