Companies that get it — I love POH!

I just don’t like throwing things away. If I use up the contents of a container, I’d rather refill it than add it to the landfill. And when I find a product that will let me do that, I prefer to use that product.

I recently needed more dental floss and decided to go online to see whether I could find a good price on small quantities of the the POH brand (great stuff!). I ended up at the manufacturer’s website ( and found, to my great delight, that Oral Health Products, the company that makes POH, sells refills.

Here’s what they say on the subject: “The beautiful little round container with its shiny cap has been around for a LONG while. Why not use it for refills? The cap is twist fit, not welded on. The label has been sticky, but not permanent. Refills. Duh. We are proud to offer refill spools of your favorite floss. Save your teeth, and save the Earth at the same time!

I can’t help it. I get excited about stuff like this. (Remember what I said: some of my friends think I’m nuts. You can see why.)


Why I recycle

I know that not everyone agrees with me about recycling. (I’m sure some of my friends think I’m nuts.) And I can’t say I agree with everything about recycling. What drives my recycling conscience, what acts as my decision-maker, is the thought of all the things that end up in landfills. What a waste!

Food. Clothes. Appliances and gadgets and devices. Packaging. How much of what we buy is actually product, and how much gets thrown out before we use what we’ve bought?

I’ve been trying to live by my own commandment: Keep it out of the landfill. Don’t buy what I won’t use. Don’t replace what still works. Don’t throw away what can be reused. (Does anyone else remember “use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without”?)

I was brought up not to waste. My mom was the daughter of immigrants, the youngest of four kids. She grew up in the inner city. Her father died when she was in junior high, so she dropped out of school. (She spent the rest of her life educating herself, and she did a terrific job.) She knew how not to waste — it was a matter of survival — and she made sure her kids did, too.

Disposable plastic food bags, the kind that come in a roll in a box, were a new thing when I was a kid. We weren’t allowed to throw away the used bags: we washed and reused them. I quit doing that when I moved into my first apartment. (Sorry, Mom. But I very seldom use plastic bags any more. Honest!)