My plastic-free challenge was a spectacular failure

Sir Terry Wogan
Sir Terry Wogan
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I read somewhere that there is enough plastic in the world – sadly not even decomposing – to wrap the whole of the earth.

There are molecules of it in the sea, in fish, being eaten by birds, pervading all aspects of our life. And it hangs around for hundreds and hundreds and years.

You know what? Everything is wrapped in plastic. Cardboard boxes of food, like cereal, have the contents inside wrapped – in plastic. Or the outside of the box comes wrapped

Seemingly, since the 1950s all we’ve done is create more and more and more of the stuff. So I decided to fight back in a rather limited but determined manner by spending a week not buying any plastic.

Surely I could feed a family of five without wrappings? How hard could that be? Well, exceptionally as it turns out.

You know what? Everything is wrapped in plastic. Cardboard boxes of food, like cereal, have the contents inside wrapped – in plastic. Or the outside of the box comes wrapped.

Meat? That’s covered. Cheese – yep. Anything frozen? Well, that’ll be plastic then. Fruit and veg? Wrapped.

Yes, there are exceptions. Some cheeses come in wax. Some supermarket meat counters will entertain my greaseproof paper as an alternative wrapping.

Local greengrocers are handy places with less, but not zero, of the P word.

It took me one trip to a supermarket to revise my rule of no plastic.

I decided to only buy food with totally recyclable packaging. But, again, when it comes to fresh, it’s nigh on impossible.

My family greeted this turn of events with horror. It took them a lot less time than it took me to catch on that sweets, chocolate and crisps were pretty much off the menu, along with pizza and, er, toilet paper.

But while out shopping we all realised how limited ‘fresh’ food is. Wandering the aisles, it didn’t take long to see that we are packaging the earth – and for what? To eat meat that’s been squatting inside its container for days and days?

Shopping daily for bits and pieces to keep our bellies full and to ward off complaints from the offspring, I ended up spending far more. Which rather begs the question; why is processed, plastic-wrapped food so cheap?

My challenge of not buying any plastic for a week failed spectacularly. But I’ve decided to carry it onwards as best I can and see where it leads. What about you?

He wasn’t my cup of tea, but I have a vast respect for him

At the rate we’re going, we’ll run out of national icons before too long.

I don’t want to sound flippant, but it feels as if the numbers who have passed away recently from our celebrity sphere far exceed the normal rates.

Or maybe it’s because we’re still keenly feeling the loss of one that the next one is brighter on our radar?

My mum used to listen to Terry Wogan’s radio show in the mornings when she was giving me a lift to the ferry (on my way to school).

I thought he was bonkers, annoying and not my cup of tea at all.

But he has made a massive difference to the nation, especially with Children in Need, and leaves his name in history. I certainly have a vast respect for the man.

Surely the joy of having a pet is its personality and quirks

Last week I read about a couple who had paid £67,000 to have their pet dog (deceased and in the freezer) cloned.

Now that is love.

I had been thinking that the idea of getting the ashes of your pet or loved one turned into some jewellery was a bit much.

But cloning your dog? And for that price?

Surely the joy of having a pet is getting to know its quirks, its personality, its propensity to chew shoes, carpets and children.

The fact that it is a clone of an older version would muddy that process.

‘How many times have I told you . . . .’ would become loaded with double meanings if the animal in question could understand the intent.

A dystopian future is upon us.