I just saw an article about all the freighters sitting at anchor down outside Long Beach, California, waiting to offload their cargo. But the port can’t take the containers because they’ve already got a full yard and they can’t get rid of what they have because there aren’t enough trucks to carry it away. That’s because of Covid and the economic side effects of the pandemic, things about which I am no expert.
What I do understand is that those containers, the ones that are in the port already and the ones that haven’t technically arrived yet, are filled with merchandise, shiny, new stuff that you and I were supposed to buy for the upcoming holidays, for our annual festival of religious commerce. With these delays – and they’re only getting worse – there’s a real danger that stores won’t have the inventory we’ve all come to depend upon this year.
So maybe this is an opportunity to make a present or to gift an experience rather than a thing. It might be just the kick in the butt we need to ditch the usual consumer/waste cycle and find something old and turn it into something new. We can give more from the heart and less from the wallet and we just might find that we don’t need most of this year’s hot buys after all, or the tons of plastic that they’re wrapped in.