Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Silly things people buy

Last week on Good Morning America a teaser was shown for some piece they were doing on shopping smart. And in the teaser, they showed a person walking out of a grocery store with a flat full of bottled water.

My first gut reaction to the image as presented along with the "saving money" strategy was, "water is free." I actually stood there brushing my teeth thinking about how silly it was to be complaining about the price of providing oneself with the basic needs of life and yet to be Purchasing something that is readily available out of the tap with no extra charge other than a person's regular water bill.

And then I remembered one of the places where I went to college. I have never tasted water so nasty in my life. It was absolutely unpalatable. But I couldn't always afford to buy gallon jugs of water all the time because I was a college student with no job. What I did instead was purchase a luxury item that was the smartest buy of my college career. I bought a Brita filtration pitcher. Upfront, the purchase hurt my teeny budget, but once I made that initial purchase, I was able to utilize the free water that was available to me from my dorm kitchen sink. And I only had to change the $7 filter once per semester. Buying water jugs was a $2-$3 per week expense.

Now people don't even bother with the gallon jugs anymore. Everyone much prefers the convenience of an individual bottle to carry around. But whereas a gallon was around $1, those little bottles which hold a fraction of the same liquid are also $1. People are spending probably 3-4 times as much on convenience.

Now that our society is focused on "going green" I hope that the bottled water fashion will lull to a stand still. Not only is it an unnecessary expense when times are lean, but it's also bad for the environment to throw all of those bottles in the landfills.

So if you need good tasting water combined with the convenience of an individual travel bottle, here's a few links that will not only help you out with taste, but will also keep your drink looking fashion forward.

Kleen Kanteen - Made of the same stainless steel as is used in food, dairy, and brewery preparation, it is purported to be Toxin-Free and won't leech Anything into your beverage. They've just upgraded their line to include some cute colors so your Kleen Kanteen can be a personal statement.

SIGG - Aluminum bottles with a ton of design options to satisfy your quirky style. Although this product is made of aluminum, they guarantee that the liner will NOT leech anything into your drink. The ingredients are not available for the lining, so be aware that you have no way of seeing exactly what is in that lining. Use your judgment on how careful you want to be about what you store your water in. They do promise that they are BPA-free.

CamelBak - This product comes from the company who originated the water hydration systems you see many bikers and various other athletes using. They changed the make-up to their plastic bottles to be BPA Free.

Brita - This was my first water filtration pitcher. I still keep one in my office.

Pur - Another filtration system. I actually prefer the taste from this version, but I think that's just a personal thing and not anything scientific.