February 12, 2013

Honorary Chirping Bird, Beth Terry


Dear Chirping Birds,

Please permit me to introduce you to our second Honorary Chirping Bird, Beth Terry.

When one thinks about Beth Terry the adjective ‘proactive’ immediately comes to mind.

Like many of us, until about five years ago, Beth was oblivious to the devastating effects of disposable plastic. Then in 2007,  just ten years after Capt. Charles Moore encountered what came to be known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, Beth encountered a photograph of a dead albatross chick whose decomposed body was chock full of plastic of all kinds---plastic bottle caps, toy soldiers, cigarette lighters and other pieces of every day plastic litter. As a devoted animal lover, Beth experienced an epiphany when she realized that her ‘addiction to plastic,’ was contributing to the extinction of these magnificent birds.

Beth immediately became proactive and resolved to become an anti-disposable plastic activist. She started a blog, originally called ‘Fake Plastic Fish’, to record her plastic footprint and to reduce its size as she learned how to live without this toxic product. The name of her blog soon changed to: myplasticfreelife.com as Beth went on to give presentations about her plastic experiences and to encourage others to reduce their use of plastic for the sake of our planet. One presentation: TedxGreatPacificGarbagePatch-Beth Terry-Living Plastic Free reveals Beth’s warmth and sense of humor as she relates her plastic experience and how she measured her weekly usage. Meanwhile, the blog was gaining momentum and setting an excellent example to interested readers.

Beth`s next pro active initiative was to publish her book: “How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too.” The book, needless to say, is as plastic free as possible. The cover is plain cardboard, the pages recycled paper and the spine held together with cotton thread.  In the book, Beth relates her own story with her quirky sense of humor and supplies numerous tips for plastic free alternatives to every need in a modern life style. We are all familiar with the four R’s: refuse, reduce, reuse and recycle. But Beth has seven more R’s to add to the list: replace, remember, repair, report, rally, realize, and responsibility. I heartily recommend all animal and planet lovers to pick up a copy of Beth’s book:

Plastic-Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too, a practical guide to ridding your life—and the planet—of plastic.
Available NOW in beautiful 4-color hard cover OR downloadable Kindle, NOOK, and other electronic formats.
Visit the
Virtual Book Tour and see what others are saying.

Beth’s latest proactive step was a letter to Sir Richard Branson suggesting that he rethink all the plastic product used on his airline, Virgin Air. Many of us have railed about the amount of plastic used by airlines but instead of moaning about it, Beth instead took action by writing to the Ocean Elder himself. You can visit Beth`s blog to read her letter to Sir Richard and the response which she received from him;  Dear Virgin America, I Love You, But Not Your Plastic Bottles

01/29/2013 Update: Richard Branson responds to my letter on his blog today: Plastic On Our Airlines. Dear Richard Branson & David Cush, This letter serves two purposes. First, to express my sincere gratitude for all you have done to make Virgin America the only airline I can fly without crying the whole time, and second, [...]


Beth’s journey into plastic is far from finished. In fact, a second phase is about to start. We know the acronym WWJD: What Would Jesus Do? Now we wonder, WWBD: What Would Beth Do? One cannot receive a more potent complement!   Beth has also been compared to Rosa Parks from the Civil Rights Movement. Although Rosa was unaware of the Chirping Bird Society, she was undoubtedly an Original Chirping Bird who spoke out clearly about the major issue of her time. While the issues today are different, the principle is similar, and Beth will soon be renowned for her proactivity in the anti-disposable plastic movement.

We at the Chirping Bird Society welcome Beth and we look forward to her many loud and cheery cheeps.

Goffinet McLaren




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