Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Texas sized garbage patch: mythbusting

So it's time to set the record straight, or at least qualify a bit. I myself have been tossing the "Texas sized garbage patch" image about carelessly, something we well-intentioned environmensters do from time to time.....

There is certainly a GANG of plastic waste floating around in the Pacific, especially concentrated in the North Pacific Gyre. Its a huge problem.

However, its not quite nicely shaped together in a patch "now twice the size of Texas". Rather, its spread out over a massive area, more like a big plastic soup than a patch per se. Even referred to it as Plastic Soup a while back. "Patch" conjures up the notion of something solid, Trash Island, somewhere the hard core eco-travelers might consider vacationing.....

The map above gives an idea of the scope - HUGE area. If the waste were all contained in a nice neat pile, might be easier to consider a cleanup.....

Its just such an irresistible image, the "Texas sized" analogy. And visuals so help us to wrap our head around concepts that seem abstract or "out there", like many ecological issues.

Another way to make this issue tangible, is bringing the gyre back. I mean literally.

I'm headed there for a month in January/February, sailing from Hawaii to the Gyre with The Algalita Marine Reseach Foundation to do some more research on plastic marine debris.

We'll be bringing back actual samples, like the one you see Captain Moore holding below. If you want your own personal sample, for educational or personal enlightenment purposes, give a call, perhaps we can work something out.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

December 20th: A Day Without A Bay

I know you can do it.....and if you're reading this blog, you're likely inclined to do so already:

Next Thursday, December 20th, Los Angeles has officially declared a day of plastic bag abstinence.

If for any reason the lack of a bag is preventing you from joining in the BYO fun, this is your day to pick up a freebie - check out all the locations for bag giveaways.

You can read more about the event in my last SM Mirror column, or visit Heal The Bay's Site for more info.

Plastic bags blow. Keep 'em out of our landfills and oceans - Bring Your Own.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Potomac Attack Takes DC

Despite my eco-cycicism, sometimes I see glimmers of hope for the future. This past weekend in DC was one of those moments.....

I joined Marcus Eriksen from the Algalita Marine Research Foundation, to attend the first Forecast Earth Summitt hosted by the Weather Channel, with 22 young eco-ambassadors from all over the US. The students, selected for their outstanding committment to sustainability, spent a whirlwind weekend participating in workshops, hearing presentations from speakers, going on various green tours around the Capitol....

And learning all about the plastics plague.

For many students, one of the weekend highlights was building a raft out of recycled plastic bottles with Marcus, test floating it in the Potomac River, and watching the two of us successfully paddle -using two old crutches fashioned into paddles - to the other side.

It was without a doubt a memorable way for these super inspiring students to learn more about plastics issues, after a morning of indoor presentations on the subject, including some hands on activities - dissecting Albatross boluses to quantify plastic contents, making super strong, boatworthy rope with hundreds of plastic bags, and crafting PSAs about various ecological issues. I have no doubt they will take their new found knowledge back to their communities, and inspire positive action. Read more about these future leaders here.

Marcus and a student test the raft for floatability.....

....before I hop in, and help paddle across river.

Mission accomplished!

Thanks to Erik Lesser for the awesome images.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Plastic Bag Ban for LA County - you in??

You've been following this blog, you know plastic bags are a nuisance, you'd like to see them off your beaches and outta your sushi.....

LA County has been considering a bag ban for some time, following San Francisco's lead. This is a big move, and there is clearly tremendous opposition from "the industry" (read petroleum, huge financial interests, war....) Such that the process has been stalled. See Heal The Bay's Website for more background.

Now is the time to make your voice heard! Sign Heal The Bay's petition to ban plastic bags in LA County, let the Board of Supervisors know how you feel. Lets work together to bag the bag and kick some plASStic.

"..plastic bag use is increasing at an exponential rate in the County of Los Angeles, throughout California, and worldwide. In Los Angeles County alone, a estimated 600 bags per erson are used each year. Millions of barrels of oil are used each year in the United States to manufacture plastic bags. Unfortunately, these bags are seldom recycled. The California Integrated Waste Management Board estmates that less than 5% of plastic bags consumed in the state are recycled."

Monday, November 26, 2007

Keep plastic outta my sushi

It seems a little self-promoting to post my own article here, but as its related to disposable issues, what they heck. A column I wrote for the Santa Monica Mirror, on Santa Monica's efforts to ban styrofoam and non-recyclable plastics.

For those that make the astute obervation that sushi-eating is hardly a green lifestyle practice, it's a metaphor. Though I admit sushi is one of my guilty pleasures....

My lovely photographer friend Rebecca was gracious enough to take this photo at the Grateful Bread on VERY short notice. If you find yourself with a mad cupcake craving after visiting her delicious website, trust me, you're not alone.

Monday, November 12, 2007


This week on American Public Media, CONSUMED, an excellent series about overconsumption, sustainability and how/if to reconcile the two....

Can we really expect to green-shop our way out of this mess?

Half-listening this morning while multi-tasking, I stopped in my tracks to focus, finding myself cheering silently at what I was hearing. We're burning up copious amounts of petroleum to fuel our voracious appetites for stuff - new stuff certainly don't need, flown in from all over the world.....

And the real costs for this transcends the price tag big time. Pollution, climate change, environmental degradation....how about the human costs - the thousands of lives lost to date in the war, so that we may continue our gas guzzling ways?

According to commentator Robert Frank, we need economic structures in place that demand us to pay the real price for consumer goods:

"The simplest solution would be a carbon tax that would force consumers to confront the environmental impact of their purchasing decisions. Such a tax would raise the price of fuel sharply -- stuff from distant places would become much more expensive, and most people would buy much less of it."

He seems well aware that this would hardly fly with our current admin:

"A carbon tax proposal would be dead-on-arrival in Washington. If so, our problem is not that we don't know how to make the economy sustainable. Rather, it's that we simply lack the political will."

Check out this and other stories on Consumed: is our consumer society sustainable?

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Puente Hills Landfill: seen from Google Earth

A modern day measure of magnitude: can you see it on Google Earth?

Here it is, the Puente Hills Landfill, the largest in the nation.

Landfiills are a pretty fascinating metaphor for the way we deal with our waste. Out of sight, out of --

wait-- not so fast - the landfill is slated to shut down in 2013.

After which time, we'll be sending all of our crap out to Arizona, to the Mequite Regional Landfill, currently in the works. Any Arizoneans out there feeling a NIMBY twinge?

If this leaves you hungry for more landfill tidbits, good news: our local dump will be the subject of an upcoming Forecast Earth series, featuring Marcus Eriksen, shown here with a BYO bag. Looks like a suggestion we can't refuse.......

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

USA Today: Can Plastic Alter Human Cells?

Some pretty major publicity for the plastics issue - a huge spread in last week's USA today on plastic, toxicity, and human health.

Women - new or expecting mothers especially - take note. Chemicals used in certain plastic products have been linked to reproductive abnormalities, and can have particularly damaging effects on young children. Research suggests that the timing of exposure is key; infants, fetuses, nursing children etc. are most susceptible.

So where do we find these chemicals?

Baby bottles, baby toys, even the lining in metal cans (yikes) contain Bisphenol A (BPA) one of the dangerous chemical that can act as an endocrine disrupter - see previous posts on BPA.

According to Frederick vom Saal, a leading researcher on endocrine disrupters, BPA is a phenomenally potent chemical that can alter human cells in the part per trillion range".

Parts per trillion may sound like an inconsequential amount, however when you consider vom Saal's finding:

"the amount that leaches out (of a liter bottle) is in the part per billion range, nanogram per milliliter of fluid..." Such that a baby drinking out of a liter bottle is taking in micrograms of BPA.

Sounds like enough to warrant serious concern.....

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Further proof: there is no "pristine"

Not even Half Dome, one of the world's wild wonders, in Yosemite National Park, is free of plastic.

Here, en route to the final ascent, above Vernal Falls, I found a handfull of plastic bottles lodged in the rock, discarded by thirsty, "nature loving" hikers. Their short lived purpose served, these bottles will kick around for thousands of years, winding their way downstream, ugly reminders that there is no such thing as "pristine" anymore........

For an excellent synopsis of this idea, see the Shifting Baselines slideshow here. As we increasingly accept trash in even our most treasured national parks, we begin to think this is "normal", and lose our sense of outrage.

We gotta keep being pissed off - while of course maintaining our sense of humor - or nothin's ever gonna change......

Monday, October 29, 2007

Breaking news: THE PAPER CUP

Paper cups are all over the place these days. I mean in the media, not just strewn about streets and seas.....

Toronto Star columnist David Rider contemplates cups in Have mug, will travel, for his weekly "enlightened shopper" column. He contacted me to ask my personal cup preference - ceramic vs. steel vs. plastic (see article for my answer: hint reuse!), and gave BYO a nice mention.

Then noticed this plug for reusables in Real World Green, "Paper cups, do you use them?" Clear message here to bring your own!

Seems a small issue in the grand scheme of things, but such an easy one to shift. And as the Real World clip mentioned, paper cups are NOT in fact recyclable, which most people incorrectly assume.

Personally, I'd avoid the plastic mug with hot coffee, as certain plastics can leach out nasty chemicals, especially when heated.

Granted, there are numerous kinds of plastic, 7 actually, not sure what type is used for these coffee cups. This article gives a plastics-health overview, as well as a breakdown of the #s.

I'd stay on the safe side and stick to ceramic or stainless steel.

And LOVE your cup!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

TRASHED coming to LA

After a smashing success at the World Premiere in Chicago, TRASHED makes its way to Los Angeles, Nov. 1st, 7:30 at the Crest Theatre in Westwood. As the name would suggest, the entertaining, thought-provoking doc examines one of "the fastest growing industries in North America", our garbage.

A Q+A with Director Bill Kirkos will follow the screening, along with a speaker or two talking about solutions. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll wrinkle your nose, and you'll vow to make a better effort to ditch disposables and BRING YOUR OWN.

How can you "refuse"?

Monday, October 22, 2007

Green garbage - just toss it!

Finally, the solution to littering: bioplastics. You can toss 'em with impunity, go ahead, they're biodegradable! If you always relished the naughty idea of chucking trash out the window, nows your chance.

Okay okay, this is from The Onion, thus a satirical piece. BUT the message touches on a real issue. Bioplastics, while in some cases a better alternative to petroleum plastics, still don't get at one of the underlying mentality, i.e. our disposable approach to resources.

Don't get me wrong - I'm all for avoiding petro-plastics, and encouraging alternatives. And bioplastics may be a great way to get people thinking about the plastics issue. There are however some other factors with bioplastics that we need to address - I'll be exploring these in the next few weeks.

Ultimately, we've got to shift away from single use disposables - though they may be green/biodegradable/compostable, doesn't mean its cool to use and abuse.

You know what approach I suggest.....

Monday, October 08, 2007

Tell Arnold to sign AB 258!

AB 258, awaiting Arnold's signature, would demand greater responsibility from plastic manufacturers to prevent pre-production plastic pellets, or "nurdles", from escaping into the marine evironment. By the gazillions. As they currently do, due to poor management practices from the aformentioned industries. And creating a huge mess....

The bill passed the California Legislature, and is now in the Governator's hands, so now is the time to make your voice heard. Send a letter here.

AB 258 is part of the Pacific Protection Initiative, a package of 5 bills aimed at stemming the tide of toxic garbage flowing out to sea. Check out all 5, and stay tuned for an update.

For more on the issue of plastic pollution and the marine environment, see this excellent article in Best of Life. An apropos excerpt:

"Ask a group of people to name an overwhelming global problem, and you’ll hear about climate change, the Middle East, or AIDS. No one, it is guaranteed, will cite the sloppy transport of nurdles as a concern. And yet nurdles, lentil-size pellets of plastic in its rawest form, are especially effective couriers of waste chemicals called persistent organic pollutants, or POPs, which include known carcinogens such as DDT and PCBs.

The United States banned these poisons in the 1970s, but they remain stubbornly at large in the environment, where they latch on to plastic because of its molecular tendency to attract oils."

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Monday, September 24, 2007

First Flush

Or, "How three plastic nerds spend a rainy saturday morning for kicks".

First Flush, a poetic sounding term for a less savory phenomenon, when that long awaited first rain of the season washes our unsightly urban crap - garbage, chemical spillage, animal waste, pesticides, oil, human-gastrointestinal viruses, etc. - into storm drains and out to sea, leaving our streets nice and clean again. Phew.

I mean eeew......

After last friday night's downpour, Marcus, Sara and I headed down to the Ballona Creek for a morning after reality check.

According to Heal the Bay, this year's first flush was of particular concern, as we've had one of the driest seasons in 130 years.....

Here are some images of what we found:

Is it me, or does that not look like a floating plastic body?

Lighters and syringes and toys, oh my....

What happens to your disposables when you love 'em and leave 'em.

Thank god someone else is picking up after us.........

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Plastic Bag Monster strikes again!

Readers, beware....there have been several recent sightings of the dreaded bag monster, on the loose again.

The bag monster has been wreaking havoc in San Fracisco, and stalking young women nationwide.

So far no one has been able to catch him.

To avoid any unfortunate run ins with this sinister synthetic scoundrel, make sure you are prepared: Bring Your Own.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Setting sail for the Garbage Patch

A guided marine meditation:

Vacation day one. You’re standing on a sleek sailboat, gazing out to sea as a light breeze toys with your hair and fills your sails. Endless miles of open ocean stretch in all directions, creating an azure canvas upon which float:

274,000 used toothbrushes, 23,547 lighters, 456,782 plastic bags, 7,600 disposable diapers, 23,409 (insert favorite plastic item here).

Meet The Garbage Patch. The words largest landfill – in the ocean.

That this issue is finally beginning to attract more attention is largely due to the work of Captain Charles Moore and the Algalita Marine Research Foundation. Charles stumbled upon the garbage patch in 1997, and has since dived into the issue full force.

Charles and his intrepid crew set sail for the garbage patch yesterday aboard the Oceanic Research Vessel (ORV) Alguita. For the next 3 weeks, they will study this nasty phenomenon, collecting samples and info to better understand the scope.

You can check their progress on the Ship 2 Shore blog, as well as here – I’ll be following the journey closely, wishing I were there in person....their findings will remind me of why the issue moves me so.

And will fuel me to keep pushing this one, simple solution: Bring Your Own.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

The greenest cocktail around

"I'll have the fresh local tapwater, no ice, in a reusable glass please".

A line to send a date running? Perhaps for now, but might not be so far fetched in the near future.

Bottled water has been in the public eye of late, for a host of human and ecological health reasons - not that the two aren't intimately connected...

*People are noticing the global plastic bottle pileup, from city streets to "pristine" beaches - synthetic shite is EVERYWHERE. And thousands upon thousands of the plastic empties wind up at sea.

* Then theres the rip off factor: bottled water may just be tap water in an appealing plastic package. So essentially, you're buying the plastic. Which is made from petroleum, and may leach crap into your water anways, so.....hardly seems like a good deal.

From the 4 year NRDC study, "Bottled Water: Pure Drink or Pure Hype"?:

"According to government and industry estimates, about one fourth of bottled water is bottled tap water (and by some accounts, as much as 40 percent is derived from tap water) -- sometimes with additional treatment, sometimes not."


So instead of getting suckered in by "pure fountain of youth" marketing schemes, think outside the bottle. Love your tap - love your ocean - love your body - bring your own.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Plastic and female sexuality

Or more accurately, Bisphenol A (BPA) and female reproductive disorders, but that's a mouthful of a title, and less catchy.

BPA, a chemical found in hard plastics - water bottles, kids toys, baby bottles - may leach into human bodies via the water we drink, the toys we teeth, the food we eat....

And now scientists suggest a connnection between BPA and reproductive issues in women - endometriosis, cystic ovaries, fibroids and cancers.

Read more on Wired, and Treehugger.

I first learned about the plastics-chemicals-health issue through Captain Charles Moore and his groundbreaking research on plastic particles in the marine environment. Charles inspired me to read Our Stolen Future, about the sinister effects of synthetic chemicals on human reproduction.

Perhaps theres some poetic justice here, that we as a species ultimatly self-destruct....BUT taking other defenceless species down with us is not cool. So long as were here, we gotta keep being vigilant. And demand more from our spineless leaders.

Meantime, for all of us health conscious "8 cups of water a day" types, stop sipping synthetics and get yourself a reusable bottle ASAP - try SIGG or Klean Kanteen. More on plastic bottles to come......

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Water we to do w/ used filters?

I had lunch the other week with Charles Rosenberg, nutritionist/DJ/writer and chef for an upcoming Yoga retreat, who I met through 6 degrees of separation. Charles instantly became my new BYO hero.

We ended up chatting about the evils of disposables more than nutrition - it's rare that I meet someone as committed as I to the issue.....Charles even brought my attention to one I'd never really considered: used water filters for Brita, PUR, and other home filtration systems.

Apparently, used filters are not recyclable in the US, which means sending these now toxic, plastic pieces of junk to the landfill. Yet they DO recycle filters in Europe, using "a different technology"......anyone looking to import this superior system anytime soon?

Other concerned hydraters have had this question. Check out this discussion on Fake Plastic Fish, which includes a back and forth dialogue with the Brita reps themselves.

Back to lunch with Charles: when my overambitious ordering yielded a field of leftover greens, Charles whipped out a reusable container, which he totes around in case of disposable emergencies. And took the rest to go sans paper or styrofoam.

Did I mention he's my new hero?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

BYO goes to Hollywood

Last week, I was invited to eco-evangelize at BPM's green anniversary launch party at the Avalon in Hollywood. It was somewhat last minute, and BYO isn't really set up (yet) for tabling, but fortunately one of my fave groups and main inspiration for BYO The Algalita Marine Research Foundation, was able to lend me their incredible visuals.

In fact, their newest volunteer and fellow anti-plastics superhero Montine Blank drove the materials up from Long Beach and joined me at the event. Montine deserves her own separate post, so I'll hold off on more info and get back to the event......

The idea was to target a youngish, hipster demographic, bringing them into the green scene through a fun, star studded event and hot band line up. Great idea - though the green part could've used a bit more planning.....from what I saw and heard, the vast majority were there for the bands, and weren't all that interested in the 'eco' part.

Still, kudos for the attempt, the idea is solid, next time they should bring the sustainability groups into the planning earlier.

BYO will be making the rounds. Tomorrow were constructing a window display for Patagonia's main street store, CityTV will be doing a "be green" segment on BYO soon, and some more exposure down the line - the message is timely. Lets kick some plASStic!

Monday, July 02, 2007

Statewise recycling program: more than meets the eye.

The plastic bag issue is blowin' around everywhere these days.

First there was San Fran. Then some interest from LA, and recently, a flurry of attention about the nation's first statewide manditory plastic bag recycling measure.

AB 2449, which went into effect July 1st, requires big markets to take back and recycle plastic bags.

YEAY! I can finally load up on plastic bags with impunity, heck - double bag it, and gimme a separate one for my stick of gum, why not? They're recyclable....

Sarcasm aside, at least the issues making a small splash.

Unfortunately, the passage of this bill came with great compromise. So great that many environmental groups were adamantly opposed - I posted about the issue a few times. Turns out that the bill ALSO prohibits local municipalities from placing fees or taxes on plastic bags, a measure that seems to work in other parts of the world.....

Why the compromise? According to Californians Against Waste, ceding to this devious demand was the only way to push SOMETHING forward. Read CAWs statement here.

Time for some more research. I've been accused of being a knee jerk, alarmist liberal, so I'm going to hold my tongue (or fingers) and investigate more before I spout off on this. Meantime, if anyone has any insights, I'm all ears (or eyes).

Incidentally, AB 2449 was sponsored by Assembymember Lloyd Levine, who I joined on a panel discussion on sustainability with the LA County Young Democrats a few months back, thats him behind me to the right. He was certainly passionate about the issue, inspired by jogging around a Los Angeles awash in plastic bags....I'm going to give him a try.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Bring Your Own....eco stud?

Okay, maybe the link to BYO is a stretch, but I couldn't resist posting this.

People mag recently did a spread on "lean green sexy machines", hot eco-minded eligible hunks. And featured my Santa Cruz buddy Guillermo Payet, founder of Local Harvest! Huge kudos to People for having the wherewithal to recognize true brilliance.

Guillermo created Local Harvest way before the local/organic craze became hip - a man way ahead of his time. Combining his passion for sustainable food systems with his remarkable programming skills, Guillermo created a national database linking people directly to local farming resources. You can punch in your zip, and LH connects you to local farms, restaurants, CSAs etc. in your immediate vicinity. Hot stuff indeed.

Building community is second nature to Guillermo. When I lived in Santa Cruz, I think I met most of my friends through his infamous pizza parties, always an eclectic assortment of international folks and Santa Cruz changemakers.

Hes also a phenomenal chef, masseuse, beekeeper, and....get in line ladies. Just don't wash your jeans too often.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Meet the Skooperbox

"But what do I do about doo doo?"

I hear this pet owner dilemma over and over, from people who want to ditch plastic bags, but haven't found a green alternative to the pick up problem.

Then learned about the Skooperbox, a biodegradable, recycled material option, with added benefit of distancing you from the inevitable squish factor. Nice.

Many of my friends/family members use excess plastic bags to do the deed - like the super annoying ones that come with the LA times for example. (Does it REALLY rain here often enough to warrant this petroleum layer?)

While this is certainly reusing, it unfortunately preserves the stuff in landfills for centuries, due to plastics' nefarious longevity. Which, unless you wanted to preserve your pet waste for future generations to study, is a pretty foul concept.

If I had space for a furry friend, I'd certainly give these a try. And if I also had garden space, I'd chuck both Skooperbox and contents into a special canine composting toilet, directions thanks to the Worsted Witch.

Any plastic eschewing pet owners out there?

Monday, May 14, 2007

All the news thats fit to....wrap

Thanks to Dave Chameides' eagle eyed father for spotting this brilliant little metaphor.

Monday, May 07, 2007

The " Dark Underbelly" of the Farmers Market

Farmers markets, mecca of clean, green living, shiny happy people buying organic fruits and veggies from their local farmers.....

...and promptly encasing them in petroleum based plastic bags. Each one a potential turtle choker, sea bird poisoner, and PCB attractor throughout its gazillion-year lifespan.

Many others share my puzzlement at this seemingly obvious contradiction. Today's Treehugger post mentions the issue:

And this excellent little video short by Sara from It's So Easy Being Green enlightens at the scene of the crime.

I saw this months ago and was thrilled to find another plastic-eschewer. Then met Sara herself at last weeks Green Drinks. High time to put our heads together.....

In the video, Sara brings her own set of reusable produce bags along with the requisite tote bag. You can find nice lightweight produce bags here, (also sold at the Santa Monica Co-op) or get creative and make your own.

Hmmm.....maybe a "make your own" booth at the farmers market?

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Jumping on the (throwaway) BAN wagon?

San Francisco's decision to bag the plastic bag continues generating ripples near and far, which is great in many ways....mostly in that its got other cities thinking. Including close to home....

My one concern (granted, its easy to criticize, and I know these things are monumentally complicated to pass) HOWEVER:

Replacing plastic bags with paper and compostable does little to address the root of the issue: our disposable mentality. Yes, its potentially preventing plastic bags from winding up in the ocean, to be chomped by poor unwitting sea turtles.....but at the end of the day, a tremendous opportunity to educate is missed. We gotta start valuing our resources! Bring your own damn bag, use it over an over, take some responsibility for your crap!

The much cited ban in Ireland was effective because it charged people, by placing a 15 cent fee on bags. People no longer looked at the nasty little suckers as expendable, valueless items, to be tossed unthinkingly.

We HATE having to pay for things we think should be free.....and when we have to PAY, even a paltry sum of 10-15 cents, we immediately attach some value.

So as other municipalities and communities discuss how to deal with the synthetic scourge, I'll keep repeating my mantra: Bring Your Own, and quit throwing it all away.

(Image from Graphic Witness)

Monday, March 19, 2007

Sign the petition, Ditty please?

"Go ahead, touch if you want, they're real....petroleum".

This outstanding image shows The Ditty Bops clad in sexy night attire - made entirely from plastic bags. That's creative reuse, will certainly make more of an impact than, say, a pamphlet.

In addition to touring by bike, riding an Xtracycle, creating a 2007 "vegetable bikini calendar", and championing sane living, these two started an online petition to encourage personal responsibility for reducing disposable plastic bag waste.

They're shooting for 5,000 sigs....go ahead, add yours.