<em>Mister Trash Can</em> <em>Mister Trash Can</em>
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Mister Trash Can

Every year, US households and businesses throw out 251 million tons of trash and our second biggest export to China is trash! Good Magazine packages these disturbing facts into a cute animated short called Mister Trash Can that’s guaranteed to make you feel bad about yourself. It’s directed by Garrett Morin, animated by Chad Colby and written by MacKenzie Fegan. The video is below but if you want a higher-res version, head to Good‘s website.

  • Katella Gate

    *Yawn* I get it, I get it. I saw Wall*e already…. Americans are pigs. Offer a solution, just don’t gripe about it.

  • Adam

    Now I’m sad. It should be noted, however, that the Texas-sized lump of plastic in the ocean not actually correct. http://skeptoid.com/episodes/4132

  • Wow Katella, Are you so sleepy that you wait to get a solution offered instead of being pro active and help us all with some tips?

    Anyways, This is interesting for the message given and the notion that behind it. Sure the giant plastic island is a fable as debunked by Adam up there, But still doesn’t takes less from the fact that we need to do something about this. Here are two of my favorite links when it comes to try to live a little more green…


    And as for the animation-talk we love to squash and bash and be negative… Its fun, was fun, nothing bad out of. Sure could be better, but I got the message and left me with a notion. Thats good edutainment. I cant wait to see people bashing over this! Good Ol’ Brew dont fail me now!

  • Oh, yeah? Well, I guess these guys have it wrong, huh?

    And Katella, you want solutions? Go to Story of Stuff.com and you’ll find a couple of them —I’ll give you a hint: change your cell phone every 2-3 years instead of every time the newest & coolest one hits the market that you just GOTTA have. (BTW, once again Animation is used to illustrate these dire points)

  • Ian

    I know this is a big issue and needs to be looked at and is important to the future, but do we still need that child narrator gimmick, really? Coached children are the worst. At least he didn’t pull any of that “for MY future” malarkey. So I hope China is paying as much for our garbage (thrown out McDonalds toys?) as we do for the garbage they ship us. Better idea, dig through the trash and re-bag those suckers with empty sandwhich bags!

  • JPB

    I agree with Ian, the child narrator is awful. Esp. when the kids talking percents, statistics, and a french speaking sendoff, ugh!
    No question the giant trash blob in the Pacific is awful awful awful, and we have a serious problem with our waste. But I feel there’s gotta be a looser or more honest way to involve children in the mess we have made. (pun completely intended)

  • There’s a documentary called “Manufactured Landscapes” that talks about China’s trash problem, and is full of footage that proves how serious the problem really is. I haven’t seen it yet, but the images I’ve seen are unbelievable. Numbers are one thing, but seeing miles upon miles of trash and people having to sort through it is really something.

    What this animated short does, on the other hand, is something different, albeit still quite powerful, and, yeah, it makes me feel guilty too.

    It also makes me mad at certain room mates who don’t clean out cans, so I have to clean the day-old crust just so I can recycle them myself. Then there’s the fear that something’s contaminated and it’ll just get thrown into the landfill anyway. There is a point where I have to stop letting it bother me.

  • ge5

    lighten up folks….

  • Great animation and very cute, but I agree with the first comment the world knows all this already , work on something that offers me a solution.

  • I think this was really great. Maybe instead of trying to find things wrong with it, we can just take the message as it was intended – to encourage us to try a little harder to take care of our planet. It’s simple and to the point – some tips on how we can reduce our waste would have made it even better.

  • If everyone already knows that there’s a problem, then why does it still exist? It’s not actually that difficult to reduce the amount of garbage you produce. (Eliminating it completely, on the other hand, is extremely difficult.)

    I kinda liked the kid narrator, actually. It was silly, and a little absurd when he was rhyming off all those giant numbers, but it didn’t bother me at all.

  • I like to pick apart stuff and see what’s wrong with it because I think its better to excel than be mediocre. Yes its a nice piece, yes it shows talent but in todays world I think people need more facts about a problem and Solutions to fix the problem. In the animated video it talks about trash going to China, but it doesn’t elaborate on this fact. One of the reasons we send so much trash to china is China use much of the recycled paper and cardboard to create more boxes to ship back goods like wide screen television sets to the USA. In fact the paper recycling industry has taken a hit here in the States because less folks are buying big ticket items, the trickle effect is China buys less recycled materials and more recyclable materials get thrown in land fills here and in Third world countries.

    This site does a much better job of giving me facts about trash and how to do something about it.


    And to Chris L who said

    If everyone already knows that there’s a problem, then why does it still exist?

    Because its easier to ignore the problem, especially when people are given information they know about already. Give them solutions, give them a way to respond or act.

    In Darfur there has been ethnic cleansing or Genocide going on since 1997 but there are still villages being burnt, babies being thrown into fires, but the world does relatively little compared to what we should be doing. Yes its important to continue to get the word out but if that word does not find a way to really get people educated and involved then your just adding to the talk and not action.

    The visual medium is a powerful tool in building awareness and for a conflict or cause.

    Take these drawings done by children from Darfur for example


    These drawings are actually being used as evidence by the International Criminal Court to try and bring to justice the governments and individuals responsible for these terrible crimes.

    Again the piece is nice but raise the standard, don’t try to do something cute and environmental because its in vogue.