Friday, February 25, 2011

I wonder what Dr. David Suzuki would think?

My friend Shaina and I visited the new Art Gallery of Alberta last night, it was Oscar's first foray into the art world. I was a tad nervous to be traipsing about area after area of perfectly climate controlled rooms with a decided lack of washroom's but lost all trepidation when we walked upstairs to view the latest Brian Jungen installation.
The above picture is of Brian's "Cetology" a whale skeleton built entirely of re-purposed mass produced white plastic garden chairs. It got me thinking:
I use approx. 3 disposable poop pouches a day and Oscar has been around for approx. 400 days so (I could use Shaina's math head now) 3 x 400 = 1200. OMG! That's 1200 poop pouches that are in landfills because of me. This of course got me thinking even more:
What did people who had ostomies use before the advent of Hollister, ConvaTec or Coloplast? I'm a picturing Duct tape and plastic bread bags or even honey and elephant ears (the plant, not an actual animal ear)! Either way, a far cry from the technologically advanced system's we use now. So I thought:
Why isn't there a museum of ancient ostomy supplies? Some pretty famous people have them and it wasn't in the recent past: the queen mum, US president Dwight Eisenhower and the one that really has me scratching my head; Fred Astaire, the singing, dancing movie star dynamo. How exactly did Mr.Astaire keep his pouch in place without the help of Sure Seals ( I am pretty sure all that cavorting with Ginger Rogers would have had anyone's pouch up around their neck. Just how much of our landfills are that much fuller thanks to everyone's ostomy supplies? Why couldn't WE design art pieces with pouches or belts or wafers or the any number of things ostomates use?
I tossed and turned last night for many hours, freaking out over how I am helping to destroy the environment with all of Oscar's pouches when I had a light bulb moment. Biodegradable Ostomy Pouches. Do you hear that ostomy supply manufacturers? I have just presented you with a kajillion dollar idea, you could even advertise it as a "green" product and charge us all more for something that is a life necessity.
Somewhere around 2am when I finally drifted off into sleep I thanked Oscar for allowing me to spend some quality time with Shaina and for letting me traverse the new art gallery. He might not be saving the world, but he has saved my life and for that, I am eternally grateful.


  1. Fantastic idea, Oscar. I look forward to being a more environmentally friendly ostomy, too.

    - Barbie

  2. There is such a museum of antiquated pouches - assembled by one of the first-ever WOC nurses. I don't think it's open to the public, though. The very earliest pouches were rubber, designed for a long life with many washings and airings, and the faceplates were held on with a type of rubber cement with additives for skin health. Yes, we have a lot to be thankful for in modern pouches.

  3. A greener way to get rid of the brown. That would be awesome.

  4. I thought you were going to suggest we turn the used pouches into some sort of art display. Call it "There's Art in the Fart"..or...There's Crap in the Trap"..but that's just me.

  5. Darren and I went to see that exhibit on Thursday, and might I say; IMPRESSIVE, yes? I couldn't believe the scale!

    I love how it inspired you! It's one thing to go look at some art, but to come home with an earth-friendly million dollar idea is another. I think you should spearhead it!

  6. Thanks for the humor and insight from you and Oscar, Allie.

    Lucille tries my patience at times; she is an ileostomy and her pouch can be worn for 3-5 days at a time. However, some times she leaks 2 or 3 times a day!

    I like your idea of an ostomy museum - and the art display. Thanks for allowing for comments.