Wednesday, August 13, 2008
A Hole in None
Hot beverages these days invariably come topped with a sippy lid, the kind with a little hole so you can walk and drink at the same time. But is this a benefit? There is a Zen Buddhist saying: When walking, just walk. I heartily agree. An adult is not a baby nursing a bottle, and should be able to wait 5 minutes to arrive at her desk, THEN drink the coffee.
The hole in the sippy lid is a spill hazard. It forces people to create hole-covering blotter pads out of folded-up napkins or risk arriving at work covered with coffee dribbles. Recently an official solution has been thoughtfully provided by Starbucks: they now produce little green plastic stirrers/plugs to fit the hole, topped with a jaunty trademark mermaid. Mightn't it be better to just go back to offering old-style flat lids?
A heavily-promoted aspect of Starbuck's corporate identity and branding is their social responsibility, what they are doing for the environment, etc. So why come up with a solution in the form of an additional plastic item the world doesn’t really need, one that will end up in landfills or washed up on beaches, when it would be cleaner to just solve the original design problem? Lids should not have holes in the first place.