Sunday, November 30, 2008

Container Ships

"Every year somewhere between ten and fifteen thousand containers are lost at sea because of big waves or storms. Eight feet wide and up to forty feet long, they tend to have quite a lot of air in them, so they float in the water, wreaking havoc on small boats and local fishermen before they sink to the ocean floor – filled with our computers, our dishware, our jeans."

I found this remarkable statistic (or remarkable to me, anyway) on p. 316 in the epilogue of Rachel Louise Snyder's new book from Norton called Fugitive Denim : The Moving Story of People and Pants in the Borderless World of Global Trade.

All afternoon I could not stop picturing the lost containers – thousands and thousands and thousands of them – very slowly corroding under five or six miles of salt water.