While many have been criticizing the increase in plastic waste stemming from single-use dining supplies, the turtle community has had a surprising reaction. Stan Turtlesworth Jr, a sea turtle residing in the Chesapeake Bay, is happy with the increase in plastic. “Thank you Washington and Lee University! With my new six-pack necklace and bottle-cap hat, I have been receiving much more attention from the female turtles and respect from my male peers,” he said in that Cockney accent that turtles have. They also are all big Shel Silverstein fans and are incredibly enthusiastic about the Chesapeake Bay, which has grown to one of the largest turtle colonies in the entire sea-world. Some of the turtles even have backpacks in which they carry their monocles. Stan used to get bullied for his lack of unique identifiers because all turtles look the same, but now, he has a hat and necklace that shine and make him much easier to recognize.
“Ever since the brutal terror attack on turtle cove by those damned sea squids everyone has been feeling down,” he recounted. “Now we have something to look forward to!” he exclaimed, referencing the weekly plastic dumps they receive from W&L. While he has his hat, others have used bottle caps for different means, such as a new drum set, a ball for turtle soccer, or as a container for turtle-explosives, used to fight back against those damn sea squids.
Turtles and sea squids have a long history of fighting. While the two have more in common than they realize, the conflict has always been fierce and violent. It all began as a territorial dispute in the early 1300s as the sea squid population moved northwards following a population boom as a result of increased crustacean supply. As they moved north, they began to see more and more sea turtles, whom they never fully understood. These turtles spent their days gathering food, engaging in musical theater endeavors, and making jokes where the joke is the anticipation followed by a subpar punchline. The squids, on the other hand, having western Canadian accents, wearing leather jackets even in the summer, and HATING musical theater quickly began to impose their own culture and values on turtle society. The catalyst of violence came during the sea turtles’ production of Wicked, during which a sea squid in a suicide bomber vest came out during the “I’m Not That Girl (Reprise)” and killed two-thirds of the cast in an instant. In a matter of seconds, violence erupted and the two populations have been in conflict ever since.
“Without W&L’s immense increase in plastic waste, I might not be here today. Thank you all for caring so much about the turtle population and giving us these incredible gifts!” said Turtlesworth Jr. “My grandfather died of COVID-19 in October, right around the anniversary of the Wicked Sea-Squid Massacre… Our turtle health care system was overrun with sick elderly sea turtles and the inflation rate of the turtle rupee meant I didn’t have enough to get him the help he needed at the private turtle clinic. But now, I cannot claim to be upset because of my dank new hat and necklace.”