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Pamela French

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The Pepsi Refresh Bottle Cap Challenge!

Posted: 07/20/11 05:45 PM ET

What was I thinking?! Having just come off the Green Giant, Green Awards, and asking my friends, colleagues and like-minded green parents to vote for my entry daily, I entered another contest, The Pepsi Refresh Challenge.

To my surprise, my entry was accepted and went live on July 1st. I didn't even think about the fact that July 4th was days away, a terrible time to get people to vote, but my gut feeling was people who voted last time would see how the power of voting really did work, and vote again this time. Man was I wrong! Not only were people away for the July 4th week/weekend, but they had had it last time voting daily for me, why do it again... so soon?

By week 2 of the contest I realized Pepsi had another competition going on within the actual democratic voting competition - 'power voting'. The codes inside the Pepsi Refresh yellow bottle caps had voting values ranging from 5 to 100 votes. You were allowed 10 'power votes' in a 24 hr period, and this was a sure way to better your standings in the race to the top.

This Pepsi bottle cap collection, was a big issue for me, I was setting out to make a film to educate the NY school population on how to make their schools more sustainable, How could I be pushing people to drink soda? So power voting became an obsession, and I set off, going to any lengths (other than buying soda) to get my hands on bottle caps. The above video is only shot after riding to and from a redemption center in Manhattan, calling all Aveda Experience stores nationwide (they recycle bottle caps), and reaching out to everyone I could possible think of who might have access to Pepsi bottle caps - my building's porter was asked as well to keep an eye out for yellow Pepsi caps.

Seriously my world has changed since I've entered this competition, not only am I consumed by yellow plastic caps, but I now observe the city streets with fresh eyes. I ride my bike looking into curbside garbage cans and anytime there is a little yellow something on the street or sidewalk, I reach down and pick it up.

Pepsi, I hope what I've done this month is worth it and I win this prize, I cannot imagine having to go through this again! Please wish me luck and feel free to vote for my project.

 

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