Bottles Versus Cups

(or, I really tackle the big issues in our society on this blog don’t I?)

In a World in which the vast majority of us will do absolutely nothing significant enough with our lives to warrant the attention of others for any more than four seconds, our society has evolved to empower us with stupidly arbitrary decisions to make, that make us feel relevant to the development of our species, and not the proverbial teardrops in the murky puddle of humanity that we are. There’s democracy, where deeply-held beliefs in one party or another can render most votes pointless; the card game ‘Twenty-One’, in which players are forced into decisiveness over whether to ‘stick’ or ‘twist’; or this thing (perhaps the best example that human beings should never be allowed to choose anything ever).

But today, I propose a new decision for you to make: which is the better vessel for holding drinking water: bottles, or cups?

Personally, I’m going with bottles, a decision that has caused great controversy in my house. As far as I can see, bottles are better in that they are, generally, larger; I don’t know the volume of the glasses in my cupboard, and you might have two-litre plastic tubs in your house that you drink out of (…somehow), but I tend to go longer between refilling the litre bottle on my desk than when I fill a glass with water. This is a good thing from the “I’m an inherently lazy person” perspective – the less my vessel of water is empty, the less I have to fill it up, and so the less I have to walk around my house (shut up this is the first world). Furthermore, bottles are generally resealable, meaning that on occasions where I hit my drink with an elbow, bottles are less likely to cause spillage than cups, and spillages mean getting up to get toilet paper and dry my desk (I’m not really this lazy – I go running, I promise). There is also the issue that my desk is full of electrical doo-dads, and although a computer is unlikely to be destroyed by a small puddle, unless I happen to be drinking hydrochloric acid, as I do from time to time, it’s just another worry I could do without. On a more serious note about spills, the fact that glasses are made of glass (such insight is why I’m applying to Cambridge) means that if i do drop a cup or knock it onto the floor, it may splinter into pieces, which can be dangerous; especially for me, as I once stepped on a piece of glass broken off of a milk bottle. Conversely, if a plastic bottle falls, all it will do it let water out and make a funny sound like an incredibly slow whoopy-cushion rasping, or a frog deflating. Bottles are also more fun too; does anyone else like taking the stickers off one brand of bottle and applying it to another? Probably not, but I once had a Powerade bottle with an Evian label and a Buxton one stuck to it, and found it highly amusing.

Bottles are also much more practical than cups outside of your home – ever seen a football player run over for a glass of Lucozade during that bit in the second half where one guy’s pretending to be injured for about three minutes and everyone seems to agree on an NFL-style timeout? No, they drink from bottles – they are sturdier, easier to drink out of due to their funnelled tops and have all the other advantages I outlined before. Personally, I don’t see a point in changing from carrying a bottle around in your bag when you’re going out, to a glass when you get home – just take the bottle from your bag, and hey look, water! A cornerstone of the pro-cup argument is that water in bottles stays there forever, and ends up all bubbly and weird, and probably isn’t the best thing in the world to drink; however, if you leave your bottle in your bag, only to be used when you’re going out, the half-full volume of water in there will sit there for literally days on end (if you spend little time outdoors). And then once you’re actually outside, you won’t want to drink that water because it’s all hot and old, and you’ll act like the rest of us and flood caffeine down your bloodstream from a coffee or some Godforsaken soft drink; I would propose that drinking water out of cups at home and bottles when you’re out is actively unhealthy for you. It’s also unhealthy for your wallet; a 500ml Coke in London costs, apparently, about 85p (although I’ve seen them sold for £1.50 in places), whereas filling up a 500ml bottle of water at home is free – this is literally one hundred percent cheaper. Also when you’re out, having a bottle of water gives you the chance to help someone out and give them a drink, a bit like if you’re the guy who always has the chewing-gum, although to a slightly lesser extent; everyone will be happy to drink some water if they’re thirsty, it’s an evolutionary trait designed to keep us alive, but not everyone wants your ridiculously-flavoured ‘KA’, or ‘Cherry Coke’, or ‘Mountain Dew’ (a drink whose name is only accurate in the sense that it is about as good for your health as throwing yourself off an actual mountain). Hell, even the Tube’s got the right idea, and if it can fit the entire population of the Earth onto a few Victorian-designed trains for a month of Sporting Events, surely we can trust it when it tells us to have a bottle of water?

I guess the debate comes down to practicality or, for want of a better word, style; yes, bottles look like fat pencils, and the presence of attractive young women wearing t-shirts on Evian bottles with babies’ bodies on them is more disturbing than anything else, and I accept that glasses are much smoother to hold, and fun to look at – the McDonald’s Coke Glasses look frankly awesome, with the drops of water imposed on the sides and stuff. But, I don’t care about looks; for me, the size, safety and functionality of bottles trumps cups and their mad swag any day.


Andrex Scrunch or Fold Advert (for proof that maybe Communism has it right that we shouldn’t have democracy)

Prices of Cokes in London (for the prices … of Cokes … in London)

Tube Advert (for evidence that Boris can do some things right)

Evian Model on a Bottle (for a look into what my nightmares consist of)

McDonald’s Coke Glasses Designer (you’ll have to scroll down a little bit)


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