No, he’s not whistling songs to the fishes. He’s drinking water containing dead microscopic animal carcasses so that he can conserve his stash of Evian. Very cool.
This eco-friendly guy is demonstrating how to properly use a “Life Straw,” a water filtration device that, in an emergency, allows one to drink up to 264 gallons of water without getting amoebic dysentery or other nastiness that flourishes in non-chlorinated water. In order to use the device, one must lay prone on the muddy bank of a polluted stream, fetid pool, or on the tarmac next to an oil-laced pothole, and just stick it in and suck it up.
Apparently you’re not allowed to use a collapsible camping cup to scoop up the filthy polluted disease-laden water. You gotta get down and do it like the slugs and snails while keeping your watch dry. (After all, you gotta know what time you’re going to be dehydrated, rignt?)
Generally, if you drink enough fluid so that you rarely feel thirsty and your urine is colorless or light yellow — and measures about 6.3 cups (1.5 liters) or more a day if you were to keep track — your fluid intake is probably adequate.
That’s from the Mayo Clinic website. So assuming you keep track of your piss volume, 264 gallons of fresh water = 1,056 quarts = 2,112 Pints = 4,224 cups. 4,224 cups /6.3 cups /day = 670.5 days worth of water. That’s almost 2 years of clean water for only $19.95. Damn cheap, and you could lap out of every toilet bowl you ran across without fear of turning into a dog.
The question is, who wanders so far away from civilization that they would need 2 years of fresh water for a hiking trip? Maybe they brought a friend with them and reduced the supply by half. Bring more friends, and they better bring their own.
On the other hand, if the product filters like it’s supposed to, at $20 US a pop (excuse me, $19.95 + Shipping & Handling for non-indigenous hikers lost for a couple of years in the bush) there should be no 3rd World people that can’t afford it… until you realize that many are living on pennies a day because their governments won’t allow them to do otherwise, assuming they even have governments.
This product, although it is little more than an overpriced equivalent to chlorine tablets, or to scooping water out of a bog and boiling the hell out of it in a pot, is aimed at people like Mister Mudsucker above.
I love EnvironMentalCapitalism. =D
P.S. The link doesn’t say if it works on water from the garden hose.
[Update: Apparently potable water purification tablets are a lot more expensive per gallon than this device, and you’d still have to strain the muck from the water at some point during treatment; however, if you drop that sucking thingy into the pool of filth, I guess you’d have to sanitize it in boiling water anyway.]