Monday, September 12, 2016

That Contains Petroleum?! Guest post with Tamara Narayan

For me, a story idea can come from anywhere. Once, inspiration hit while driving down the highway, looking at the bits of plastic grocery bags stuck in trees too high for anyone to pull down without a cherry picker.

Image: Greg Goebel


Wouldn't it be nice if they all disappeared? But if they did, wouldn't that be kind of spooky? 



Then again, who would miss them? No one. The bags are ugly, introduce toxins to the environment, and kill animals who ingest them. What if plastic bags were the first of several things to disappear? I knew the bags contains petroleum. What if other things containing petroleum also disappeared? What kind of havoc would that render?

Off to Wikipedia! Well, actually I found this list from Ranken Energy. And what an eye opener it was. Some things weren't a surprise, such as tires, shoes, footballs, and paint. But others were unexpected, to say the least.


Image: Omegan


Things you rub on your body: cold cream, lipstick, perfume, soap, nail polish, and rubbing alcohol (not to mention petroleum jelly, like duh!)

Things you play with: guitar strings, roller skates, tennis rackets, skis, boats, and dice

Things you wear: sweaters, football cleats and helmets

Things in your bathroom: toilet seats, toothpaste, shaving cream, dentures, shampoo, hair coloring, and shower curtains

Things in your medicine cabinet: vitamin capsules, antihistamines, cortisone, aspirin, soft contacts, and deodorant



So many things! From so many parts of life! What would we do without petroleum? What would be the impact if these things disappeared? In most cases, we would live, somewhat irritated and inconvenienced, but we would live.

But then one item in particular caught my attention. Something, that if it were to vanish, would cause a body a big problem. What was it? Well, you can skim the list yourself and see if you can guess, or go ahead and read Heart Stopper (big hint), the title story in my anthology. Yeah, I'm terrible, aren't I?




Heart Stopper and Other Stories is a collection of four suspenseful tales, available now at Amazon.com.

In the words of fellow blogger Diana Wilder at ...about myself, by myself...This is not sledgehammer blood or gore, but the sort of tantalizing, slowly building tension that will send you groping for another pillow and eyeing your alarm clock to see if you might be able to read to the end and not be too impaired in the morning at work.

About the authorFrom doling out movie popcorn to flinging smelt to penguins, Tamara Narayan’s career took the “road less traveled”. It veered off into a land of integrals and other strange things while she taught college level math, but these days she’s cruising the fiction highway. In addition to the Heart Stopper collection, her short story Scrying The Plane is in the IWSG anthology, Parallels: Felix Was Here. Find her at www.tamaranarayan.com.

What surprised you about the list of items containing petroleum? Which one would you miss the most?

32 comments:

  1. They've banned the plastic bags in our community which is kind of a hassle though I understand the concern. The thing that bugs me is having to carry around reusable bags or buy the paper ones. Sounds like a scam pushed by the paper bag industry.

    But you're right about petroleum products. There is so much that we use that has petroleum at its base or relies on petroleum in some way. We need to start finding more substitutes.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Before I wrote this post, I researched the paper vs. plastic bag conundrum going on and it was interesting. Plastic bags do cause harm to the environment, but they take less energy to produce than paper bags and they are completely recyclable. Problem is, few people bother to get them back to a recycling center.

      Delete
  2. Deodorant, huh? Who needs deodorant, but contacts?! I gotta have my contacts. ^_^

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Me too. Whenever I have to wear my glasses, I just hate the "frame" they leave on the world.

      Delete
  3. It is surprising to find out the ingredients that are inside the things we use.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I read a science fiction novel some years back where a genetically engineered bacteria designed to clean up oil spills ran amuck and ate up all petroleum products. Chaos ensued ...

    ReplyDelete
  5. Aspirin? Of course there are good uses for petroleum, but we've over done it with the plastics. No one seems to understand that things like plastic bags aren't biodegradable, that they just break down into tinier and tinier pieces until worms and microbes are eating them and dying because the plastic can be digested. Plastic has already be found in the bellies of dead whales and krill. Why be terrified of terrorism when plastic is going to be the thing that kills of life on this planet? (Okay, I'm sorry, I'll get off my soapbox now. I hate plastic.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is incredibly frustrating to think of all the harm something we don't need is causing the planet. It's like Dr. Suess's Sneeds, but much worse.

      Delete
  6. Aspirin? Of course there are good uses for petroleum, but we've over done it with the plastics. No one seems to understand that things like plastic bags aren't biodegradable, that they just break down into tinier and tinier pieces until worms and microbes are eating them and dying because the plastic can be digested. Plastic has already be found in the bellies of dead whales and krill. Why be terrified of terrorism when plastic is going to be the thing that kills of life on this planet? (Okay, I'm sorry, I'll get off my soapbox now. I hate plastic.)

    ReplyDelete
  7. We are surrounded by petroleum-infused products. Besides what it's doing to our ecosystem, think what it's doing to us. Since our skin is a permeable coating, think of all that petroleum being absorbed into our bodies each time we rub some of that soothing lotion on! congrats on your books.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Excellent question. It makes you wonder what the potential side effects could be.

      Delete
  8. Something is in everything. Trying to catalog all of that will give me a headache so pass. But yeah petroleum is definitely in a WHOLE lot of stuff.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Indeed it is. Interesting for a writer hot on the topic, but maybe overload for those with other things to worry about.

      Delete
    2. Indeed it is. Interesting for a writer hot on the topic, but maybe overload for those with other things to worry about.

      Delete
  9. Without toilet seats, we'd have to use squat toilets.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Kind of makes one wonder how life will be when petroleum is no longer available. Thanks for stopping by today!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Very tantalizing! Sounds like a fascinating story.

    ReplyDelete
  12. An interesting line of thinking, Tamara!

    ReplyDelete
  13. That's a huge, surprising list! I think I'd most miss antihistamines and cortisone, as someone who suffers from allergies and eczema. If petroleum is in aspirin, I assume it might be found in naproxen sodium as well. I depend on those pills to manage my dysmenorrhea and avoid the crippling horrors I went through before being recommended that medication.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Honestly, I'm not that surprised. I think if we really examined the ingredients of things, we'd all be in shock. I'm constantly amazed at some of the things we have in our everyday circumstances.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Kind of scary when you see all the things included... I've changed my deodorant to crystal based on :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. Wow, that's quite the list. I shudder to think what all that petroleum in, on, and around us is doing to us and the environment. It can't be good.

    ReplyDelete
  17. We Can supply Aviation Kerosene,Jet fuel (JP 54-A1,5), Diesel (Gas Oil) and Fuel Oil D2, D6,ETC in FOB/Rotterdam only, serious buyer should contact or if you have serious buyers my seller is ready to close this deal fast contact us below:now base email us (neftegazagent@yandex.ru)

    PRODUCT AVAILABLE IN ROTTERDAM/ CI DIP AND PAY IN SELLER EX-SHORE TANK.

    Russia D2 50,000-150,000 Metric Tons FOB Rotterdam Port.

    JP54 5000,000 Barrels per Month FOB Rotterdam.

    JA1 Jet Fuel 10,000,000 Barrels FOB Rotterdam.

    D6 Virgin Fuel Oil 800,000,000 Gallon FOB Rotterdam.

    E-mail: neftegazagent@yandex.ru
    E: neftegazagent@mail.ru
    E: neftegazagent@yahoo.com

    Best Regards
    (Mr.) Vladislav Yakov
    Skype: neftegazagent

    Thank You

    ReplyDelete
  18. AVAILABLE PETROLEUM PRODUCTS - D2, D6, JP54 & JETA1.

    WE HAVE AVAILABLE PETROLEUM PRODUCTS FROM RELIABLE REFINERY IN RUSSIAN FEDERATION WITH BEST PRICE AND QUALITY.
    BELOW PRODUCT ARE AVAILABLE WITH BEST OFFERS - FOB CI DIP AND PAY.

    JP54: Quantity: 500,000-2,000,000 Barrels
    D2: Quantity: 50,000-150,000 Metric Tons
    D6 Virgin: Quantity: 400,000,000-800,000,000 Gallon

    SERIOUS BUYERS PLEASE CONTACT US FOR MORE DETAILS WITH YOUR SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS SO AS TO ENABLE US PROVIDE YOU WITH OUR WORKABLE PROCEDURE.
    Sincerely.

    Maksim Yaroslav (Mr.)
    EMAIL: neftegazconsultant@yandex.ru
    EMAIL: neftegazconsultant@mail.ru
    Skype: neftegazconsultant
    TEL: +7 9265036551

    ReplyDelete
  19. AVAILABLE PETROLEUM PRODUCTS - D2, D6, JP54 & JETA1.

    WE HAVE AVAILABLE PETROLEUM PRODUCTS FROM RELIABLE REFINERY IN RUSSIAN FEDERATION WITH BEST PRICE AND QUALITY.
    BELOW PRODUCT ARE AVAILABLE WITH BEST OFFERS - FOB CI DIP AND PAY.

    JP54: Quantity: 500,000-2,000,000 Barrels
    D2: Quantity: 50,000-150,000 Metric Tons
    D6 Virgin: Quantity: 400,000,000-800,000,000 Gallon

    SERIOUS BUYERS PLEASE CONTACT US FOR MORE DETAILS WITH YOUR SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS SO AS TO ENABLE US PROVIDE YOU WITH OUR WORKABLE PROCEDURE.
    Sincerely.

    Maksim Yaroslav (Mr.)
    EMAIL: neftegazconsultant@yandex.ru
    EMAIL: neftegazconsultant@mail.ru
    Skype: neftegazconsultant
    TEL: +7 9265036551

    ReplyDelete
  20. We Can supply Aviation Kerosene,Jet fuel (JP 54-A1,5), Diesel (Gas Oil) and Fuel Oil D2, D6,ETC in FOB/Rotterdam only, serious buyer should contact or if you have serious buyers my seller is ready to close this deal fast contact us below:now base email us (neftegazagent@yandex.ru)

    PRODUCT AVAILABLE IN ROTTERDAM/ CI DIP AND PAY IN SELLER EX-SHORE TANK.

    Russia D2 50,000-150,000 Metric Tons FOB Rotterdam Port.

    JP54 5000,000 Barrels per Month FOB Rotterdam.

    JA1 Jet Fuel 10,000,000 Barrels FOB Rotterdam.

    D6 Virgin Fuel Oil 800,000,000 Gallon FOB Rotterdam.

    E-mail: neftegazagent@yandex.ru
    E: neftegazagent@mail.ru
    E: neftegazagent@yahoo.com

    Best Regards
    (Mr.) Vladislav Yakov
    Skype: neftegazagent

    Thank You

    ReplyDelete

  21. We are working with a Representative services in TANK LEASING/SHIPPING COMPANY In Russia Federation,Rotterdam and Houston.

    They have their own storage tanks for petroleum.

    If you are interested in leasing of storage tanks in any Russian Port or Rotterdam port, kindly contact us via email oilstoragetankagency@inbox.ru or oilstoragetankagency@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete

I'd love to hear your valuable Tidbits -