Wow. I’ve ignored this blog long enough that I’ve started receiving hate mail! On Monday, a mysterious character using the screen name “susan” kindly left me the following comment on my last post:
the frugality of this recipe grows more impressive with each repeated visit to your website … look, i understand it’s cheap but can’t we get another post soon enough here?
dining cheaply, thank you.
How charming. (Love you, Suze!)
Much to my chagrin, this lovely comment turned up in my email account during class (not that I ever check email in class or anything), and I barely contained my urge to laugh aloud. My wide smile was enough to call attention to myself as it was, given that only two other students are taking this senior seminar and that the professor happened to be lecturing on the finer points of APA style. Believe me, no one smiles at yet another review of ampersand and “et al.” usage.
Ah, summer school.
I hate summer school. More specifically, I hate 8 hours of homework a day. Not that I actually accomplish 8 hours of homework a day, because between driving to and from campus (it’s a bit of a hike!), attending the darn classes, grocery shopping, making dinner, and bare-minimum housework, I simply don’t have 8 hours a day to put my head in a book or in front of the computer screen. There’s also that pesky issue of preserving my relationship with my husband by, you know, talking to him every once in a while. So I don’t ever get all of the homework done, which leaves me with that horrible desperately-trying-to-catch-up feeling all the time.
That said, I’m incredibly thankful to have this opportunity to finish my degree, so don’t take my grumpiness too seriously. It’s only temporary.
Now, on to business: May I offer, dear disgruntled readers, an olive branch of a quick and dirty review of New Wave Enviro and Klean Kanteen stainless steel water bottles? Not very exciting, perhaps, but useful.
You’ve probably heard the news by now about Bisphenol-A (BPA), an endocrine disruptor, leaching out of the hard, clear polycarbonate plastic used to make Nalgene bottles and baby bottles. If you’re not yet familiar with the issue or simply want to learn more, go here for an excellent Green Guide article (it includes tips for avoiding BPA). Keep in mind, though, that this article was written two years ago and that significant discoveries have been made since then that have led Canada to ban BPA in baby bottles.
If you, like me, need to carry a water bottle around, consider ditching that Nalgene for a stainless steel version. Sigg, Klean Kanteen, and New Wave Enviro are the most popular brands. Swiss-made Sigg produces lots of cool-looking designs, and their bottles are readily available at Whole Foods. I chose not to buy a Sigg, however, because they’re made of aluminum with an interior coating. Call me paranoid, but I’m a little nervous about that interior coating getting worn and beginning to flake off, exposing me to the aluminum.
That leaves New Wave Enviro and Klean Kanteen. I bought one bottle of each in order to compare them, as you can see below. The 20 ounce New Wave Enviro sits on the left (red), and the 40 ounce Klean Kanteen sits on the right.
Of the two, Klean Kanteen is much more well known, but New Wave Enviro is less expensive. I wondered whether the price difference was mostly due to the name-brand factor. After a few weeks of using them both, I have concluded otherwise. In my experience, Klean Kanteen produces, hands-down, the superior product. Here are three reasons why.
1. I far prefer drinking from the Klean Kanteen bottle because of the mouth design. Here is the Klean Kanteen mouth:
See how it’s smoothly molded inside and out? There are no uncomfortable seams to be found. Contrast that with the New Wave Enviro mouth:
Can you see those seams? Here’s another shot:
This design makes the bottle quite uncomfortable for drinking. The edges catch your lips slightly, and the feel under the tongue is, well, awful. It feels like…aluminum foil on your teeth. Furthermore, there’s a strange metallic taste. Ick.
2. The Klean Kanteenbody seems to be made of heftier stainless steel, and its lid is more substantial too.
The Klean Kanteen lid is smooth, with large threads that are easy to align with the grooves in the bottle.
It’s also comfortable to hold, with plenty of room for chunky fingers, like mine. (Kindly overlook the overexposure in this photo. I’m still learning.) And yes, my fingers really are chunky. I wear a size 8 to 9 ring.
For comparison, here is the New Wave Enviro lid:
Maybe you can’t tell from the picture, but this lid seems cheap. The threads are small, the plastic has noticeable seams, and the carabiner clip is a joke, though it’s a cool idea.
3. The paint on the New Wave Enviro is thin and scratches easily.
Now, the Klean Kanteen bottles aren’t perfect either. I had heard a lot of complaints about denting, and I have experienced a small one so far.
Considering, though, that I’ve thrown this bottle around quite a bit, and that it took a full-force fall from 3 feet high when the bottle was full to create this dent, I’m not too worried. Also, like other stainless steel products, it shows fingerprints badly.
Bottom line: I love my Klean Kanteen. I carry it everywhere. It has become a part of me. The New Wave Enviro, on the other hand, has been sulking in the cabinet for a couple of weeks. Poor thing. Maybe my husband will take pity on it.
To purchase your own Klean Kanteen, you can visit Amazon or REI or look at Klean Kanteen’s listing of authorized retailers. I purchased mine through the REIwebsite, then had it delivered to my local store to avoid paying shipping charges. The company offers 12, 18, 27, and 40 ounce bottles, ranging in price from about $15 to around $25. They may cost a pretty penny, but I think the quality is worth the money. These bottles should last forever.