Lessons from a life of startups, coding, countryside, and kids
I’m a freak: a computer programmer that doesn’t drink coffee. I don’t drink tea either. Or hot chocolate (unless I’ve just been swimming with dolphins in the seas off New Zealand and hypothermia is a possible concern). I like ice cold drinks: Fruit juice, orange squash, Coke or 7UP, and mostly just water.
One of the highlights of last Friday were my two experiences drinking water. Here’s why…
I was a Cork Meet – a large networking event – and like most conferences it caters mostly for the engage-brain-with-coffee crowd. Luckily I found a water dispenser in the corner and I could fill up my Vapur Reflex which I’d received at Christmas but had yet to use.
It’s perfect! It folds flat when you’re carrying it, stands up when it’s full, has a good solid nozzle which doesn’t leak, and a caribiner for attaching to a bag. It is now a permanent addition to my laptop bag and I may get a second for my camera bag.
The only downside is that the bag lacks structure and tends to droop down when you’re drinking it. It can also look like you’re drinking from an IV bag.
I was so thrilled with my experiences with the Vapur bag in the morning that I was excitedly telling everyone I met… and then I met John, inventor of PUNC bottles who told me I was doing it all wrong.
John was giving a presentation at the Selr8r open day and started by telling us that plastic bottles are bad. He’s probably right, although I’ll be honest and say that I have bigger fish to fry in terms of healthy living. The BPA scandal has made everyone a bit more aware of the health risks of plastics and I have no doubt that there will be more health problems discovered in the future. But I don’t think that’s the main selling point. After all, your drinking water in the office is almost certainly delivered in a large plastic bottle.
The first thing you notice about the PUNC bottle is the packaging. The bottle comes nestled in a bright, bold poster tube and that alone marks it out as something special. This is an object of design. The bottles themselves are made of thin stainless steel and are incredibly light (nothing like the old aluminium bottle I had for hiking). The stainless steel is the same stuff used for food preparation and, since some of my limbs are already held together by this material, I think we can trust it! The bottles are curved in the middle, which really helps with holding them, particularly when you get condensation forming on an ice cold bottle. It gives the bottle a softer look and they come in a range of playful metallic colours.
The bottles have a range of caps too. I have the sports cap which provides the familiar exercise bottle valve. The only downside to this is there’s no air-hole which limits the amount of water you can take in (and you can’t squeeze the bottle either). There’s also an easy flip-up straw lid and regular screw on lids. I tend to leave the lid off at my desk and just drink from the wide mouth (big enough to put ice cubes in). PUNC bottles come in various sizes (0.5L, 0.75L and 1L) and there is also a selection insulated bottles (stays cold for 24hrs!)
John was gracious enough to give me the Red 1L bottle he’d brought in for the presentation. Or perhaps he took pity on me when I told him that I would buy a 1litre bottle of Volvic and just reuse the plastic bottle for a few months! Yeah, that doesn’t sound too hygenic now that I mention it.
Trick question. Buy both!
If you drink water then having a Vapur in your laptop bag or camera bag is just a no-brainer. They’re perfect for travelling light.
The PUNC bottles are my choice for drinking water just about anywhere else. I use mine at my desk and I plan on getting a small one for my daughter’s lunchbox, and maybe another for the car. You can find local stockists on the PUNC site or buy online.