Me: If I were going to get arrested, I would want it to be for bootlegging. G: OK. Me: 'Cause that's just cool. G: Yeah. Me: And it's kind of like a pirate. G: It's like a pirate who doesn't loot. Me: Right. Like a good pirate. G: It's like Han Solo. Me: Or Rhett Butler. G: Right on. Me: OK. I was just sayin'.
Wow, I haven't visited my LJ since May 18th. Actually, I think I started to post a few updates somewhere in there, but having a lot to say often results in me writing nothing. Sometimes, it's probably better that way. Usually, I just wish I'd written something down so I didn't forget it.
Much has been going on in my world recently. The addition of an iPhone to my otherwise technologically spartan lifestyle has revolutionized my communication style. Not to mention, it's just plain cool. After 16 years, I finally have a cell phone I will carry around with me. The last time that happened, I had a supersweet Motorola flip-phone my Freshman year in college. While my other techno-hip friends were stylin' with bag phones in their trunks, mine was actually small enough to fit in my backpack or a large purse. When Christmas break rolled around and I used my savings to buy a ThinkPad (in color!), I was the certain envy of everyone in my dorm. While they were all tethered to those uncomfortable computer lab chairs in Leazar, I was telnetting from the comfort of my 11th floor suite in Sullivan. Oh, yeah.
Anyway, that was 1993 and about the last time I was technologically current. And I really hadn't been suffering from it until just recently, when the overwhelming urge to tweet on the go won out. Now, I'm just happy to have an in with the phone company so I can tweet at a discount.
So, I spent much of yesterday reflecting on many of the "green" changes I've been wanting to make about the way we live. I've come up with a short list of things I intend to do this year:
1) Not collect another plastic grocery bag. I have several reusable shopping bags, but don't always remember to take them into the store, especially for shopping other than grocery shopping. Several months ago, I put some in the car so that I wouldn't have that "uh-oh" moment, but I still frequently manage to forget they are there and leave them in the trunk. I have a huge satchel of plastic bags waiting by the front door. Next time I'm at the store, I'm depositing them once and for all. I've been recycling plastic grocery bags for what seems like eons, but there's really no need to collect any more.
2) Create a backyard compost bin. At our townhouse, we had no place to compost. When we moved into this house, I was excited about being able to start a compost pile. Indecision about how and where to build it have kept me from doing so. A few months ago, I started countertop composting. I've decided that on our small, city lot, a self-contained compost tumbler is the way to go. It can live behind our potting shed and won't attract unwanted critters. I plan to start clearing that area and creating an appropriate surface next week.
3) Use more pure ingredients. For the past several years, I've been buying more organic products, not just organic foods. Some time ago, I switched to organic facial care and makeup. My skin thanks me. Recently, when purchasing new bed linens, I opted for organic cotton. While I've found it difficult to give up my favorite shampoo and conditioner, I've been making a greater effort to use eco-friendly cleaning products. Little by little, I'm replacing what we have on hand with healthier alternatives. I'm making progress, slowly but surely.
4) Recycle a greater variety of items. Currently, we recycle everything the city accepts--glass, aluminum, cardboard, chipboard, #1 and #2 plastics and newspaper. We reduced our newspaper waste by canceling our subscription several years ago, and I reuse what we manage to accumulate as paper for Bird's cage. It recently came to my attention that Whole Foods recycles #5 plastics, so I plan to check into that. I save many other types of containers, but they are piling up without specific uses in mind. Which brings me to probably the biggest item on the list...
5) Generate less garbage. If we didn't purchase so many packaged items to begin with, we wouldn't have so much packaging to dispose of or recycle. Reducing our amount of trash to one tall kitchen bag (or less) a week will be a good place to begin. I plan to start consolidating refuse from around our house on Sunday nights in an attempt to monitor this. Purchasing more bulk foods and veggies should help out, too--not to mention be good for our waistlines. And I need to stop using paper bathroom cups. I have them on hand for guests, but when they're sitting out, I tend to use them, too (for about a week at a time, until they fall apart). No more of that.
I'm sure I will think of many more things to add to this list as I step up my "green conscience". This is a good place to start.
Together Be: Melanesian Choirs (The Blessed Islands)
Close examination of my refrigerator shelves a little earlier this evening revealed that I have 9 different varieties of mustard on hand. They all serve their purpose; they're for eating on different kinds of food. I had no idea I was such a mustard snob. This is awesome! So late in life and I have discovered yet another intriguing facet to my persona. ;-)
Just to be sure, I checked out the pantry. I found three unopened jars/bottle in there. One of them is a kind that's not even in the fridge...
I haven't had time to mess with LJ in ages (or spend much time poking around the internet), so this has probably made its rounds for sure. However, it was pretty neat. Here's some super-cool street art.
It reminds me of the awesome graffiti the Doctor and I went hunting the last time we were in Charleston. It envelops the entire backside of an abandoned strip mall, an inconspicuous roadside relic on the way to Folly Beach. A two-second detour off a major thoroughfare, yet most people don't even realize it's there. My parents live five minutes away, and I read about it in The New York Times, for goodness' sake. I'll have to post pictures next time I think about it.
Though I enjoy various talk radio programs, I can't stand listening to talk radio while I'm trying to fall asleep. Music is great, but my brain will absolutely not tune out spoken language no matter how tired I am. It stays way too busy analyzing what I hear. (This would be a great way to torture me, if anybody is out there making notes.) Since drmellow likes to listen to talk radio at night, I frequently find myself across the hall or downstairs on the sofa after an hour or two, if I want to catch any Zs.
I usually request BBC World Service if I'm going to have to lie awake and listen to something. Recently, I discovered that I can sort of half-way pay attention if the newsreader has a Scottish accent. I'm still focused on EVERY. SINGLE. WORD... but it's not *quite* as annoying. I guess I'm partially lulled by the sing-song musicality of it.
So, tonight's goal is to try and fall asleep before the news goes off and the station returns to musical programming. Oh, no... Are the British people back? Drat. I need more Fiona MacDonald.