Sunday, April 22, 2007

Real Life Do-Good Tips for Normal People

I'm 41 today, and I'm entitled to some serious wallow for that reason.

But I have too many things to do so I'm not going to get any time to wallow pointlesslessly or wonder how in the hell this happened. Single. 41. A day job. A new life. Again.

It's not just my birthday, it's also Earth Day. So here are a few tips for you on how to be more green without having to exert yourself.

-You know those great lightbulbs that last longer and save the world? Well, they have mercury in them. Poisoning the environment seems a foolish way to avoid global warming, so don't throw them in the trash. You've got to dispose of them at the local recycling center. Or just throw them in the bin labelled "Fluorescent Bulbs" at the recycling area in IKEA. It's usually past the registers, near the exit. Don't break them. Baaaad idea.

-Switch your power provider. In NJ, we are able to pay just a little more in exchange for getting all our power from renewable sources such as wind, hydro, and solar. But it isn't very helpful if it's just me. Everyone should do it! Check here to see if green power is available in your state.

-Cut back on cows. In the UK, everyone is yammering on about the damage that aircraft are doing to the environment. Well, fine, I've been advocating local transport for a long time. But the cow industry creates 18 percent of C02 emissions, more than cars and planes combined. Don't just take the train the next time you have to cross Europe--rethink that fast food "just this once." Cut back on the red meat and dairy. Your green karma will be good enough to use a few normal lightbulbs and fly across the Atlantic.

-Patronize the farmer's market for your veggies. Okay, easy for me to say. Once a week, there's one in the park in front of my new apartment.

-Take your own cloth bags to the supermarket. Does this sound mad to you? Then buy the supermarket cloth bag so you don't look like a bag lady. I have a Shop-Rite one that I use over and over and over. Holds more than plastic and saves me the uncontrollable plastic bag collection problem.

Happy Earth Day.


Matt Hollingsworth said...

Well, Happy Birthday! I hope you have a fun day.

neal s said...

Happy birthday!


Marie Javins said...

Thanks guys.

Here's what I've done so far:


-supermarket shopping

-browsed Linens'N'Things during the dry cycle

-reorganized garage

-carried up the stairs: a bunch of comic books, five pieces of framed artwork (I'm going to make the spare room a comic book art gallery)

-talked on the phone a lot

-used "Zip-It" tool to dig a bunch of hair and gross stuff out of Yancey's bathroom sink. Seems the culprit for the slow drain was a rubber band. Nice renter.

And now I am going to hang a mirror.

The fun never ends.

Linda said...

Hippo birdie two ewe!

Matt Hollingsworth said...

Coulda been a cat that got that rubber band in there. One of my cats has a fetish for all things plastic and rubber, rubber bands included. And sometimes they like to play in bathtubs. So, might have been a perfectly nice renter with a kitty!

Marie Javins said...

You're right! The renter had a cat. I know this because I swept up hair for a week. Mystery solved. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

When you buy the supermarket bag.. or any other bag... remember to bring them back the next time you shop. I now have the plastic bags and the cloth bags!

Happy Birthday and Earth day...

The other Marie

Sara Kocher said...

Happy belated birthday, Marie! Hope the Ethiopian food was fab.

Birthdays sorta lose their sparkle once you're past both the pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey and get-drunk-and-wild-with-good-friends stages of celebration. Now it's a nice dinner, pleasant conversation, and some home improvement chores. Oh well.