Sunday, June 15, 2008

Some Thoughts

Yes yes, I know I've been an absent blogger. But I was reading this book about "flipping the switch on technology" called Better Off by Eric Brende. I sort of stopped checking e-mail or using the computer for a while. Not because of the book persay, but because it's Summer and all I really do is eat, read, and take care of other people's progeny for pay. I was tired of the computer, and reading about Eric's adventures on a farm in an anabaptist community was so riveting that I didn't WANT to see what was happening out there in the modern world.

I've been considering other eco-thinkers as well. Barbara Kingsolver, Daniel Quinn, various and sundry bloggers...

It occurs to me that among those of us in the environmentalist camp, there are many different points of view. Some think technology will save us, others think technology is our big problem. Some think the most important thing is eating locally while others are more concerned with consumption or oil or mass transit. As I've written before, I'm most worried that environmental responsibility will become only an upper-middle class progressive issue - a way to gain social capital in chic circles while average Americans roll their eyes and continue to buy meat for their kids contained growth hormones. Also: shit. The way I see this happening is by making green living affordable and (fairly) easy. I think it's key we not market it as a luxury, or greenwash the public into buying new stuff just because it's "natural."

What's a good name for those who buy at Big Box stores exclusively and eat mealy watermelons in Winter and go through two rolls of paper towels a week? If I'm progressive are they regressive? If I'm radical are they reactionary? Maybe complacent is a better label. Complacies? Not as good a dismissal as hippie is for me. I'll work on it...

But I digress. Here are some things I should mention quickly that have occured to me/just occured in the last two weeks:

1) Barbara Kingsolver makes a point in her Animal Vegetable Miracle Book that caused me to think: We (and by we, I mean me) get our underwear in a bunch over the price of organic food. I had a whole rant about how the farmer's market was too expensive. Still think it is. But Kingsolver points out that US citizens spend a far smaller percentage of their income on food than any other nation does. She claims that we're buying substandard food because it's cheaper and argues that it's worth an extra dollar or two to eat organic foods: you're helping out the small farmer, the local economy, getting more nutrients, a better taste, and you can rest assured there are no poisons in the food. Yep, she has a point.

2) But then, so does ZeFrank when he damns farmer's markets as the playgrounds of silly vacationers (this is all tongue in cheek, but still spot on):

3) Someone has stolen my composting worms off the porch! The shovel as well! I'm flabbergasted and quite sad. Think of all that good garden compost I lost, not to mention the wormies themselves. A pox on the thief!

4) My veggie plants are kicking butt! I still need to take pics of the garden, but my friend and I will be feasting come August!

More soon. I have recipes to share and rants to impose. I have a funny plumbing story and some haircare/armpit maintenance thoughts. I also have a good list of green bloggy news, but right now my book is calling to me...


Margaret D said...

i. love. ze frank! i couldn't love him any more if i tried.

Lea Maria said...

Oh no! Worm theft!

Also, the whole world (and when I say "the whole world," I mean me {obviously}) is wondering when you and I are going to start video blogging, ala ZeFrank and the Brothers Green.

The world (again: me) is also wondering when you will compile and seek to publish a book on being both thrifty and green.

Also, the world misses you.