I have long been interested in the eco friendly dance through time and space but have been sedately riding along on the back end of a donkey for some time. Yes, stuck in this state of unconscious auto-bot where I haven’t made all of that many changes to my “be kind to your mother earth” lifestyle. After volunteering at the Projecting Film festival, it became a little harder to sit about doing what I do, which isn’t bad, but isn’t good either.
Recently, I have been trying to wean myself off of disposable items, which I am finding to be really challenging. I mean, I am falling down spectacularly. For example, I vowed I was no longer going to purchase granola bars from the store, that I would from this point on, henceforth, make my own granola-ee snacks. Ta da! Look at me go! Except probably a few weeks later I caved because Nester’s had a sale for a really friggin good price. Like, a price you would never see at one of the most overpriced super markets that claims to have unbeatable prices. Seriously, there’s some sort of demented sign like that in their window. Maybe they mean on Main Street from 29th until about 14th where there is an equally overpriced IGA. But I digress. I went into Nester’s because they sell my favorite Hummus/Humous/Houmus of late (also heavily packaged) and they said, “Leanna, you really really like us. You can’t make anything resembling us this quickly, this accurately, with a perfect blend of chocolate, peanut butter and chewiness. You simply cannot accomplish this feat right here and now if ever. There are no ovens or recipes availab…..”. You can see why I bought them. They simply wouldn’t give it a rest, and man, they were a chatty bunch of evil bitches.
Other ways in which I have not accomplished what I wanted after seeing the Clean Bin Project..diet pop addiction. Yes, diet pop addiction. I don’t drink it as much as I used to, and it’s something that I never ever did for my whole life basically, and then 3 years ago, I suddenly went utterly mad and decided that, as I was doing Weight Watcher’s, I needed something else to replace the empty calories of vitamin, nutrient rich juices (don’t drink your lunch, you know) so diet pop it was. This was supposed to be a treat, something fun to mix it up, while my 98% beverage consumption consisted of water. I didn’t ever intend to go there, but Crystal Lite was my gateway drug, so diet soda wasn’t far behind. I’ve tried to quit on a number of occasions, with success, but something about that aspartame, that depression, anxiety inducing fabrication that goes against nature and hormonal balance, kept luring me back in. Oh, Dr. Pepper, you sick and twisted physician, you are not a healer, no, but an illness making bastard. Delicious ailments! And so slowly but surely, my water consumption decreased and my pop bottle collection rivaled Imelda Marcos and her shoes.
Aside from the health reasons, there is the also apparent hypocrisy of participating in powerful and immoral multinational corporations when I Run to End Poverty and belong to Fair Trade Vancouver, etc etc. I know these things, yet I have continued. However, after seeing “Blue Gold” yesterday, I simply can’t. After being smacked upside the head,slapped upon the face and punched in the gut metaphorically, it’s hard to blindly meander into a store and say yes with my dollars, no matter what my reasons.
I think before I give up granola bars, I am out and out saying enough is enough to soda GIANTS like Coca Cola who fill the mouths of nations in Africa, the underdeveloped, so-called 3rd world nations. What everyone needs is clean, non-bottled drinking and bathing water. Not fucking brown syrup. Oh, to swim in the sea of a once prescribed Cocaine beverage known now as Coke. Coke is it, “3rd world”! Coke literally IS it, because you can’t afford the water.
So yeah, capital H hypocrite. I am not alone, but the jumping off of buildings because everyone else is doing it rule applies here. Idling in one’s car until the gas is gone without going anywhere…that is a bad decision. And so is participating passively in corruption. Especially when you know people are getting shot for standing up to these “people with rights too (aka corporations)” Killed, beaten, sued..oh SLAPP suits!
What can I do? Whatever can I do? This makes me want to cry and chew upon pillows. First off, on a personal level, there are many ways I can return to to distract me from consuming things in an attempt to dull my anxiety or fill a void. I can go for a run, I can write a blog post, I can jump around in my room shouting obscenities, giggling incessantly, dancing triumphantly. I don’t need those things. My silly mind is just being impetuous.
What have I added to my laundry list, if inconsistently:
1. I carry a hand towel , a cloth napkin, cutlery, and a pair of chopsticks, though I haven’t brought this up to 100%, I’m persisting and punching through my forgetfullness.
2. If I know I’m going to get take out food, I bring Ziploc containers with me to store to put the food in and put it in a cloth bag. I am at about a 40% success rate on this, but now that I’ve publically non-publically said this, I’m going for 100%
3. I occasionally carry food with me, so I don’t have to buy it. I used to be so good at this, but bad habits die hard, and just when you think they’re dead, they turn out to be the undead Zombie habits. I beat them with shovels when I remember. Otherwise they’ve continued to gnaw holes in my brain with their Coke Zero teeth and lapped it up with Dentyne fire cinnamon gum tongues. It’s tasty gross.
4. Turning the shower on and off for soaking, lathering, then rinsing.
5. Eating and drinking Fair Trade stuffs more. Clearly colas don’t fit into this group, but they are going bye bye, have gone bye bye, already.
6. I am going to as many sustainability things as I can find and spreading the word where and when I can. I am surprised more people haven’t defriended me on facebook. I suppose it’s because they aren’t noticing or paying attention to my litany of “suggestions for a better life.”
7. Volunteering my time for causes I believe in and arming myself with guns of knowledge.
8. Walking more, busing less, and eventually, back to the biking I go.
9. Only using fabric bags for grocery shopping. I bring small plastic for bulk goods.
And that leads me to where I want to go:
1. Transitioning away from any packaged anything that I can’t re-use or recycle readily, such as shampoo, cleaners, toothpaste, grocery store items, restaurant packaging, etc etc etc. So yes, I am going to make a solid effort to shift away from the bulk of prepackaging. It is a work in progress, and a pretty slow one at that.
2. Riding my bike. As often as possible.
3. Growing more food. And if not growing it, local farm marketing I will go. That’s more likely for the rest of this year.
4. Paying more attention to where food is coming from when I do get something packaged when it is easy to recycle.
5. Find out where to recycle things like Almond Milk tetra packs that I can’t put in the regular recycling.
And we’ll leave it at that for now, because those things alone are major, mega life alterning choices for me. And all I can do is, do or do not, there is no try, thank-you Yoda:)
Laundry List, OUT!