Saturday, February 20, 2010

A post about Stuff

I know you are all waiting on the edges of your seats for the extra special post I promised for this weekend, but this is not it. The extra special post involves some things that are currently wet and I would like to have them dry before I take pictures. You'll have to wait until Monday, which is when I've scheduled it to appear (magic!).

Right now I would like to take some time to talk a little about Stuff. We all have it, lots and lots of it. Even those of us who do our best to keep it minimal have more stuff than we actually need. I get endlessly annoyed with all of the Stuff out there in the world, begging to be purchased. All of these things that are supposed to make our lives better, easier, more complete. I talk to some of my co-workers about this and they tend to agree. But then, booksellers are a thousand times smarter than everyone else and have no faults whatsoever. Ahem.

The product that always jumps first into my mind and annoys me more than any other product out there is The Swiffer. Can a product possibly get any more needless than a Swiffer? You replace a broom and a mop (perfectly sustainable and long-lasting, cheap tools) with something plastic, disposable, and expensive. Yeah, ok, the refills are cheap (I'm guessing here, I've never bought any), but holy crap! you don't need it! And you have to keep buying them. Over and over and over again.

I recently saw some products on Etsy for reusable Swiffer heads. A step in the right direction? I almost bought some for my mother. Maybe I will.

So basically, when people talk to me about the problems with American Culture, the first thing I think of is a Swiffer. I know there are worse things, but this a pretty good metaphor for what's wrong with the developed world.

This brings me to an important point. The point, actually, of this post. I'm going to be writing a few posts about the wasteful everyday items we use, well, everyday. The Logger was complaining about the lack of paper towels in this house the other day when I reminded him that I don't use anything disposable (except toilet paper), so we don't have any. Sorry. You'll have to use those cleaning rags after all. And to kick off this little series of posts, I'll start with the Super, Extra-Special, Weekend post I promised you. Monday is the new Sunday, so look or it then!

I end this little post with my favorite green tip:
Not all modern inventions are bad. Washing machines are awesome (cold water people, cold water). But seriously, who needs a dryer when you live in the most beautiful, green place all summer...

and you've got a rockin wood stove all winter.

PS- I started a new book! Check it out in the left hand column!

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