We have always held to the hope,
the conviction that there is a better life,
a better world,
beyond the horizon.
-Franklin Delano Roosevelt
I was culling my pictures to free up some space on my hard drive and found my shots of those first shoots of spring: the wonderful, wonderful crocuses, first splashes of color against a desolate landscape. DATED MARCH 28.
Three days later, I have shots of fully grown daffodils; five days after that, the bush beneath my kitchen window is captured fully exploding into bloom.
I AM VERY VERY EXCITED. The countdown begins…
This story has been all over the green blogosphere lately, but in case you missed it, Americans are being taken to task for their toilet paper use:
The tenderness of the delicate American buttock is causing more environmental devastation than the country’s love of gas-guzzling cars, fast food or McMansions, according to green campaigners. At fault, they say, is the US public’s insistence on extra-soft, quilted and multi-ply products when they use the bathroom.
-(from The Guardian)
More than 98% of the toilet paper sold in this country originates in virgin forests, as opposed to abroad, which purchases up to 40% recycled product.
I’m sort of shocked that this is such a hot issue; it’s old news to me. At the risk of “too much information”, I buy Marcal, which is 100% recycled paper. I have pretty much always bought Marcal because it’s cheaper and they often print coupons in the Sunday paper, making it super-cheap. Recently, though, they’ve changed the packaging to highlight how buying their product helps to “Save 1 Million Trees”, complete with background photo of trees and fields of flowers; the new packaging costs a dollar more than it used to, even though the product inside has stayed the same. I guess that’s the cost of progress.
I have been nagging Jeff to build me a cold frame (as promised) to extend my growing season, and Chelsea Green has helpfully published a tutorial on how to do just that: here’s Part One and Part Two. For my part, I have helpfully printed out these posts and taped them to the bathroom mirror.
Speaking of nagging, Unclutterer has unearthed the perfect job for me: professional nagger. Options include “daily nag, a power nag, an on-going nag, a week-long nag, and a community nag.” Excellent! Please keep me in mind for all your nagging needs.
Is Facebook hurting our brains? I’ve been reading an interesting book titled Endangered Minds: Why Children Don’t Think And What We Can Do About It, which sets forth the theory that childhood exposure to TV and other electronic media effectively “rewires” the way the brain develops, at the cost of higher-level cognition.
Similarly, Baroness Greenfield, an Oxford University neuroscientist, feels that sites such as Facebook and Twitter rewire youth, shortening attention spans, encouraging instant gratification and making them more self-centered.
‘We know how small babies need constant reassurance that they exist,’ she told the Mail yesterday.
‘My fear is that these technologies are infantilising the brain into the state of small children who are attracted by buzzing noises and bright lights, who have a small attention span and who live for the moment.’
Last year I tentatively wrote my township suggesting they use some public lands for community gardens. I never heard anything back, but after reading this comprehensive article on starting a community garden, my resolve is renewed. This site is an incredible wealth of information; check it out.
Or, if you’re really lucky, you’ll find your area already has a community garden after searching the national database.
Wondering where you can recycle your electronic whotsits? According to Best Buy,
Now you can bring almost everything from TVs and computers to DVD players and more to any U.S. Best Buy store, and we’ll recycle it. Best Buy does not charge a fee for recycling most consumer electronics. However, we do charge $10 for TVs 32″ and under, CRTs, monitors and laptops, which is offset with a $10 Gift Card.
Note that we currently cannot accept TVs greater than 32″ or external/internal hard drives which need to be removed before recycling laptops and desktops.
We accept up to two items per household per day.
This week’s call to action: the Jeans for Teens campaign. According to the National Coalition for the Homeless, the majority of homeless and runaway youth are between the ages of 15 and 17. Raise awareness of youth homelessness, help clothe homeless teens, and recycle your gently used jeans by taking them to an Aeropostale store near you.
Falling under the “I just can’t resist” category this week:
- Man Pleads No Contest to Sex With Car Wash Vacuum.
- Man charged with felony “sudden snatching” after stealing a laptop to check Facebook.
- Man Catches 3 Foot Rat. Quote: “I did it, I caught a rat the size of a cat!” Where’s Dr. Seuss when you need him?
That’s it for this week… What good stories did you see?