For a split second, I had to decide: to put the damp towels from the wash machine into the dryer, or to hang them up to dry. I could hear Prad’s admonitions, I knew full well what would be best. The temptation was too great, though, the open door of the dryer calling me to just dump the damn things in there. And guess what, I went for the easy solution, too hurried I felt to walk the extra twenty feet to the next door mechanical room with our makeshift drying rack. What difference would one hour in the dryer make?
Archive for April, 2007
Posted in Green Girl Wannabe, tagged confession, eco-sins, ecopsychology, environment, grocery shopping, guilt, human behavior, plastic bags, reusable bags, sustainability, Whole Foods on April 23, 2007| Leave a Comment »
What will it take for me to remember to bring the reusable bags to Whole Foods? That one is a real hard one. On my way back from Foothill, I decided to swing by Whole Foods to do some last minute grocery shopping, just to be efficient. Of course, the bags were not in the car. While waiting in line at the checkout counter, the magazine cover dares me with its headline, “In 93 years, half of the earth species will be instinct”. Now I feel really guilty. The clerk seems oblivious to my internal battle. And the bagger does not realize the effect of his “Paper or plastic”, on my already fragile mental state. To assuage my guilt, I instruct him to please use only one plastic bag. I will carry the eggs and the loaf of bread. I quickly scan the crowd , secretly hoping to find other sinners like me, without the glorious green bags in hand.
Charlotte asked me to spend the day with her in San Francisco. She wants to see the Vivienne Westwood exhibit at the De Young, and then go shopping to H&M, with lunch in between. How could I possibly refuse? a day with my dear daughter all to myself. Plus, H&M is one of my favorite stores anyway. Once in the store, I am seized with a frenetic urge I know all too well. Gone my resolutions to no longer consume, my determination to boycot slave labor. Nothing is left, except guilt, that keeps nagging at me whenever I grab yet another dress, another cute top, another deal too good to pass up. The whole experience is a mixed bag of excitement, and disappointment. I am disappointed with myself for not being stronger, for giving in, once again. The spectacle of my other fellow shoppers, all shopping like mad, just like me, transport me for a minute in a place I would rather ignore. The earth has become dark, and a huge landfill with mountains of discarded clothes, that leave no more room for us to be and breathe. Charlotte calls me, she has found a white dress she wants me to look at. I push the fleeting image of doom into the recesses of my thinking brain. Charlotte and I are on a mission and nothing will stop us.
Filled with motherly love, I woke up this morning determined to dazzle Catherine with a breakfast extavaganza. Nothing spared. My green conscience, Prad that is, had not woken up yet, but I could hear his voice. Why are you making so much? She never has time to eat her breakfast. Why are you wasting? Still, I had to do it. One English muffin, both halves, toasted. A full cup of hot chocolate milk. An orange from our garden, cut up nicely. Goat cheese from France, it’s made near my grandmother’s village, so I can’t resist. Smoked salmon. Mixed berry jam, and butter. I was pleased with my efforts. It all looked nice on the table. Waiting for my daughter to show up and enjoy. Of course, she showed up at the last minute, pushing the two muffin halves and half of the orange onto a plate, for her to eat in the car. Upon my return, I felt guilty about the cup of chocolate milk, untouched, daring me at the center of the table. The thought brushed me, of drinking it, but then, I had used whole milk, and my strict diet won’t allow. The kitchen sink became the scene of yet another crime, the dumping of a whole cup of chocolate milk. Not good. I started thinking of the cows, eating the corn, and the corn crops depleting the earth, and of the slave labor used to harvest the sugar and the cocoa. Still, I found comfort in the organic orange from our garden. How much more green can you get?
It is not good to dispose of waste in the garbage disposal, anymore. I heard it from my friend Pauline, several months ago. Pauline is an authority in the field of environmental education at University of Hawaii. All that organic stuff ends up in the water stream where it releases a bunch of nasty compounds that are not good for the environment. Prad read an article about it this week, and decided we (that’s me, him, and our four kids) should all take action, and put all our waste into the garbage until we get a composter. I did it a few times, until today. Those few mango peels couldn’t possibly do too much damage, and so I went ahead and grinded them. Small crime, nobody will know, until now. I still haven’t figured out this compulsion I have of going through with these small things I know are bad for this earth.