The Grass Is Greener And So Am I

by Courtney Sirotin on July 27, 2012

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When I first started this blog I made a list of topics to reference on the days I can’t think of anything to write about. One item on that list said, “I’m Ashamed To Admit…” and it was going to be a series of posts wherein I come clean about certain embarrassing things. The idea was born out of this one particular thing I’ve been ashamed about for a long time, though I have plenty of material to add to the series if I ever pursue it.

Every time I’ve referenced that list of ideas I’ve skipped over the “Ashamed” series because I was just too embarrassed to publicly announce that thing I was hiding. However, now that my family has moved houses, that thing has been resolved and now its finally time for me to clear my conscious.

I am ashamed to admit…

Until July 1st, I didn’t recycle.

Maybe you think that’s an anticlimactic statement? If so, you are underestimating how awful I’ve felt about my wasteful ways for so long. There is no good justification for why I didn’t recycle, but the reason was financial more than anything. Cartersville didn’t offer a recycling program so if I had wanted to recycle I would have had to pay for it and/or go out of my way to bring my recyclables somewhere on my own. Smyrna, the town we live in now, has a recycling program and I get almost giddy when I get to add stuff to our very own blue recycling container!

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I always want to be “green” like so many people I know and respect and now I’m getting closer. I suppose I suffer from peer pressure, but in a good way.

Tangent: That last statement reminds me of this Freakonomics podcast I was listening to recently that referenced a study that showed that people are more influenced by what other people are doing than by anything else, including persuasive facts. The researchers measured the home energy usage of this particular community where one third of the community was exposed to a sign that read something like, “Reduce your energy use because it saves money.” Another third of the group saw a sign that said, “Reduce energy use to protect the environment for future generations.” The final third of the community saw a sign that simply said, “Your neighbors are taking measures to reduce their energy use and so should you.” As you can imagine, the third group reduced their energy usage the most.

So, yep, now I recycle. Other “green” things I’m doing include using cut-up old t-shirts in place of paper towels, cleaning my house with a vinegar and water spray and banning paper plates from our cupboards (a previous splurge Jay used to “require”).

Little by little, we’re coming along. Next up, I want to join a CSA for the Fall!

I know you wanted me to admit something juicer so if you’ve read this far, here’s the payoff: Sometimes, occasionally, I pee in the shower! Hahahahaha!

(Hey, I’m just trying to save water! Winking smile)

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

RUSS July 29, 2012 at 6:38 pm

OK Love, here it goes. As far as recycling, think about THIS “Cash Cow”. “You”, as the “Ashamed”, now PAY to Recycle I’m assuming. If not with just your property taxes with an additional charge. Most “Trash Pick Up Joints” charge extra for this “Feel Good” service. Most large Municipalities have a huge center to deal with all of the “Trash” that the aforementioned “Trash Pick Up Joints” bring in from your humble abode. IT’s ALL dumped in the same repositories! They sort it all anyway with a mass of mechanical and human sorting devices. THEY recycle EVERYTHING. With you putting it in your “Warm & Fuzzy Bin”, it SAVES THEM 1 short step in the process saving THEM money. AND YOU PAY EXTRA TO SAVE THEM MONEY! NOTHING is wasted. The plastics, metals, paper products & other items are sorted, then used to generate money by selling them to companies that Re-Use them to make their products. What is not sold is Burned to produce Heat which is the used to more than likely produce STEAM, which is then sold to local businesses for their Heating needs or to be used in turning Turbines to produce Electricity. ANOTHER income. Nothing is put in Landfills anymore that is not totally useless as in the Ash from the fires, and without doing further research I’m SURE they have found a product or business that can use it also. You go right ahead and pay them to make money so you have that “Warm & Fuzzy” “I’M NOW GREEN” feeling my cute little delusional recycler! GOD I feel better now! Did I use too many quotation marks?

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COURTNEY July 30, 2012 at 12:55 am

Actually, I think you came in one quotation mark shy of convincing me. 😉 Regardless, if what you say is true, I feel better about my years of not recycling in Cartersville because my trash was being recycled anyway. If what you are saying is not true, then I will feel happy that I am making a difference now. Either way, I’m gonna feel warm and fuzzy, Russ! You can’t stop me!

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DONNA July 30, 2012 at 10:17 am

I think probably one of the greenest things you are doing is living closer to Jay’s work and other resources. That is saving oil and reducung emissions. I think we should all do what we can to conserve energy. it is not one of my strong points, but when I think of my grandchildren it makes me want to do what I can to preserve the Earth. It definitely requires a group effort. I am proud of you for your thoughtfulness.

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