Green Backlash

I'm having dinner with the Muse tomorrow night. And I know she'll ask me, "What is one green thing you've done recently?"

I'll have to stop and think. I mean, I've gotten in a rut recently with my one green things. I've begun to justify the actions I take that aren't green as a result of the green habits I do take on. Let me be cliche', one step forward and two steps back. The pendulum of change keeps knocking me in the ass and pushing me in the wrong direction.

Diet coke has tempted its way back into my occasional drink of choice. "Medicinal," I explain to the heavens if no one else is around. Out of the corner of my eye I see the village in India though, with its water supply depleted by Coke. I rehearse the numbers; calories to make, can and distribute the soda compared to the energy calories in the soda. The numbers don't lie - I'm going to hell.

And yes, okay, since I'm already doomed, I'll admit it. I'm back on Starbucks too. Jeez. Is nothing sacred? Double tall lattes'. Put me in jail. They are delicious. I know. I met the tall Guatemalan God who advocates fair trade coffee beans without a middleman. He looked me square in the eye. And I've read about the bean farmers who can't get a fair price for their crops while our corporations grow richer. But, what can I say? Okay, I'll find fair trade coffee in the neighborhood if I'm going to continue to drink coffee. ButinthemeantimeI'mhavinglattes.

See what I mean. I've become petulant. Maybe it's the caffeine.

How are you doing with taking action on a green thing or two? Let me know. I need some momentum to move this backlash in the other direction. Hopefully before tomorrow night.


Anonymous said...

For me it is no more chocolate. To remind me why I did it, I posted a picture on my fridge of the children used in the slave labour trade for chocolate ingredients-keeps me on the straight and far lol


Laura said...

Truth be told, I avoid the regular grocery store like the plague. And so far, since it's out of sight, those processed foods that I was unaware consumed so many of my mouthfuls have been a non issue... phew!

El Frijol said...

Riding my bike instead of driving to school is my step forward. Two hot showers a day are my steps back, I guess.

Anonymous said...

I know this sounds bad to throw more money at the problem, but we have an espresso machine. And I loooovvve my espresso machine. We found fair trade, organic, shade grown, locally roasted coffee that gives back to the world. I make my espresso at home and it's better than Starbucks, and I don't feel guilty.

And the Coke thing? My husband loves Diet Coke, and it was a hard habit to break. I've never understood it myself, but I have other vices I'm sure. ; ) Just think of all the things it's doing to yourself. Haven't there been studies showing that Coke breaks down metal like battery acid or something?

Green Bean said...

It's funny. I'm a little like you, the longer I do this green thing, the more a few things creep back in - the occasional frozen pizza for the kids, not riding my bike as much as I should, letting the bathtub drain instead of hauling the buckets out to the plants.

In other ways, I'm alot better than I was. I never ever consider buying non-fair trade chocolate.

Theresa said...

For me, some things have become an easy habit (baking soda and peppermint drops for toothpaste, collecting shower warm up water for toilet-flushing) and others are still a chore to be avoided/excused (hanging the laundry to dry, driving less). I try to remember that life isn't static, it's dynamic, and I'm not going to be as enthusiastic about something all the time. But that could also just be another justification!

Anonymous said...

I'm with you Katrina, so understand what you're talking about. We do a lot, more than most. But that still doesn't justify not doing more. And sometimes I get green fatigue.

My partner keeps me on the straight-and-narrow. I try to remember that the occasional lapse doesn't signal the end of the world. I talk to my parents about what they're doing. I try to work out easier ways of doing the stuff I should do, so it feels less of a chore.

I'm helped by the fact our local cafe uses fair trade coffee!

What about writing to Starbucks - saying you're a lover of their coffee, but have a problem because it's not fair trade? The ideal is of course not to go there, but sometimes we can't do the ideal. And a bit of customer activism is better than nothing?

Kale for Sale said...

molly - A visual is a great idea. Thank you. I'm with you in saying no more. That's a lot easier than a cup of coffee every so often. If I'm having one cup, I'm having one cup every day. And thanks for the wake up around chocolate. I rarely eat it so I don't give it much thought.

fearlesschef - Give me five! That's fabulous. There's a whole other world of food that is happening outside of the stores, isn't there?

the bean - Ummm. That is a dilemma. I've got a step forward though - share your shower! BTW - That picture is quite clever.

melinda - Now there's an idea! One I'm not sure I need. But my mouth is watering. Home made lattes. It might be dangerous.

And yes, Coke has some quite horrible uses I've heard of and I hum as I pour it in a cup, making sure I get the last drop. It's sick. Thank you for the link. I didn't know that it washes out the good things in the body to build strong bones, etc.

green bean - I'm so glad you buy a frozen pizza sometimes. Thank you.

theresa - Baking soda and peppermint drops. That actually sounds good. Thanks for the reminder of balance. (What kind of peppermint drops? Peppermint oil drops?)

kathryn - It is so good to have a partner that cares too. The cute guy here is the one who hangs the clothes to dry and carries the pre-hot shower water to the garden. In that way we are able to do more than if we were on our own.

I love your idea about writing a letter to Starbucks. Why didn't I think of that? Thank you.

Theresa said...

The baking soda and peppermint drops is surprisingly good. I have a little shallow container (a jar lid) that I fill with baking soda, and then I put about 5-8 drops of peppermint essential oil in it and mix it all around. Then I just dab my moistened toothbrush in it and brush away - very refreshing! Plain baking soda works, but the peppermint in there makes it quite nice.

Oh, and I had a frozen pizza last night.

M said...

Yeah, I hear you, sometimes it seems so easy to be green and crunchy, which can make the other times sort of discouraging. Right now I can't think of the last time I had a day when I wasn't in a car. But I got a bunch of kale transplanted into the garden this weekend, and that felt like a down payment for being green this winter.

Anonymous said...

Late to the conversation, but it's timely as I was just thinking about it the other day. We've been doing really well all summer, but the busier we get this fall the easier it is to let a few things slide. Like coffee - instead of firing up my trusty percolator with organic fair trade shade grown (mouthful!) beans I've been buying crappy coffee from the cafe at work. Need to break that habit again.

And premade dips and hummus found their way back into the fridge when my dad came to town unexpectedly. I wanted to enjoy my time with him, and part of that was choosing not to cook everything from scratch. It was cheating, but sometimes balance is required, right? Or am I just deluding myself?

Kale for Sale said...

laura - You got it. That's exactly what I was saying but you did it so succinctly. My latest delusion -- the unbalance teaches me how to balance better so I don't get knocked off course so easily the next time.
Your so called cheating sounds pretty delicious. I love hummus.