Friday, March 21, 2008

McDowell is Going Green

What with the end of the world coming to fruition, and the end of days upon us, I've taken to doing a little bit here and there for the environment.

1) We now recycle all cardboard, glass, metal, and plastic.

Whereas before we would simply throw away these materials, living in Westchester has afforded us with a unique opportunity to simply place them in a separate trashcan which is picked up once a week. We don't sort them, which makes it very easy to do something right for the world. Yovanoff told me he read that there was a study that said the true barrier to voluntary recycling is the EXTRA step people must take, to go out of their way to recycle. I find that humbling and true, and I am ashamed of the years before when it was such an inconvenience to GO to a recycling station, or separate my materials, etc. Here in New York, they just come and get it, it's that easy and makes one feel a little better about our future.

2) I print out a lot of crap at work, hundreds of pages sometimes, and it all goes to recycling afterwards, too.

It's such a good thing that they have recycling bins for white paper, as we produce a lot of it. Shame, though, about the segregation.

3) I've brought in a coffee mug so I don't waste anymore paper cups.

I drink a lot of coffee or water during the day, and before I would generally use different cups all the time, mostly because I'm a dolt, but mostly because I'm lazy. This way, I reuse the same mug (my awesome black Gotham Comedy Club mug provided to me by Heather) and don't waste all those paper cups.

4) Transportation Choices

We just bought a Prius, which should save us some dough and waste less gas, but also daily I take the Metro-North commuter train into Grand Central. It's an easy 35minute ride, then a 5 minute subway ride to Union Square, and a little walk to my office. I hardy take cabs, so the only car I am every really in is our new Prius. I hate to take credit for something that I am basically forced to do every day (it's the only way into town without driving, which would just be a headache anyway), but it's noteworthy.

5) No more rubber worms when fishing.

Sometimes, not all the time, I lose my rubber/plastic worms/grubs when fishing for bass. Just as often I find discarded lost lures in the sand and mud of lakes and rivers and I'd always wondered what happens when a fish is just too big to land, and he escapes with your fake worm. Field and Stream tells me that what happens to those worms is, they get eaten. A lot. People are starting to find these plastic worms in the guts of dead fish, and the health of entire ecosystems is at risk because of the small lumps of rubber that fall to the bottom of the lake and eventually make their way into the food chain.

6) How about a garden?

With warmer weather on the way, we're planning to get a vegetable garden going. This will provide more opportunity to mulch or compost (I'm always looking for reasons to mulch and compost) but also reduce our vegetable bills, but ALSO limit the carbon footprint from the farming and transportation that go into our groceries. I'm afraid of rabbits and raccoons eating my garden veggies, and look forward to seeing them on the field of battle.

So I'm no hero, I just like hitting people on the head. I figure it's all worth doing, because up until now, I feel like all I've ever done is take and take from this world, so maybe it's time to do a little something to make the world better. At least until rapture, which is hopefully soon, because I look forward to taking out some zombies.


Bryan said...

Congratulations, especially on the new Prius. Was it in Boulder or in Brooklyn that you had to sort the recycling yourself? In Maine, you can toss a cereal box, old baseball cleats, twenty pounds of junkmail and an aborted fetus in a green bin, leave it at the end of the driveway, and trust that it all becomes soy milk and newborn kittens. At least, I think that's how it works.

Lucy said...

Good post.