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Pickle Me This

February 27, 2007

A Hardheaded Woman

When I proclaimed I would never be brainwashed into a cult, it became clear that there is nothing like obstinacy to make other people irate. Though no doubt I was right, and perhaps Stuart was just short on sleep or in need of a feed, he was made furious by my nerve. That I would never anything drove him to “Hah! I’ll show you.” He never did, of course and I remain free of any cult-like associations to this day.

But I understand what drove Stuart (beyond generic grumpiness). Any person who dares to plant her foot on the ground and say “I will never…” makes one want to cover the world for exceptions, the one circumstance in which that person will. Particularly if one is bossy and a mite controlling (like myself)– to have another escape your limits and plant their foot out there all of their own accord is a wee bit rankling. Especially if the foot-planter is just as hardheaded, which she would have to be in order to say “I will never…”.

The foot planter who’s been driving me mad of late is the Toronto woman who is aiming to produce no garbage. She is blogging about it here. Why, you might wonder, would such a noble endeavour bother anyone? For the reasons I’ve outlined above, I think, but (wait!) there are problems with the plan. First– that they use whatever garbage they do produce as material to make art from (the one example I remember is collages made from the stickers on fruit) and give to their friends. I don’t know. Garbage made into art is still garbage, usually, unless you are really good at art. Basically they just pass their crap onto someone else who can’t throw it out either because it was given under the guise of a “gift”. Second– it’s not so much that they’re producing no garbage, but rather they’re opting not to take it home with them. Living in society you are part of an entire system that produces waste, whether or not you can see it yourself. And so it’s sort of narrow-minded to pat yourself on the back for refusing a napkin for your muffin at the coffee shop (for example) when the napkin is obviously there and you’re supporting the establishment that will give yours out to someone next in line.

I see the value in what these people are doing as a statement. She just recently managed to go 31 days garbage-free. It is excellent that they are raising awareness about the stupid amounts of waste we produce, and the problem of over-packaging. Many of their waste-reduction tips are probably quite valuable to the average person. But still, I’m annoyed. Hah, I’ll show them.

I think I am being difficult (short on sleep and feed, I suppose).

Update: I do wish to affirm that the annoyingness cited in this post is mainly my own. A response to my kvetching is here and sensible.

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