Tuesday, May 13, 2008

the three R's

For some reason, I feel like recent eco-obsession is a second time coming. I vividly remember being in 3rd grade and knowing a lot about "being green". My best friend Megan and I even formed a club called Earth Talk. We had a theme song, too! Imagine my nine-year-old pipes belting this out:

Earth Talk! E-E-E-Earth Talk!

That's all I remember of the song. I also remember we were obsessed with the book 365 Things Kids Can Do to Save the Planet. We used it to find facts and write a letter to the editor, which was published in the local paper. A few days later, a really nice old lady sent us a book she'd written about preserving Florida. We never read the book - it was written for adults and totally boring - but it was a really sweet gesture. I can't wait to be an old lady who reads the letters to the editors and peddles copies of my books to unsuspecting nine year olds.

As co-presidents, secretaries and treasurers of Earth Talk, Megan and I would hold club meetings. We'd think up ways to recruit new members and brainstorm ways to harass our parents into recycling. I also deemed my big sister, Janine, unfit for the club because when we saw a dead raccoon on the side of the road she didn't cry! No member of Earth Talk would treat the tragic loss of one of Earth's creatures with such insignificance. I think I got in trouble for not letting her join. Maybe we should've spent time writing more song lyrics instead.

So, lately, with recent green-craze, I can't help but think the recent campaign for recycling has been recycled. I feel like I've heard this all before, only, now it's a lot scarier because I can read and comprehend those adult books. And in the spirit of recycling, I've tried to revamp the three R's in my life.

Reduce - I create a lot of trash with my bag lunches. So I switched to a lunch box (a really ugly, bright red monstrosity I got free for filing my taxes with Jackson Hewitt) and I pack my sandwich in a tupperware container. I also started carrying the Nalgene I got at Montreat instead of throwing out a water bottle every day.

Reuse - My new favorite thing are my recycled bags from Publix. They're 99 cents and hold four times the amount of a plastic bag. I also bought a gigantic blue bag from IKEA that will hold over fifty pounds. It cost 59 cents. IKEA actually makes you buy your bag or bring your own. They don't give you plastic ones for free. This idea, I love.

Recycle - I do recycle! My condo is one of the only in the area that offers recycling. I also recycle paper like crazy at work. If the kids do one side of the worksheet without wrinkling too many edges, it goes right back through the printer again for round two.

I'm glad for my eco reunion. It's like reconnecting with an old, green friend. Have you re-examined the three R's yet?

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