Things I wish people would stop making and wearing and buying…
In no particular order:
I.) Offensive T-shirt, buttons/pins, and bumper stickers. You don’t need to wear your heart on your sleeve people. Get a blog! Hahaha… Oh, the irony. But seriously, I have seen too many men wearing the “5-dollar foot-long” t-shirt with the downward facing arrow, especially the one I saw who was carrying a baby.
I know this is a dangerously censoring thing to say, and I definitely believe everyone has the right to express themselves. But reading… is both an active and passive act. To read my blog, you have to devote some amount of time, attention, and energy. (So, I thank you in advance for your contribution.) But these walking (and driving) billboards are brief for a reason (besides demonstrating how witty the writers were); They are read so quickly and passively that the reader is not really given the option (That’s why advertisers utilize catch phrases so frequently)… and sure, they’re often cute and entertaining. But guys, save your “Five-dollar foot-long” t-shirts for your fantasy football league sausage-fests. In terms of getting laid, a higher proportion of women will be fooled into thinking you are worthy of jumping into the sack with if you don’t force that spurious claim in their faces.
II.) Speaking of false advertising: Butt enhancers (i.e. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d4EvVErNhVE&feature=player_embedded#!). Unless you have a medical condition which requires more than your god-given cushion, what the hell are you thinking? Isn’t it bad enough that we have allowed the fashion community to transform us from a nation that was burning our bras to one that is literally taping our bosoms together for better cleavage as if we were Marie Antoinette? (That was the 18th century, ladies!) Now women want to apply the same sort of false advertisement that push-up bras enable to our backsides? Ladies, if you want to look better in jeans, hit the gym. You reap what you sow, and I’ll be honest- I need to do butt crunches just as much as most gals in this livin’ large country… I’m still not padding my panties!
III.) New, new, new… EVERYTHING: computers, cell phones, mp3 players… yes, technology seems to be snowballing forward at an amazing rate, and we all want to experience the latest and greatest. But have we ever created so much new waste so quickly before? In a time when every major company is purporting to be green and eco-friendly in their new productions, they aren’t spending nearly as many resources facilitating the disposal of their old products.
I know I can only postpone our old TV from being replaced by a flat-screen for so long… (It’s a space issue more than a aesthetic or technological one). But why aren’t we making computers that can be upgraded rather than replaced? Why are cell phone carriers refusing to update software for certain smart/android phones? Because then we wouldn’t have to front the cost of their R & D (research and design) for the new replacement product they’re going to sell us… We all see the viscous cycle. We just don’t want to be the last kid on the block who doesn’t have the new toy.
If you are updating your appliances for energy efficiency, kudos to you. But please think twice before dumping that ivory refrigerator on the curb simply to replace it with a stainless steel one that has the same guts inside. If you feel the need to throw your money away just to make sure it matches you new stainless steel stove, microwave, and dishwasher, at least try to take as much time finding a new home for your old appliances as you do shopping for your new ones. Yeah, it’s a bitch to do this. Weirdos from Craigslist can be more hassle than it is seems it’s worth… But think about this- If you were born today, by the time you were grown to age you are now, how would you expect the world to look? How would you want the world to look? How can you help make that happen?
I know, I know, you can’t do it all yourself… and there are so many selfish people not doing their part… Well, I really, really want to try. Won’t you help me?
Here are some resources I found Googling. I didn’t dig hard. These are just the surface sites. So, I’m sure there are more out there for specific geographical regions and certain household items (Oh, and -most people have heard by now- you can even donate your old unwanted car). Don’t forget, many places offer tax-deductible donation forms.
Habitat for Humanity: http://www.habitat.org/env/restores.aspx
And before you go to these lengths, why not think about the people you know? Do you have a son, daughter, brother, sister, niece, nephew, aunt, uncle, friend, neighbor, coworker… (ok, I’ll stop, you get it) who is just moving into their first apartment; Who is downgrading to a smaller home after loosing theirs; Who has a washing machine that’s leaking or a toaster that catches the bread on fire, when you have one you’re throwing away?
Alright… I’m sure this list is going to grow… and I welcome you to add to it. I’m going to go eat some cheese.