Thursday, November 24, 2011

Say NO to Consumerism and Support Buy Nothing Day

Happy Thanksgiving 2011!  Thanksgiving is a time to spend with your family and friends to eat a wonderful meal and give thanks to the Native Americans for helping the early settlers survive in the North American harsh lands.  However, Thanksgiving holiday has turned into not only a time to give thanks, but a time to spend a lot of money on stuff.  Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving and is known for being the number one day of the year that has the best deals.  People wait in line for hours or even days to snag these deals, but what for?  Do we really need to buy a bunch of stuff we don’t really need?

Well, I hope after eating all that turkey you are ready to fall asleep because that is exactly what you should do!  Instead of going shopping on Black Friday, say no to consumerism and support Buy Nothing DayBuy Nothing Day is a day to “unshop, unspend, and unwind.”   Just relax and do nothing for yourself or the economy for the day.  All the ads may say that these are the “lowest prices of the year and you cannot miss out on these steals!” but why give in?  By supporting Buy Nothing Day, you will be saving many resources that must be extracted to produce stuff and you will also be saving a lot of money since you won’t be tempted into buying these “amazing deals.”  Buy Nothing Day is not about changing your lifestyle for just one day, it’s about making a commitment for one day to hopefully open your eyes to make smarter choices for your future consumption choices.  I know this may be hard, so if you can’t ultimately support Buy Nothing Day, then try cutting back on buying only the things you need.  This will still save excess resources and some money in your wallet.  Visit the Buy Nothing Day website to find out more information. 

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Say NO to Sunflower Seeds

When you’re out, a common snack or a way to stay busy is to eat sunflower seeds.  Now with sunflower seeds, the only part you eat is the inside and then you’re left with a broken shell covered in your nasty saliva.  The shells become very messy and a common way to containing them is by spitting them into an empty water bottle.  Whether you’re a baseball player eating seeds in the dugout or eating seeds in a car while on a road trip, avoid spitting the seeds into a bottle.  Or you can simply say NO to sunflower seeds. 

Sunflower seeds have little nutritional value, so getting rid of them in your diet will not severely affect you.  It may even help you because there is a large amount of salt on the shells of the seeds that provide an excess amount of sodium in your diet.  Also, you will be saving money by not buying them.  By saying NO to sunflower seeds will reduce the amount of pollution created during the production of sunflower seeds and it will also reduce the amount of waste generated by the shells.  When the shells are thrown in empty plastic bottles, they will not be able to decompose for hundreds of thousands of years until the plastic bottle decomposes.  This creates a build up in landfills that create a large amount of methane gas.  Sunflower seeds are also a hassle to clean up in public areas where they are thrown on the ground and can eventually cost taxpayers a lot to clean up the litter.  

I understand that eliminating the consumption of sunflower seeds may be difficult, therefore you can reduce the amount you eat maybe find a reusable brown paper bag to spit them in.  That way the shells can biodegrade at a faster rate than if they were spit into a plastic bottle.  If you choose to eliminate eating sunflower seeds and you are craving a snack, try eating a healthier alternative that does not create any waste.  Ex: Apples (and be sure you eat the ENTIRE apple)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Half vs Full Flashcards

There are many methods when it comes to studying for a test.  Some people rewrite their notes, type out study guides, or wastefully make flashcards.  For some people making flashcards are an extremely helpful study technique and that's awesome!  However, making flashcards also wastes a lot of paper.  More specifically, flashcards are used to typically for remembering definitions with one vocab word per card...  ONE!  This technique becomes an extreme waste of paper because there is a lot of empty space on the notecard, therefore excess amounts of paper are being wasted.  Next time you want to make flashcards, try cutting them in half or in fourths (depending on how much information you are writing on them).

Cutting the notecards in half will reduce the amount of paper you waste because you aren't wasting as much plain space as before.  If your information is small, you can even cut your notecards into fourths and this will reduce your notecard consumption even more!  The production of notecards can be costly because the paper is much thicker than a normal piece of paper.  This will reduce the pollution produced in the destruction of forests for paper pulp, carbon emitted during the production and transportation of the item, and the actual cost of buying the notecards from your wallet.  Since you will be using less flashcards you will save a lot money because you won't have to buy them as frequently.  And don't forget the EGOlogical tip to write small.